Friday, February 15, 2008

Bloomberg - who needs him?

The Republicans have decided that John McCain is going to be their candidate, and they hope that he can pull the fractured elements of their party together for long enough to at least conduct a credible campaign for the November general election. The Democrats are working hard to deal with their embarrassment of riches in which there seem to be too many good candidates to make a decision among them an easy one.

So who in Hell needs a Mike Bloomberg run for the Presidency? David Sirota writes about the Bloomberg idiocy.
Our media love to tell us just how much Americans are pining for an independent presidential candidacy, and specifically, just how much potential support there is for a Mike Bloomberg for President campaign. But as I show in my new nationally syndicated newspaper column out today, both assertions are fiction. That begs a simple question - one that ties into my upcoming book: Why is the Establishment so adamant about jamming a candidacy down our throat that we so clearly do not want? Why is the political elite so insistent on crushing what has become a full-fledged uprising in 2008?

The latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll shows that Bloomberg is extremely unpopular on the national stage. Gallup reports that "the American public does not appear to believe it is important or necessary for an independent candidate outside of the traditional two major parties to step into the race in order to save the nation." And America clearly isn't interested in an independent candidacy who, as Glenn Greenwald notes, holds extremist views on major issues like Iraq (sidenote: As part of my ongoing efforts to use the column to promote fellow progressives, Glenn is featured in the column).

And yet the Bloomberg bandwagon in the media continues to grow ever larger. Barely a day goes by without some fawning story speculating about Bloomberg's potential run for president - implying that he has some sort of huge mass constituency and political monopoly on so-called "competence" and "bipartisanship."

The disconnect between what Americans actually want and what the Establishment wants America to want reflects just how petrified the elite are right now. They look at both parties' potential nominees and realize that they each potentially represent some form of fundamental change - and that scares them. And so they are desperate for someone - anyone! - to suppress what Alexander Hamilton called the "popular passions" and champion the status quo's "permanent will."
So we have the Republicans who are the party of fear and war, and the Democrats who think that the demonstrated incompetence of the Republicans are sufficient justification for replacing the Republicans in the White House and regaining control of Congress.

So who is Bloomberg's constituency besides a few media voices? Billionaires for Bloomberg? What is that? A constituency of one very large ego and a massive pocket book?

We don't need him here in Texas, and he offers nothing apparent that Washington needs. He needs to be satisfied with buying the job of Mayor of New York and forget buying the Presidency. Or perhaps he merely wants to see how much money he can waste on votes, the way Mitt Romney, Phil Gramm, and John Connelly all have done.

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