Well, it’s time once again to say a fond farewell to one of the legions of Democratic presidential candidates.
This time, the dearly departed is physical giant/moral little person Bill De Blasio, who declared the end of his candidacy on Friday, to an audience of six empty plastic chairs and a folding table with uneven legs, in a lost luggage area near the bathrooms in a bus terminal in New Jersey.
Why would I kick De Blasio while he’s down, you might be asking yourself?
Have you seen how tall that guy is? It’s very tough to kick him properly UNTIL he is down.
But that’s not the only reason. My thesis today is that Bill de Blasio might be the purest distillation of all that is wrong with the elite left today.
Before I continue, let me reiterate that I know a lot of very fine people who are Democrats. A few are family, some are friends, some are work colleagues. Most of them are attracted to the ideals of a traditional, blue-collar Democrat party that once stood up for workers against larger societal forces, combined with a desire for such worthy ends as protecting the environment and fighting discrimination, goals that most conservatives (whether those Dems realize it or not) share, and would be happy to make common cause around.
Those are good people, and it’s a shame to see us becoming alienated from each other in these polarizing times.
But that’s not the people I’m talking about. Bill de Blasio has no more in common with those folks than he does with conservatives. He’s an archetypal lefty elitist, and I think it’s worth considering the markers of his genus, because while he may have limped ignominiously off the stage, there are many others of his type left, and one of them is almost certainly going to be the Dem nominee for president.
So let us consider my list of six identifying characteristics of lefty elitists:
1.They reflexively falsify their own identity in some crucial way. Sometimes the fakery has to do with personal habits, as when Ted Kennedy pretended to be sober, and married, and a Catholic. Other times it involves matters of class origin, as when Al Gore pretended to be a humble dirt farmer… raised by a millionaire civil rights-opposing Senator, and spending his childhood in a swanky DC hotel suite. Sometimes it involves a make-believe ethnicity, as when an Irish rich kid named Robert Francis Patrick Declan Macmanus Houlihan O’Rourke poses as your quasi-Hispanic border-town buddy “Beto,” or when the whitest lady in the western hemisphere gets an academic job because she claims Indian ancestry on the grounds that she watched a lot of F-Troop reruns and had several Siouxsie and the Banshees records. (#wemustneverstopmockingher)
Bill fits that bill. First, because his first name isn’t “Bill,” it’s “Warren.” Second, because his last name isn’t “de Blasio,” it’s “Wilhelm.” The story is that he was often called “Billy” as a child. But then again, as a child I was often called “Carlos Danger” as far as you know, and you don’t see me adopting that nom de pol as an adult. (Thanks for ruining that option, Anthony Weiner!) Also, he supposedly adopted his mother’s maiden name as part of “embracing his Italian heritage” at age 22, becoming Warren de Blasio-Wilhelm in 1983, and then “Bill de Blasio” at age 41.
The “embracing an Italian identity” part sounds believable, but call me cynical. I think for a two-faced pol like would-be Kaiser Wilhelm, that change likely had at least as much to do with getting away from a German moniker that would do more harm than good in the atmosphere of identity politics in NYC. Sure, a German name can come in handy if you’re making pianos, brewing beer, selling a well-made luxury car, or angling for command of a panzer division near the Polish border in the summer of 1939.
But when you’re up against one leftist candidate from the Black Panther Party and another from La Raza in the early 21st century? Not so much.
- They build hypocrisy into every policy. Elitist lefties want to keep little people from owning guns, while they retain their armed bodyguards. They want to force regular folk to send their kids to sub-standard public schools, while sending their own kids to private schools. They want to make the little people return to using trains or bicycles — or maybe oxcarts – while they fly private jets and are then driven around in SUVs with a carbon hoofprint of Hillary-esque proportions. They want to show compassion to criminals by releasing them into your neighborhoods, and generosity to downtrodden voting blocks by giving your money to them while keeping their own fortunes in trusts that are beyond the tax code’s reach.
Again, Warren fits the bill. He wants to disarm little people who haven’t committed any crimes, and who might live in dangerous areas where the protection that guns can provide might literally be the difference between life and death. Meanwhile, he makes his speeches – and goes to his office, and to the gym, and to public events, and home – while surrounded by bodyguards who carry licensed guns. He opposes or slow-walks approval for charter schools, and he’s done his best to shut down gifted programs in the public schools. Programs like the ones that his own kids attended, coincidentally.
- They prefer utopian feel-good plans, while neglecting the common sense/good governance front. They don’t maintain infrastructure, don’t fill potholes (unless you count San Francisco’s plan to fill potholes – and streets — with human feces), and preside over crime running wild. California spent billions on a now-defunct bullet train and established elaborate networks of sanctuary cities and welfare support programs for illegals, while managing to be out-performed by the 15th century French Rat-Catchers unions in the crucial metrics of preventing typhus, smallpox, and the bubonic plague. (LA’s new tourism motto: “What happens in LA, stays in LA! Except for the ebola. That you’ll be taking home with you.”)
