Saturday, October 18, 2008

McCain-Palin: The Faux Populists

This image from a recent cover of The Village Voice perfectly captures the faux populism of the McCain-Palin campaign. 

If disaster strikes and they're elected, they'll stand against the minimum wage, expanding the State Children's Health Insurance Program, veterans' benefits, women's reproductive rights, the Employee Free Choice Act–anything that will materially help the struggling lower and middle classes in this country. For the first time ever, they'll attempt to tax employee health benefits. Meanwhile, they'll continue to cut taxes for the wealthy and major corporations.

What accounts for their appeal to those among their supporters who aren't doing too well? How do they identify with a ticket that opposes their economic interests? McCain is a veteran and Palin is a soccer mom who loves "Joe Sixpack" and says "You betcha" and "doggone." They're the All-American mavericks. They have the populist images–but they're dead set against populist policies.

Palin has said to her supporters in New Hampshire and Florida, "You guys just get it!"

They're getting it, alright. Leave aside Palin's just-plain-folks charm. What they'll get if these two win is the shaft.

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