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Shilling for GM and Chrysler = “Grassroots Populism”


The New York Times Opinionator has a round-up of all-things-Santelli, which links to this analysis from David Sirota:

Along the lines of Cole, Sirota frames the debate as one between market populism (Santelli) and grassroots populism ([Lansing, Michigan mayor Virg] Bernero):

After watching these two clips, the question is the same question that’s always been at the heart of economic politics: Which side are you on? And the answer, if you look at the hard data, is that most Americans are Grassroots Populists: those who think Wall Street and the government are colluding to rip off taxpayers, and who think the crumbs of aid for so-called “losers” that Santelli is ragging on is way too small — not way too much.

The idea that Virg Bernero represents some sort of “grassroots populism” is ridiculous. He is a prominent advocate for never-ending transfers of taxpayer wealth into the sucking maws of two giant bankrupt corporations, GM and Chrysler — transfers which ensure that their shareholders, bondholders and executives are shielded from the full consequences of the risks they took, and that their retirees are guaranteed better benefits than most American workers enjoy.


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