Tuesday, April 10, 2012


Elizabeth Warren is the very liberal Democrat challenging incumbent Republican Scott Brown for the Massachusettes' senate seat this fall. Not surprisngly, the left-wing magazine The Nation is enthusiastic about her candidacy. Hence, from time to time, puff pieces like this one by E. J. Graff appear in its pages.

What interested me about the article was its first three paragraphs and a common tendency among many liberals it reveals:
It was a grim, sleety day in Chicopee, a gritty postindustrial town in western Massachusetts, where paint flakes off worn-out bridges and boarded-up factories. At a community relations luncheon, kind security guards were opening back doors and holding out umbrellas for the few willing to brave the freezing slush. This was not a campaign stop, we reporters were told decisively by Alice Buckner, the business and community liaison at the nonpartisan, federally funded Westover Job Corps Center. If Elizabeth Warren showed up, she would be visiting with students, not campaigning.
Around us, upbeat young Jobs Corps enrollees—ages 16 to 24, brown and black and white, skinny and fat, tattooed and pierced and dyed—were setting up the room and the banquet table. Among our handouts were heartbreaking student essays about choosing jobs over drugs; gastric bypass surgery over helplessness; and overcoming bullying by practicing the new skills of energy, enthusiasm and hard work.
Chicopee’s mayor, Michael Bissonnette, took the podium to tell the students that he had grown up in the projects, and he knew their biggest problem—themselves. They had to look themselves in the mirror each day and say, “I can do it.” Then he introduced his “good friend” Elizabeth Warren, who was running for US Senate and who had something to say about all this.
Since liberal Warren is the mayor's "good friend", I'm assuming he shares her ideology. If so, then how can he, and later she, tell these young people that their biggest problem is "themselves", that they should practice saying, "I can do it," when that message and plea is a decidedly conservative one.

A liberal message, by contrast, would tell them that their biggest problem is not "themselves", that in fact their plight is not their fault at all, but rather it's the fault of the "machine", the Man, the 1%, Big Business, Big Oil, Big (you fill in the blank), white people, vested interests, the legacy of racism or sexism or homophobia, etc., etc., etc., anything and everything but themselves.

Even liberals know in their heart of hearts that liberal-ism is not the answer.

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