Angry Mom: Oh, Honey — If Anybody’s ‘Out of Touch’, It’s You
I wasn’t going to waste my time on the over-privileged, excessively-pampered trophy wife Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin stupidly took with him on a recent taxpayer-funded business trip.
Linton was on a government-funded jet, and cited her husband's service as part of her punch-down of a critic https://t.co/DfJ1GOMvlf
— Maggie Haberman (@maggieNYT) August 22, 2017
But after thinking about her rude, snotty, and insanely ill-informed reply to someone who took issue with her gross display of wealth, I think I should expend a few words.
Mrs. Mnuchin believes she and her spouse contribute more to the country than whomever it was who critiqued her behavior.
No. They and their kind are leeches. Bloodsuckers. Literally part of the great vampire squid empire Matt Taibbi described.
They do not add value to this country. They chew at its foundations in great, monster-sized bites.
And they believe they are entitled to do so.
But they’re wealthy! Look at all the money they have, one might say.
What did they do to make that wealth? They inherited much of it, especially in his case — they had access to pre-existing capital.
Meanwhile, nearly half of this country’s citizens can’t put their hands on $400 or more in cash in the event of an emergency.
This, in spite of the fact roughly half of the country has some money in an investment account. Let me guess that much of this is a 401K established through an employer and it’s not liquid. It’s also money managed by financial industry professionals like Steve Mnuchin who don’t do a lot actively with the Average Joe’s 401K but use them in the aggregate to take positions in the stock market while skimming off a living through fees — and the Average Joe only has $104,000 saved by the time they retire, on which to live the rest of their life.
Yeah, but these Mnuchins must have worked hard to get through those private schools, one might say.
Prove it. How many times do these uber wealthy ever really show anybody their grades to get a six-figure entry-level job out of college? Mnuchin’s father was a partner at Goldman Sachs. Mnuchin himself rubbed shoulders with a network of uber wealthy as a member of Yale’s Skull and Bones society. With that background it’s not hard to get one’s foot in the door AND draw a salary more than twice that of the Average Joe.
Ditto for Mrs. Mnuchin, who also attended private schools in Scotland and a private university in the U.S.
Average Joe or Josephine doesn’t have either the family money to go to expensive private prep schools or attend a four-year university without being massively in debt. The Average Joe Junior who graduated last year had more than $37,000 of student loan debt which will take them on average 10-21 years to pay off.
(Gee, I wonder who benefits from the interest on these loans…Bueller? Bueller?)
Deplaning from her taxpayer-subsidized flight, Mrs. Mnuchin’s attire, from the top of her over-processed hair to the ends of her manicured toes, was roughly equal in cost to the average student loan debt — her Birkin handbag alone costs about $20,000.
The same Average Joe/Josephine/Junior also faces a job market with deeply entrenched wage stagnation, making savings difficult after paying on school loans.
They also face difficulty before they graduate if they hold down a minimum wage job; there’s no place in the U.S. where rent on a one-bedroom apartment is affordable for a full-time minimum wage worker, let alone one who is trying to go to school full-time.
After graduation, long-stagnant entry level wages may help ease the pinch, but then there’s the challenge of rising health care costs which have not abated even though the ACA makes access to health insurance easier.
Good luck finding a way to afford having children. Diapers alone will cost $750 to $1200 a year.
Don’t even get me started on transportation costs. And Boomer-aged pundits pule about Millennials killing all the things…
But surely these uber wealthy people must have earned some of their wealth, one might foolishly claim.
Oh, yes, definitely. They earned it by capturing legislatures and regulatory bodies, and by putting a squeeze play on both investment analysts and regulations. They’ve used them to insure they never actually pay taxes appropriate to the amount of public resources they or their investment portfolio consumed. They’ve demanded quarter-after-quarter profits off the backs of the Average Joe/Josephine/Junior, insisting corporate management maintain low wages to offset other rising costs like rent. They’ll reward upper management with ridiculous compensation packages if they can maintain profits and sack them if they don’t. And then because foreign investors are driving up the price of property, they sink those profits into the same bubble and continue to lean on corporate management for profits even as they increase other business costs through increased rents.
They earned that wealth by sucking the lifeblood out of the kind of people Mrs. Mnuchin talk down to so defensively, even after they’d just paid for her air travel.
