The Corporate CEO's and big Wall Street Bankers must have been having a good old time celebrating their victories in the mid-term elections.
You can see them now. High-fiving through the cigar smoke in their wood paneled Upper East Side exclusive clubs. Laughing at how easy it was to put one over on so many everyday working people. They are thrilled that they successfully convinced many Americans to vote against their own economic self-interests by playing on their legitimate anger that their economic well-being is under attack.
Of course, the cruel irony is that the people who funded the vicious TV ads and flights of mail urging everyday Americans to throw out the Democrats in order to demonstrate their fury at the economy, are the very people who have made a killing themselves by attacking the middle class.
They are the very same people who have outsourced middle class jobs, siphoned off ever-larger portions of the fruits of middle class labor, and made fortunes speculating with the middle class' money. And, unbelievably, they are the very same people whose reckless speculation collapsed the economy and cost eight million Americans their jobs.
That's right, the same people who paid for those ads playing on middle class economic insecurity are the people who made the middle class insecure in the first place.
Those guys who are celebrating how they pulled one over on everyday Americans are like arsonists who set a building on fire and then crow about their heroism organizing the bucket brigade.
As part of their fall campaign, they sent Republicans scurrying around the country in a frenzy about the budget deficit. But what is the very first thing they do after the election? They demand that the country borrow $700 billion more dollars to give millionaires more tax breaks. You've got to admire the sheer chutzpa.
And there is more. The Republicans have every intention of refusing to support middle class tax cuts -- of holding middle class tax cuts hostage -- until millionaires get theirs too.
They spent massive amounts of air time promoting cuts in spending. What's the first thing they want to cut? Unemployment insurance for millions of unemployed workers who can't find jobs.
That's right. New tax breaks for millionaires, and cuts in unemployment insurance for middle class workers whose jobs they destroyed. That doesn't exactly square with Tea Party talk about how actions should have consequences.
And that contradiction is precisely the Republican's big problem. It's one thing to vote against incumbents because you're furious about your economic situation. It's another to watch the guys who you elected to replace them vote time and time again to promote the interests of millionaires and billionaires -- and to make things worse for you.
It will not be long until millions of Americans begin to realize that the tonic they bought from the sharpies on Wall Street and corporate CEO's was snake oil.
A lot of voters cast their ballots out of anger this fall. But the Republicans don't have any clue how angry people will get when they realize they have been sold a bill of goods.
The great con artists are people who first win the confidence of their mark -- hence the name "con" men. Con men convince you to trust them - and then betray your confidence and steal your money. When the mark discovers the con, he is likely to be really angry. He is angry not simply because he has lost his money. He's angry because the con man played him for a chump.
Many voters in this fall's elections thought that when they cast their ballot for the Republican candidate, they were supporting the dashing young hero who was going to save the middle class heroine from the oncoming train just in the nick of time.
As soon as they start making policy in the new Congress it won't take long for people to realize that the "dashing young hero" outfit was a disguise. In fact, it will be the greedy villain who is revealed as he gallops up as the train approaches. And instead of untying the knots that prevent our heroine's escape, he will demand a ransom that must come directly out of her middle class pocket. Not exactly the outcome those middle class voters were expecting, and oh will it make people angry.
Robert Creamer is a long-time political organizer and strategist, and author of the book: Stand Up Straight: How Progressives Can Win, available on Amazon.com.
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