Arthur Brooks: The Real Culture War Is Over Capitalism

Still, the tea parties are not based on the cold wonkery of budget data. They are based on an “ethical populism.” The protesters are homeowners who didn’t walk away from their mortgages, small business owners who don’t want corporate welfare and bankers who kept their heads during the frenzy and don’t need bailouts. They were the people who were doing the important things right — and who are now watching elected politicians reward those who did the important things wrong.

Voices in the media, academia, and the government will dismiss this ethical populism as a fringe movement — maybe even dangerous extremism. In truth, free markets, limited government, and entrepreneurship are still a majoritarian taste. In March 2009, the Pew Research Center asked people if we are better off “in a free market economy even though there may be severe ups and downs from time to time.” Fully 70% agreed, versus 20% who disagreed.

Read it all.


Posted in * Economics, Politics, Economy, Office of the President, Politics in General, President Barack Obama, Taxes, The 2009 Obama Administration Bank Bailout Plan, The 2009 Obama Administration Housing Amelioration Plan, The Credit Freeze Crisis of Fall 2008/The Recession of 2007--, The Fiscal Stimulus Package of 2009, The National Deficit, The Possibility of a Bailout for the U.S. Auto Industry, The September 2008 Proposed Henry Paulson 700 Billion Bailout Package, The U.S. Government

7 comments on “Arthur Brooks: The Real Culture War Is Over Capitalism

  1. Fr. Dale says:

    [blockquote]And what investments justify our leaving this gargantuan bill for our children and grandchildren to pay?[/blockquote] If one thinks of this in Environmental terms, aren’t we polluting things up stream for our children and grandchildren downstream? For them, this is a form of taxation without representation.

  2. tgs says:

    Nations grown corrupt
    Love bondage more than liberty;
    Bondage with ease than strenuous liberty –
    John Milton

  3. tgs says:

    This didn’t display in the correct poetic form. Sorry.

  4. William P. Sulik says:

    Back in the late 1960’s and early 1970’s there was a shift in America – no longer did we try to make America a better place for our kids; now our kids were to make America a better place for us. So we finance our schemes at their expense and, if a new baby comes along at an inconvenient time, abort it – it’s a reasonable choice.

    It’s not surprising then that we are a nation of locusts and no longer ants.

    [blockquote] Four things on earth are small,
    yet they are extremely wise:
    Ants are creatures of little strength,
    yet they store up their food in the summer;

    [i]Proverbs 30:24-25[/i] (New International Version)


    You have increased the number of your merchants
    till they are more than the stars of the sky,
    but like locusts they strip the land
    and then fly away.

    Your guards are like locusts,
    your officials like swarms of locusts
    that settle in the walls on a cold day—
    but when the sun appears they fly away,
    and no one knows where.

    [i]Nahum 3:16-17[/i] (New International Version) [/blockquote]

  5. Katherine says:

    This is an excellent essay. Llberals who don’t understand the “Tea Party” movement or conservative criticisms of the Obama budget should read this. They may not agree, but they would understand what the issues are.

  6. chips says:

    I fear many will understand only when it becomes too late. Much like TEC but writ large.

  7. Jeffersonian says:

    It’s always been about free market capitalism, folks, no matter the flavor of the statist espousing environmentlism, civil rights, health care reform, etc. There are many fronts, but only one war and one target.