Increasing Poor Bodes Poorly for Republicans

Matt TaibbiMatt Taibbi has been writing some strange things recently. On election day, he wrote that it was going to be bad regardless of who won. Later that night he admitted that the evening was actually pretty good. Like a lot of us progressives, I think it was just nerves. He wanted to reassure himself that even if Romney had won, it wouldn’t be the end of the world.

And he was right, as long as the Democrats had managed to keep control of the Senate. Of course, there was a question about this. If the polling on the presidential race was so wrong as to allow Romney to win, couldn’t it have also been wrong about the Senate races? Anyway, a Romney presidency would have been a very bad thing, but I doubt it would have caused the cities of America to burn. (At least at the beginning of his term.)

Today brings another curious article by the great Mr. Taibbi, Hey, Rush Limbaugh: ‘Starting an Abortion Industry’ Won’t Win You Female Voters. He spends most of it making fun of Limbaugh, which is always worth spending some time on. Taibbi is at his best when he’s being a total asshole.

Finally, however, he gets to his real point which is that a big part of the Republican Party’s problem is its attitude:

But modern Republicans will never be able to spread that message effectively, because they have so much of their own collective identity wrapped up in the belief that they’re surrounded by free-loading, job-averse parasites who not only want to smoke weed and have recreational abortions all day long, but want hardworking white Christians like them to pay the tab. Their whole belief system, which is really an endless effort at congratulating themselves for how hard they work compared to everyone else (by the way, the average “illegal,” as Rush calls them, does more real work in 24 hours than people like Rush and me do in a year), is inherently insulting to everyone outside the tent—and you can’t win votes when you’re calling people lazy, stoned moochers.

This is certainly true, but I don’t think it is a primary reason why minority voters tend to vote Democratic. Republicans have a much more fundamental problem going forward besides their hatred of pretty much everyone other than white Christian men. The poor vote overwhelmingly for Democrats—even in most red states. (I plan to be writing more about this in the coming days.) Over the past 30 years, the Republicans have pushed policies that moved wealth from the poor to the rich. Thus, there are more and more poor people and less and less rich. This more than anything that anyone is talking about is the reason that the Democrats will continue to strengthen their electoral position.

We will see if the Democrats manage to screw this up by “moving to the center.”

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About Frank Moraes

Frank Moraes is a freelance writer and editor online and in print. He is educated as a scientist with a PhD in Atmospheric Physics. He has worked in climate science, remote sensing, throughout the computer industry, and as a college physics instructor. Find out more at About Frank Moraes.

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