I would be so incredibly embarrassed as a parent if my adult children ever acted like Mrs. Mnuchin — blind and stupid about her privilege, ungrateful to the people upon whom her lifestyle has been built, wasteful of an opportunity to be a better human.
And incredibly out of touch with Americans.
And I’d be just as embarrassed if my kids ever acted like Mr. Mnuchin, too, but that’s another chapter.
She also referenced how much Mnuchin is “giving up” by virtue of settling for a mere government salary for a few years.
Yeah, right. You can bet that his rate of “earning” after his time in government will be much higher than it was before.
He’s working on yet more regulatory capture to screw the 99% out of even more of their lifeblood. Fuck her with her goddamn Birkin bag upside down and sideways.
Didn’t he leave GS with a severance package worth $50+ million?
Probably, haven’t looked — but what could you do if you’d inherited $3M from your parent AND you were an investment banker? His mother had $3M left post-Madoff which he was able to keep because of bankruptcy laws, if memory serves.
As you say, for top participants, using the revolving door is a money making enterprise. It increases future earnings, and doesn’t require student loan debt to do so. In fact, it is an essential part of the governmental capture that keeps the likes of Goldman Sachs and its clients so profitable – largely by exempting themselves from tax and from being subject to regulations that would make them internalize costs they so blithely cast off to others.
Ms. Linton’s fiery overreaction to being called out on her narcissism – and her ability to fantasize like Donald Trump – indicates that she knows she’s in it for the ride and is afraid of being exposed, what with her marriage to Mnuchin being less than two months old. Before she gets too riled up, someone might tell her that she is now a public figure, a status with which her prior success in Hollywood might not have prepared her.
Apart from the odd bit of anatomy and a portion of Mnuchin’s assets, Ms. Linton’s reach exceeds her grasp about as much as do the University of West Los Angeles Law School’s (her alma mater) aspirations of ever being accredited by the ABA.
The Place de la Concorde is a good starting place……..line them up………all of them, and please do start the que with those who dye their hair orange.
If the Place gets too busy, move the overload to the Tower of London……….Big Ben will remain silent.
Now kindly do, put down your cup of tea and get off your ass Clandestine Services and clean up this faux Royal House of Cards Narcissistic Totallitarian Mess and all of those so willing to sell their soul to participate in this Grand Faustian Bargain.
Thank you for this PERFECT RANT!
Thanks, harpie! That last bit you posted in your comment — about her fucking Birkin handbag — was the last straw.
Do you know how much my kid’s tuition is this term? One goddamn Hermes Birkin. Argh…
Yeah, sorry about that :-)
…I couldn’t just let it be, for some reason…probably the fkn Hermes Birkin bag as well…that “taurillon clemence leather”, don’t you know, with the GOLD [maybe that was just the color and it was not actually gold plated?] hardware, and the “clochette with lock and two keys”and “lined with white chevre”” of course! But what really got me about the descriptions I saw, was that they actually wrote that the “double rolled handles” had never been used…were, in effect pristine and virgin.
Now that’s special!
I’m sorry about all the comments…I didn’t mean to take over the thread. I’ll stop now.
“lined with white chevre” — when I first read that description, I bust out laughing.
Chevre = goat’s milk cheese.
No worries, I’m just as torqued off by Antoinette. ~barf~
Trump and Ms. Munchin are not the problem any more than Marie Antoinette was. They are the symptom. Extreme wealth is not earned, it is stolen. The first two words of any business plan are “create monopoly”. “we make money the old fashioned way, we earn it” was just psyche warfare. The US government has been an example of William Black’s control fraud since before he popularized the term. The extreme money in control fraud is not made by siphoning out a tariff, it is selling short and then destroying the entity. Usually more effective to destroy from within using moles, but whatever works. Another model, destructive capitalism, the taking the monopoly from someone else, see Waltons is the limit when one monopoly, in the US today it is the medical industry, takes wealth from other monopolies to such an extent that the host economy crashes.
The people will die business plan, forever wars, military intelligence complex, tobacco, auto industry, petroleum industry, sugar and carbohydrate industry, US medical care. I can not keep track. First addict people to opioids and then legislate a monopoly on opioid withdrawal drugs. [ Short segway, who is making money on drugs, and why is opioid flagged by this spell checker, talk about Orwellian ].
I too have experienced Rayne’s examples of privilege. I am wondering how much the privilege, ( real as it is), fight is drama that distracts from large scale theft. The faster the pie shrinks the bigger an issue privilege becomes. The Clandestine Services a deus ex machina? Why would they clean up now when they are such a part of the long term problem and have done nothing in the past.
