ELIZABETH WARREN: DRIVING TOWARD U.S. SENATE

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EDITOR’S NOTE: Republicans may soon wish for the days when Warren was going to run the new agency to police financial institutions in their dealings with consumers. They now have a powerful, well-liked and respected candidate who is most likely going to be the next senator from Massachusetts with impeccable credentials for the job. She will enter the Senate like Hillary did — a junior senator but one with more political clout than any 10 senior members combined.

But the fact that she is willing to enter the toxic arena of political campaigning is testament to a new era in American politics. We have all felt for a long time that anyone who would want to run for office is probably someone we don’t want to win. And we have all felt the nagging feeling that the real people who would really represent the people won’t do it because they don’t feel they could make it, and more importantly, don’t feel they will make a difference if they do make it.

Elizabeth Warren is not just running for Senator. She is making a statement that all Americans should hear. She is saying that if you want to make a difference, now is the time to put your time and effort where your mouth is. She is saying she doesn’t need the job, but she wants it because of her desire to serve the public and the nation. Remember when that was true for most candidates, once upon a time?

The Occupy Wall Street movement touches the same nerve. And it is my hope that it spawns a political movement that actually turns the tide. People who are at those rallies and protests should be asking themselves whether they could make a go of it in running for public office on local, state or federal levels. They should be asking themselves and people they know to run for office and beat the establishment hacks. Utopia is not just around the corner or even the next millennium. But we can change the course of this ship we call America and restore the ideals as goals, call upon the better nature of our neighbors to do what is right, and energize the public into a coherent whole that is unified back on point — America the Beautiful.

Elizabeth Warren’s Appeal

For a few years now, politicians straining against all of the antigovernment demagogy have been searching for a way to energize public interest and remind voters of the essential government services and protections they rely on and all too often take for granted.

President Obama has struggled to find that language, only recently beginning to draw a clear contrast between his goal to revive the economy and put Americans back to work and the stagnation that is the inevitable result of the Republicans’ antitax, antispending policies.

While most other Democrats are afraid to talk about the need for higher taxes and are running away from the problem, Elizabeth Warren, the leading Democratic candidate for a Senate seat in Massachusetts, has engaged the fight and is beginning to rally supporters.

Ms. Warren talks about the nation’s growing income inequality in a way that channels the force of the Occupy Wall Street movement but makes it palatable and understandable to a far wider swath of voters. She is provocative and assertive in her critique of corporate power and the well-paid lobbyists who protect it in Washington, and eloquent in her defense of an eroding middle class.

It is an informed and measured populism, and it helps explain why she immediately became the leading Democratic contender in the race to challenge Senator Scott Brown, the Republican who is up for re-election next year.

Ms. Warren, a law professor at Harvard, helped to design the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Because of her fierce advocacy on behalf of consumers, Senate Republicans and the financial industry made clear they would never allow her to run it.

She is a remarkably eloquent and appealing Senate candidate. “Washington is well wired for big corporations that can hire armies of lobbyists,” she said last month, soon after joining the race. “But it’s not working very well for middle-class families, and that’s what I care about.”

She is both knowledgeable and accessible when she explains the destructive credit-swap and subprime mortgage games that created the financial crisis. She draws a detailed map back to the early deregulation of the 1980s that began to rip the nation’s economic fabric — the same deregulatory fervor the Republicans are preaching today.

Her larger appeal, though, comes from her ability to shred Republican arguments that rebalancing the tax burden constitutes class warfare. In a living-room speech that went viral on YouTube last month, she pointed out that people in this country don’t get rich entirely by themselves — everyone benefits from roads, public safety agencies and an education system paid for by taxes. And those who have benefited the most, she says, need to give back more.

“You built a factory and it turned into something terrific or a great idea — God bless!” she said. “Keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.”

Democrats should not be cowed by conservative taunts that the speech advocated “collectivism,” and use this argument to push back against the Republicans’ refusal to raise the taxes of people who make more than a million dollars a year — sometimes far more. Senate Democratic leaders say they plan to employ poll-tested phrases like “Tea Party economics” and “Tea Party gridlock” in their campaign for a jobs bill and beyond. They would be better off listening to Elizabeth Warren.

12 Responses

  1. we need to write her in for president.

  2. Warren’s first Mission: Bankriminals USIDE-DOWN CRUSIFICTION, Crlin style: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MoT_5Txwp5w

  3. We need to all start making a LOT of noise about this:

    http://news.yahoo.com/foreclosure-deal-near-banks-win-more-immunity-214625588.html

  4. We need more Elizabeth Warrens in all the states.

  5. from your link, Brian:

    “…Then she talks about how the banks broke the country mortgage by bad mortgage…”

    Brian, she is the ONLY one standing up to the banks with regards to the massive ponzi MBS fraud—so, YES—we need her.

    But, maybe you work for the banks…

  6. There is more than enough money to go around without having to milk the so-called “rich people.” I am referring not to the alleged “elite,” but those of us who will or who have made over $250k per year.
    This idea of spreading the wealth around should not mean that we rob from the rich to pay the poor. When I get to be rich myself, I don’t want to be punished for my hard-earned efforts by being forced to give it away in the form of taxes or whatever.

    “…And those who have benefited the most, she says, need to give back more.” If we have been raised properly, naturally we will want to give back more. It should not be forced upon us by more political machinery. That takes away our American incentive that drives this nation. And we all know that the tax system is also corrupt. Raising taxes on all the rich people is not going to make a dent in the national debt !! Rich people (small and medium businesses) don’t need to bail out the economy, the people who got us into this mess, do. Have the Fed bail out the people, not the banks. Stop foreclosing.
    Stop telling us what to do with our money!!

  7. Ms. Warren is not what the country needs, and has been cloaked as a progressive, much like the pres was.
    Her solution to jobs, war with Iran.
    A neocon that has a nice sheepskin. One that she wears.

  8. Elizabeth is a perfect example of what we need in this country, let’s hope she is successful in her efforts, heaven knows she has had opposition and yet she is still putting up a fight – Go Elizabeth – we are on your side!!!

  9. Someone with integrity, honesty, compassion, and a love of justice…she must be from another galaxy far, far away…

  10. we need to write in en masse she is our only hope AS PRESIDENT

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