No Koch, Pepsi

Cheeseburger with that whine? I know, I know, piling on here. But I will stoop to new lows for lulz,

We can have some fun with billionaire Charles Koch’s Perkinsesque cri de coeur about attacks on him, his political giving and his “vision for a free society” as he puts it. But it is in line with, part of, the Perkinsonian vision of contemporary American political economy in which the extremely powerful nonetheless feel embattled and threatened. I see it as part of the larger story I wrote about here as the “brittle grip.”

I first started noticing this when I saw several years ago that many of the wealthiest people in the country, especially people in financial services, not only didn’t support Obama (not terribly surprising) but had a real and palpable sense that he was out to get them. This was hard to reconcile with the fact that Obama, along with President Bush, had pushed through a series of very unpopular laws and programs and fixes that had not only stabilized global capitalism, saved Wall Street but saved the personal fortunes (and perhaps even the personal liberty) of the people who were turning so acidly against him. Indeed, through the critical years of 2009, 10 and 11 he was serving as what amounted to Wall Street’s personal heat shield, absorbing as political damage the public revulsion at the bailout policies that had kept Wall Street whole.Surprisingly enough, I would imagine it is only liberals that are empathetic to the overclass, because hating on the rich is really a distinction without difference in hating on teh gays, the poors, the blacks and the browns, or treating all women like bimbos, because it an easy thing for lazy brained people to do.

But to think Obama hasn’t taken the political heat for many of the policies of the last President is ludicrous, and a lot of that heat has come not just from the wealthy, but from many of the people, reporters, and think tanks that were instrumental in initiating, enacting and building support for those policies. This too is part and parcel of the political process and culture that we live in.

We can understand that the political attention span of most issues is 6 weeks, but does the body politic a disservice when those of us who are politically active, and I include political reporters in this, when we actually carry on as if are of the same short attention span as our readers and audiences. Everyone is trying to be cool, say the witty thing, hit the funny bone, I’m cool with that. But let’s quit trying to bullshit the collective bullshitters, shall we?

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