The New York Times discovers liberal hypocrisy
Last week, a bastion of progressivism in America, The New York Times, had a sort of Christopher Columbus–type discovery. Its finding was that liberal politicians and voters don't fully practice what they preach. There is an expression in American political discourse that explains this hypocritical behavior: limousine liberalism.
The New York Times' findings were shown in a video published by its YouTube channel titled "Liberal Hypocrisy is Fueling American Inequality. Here's How." The investigative video focuses on several states where the Democrat party has absolute control of the Legislative and Executive Branches of state government. The aim of the video was to show how liberal politicians and voters are failing to deal with the problems of inequality in their states.
The video begins to look at housing policy in the Democrats' stronghold of California and its rising house prices and sluggish construction of housing units. Liberal hypocrisy, the video highlights, begins to appear when progressive voters and politicians use their political power to block policies that lead to affordable housing. An example highlighted by the Times is local progressives campaigning about and blocking the reform of zoning laws from low- to high-density housing in Palo Alto. Although the California state Legislature recently took steps to reform zoning laws, local progressive politicians are still resisting — fighting the reforms, despite the 2020 Democratic platform asserting that housing should be affordable to all.
Another area of policy highlighted by the video is tax policy in the state of Washington. The Democrats' platform argued, "Democrats will reform the tax code to be more progressive and equitable," and recently, Democrats in Congress have been arguing for a wealth tax. However, in Washington State, working-class families pay more in taxes as a share of their income than the maligned wealthy people in the state or in Republican-controlled states such as Texas.
Binyamin Appelbaum contends in the video about liberal hypocrisy, "Blue states are the places where economic inequality is increasing most quickly in this country," reiterating that progressive voters and politicians aren't adhering to the values they advocate in their policies and rhetoric. Instead, they have failed in their messianic quest to eradicate inequality on their turf.
The average liberal reader of the New York Times would surely be surprised seeing such a video criticizing their beloved tool of progressive policies, the Democrat party. However, for conservatives, the discovery of liberal hypocrisy in the Democrat party is hardly surprising.
Ojel L. Rodriguez AKC (@ojelrodriguez) is a Ph.D. student at the School of International Relations at The University of Saint Andrews.
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