Friday, January 29, 2016

The Democratic Party establishment

From Robert Reich
San Francisco, CA ·

Last night on Chris Hayes MSNBC show, Chris asked me if there’s a “Democratic establishment.”

Of course there is. It’s comprised of current and former Wall Street executives who make massive campaign donations to Democrats (some of whom have served in the Clinton and Obama administrations and then returned to the Street); hedge-fund partners who make even larger contributions; moguls from large high-tech corporations and entertainment companies who both contribute directly and also “bundle” contributions from their friends; and major Washington lobbyists and lawyers who focus their bundling and their political activities on Democrats (half of all retired Democratic members of Congress in recent years have become Washington lobbyists).

The Democratic establishment is slightly more liberal than the Republican establishment, but their world views are not wildly dissimilar. After all, they have similar large homes in Westchester or Bethesda; they frequent the same vacation spots in the Hamptons or the Vineyard; attend many of the same charitable balls and dinners; serve on many of the same corporate and nonprofit boards; go to the same conclaves, such as Davos; travel in similar private jets; and are invited by presidents (Republican or Democratic, depending on who they’ve supported) to attend similar White House parties and receptions, and to serve on similar presidential commissions and advisory boards.

So the Democratic establishment sees the world much as the Republican establishment sees it: a system of privilege and power, to which they’re entitled because of their superior intelligence and ambition. And they view the vast and widening inequities of income, wealth, and power in America as natural and inevitable and, ultimately, just.

What do you think? Am I being too harsh?

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