Last night, just after capitalism’s wet dream Donald Trump nominated another capitalist wet dream to the US Supreme Court, on CNN Nancy Pelosi paraded herself before a live town hall and declared, “We’re capitalist, that’s just the way it is.” She went on to praise Adam Smith’s “Invisible Hand”, like she was Milton Friedman from the grave.
TREVOR HILL: I wonder if there’s anywhere you feel that the Democrats could move farther left to a more populist message, the way the alt-right has sort of captured this populist strain on the right wing, if you think we could make a more stark contrast to right-wing economics?
PELOSI: Well, I thank you for your question. But I have to say, we’re capitalist. That’s just the way it is. [lengthy prostration before capital] I don’t think we have to change from capitalism. We’re a capitalist system. The free market is — is a place that can do good things. Actually, Adam Smith, “Wealth of Nations,” the invisible hand, he was more compassionate. He wrote two books. His other book was about our responsibilities to each another, as well as “Wealth of Nations.” I wish he had written one book where he incorporated all of it together.
No, Ms. Pelosi, when my grandmother was saving lengths of string for decades in a drawer she wouldn’t let me into when I was little, she was not a capitalist. She learned why she needed to save lengths of string because of capitalism, that is true. But Grandma was just a descendant of Polish immigrants who worked very hard, saved every nickel, and never once risked a red cent. Frugal. That’s who Americans are, Mrs. Pelosi. They do not risk their money. Very few Americans are comfortable risking their money for a stupid lottery ticket, let alone some fancy pants cockamamey idea they think will make them rich. Remember hearing that from the old timers? Didn’t matter how great your big idea was, you couldn’t squeeze a god damned nickel out of my uncles, or aunts, or grandparents, or great grandparents, or anyone before them.
Americans who risk their money for ideas to become wealthy, i.e. capitalists, are rare, they are not “just the way it is.” We celebrate them when they succeed. America relies on them, so yes, we need these, repeat, rare risk taking American capitalists. The quite vast majority of Americans, however, are simple, tough people who just want to work hard, and get paid for it. The toughest ones start saving lengths of string to boot, to put their kids in a house, feed them, and maybe someday send them off to school. They have never heard of the “invisible hand” except to feel it crush them.
This Democratic Party fetish of “entrepreneurism” is yet another residue of the Clinton surrender to the dismantling of the New Deal. FDR knew who Americans were. Nancy Pelosi is obviously still a zombie undead sleep walking in her “I’m worth hundreds of millions of dollars” dreamworld. If this is who leads the Democratic Party in 2017, someone who will slurp Adam Smith on live television, then the Democratic Party is pointless. It is what cost Hillary Clinton the 2016 presidential election. America is onto your racket, Nancy, especially your own political party, and no amount of waving your invisible hand around on live TV is going to change that.