Beltway "Elite" Don't Worry About Jobs, Just "Values"

Via Atrios, Dean Baker on Applebees' David Brooks:

[Brooks:]"the public's real anxiety is about values, not economics: the gnawing sense that Americans have become debt-addicted and self-indulgent."

This is really priceless. There are more than 25 million people unemployed, underemployed or who have given up looking for work altogether, but they are not concerned about economics. They are worried about values.

Sadly, this attitude is not limited to conservatives like Brooks. Too many "elite" progressive pundits also have this world view. They argue that since President Obama shares "progressive values" (set aside the question if that is actually true), progressives are crazy for not being enthused about Obama and the Dems. In the world of elites, the little people should be happy when THEY are happy. Life does not work that way.

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    The beltway elites don't worry about (5.00 / 4) (#3)
    by MO Blue on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 11:14:27 AM EST
    jobs because they have jobs. In fact, they are highly overpaid for the garbage they spew. Poll after poll, after poll indicate that jobs and the economy ranks most important with the American public but the beltway gasbags and many congresscritters from both parties have decided to create their own reality.  

    Beltway Elites (none / 0) (#31)
    by norris morris on Mon Nov 01, 2010 at 05:00:46 PM EST
    Have always been out of touch and as you say they have jobs and do really nothing but spew.

    Elite? In times like these it's imperative to be around people and be governed by people who are honestly realisitic about the need to make a living. And can speak clearly and [with feeling].

    Why are we still on HCR?  No one understands it and it hasn't been explained. One of Obama's serious flaws that he and the Dems are paying for at the polls now is that there was no messaging and no transparency about HCR.  Obama diddled for 18 months saying nothing, working behind our backs in deals made with Big Pharma & Insurance giants and threw the bill at Congress.

    Bwtween the Blue Dogs, GOP, and Dems, what emerged as HCR is chopped liver. Obama let this happen and knew the outcome when he tossed this at Congress.

    The entire episode is a disgrace. None of you understand the cuts in Medicare, Medicaid, Home Care, or a full understanding of HCR that could have been highlighted and explained. It's just that it wasn't, and HCR is a hobbled together mess that throws women's choice under the bus....and more.

    Obama is still crowing about "transformational change"??    He's ridiculous.


    Yes, all those unemployed people (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by inclusiveheart on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 11:24:54 AM EST
    aren't thinking how great having a job would be.  They're thinking that they are debt-addicted and self-indulgent.  They're especially liking it when people in the media and the government tell them so, too.  

    They're not angry at the media or the government!  They're angry with themselves!  That's the ticket!

    Nothing that psychotherapy that they can't pay for won't fix!

    They could go to church, though.  If so many churches weren't finding themselves in foreclosure.

    Come to think of it, I think that this is a great rationale for increasing the federal faith-based funding program - so that people can go get their values straightened out in church courtesy of the government.

    Perfect.  See how that works?

    Yeah (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by squeaky on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 11:31:44 AM EST
    That is the spin... Democrats have immoral and corrupt values..

    Anything to get the voters to vote against their own interest. Seems to work every time.

    They are getting beat up on values (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Inspector Gadget on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 12:47:52 PM EST
    for sure, but even moreso the spending. My bloodpressure goes up with every ad in my area that claims our incumbent Ds ran this country into the greatest debt ever. No mention that the debt was for the Rs war, of course.

    The real crisis of values (5.00 / 4) (#7)
    by MO Blue on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 11:33:20 AM EST
    The Wall Street boys wrecked the economy with their greed and ineptitude and now they intend to make ordinary workers pay for it with cuts to Social Security and Medicare. Talk about a crisis of values. link

    If this was true... (5.00 / 2) (#20)
    by TomStewart on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 01:30:06 PM EST
    Why is David Vitter still employed? Or John Ensign?

    Because when they aren't spending (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by inclusiveheart on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 01:52:53 PM EST
    time with their various and sundry lovers and hookers, they go to church.  

    And because, unlike the Democratic Party, the Republicans don't go after their own for personal excesses.

    It took years for anyone to do anything about Mark Foley and even that was only because it was about young boys - teenaged girls probably would have been fine.


    They repented and were saved. (5.00 / 0) (#22)
    by MO Blue on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 02:20:48 PM EST
    Prayed over by the boys living at "C" street and received forgiveness from their congregation after promises of more tax cuts for the rich and more money funneled to "faith based initiatives." :-(

    Ensign (none / 0) (#25)
    by Socraticsilence on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 02:38:14 PM EST
    is probably dead in the water barring the Dems running the left-wing version of Sharron Angle in 2012. Vitter is from Louisiana where they have a shall we say "liberal" view on sex scandals and corruption.

    funny thing, (5.00 / 3) (#27)
    by cpinva on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 03:27:26 PM EST
    i've yet to encounter anyone who cares more about "same sex marriage", then they do about being able to pay the bills.

    clearly, these are not patriotic americans.

    Honestly (none / 0) (#1)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 11:04:03 AM EST
    I think people had a mental breakdown in 2004. They simply can't get over the evangelicals who turned out for Bush. What they don't realize is that outside of the south, the evangelical movement has long peeked and is now on it's way out.

    It's so simple that it's the "economy stupid" but somehow they just can't get that into their heads.

    Breakdowns? (none / 0) (#34)
    by norris morris on Mon Nov 01, 2010 at 05:35:44 PM EST
    Our people have had many breakdowns since 2004, but Americans continue to allow Religion to guide their political choices, and are forever voting against their interests.