De Blasio is totally sympatico with the downward trends in NYC, many of which (to be fair to him) he inherited, from ignoring crumbling subway infrastructure and rising crime, while micro-managing what size drinks and how much sugar New Yorkers can consume and through what kind of straws. My favorite of his idiotic notions was his push to ban steel and glass skyscrapers. In New York City! Even though I never wanted to live in a huge city, I always saw skyscrapers as incredible achievements, emblematic of human ambition and abilities.
Not Big Bill. He knows better than us that such gaudy buildings are too often just tributes to the egotistical people and companies who built them. Plus, they’re terrible for the environment, somehow, with the climate pollution and the global warming. So get on board with his vision, and in no time Manhattanites will be living in mud huts and yurts, saving tons of energy by not walking to their non-existent jobs. Soon they’ll cut their carbon footprint even further, when they make the de Blasio-approved decision to stop respirating – and thus exhaling all of that nasty carbon dioxide into the air – by the simple process of starving to death. Hoorah!
- They tend to fail upward in their political careers. It’s a familiar pattern: an elite leftist becomes mayor and runs a city into the ground, then becomes governor and mismanages his state, and then becomes a candidate for national office. You don’t have to look far for examples.
Spartacus Booker went from a disastrous stint as mayor of Newark (whose motto is NOT: “A well-governed paradise on earth!”) to representing New Jersey in the Senate (whose state motto is NOT “Come for the low taxes, stay for the Absence of Corruption!”), to running for president. Pope Pete went from running South Bend (motto: “Tired of Indiana’s low homicide rate and lack of racial tension? Come to South Bend!”) to running for president. Skateboarding Doofus spent 6 years in the House with zero accomplishments, then spent a record amount to lose a Senate seat. So he’s naturally running for president.
But Bill de Blasio might out-do them all as the most flaccid example of the Peter Principle known to history. He’s continually underwater in his poll ratings in New York state and city; last month’s poll had him at 26% favorable and 57% unfavorable, for a net negative of 31. And that’s in a heavily blue state, where Donald Trump only has a net negative of 27! His presidential support never got to even 1%. Perhaps the most telling stat of all: in that August poll, he was hands down the single most unpopular political figure in the entirety of New York!
And remember: Chucky Schumer, Kirsten Gillibrand, Anthony Weiner and Al Sharpton can all be considered political figures in the state of New York.
As best I can tell, de Blasio’s finest mayoral achievement has been the emotional boost he’s given to 92-year-old David Dinkins, who until recently looked to be taking to the grave the title of Worst Modern Mayor of NYC.
- They are extremely arrogant — It’s a hallmark of elite leftists that they know better than we do how we should live our lives. They’ll tell us what we can buy, what kind of car we can drive, what we can do with what was formerly considered “our property,” who we can hire at and what rate, and etc.
And Bill de Blasio was always at home in that world. In the June debate, he gave us the most accurate and pithily distilled example of the leftist attitude toward the world in one quote: “There is plenty of money in this world, and there’s plenty of money in this country, it’s just in the wrong hands. Democrats have to fix that.”
That just about sums it up, doesn’t it?
- They are intrinsically unable to learn from past mistakes. After a century of trying socialism in dozens of countries all over the globe, and reaping a bumper crop of poverty, oppression, misery and gulags, let’s give it one more try. After the latest mass shooters broke 27 existing gun laws, passing the magic 28th is going to do the trick. After 50 years of tax increases produced less revenue to the government, and tax rate cuts have produced more economic growth… we need another massive tax increase.
Here again, Wacky Warren has established his bona fides. He started out in the 80s as a big supporter of Nicaragua’s murderous revolutionary Sandinista party, and even after that socialist experiment dissolved into disaster, he was still calling himself a democrat socialist years later. He got early jobs in campaigns of various leftist stereotypes come to life, from Dinkins to Charlie Rangel to Hillary Clinton, and advocated for a myriad of leftist policies that never seemed to work. So naturally, when he came to office in a deep blue state that deeply wanted him to succeed… he followed the same failed policies over the same cliff.
Somehow, the fusillade of negative feedback produced by decades of terrible decisions has never managed to pierce the thick cloud of unwarranted self-regard with which he’s surrounded himself.
Sound familiar? I’m looking at you, Grandma Squanto, and Crazy Bernie, and Joey Gaffes.
Let us end with the traditional farewell haiku:
Approved by no New Yorkers
Tall as he is dumb