My world has turned upside down. I read a column by William Kristol in the NY Times and found myself agreeing with him. How has this come to be? What next, agreeing with Charles Krauthammer? If that happens, please drag me out behind the barn and shoot me.
In his latest column, which is the source of my great discomfort, Kristol says the Right and Left are dumping on the auto companies. (my emphasis)
Today, G.M., Ford and Chrysler get no respect. Maybe they don’t deserve much. Detroit has many sins to answer for, and it’s been doing plenty of answering. But – and I say this as someone who grew up in non-car-driving family in New York and who is the furthest thing from an auto aficionado – there is a kind of undeserved disdain, even casual contempt, that seems to characterize the attitude of the political and media elites toward the American auto industry.
Kristol goes on to quote Warren Brown of the Washington Post.
“There is a feeling in this country – apparent in the often condescending, dismissive way Detroit’s automobile companies have been treated on Capitol Hill – that people who work with their hands and the companies that employ them are inferior to those who work with their minds and plow profit from information. How else to explain the clearly disparate treatment given to companies such as Citigroup and General Motors?”
While Kristol doesn’t pass up a chance to take a dig at “limousine liberals”, he also takes a dig at the Senate Republicans.
Meanwhile, on the right, free-market analysts have explained that our regulatory scheme of fuel-efficiency standards is counterproductive. But despite the fact that the government is partly responsible for the Big Three’s problems, the right hasn’t really been stirred to enthusiastically promote a deregulatory agenda to help the auto companies. What excites it is mobilizing to oppose bailouts for unionized workers.
This sentence in the column caught my eye. It echoes the title of my earlier diary about the bailout for the Big 3.
And Senate Republicans now run the risk of being portrayed as Marie Antoinettes with Southern accents.
Unlike most Kristol columns, this one ends with a sensible suggestion for both parties.
Whichever party can liberate itself from its well-worn rut to propose policies that help both American businesses and workers has a great opportunity. That party’s leaders could begin by offering management and labor at the Big Three a little more sympathy, and heaping upon them a little less calumny.
What a strange world we live in. Could Ann Coulter be working on a column that I would agree with? Nah, never happen. If it does, I will voluntarily enter therapy or submit myself for reeducation.