Mnuchin and his spouse aren’t merely symptoms. They are part and parcel, the same problem only this latest iteration, this present generation.
It’s the same core problem economists found when they studied Florence, Italy; the same families which were wealthiest in 1427 are still the wealthiest 600 years later.
Capital accumulates and retains its power. It shuts out newcomers. Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-first Century explains how it works.
Mnuchin’s money may not be multiple generations old, but it is old by American standards.
His spouse, too, may not have multiple generations of accumulated wealth, but she already has enough capital to gain entre to older capital.
Her sneering attitude — considered déclassé by old wealth — is the id of capital. When Handbag Mouth calls someone “out of touch,” she telling them they are not in touch with the capital class.
Fuck that hard with some Louboutins.
The left has been unable to restrain capital’s power because it can’t build an effective narrative. We’ve known that since “death tax” and Lakoff’s elephant we’re not supposed to think about.
What Handbag Mouth and her spouse offer are narrative that works at multiple levels, revolving around the core universal ethic of unfairness.
I don’t expect the now-fragmented Deep State to do anything effective about this problem. I do expect with a better narrative that the people will do it themselves, the way they did in 1776 and in 1941, and each time the political system busted accumulated power in between.
Hope your perspective is more accurate than mine. Trump and Mnuchin are small time crooks in comparison to the oligarchs and hegemony. US history and WWII are examples of how the majority is amoral and complicit with ethnic genocide and oppression. While the 0.1 percent shrink the remainder of the pie the white male privilege across all classes decreases the most. There is wealth only in the upper quartile and the 0.1 percent will follow Dillinger’s dictum, that’s where the money is. The upper quartile can lie to itself that it’s 401ks and real estate give them a seat at the table of theft wealth and oppression. The government mandated and “free market” monopolies and theft look like they are going to crush them.
Why so thickheaded? Who, right now out of the 1% in the U.S. — that’s 3.2M people — can declare an economic emergency with a pen stroke? Mnuchin and Trump are equal sized to the rest of the members of the vampire squid empire for this reason alone, apart from their personal wealth.
And who do you think they work for, in addition to themselves? It’s all of a piece — they’re all the same people who write dark money checks for Trump’s campaign(s) and the rest of the complicit GOP.
As for WWI and WWII: you need to read more about what those wars did to capital. How many British peers were forced into bankruptcy or liquidated their estates? US is incredibly complicit when not outright guilty of many crimes, but looking ONLY at this lesson while ignoring others enables capital’s march.
The Mnuchins were in KY to meet with Mitch McConnell “in Louisville, Ky., […] for a discussion of tax policy.” [That’s the PC term for it, anyway.] [That’s from NYT article about McConnell’s supposed falling out with Trump.]
And, then there’s this, from KY.com [emphasis added]:
I can’t seem to even begin to express WHY this episode infuriates me so much. Maybe I’ll start with the fact that it happened in KY…
There are surely many wealthy people in Kentucky, but there are also a LOT of poverty stricken residents. Especially in Appalachia [parts of other states as well] there are huge problems with opioid addiction and alcoholism, and other health issues-like the dangers related to coal mining as well as the long term health effects of that work and the anti-social, anti-environment methods of that industry.
The people these citizens elect to represent them in government seem to all be working AGAINST the People’s interests, and through some cosmic fluke, one of those particular officials-Mitch McConnell, has an outsize [especially considering the number of votes he needs to be elected and re-elected!] effect on EVERY SINGLE PERSON who lives in this country.
I can’t think of a good reason for this road trip to Fort Knox except to meet with McConnell and draw attention away from the real reason for the trip.
Oh, and scouting future movie locations. So pathetic.
CREW has another idea:
In November, Ron Bash, a professor of Appalachian cultural studies at Western Carolina University, wrote an Opinion piece in the NYT: Appalachia’s Sacrifice, lamenting the fact that the “do not drink the water” signs, which had been above the water fountains at the Knott County Opportunity Center in Kentucky, [“which houses a community college, a Head Start program and the county library”] for TEN YEARS, had not received the amount of attention that those “Do not drink the water” signs in Flint, Michigan, did.
This is part of a letter to the Editor about Rash’s Op-Ed from Richard W. Poeton, a retired scientist at the Environmental Protection Agency:
It sounds, and IS harsh, and it’s true, but a look at the legislative history of McConnell et. al shows that those voters are being flim-flammed, hoodwinked etc.
