First Wall Street, Now the Car Capitalists

Corporate-sponsored politicians have a way of saving their true plans and meanings until after the elections.

Lo and behold, today we found out what President Obama’s conception of “helping the middle class” really is.  (There is, of course, no such thing as a working class any more, within corporate-sponsored public affairs.)

“The auto industry is the backbone of American manufacturing and a critical part of our attempt to reduce our dependence on foreign oil,” [Obama] said. “I would like to see the Administration do everything they can to accelerate the retooling assistance that Congress has already enacted.”

“In addition, I have made it a high priority for my transition team to work on additional policy options to help the auto industry adjust, weather the financial crisis, and succeed in producing fuel-efficient cars here in the United States.”

Kevin Phillips has it exactly right: Established, imperial ruling classes are simply incapable of doing anything but more of the same, even when the endgame is at hand.

The basic economic problem in the United States and the wider world is extreme economic maldistribution. The rich have gotten too rich for their own good. They’ve won all the poker chips.

In response, first the “conservative” bails out Wall Street, and then the “change” agent sweeps in and says his notion of appropriate and urgent new action is to give free money to…Detroit, Michigan’s own set of infamous/incompetent/overpaid capitalists. You know, the guys who once ran around saying that their firms’ interests are one and the same thing as the country’s (and, hence, the whole world’s) interests…

As Phillips says, right up to World War I, Great Britain’s overclass could never convince itself to admit that its coal-based industrial heyday was over and done.

And here we are now, a century and an empire later, and our “fresh” leadership is promising to pretend that the backbone of the past is going to continue to be able to serve as a backbone of the future.

Ah, can’t you just hear the progressive, forward-looking echoes of P.M.-elect Lloyd George:

“The steam engine is the backbone of British manufacturing and a critical part of our attempt to reduce our dependence on foreign coal,” [Lloyd George] said. “I would like to see the Administration do everything they can to accelerate the retooling assistance that Parliament has already enacted.”

“In addition, I have made it a high priority for my transition team to work on additional policy options to help the steam engine industry adjust, weather the financial crisis, and succeed in producing fuel-efficient steam engines here in the United Kingdom.”