From New Republic’s interview with New York Sen. Charles Schumer, who, in a weasel-y way, links Sen. Elizabeth Warren with “left-wing blogs”:
CS: …You’ve got to look at the effect on average folks. The vast majority of the people employed by Wall Street are the secretary who goes in to work on the Long Island Rail Road, who makes fifty, sixty, seventy thousand dollars a year. I’m not saying Elizabeth does this, but there are some on the far left who just have a visceral hatred of Wall Street. It’s counterproductive.
IC: You don’t think Elizabeth Warren makes a villain out of Wall Street?
CS: I am just going to leave it at what I said.
IC: Forget Warren then. Is this a problem for your party?
CS: You don’t want to go after them for the sake of going after them. The left-wing blogs want you to be completely and always anti–Wall Street. It’s not the right way to be.
IC: So are the left-wing blogs as bad as the Tea Party ones in this case?
CS: Left-wing blogs are the mirror image. They just have less credibility and less clout.
Schumer’s been living in a bubble with the banksters for too long, or he’d know contempt for the Wall Street gang extends far beyond the “far left” faction of the Democratic Party. I don’t think today’s Democratic Party even has a far left. What Schumer is calling the far left would have been considered slightly left-of-center in 1964, or centrist in 1936.
But give Schumer credit for reminding us of the upcoming fight for control of the Democratic Party. He’s in one corner with President Obama, Bill and Hillary Clinton, and the many other neoliberal Dems who have alienated the poor and the middle class, or what’s left of it. In the other corner are Elizabeth Warren, Sherrod Brown and others in Congress who realize the party can’t energize its base, as they say, if it continues to help the rich grab an obscenely disproportionate amount of the national income, or if it continues to signal it might be on board with Republican demands for “entitlement” cuts.
The trick, of course, is to channel widespread contempt for an increasingly crooked elite into a movement for positive change, as opposed to something like the Tea Party, a movement of latter-day Know Nothings. If an old hustler like Schumer is upset, then those far-left crazies must be on the right track.
Footnote: Meanwhile, two writers from Third Way, a think tank where everyone thinks Wall Street and mega-corporations are terrific, slammed progressives and Warren in particular for not toeing the “centrist” line. Guess who sits on Third Way’s board of directors.