Elizabeth Warren has her faults, but she isn’t stupid. In her campaign for the presidency, she has adopted President Trump’s economic nationalism, and gone him one better with a leftist twist. The New York Times headlines: “Elizabeth Warren Proposes ‘Aggressive Intervention’ to Create Jobs.”
Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts on Tuesday proposed an economic program of “aggressive intervention on behalf of American workers,” suggesting that as president she would invest $2 trillion in climate-friendly industries over a decade…
This is painfully stupid, worse than paying the unemployed to dig holes and fill them in again, since we already have a perfectly adequate and efficient electric power system, and subsidizing more “green” energy will make that system less efficient, if not destroy it entirely.
…create a new cabinet-level Department of Economic Development and even manipulate the dollar to promote exports.
Now we are talking! This is pure Trumpism.
Unveiling a campaign theme of “economic patriotism,” Ms. Warren promised to announce further plans under that banner over the next several months, on issues like trade and Wall Street regulation.
When is the last time a Democratic presidential candidate ran under a banner that included the word “patriotism”? Is that different from “America first”? I don’t think so.
By pledging to intervene in markets to support American manufacturing and promote job creation, Ms. Warren laid out a goal that President Trump has also pursued, albeit by different means, like imposing tariffs on imports from China and Mexico.
The new proposals were further evidence that Ms. Warren believes that her policy-first message is helping her stand out in the Democratic presidential primary.
To be fair, standing out in the current Democratic presidential field is not difficult. But Warren’s approach is interesting and potentially important. She is trying to learn from what got Donald Trump elected president. Unfortunately, she seems to have absorbed the worst aspects of Trump’s message. A friend writes:
Trumpier than Trump! Industrial policy, national corporatism…and autarky. It’s all good!
Sadly, Warren’s adoption of certain aspects of Trumpism has been hailed by some on the right, including Tucker Carlson. If you thought Tucker is a traditional conservative, you were wrong. Unless, of course, we define “traditional” in terms a century or two old. My friend continues:
The Left is eating this up. Headline:
Objectively left, comrade. Buchananism.
…or is Princess Liawatha a “conservative”?
The genius of the American constitution: driving candidates at the national level to stand on a dime in the middle of the 50 yard line. So now we’ll have two National Corporatist, statist, dirigiste crony-capitalist “whether you like it or not” political parties. Just that one is anti-woke, anti-abortion, the other pro- #BlackLivesMatter, pro-abortion.
Immigration remains an interesting confounding issue, I think.
Well, yeah. As a practical matter, I think that as soon as a Trump administration and a Warren administration started implementing policy, they would rapidly diverge. The similarity is more in campaign rhetoric than actual plans for the U.S. economy. Still, there does seem to be a certain convergence going on. When Tucker Carlson apparently can’t distinguish between Donald Trump and Elizabeth Warren, some might say the conservative movement is in trouble.