The Campaign Spot

Everybody’s Ideological Except Me!

Anthony Dick’s piece on the home page, about a new wave of pragmatists who “do not recognize, or else they refuse to acknowledge, their own ideological underpinnings,” is worth a read. Dick’s piece focuses on those who see Obama and his team as delightfully free of any ideological inclination, but I’ll throw another example onto the pile, two recent comments from Barney Frank:

“It would be one thing to have a company collapse at a time of great prosperity when the people who lost their jobs could find other jobs, when the [suppliers] who couldn’t sell to Chrysler could sell to somebody else. At this point, you are talking about a very weakened patient, and slapping that weakened patient around in the interest of proving some economic theory would cause even more damage.”

“A push for green cars is very much a part of what we’re involved in. We don’t think that’s politics.”

If you oppose giving taxpayer money to auto companies that have been slow to adapt to a changing marketplace, a labor union unwilling to recognize that its wages and pensions make the company less competitive, and executives who spend money on unnecessary luxuries like corporate jets, you’re just interested in “proving some economic theory.” But if you want politicians to tell automakers what kind of cars they should make, even if the company doesn’t think consumers will buy them, “that’s not politics.”


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