    Watching one of the Tea Party leaders being interviewed tells a story.  She is on a walker and has just had hip surgery and struggling along as she talks about government interference, blah.

    She's on Medicare. Her obvious health problems are provided by the government.  Does she want to give her hip back? She is also poor and "proud".

    There is an irrational and emotional hyper religiosity that generates this self righteous and
    angry reaction into the catch words that oviously make her feel empowered.

    This is another form of cultism that has as it's victims...themselves.


    Brooks lost touch (none / 0) (#5)
    by kmblue on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 11:26:32 AM EST
    with any semblance of reality some time ago.
    That's one of the by-products of being an elite.

    He never had it. His "Bobos" (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by observed on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 11:33:50 AM EST
    book was complete garbage, with fabricated statistics and full of false insights.

    I have (none / 0) (#14)
    by kmblue on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 12:38:43 PM EST
    to agree

    I'm getting madder by the minute (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 03:54:03 PM EST
    The NYT could take his salary and divide it amongst 10 of the currently unemployed - maybe even ex employees of their own paper- and get better written and more insightful columns. I've a mnd to write them a letter.  

    Brooks (none / 0) (#32)
    by norris morris on Mon Nov 01, 2010 at 05:15:45 PM EST
    Rationalizes, pontificates, uses his own idea of facts and then turns in boring op eds conjured by a supposed  " Conservative Intellectual".

    I find it hard to believe that anyone takes him seriously. He has no creative ideas.


    To forget (none / 0) (#9)
    by waldenpond on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 11:42:31 AM EST
    Yeah, well that would explain why Cole keeps writing posts on his excessive drinking and his hangovers.

    Seriously Dave, wtf? (none / 0) (#10)
    by vicndabx on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 11:54:38 AM EST
    Over the next two years, Obama will have to show that he is a traditionalist on social matters and a center-left pragmatist on political ones. Culturally, he will have to demonstrate that even though he comes from an unusual background, he is a fervent believer in the old-fashioned bourgeois virtues: order, self-discipline, punctuality and personal responsibility.

    Don't want to jump to conclusions about this part, but.....

    You think Brooks is saying (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by observed on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 11:59:13 AM EST
    Obama needs to "lighten up", so to speak?
    A little Southern strategy? Hmmm

    I assume (5.00 / 0) (#12)
    by lilburro on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 12:09:11 PM EST
    "traditionalist" means screw the gays.  F*ck David Brooks.

    Caught that part also..... (5.00 / 0) (#18)
    by vicndabx on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 12:55:36 PM EST
    Agree w/your last sentence.  Effing clown.

    Traditionalist Means (none / 0) (#33)
    by norris morris on Mon Nov 01, 2010 at 05:26:54 PM EST
    Screw women's right to chose [even more than already done by Nelson/Stupak].

    Screw Gays on every level. DADT, Gay Marriage, etc.

    Combine Religion and Politics whenever possible.

    Remain cowardly regarding the Gun Lobby and avoid the subject.

    Fight  against any entitlement programs as being "responsible for one's own actions" is key.

    Don't consider extended unemployment as we all know these lazy  people would get jobs if their unemployment didn't exist. Clean toilets.

    And of course this list in traditionalist terms is too long for this post.


    The problem (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 12:34:23 PM EST
    here isn't that Brooks is saying it so much as Obama is an adherent to what these people are saying. He is much more worried about upsetting the Brooks of the world than anyone else it would seem.

    Not so sure (none / 0) (#19)
    by vicndabx on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 01:10:36 PM EST
    much more worried about upsetting the Brooks of the world than anyone else

    but, I do think pols have to worry about what the MSM "thinks" hence our worries about spin.  Agreed there is too much focus on it.


    Punctuality? (none / 0) (#24)
    by Socraticsilence on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 02:36:34 PM EST
    good god why doesn't he just say "Obama needs to show he doesn't keep colored peoples time like so many of his shiftless negro brothers."

    Sheez, such vitriolic attacks on a senior (none / 0) (#16)
    by BTAL on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 12:51:33 PM EST
    WH advisor....  

    Cole (none / 0) (#23)
    by Socraticsilence on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 02:35:04 PM EST
    Has a point- or do you honestly think that its better to have no reform on any issue if said reform is incremental. I mean Social Security is obviously the best example- as a turly progressive President would have vetoed its racist  and classist structure on grounds that it essentially imposed a tax on the working man to subsidize the retirement White Middle to Upper Class men.  

    It's better to have no reform... (5.00 / 2) (#29)
    by Romberry on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 03:44:25 PM EST
    ...than to have bad reform that fundamentally isn't reform at all. The health care bill does some good things, but it isn't really reform, it's cement. Actually, it's worse than that.

    I agree (none / 0) (#26)
    by lilburro on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 03:08:01 PM EST
    that the reform is good.  I'm glad the bill passed.  But John denigrates people who actually open conversation and push it to the left and then acts like he's in total agreement with them.  His current obsession with DADT does not stem from gay activism, it stems from trying to prove the President is right.  It's completely transparent and it's ridiculous.

    I once again can only stew in anger (none / 0) (#28)
    by ruffian on Fri Oct 29, 2010 at 03:42:40 PM EST
    at the amount of money Brooks gets paid for such total horses---.. If he were forced to put his average pay per column at the end of every column, he would have to be in hiding with Julian Assange.