From that 9/12/2009 article [linked above]: Clean Water Laws Are Neglected, at a Cost in Suffering:
From 8/21: Trump’s Interior Department moves to stop mountaintop removal study; Charleston [WV] Gazetette-Mail
From today: What Exxon Mobil Didn’t Say About Climate Change
Here is the report:
In 2011, Harold Rogers Ky-5 introduced H.B. 960.
The Official Title as Introduced [I kid you not!] ;
Short Title as Introduced: Mining Jobs Protection Act
In the Senate, it was called S. 468, and Mitch McConnell was all for it:
[From the Congressional Record] McConnell:
Here’s his Senate-Mate Sen. Paul [KY]
Does this affect all those PCB etc laden river bottom superfund sites dredge material in addition to mountain top mining?
Do you mean the 2011 proposed law [above] or the suspension of the Mountain Top removal study further above? If it’s the former, I’m pretty sure that was never passed and signed into law…but the sponsors could point to having supported something called the “Mining Jobs Protection Act” to show how much they really care about their constituents.
If it’s the latter, then I would say it’s just about the mountain top mining.
Last November, McConnell had an opportunity to get a bipartisan Bill passed to actually DO something for coal miners:
Retired Coal Miners Losing Their Safety Net; NYT; Editorial; 11/28/16
As it turns out, that Bill did NOT get passed, and only SOME of the protections are extended. For more, see: McConnell’s Dual Role In Miners’ Benefits Saga, WOUB [Ohio]; 5/3/17
CREW filed FOIA request about the use of a government plane for a joyride to KY, where the eclipse just happened to be…
It’s the arrogance that will do these swine in.
Oh, man, such a sticky WEB!
CNN exclusive – Top Trump aide’s email draws new scrutiny in Russia inquiry 7:31 PM ET, Wed August 23, 2017
About this article: Sarah KendziorVerified account @sarahkendzior
Sarah KendziorVerified account @sarahkendzior Sarah Kendzior Retweeted ΞLΞVΞNTH
See this thread from ΞLΞVΞNTH @3L3V3NTH
EPA, Jim Justice coal firms reach $6M deal over water pollution; WV Gazette; 9/30/16
In West Virginia, Trump Hails Conservatism and a New G.O.P. Governor NYT; 8/3/17
The original sale in 2009 appears to be part offshoring equity out of Russia and part getting some control of metallurgical coal supply to not be beholden to competitor steel companies. This looks like a profitable deal for Mechel until coke coal prices fell in 2013. Depending on source, prices fell from 25 to 75 percent by 2015. https://www.eia.gov/state/seds/data.php?incfile=/state/seds/sep_prices/total/pr_tot_US.html&sid=US
Not sure how much swag Justice got from Putin in the buy back. It was worth a lot less in Feb 2015 than 550 million in 2009. By comparison the major energy coal companies went bankrupt and wall street bought in at the low.
This thread took a slightly different tack on that “WV” connection:
Amount of Mechel’s restructured debt via Gazprombank nearly matches the profit Justice cleared between the mine sale and buyback. Like only attorneys’ fees off the top…
I sure hope Mueller’s work sweeps up all these boneheads. Imagine the special elections afterward.
Wow. Thanks, Rayne.
Roger Sollenberger @SollenbergerRC
…feeling the need for a little timeline…
Also, getting back to Louise Linton in a way: supposedly Justice [what an irony in that name] is the richest man in WV.
Like your piece however really question this claim ” This, in spite of the fact roughly half of the country has some money in an investment account” Can you provide credible evidence for this claim?
Best article about the arrogance that Linton displayed.
Did Steve Mnuchin and Louise Linton really ‘give … – Los Angeles Times
Dow Hits 21,000, Trump Touts Stock Market Success, But Many … – NPR
Combine the uneven ownership rates and ownership amounts, and the total inequality in the stock market is astounding. As of 2013, the top 1 percent of households by wealth owned nearly 38 percent of all stock shares, according to research by New York University economist Edward Wolff.
Indeed, nearly all of the stock ownership in the U.S. is concentrated among the richest. According to Wolff’s data, the top 20 percent of Americans owned 92 percent of the stocks in 2013.
Put another way: Eighty percent of Americans together owned just 8 percent of all stocks.