Michael Bloomberg has entered the spotlight for this year’s Democrat nomination race without being in a single race or speaking at a single debate. As Biden crumbles, his supporters go looking for a new old man of the middle. Bloomberg himself has spent $200 million on his campaign so far. Out of the woodwork, journalists, activists and pundits all praise him and consider him the best shot to dethrone Trump.
In the way of this week’s fun, old quotes and videos of Bloomberg have come out of the woodwork. Bloomberg is failing the wokeness litmus test. Many are not batting an eye at this, and it is full steam ahead. John McWhorter, noted African-American huckster, even defends Bloomberg’s honest appraisal of who is doing the killing in New York City. Bloomberg is attempting to do on the national stage what he did in New York. This is all out in the open for anyone willing to read.
How did Bloomberg keep NYC running so smoothly and reaching new heights with little civil discord? Good ol’ fashioned bribery. In this old article, Ben Smith at Buzz Feed is careful to say it is not “ugly quid pro quo influence shopping“, but he is wrong only because he sees that ugly side as one direction. Bloomberg buying silence from potential agitators or antagonists is the same as someone giving him money for his decisions. The direction of bribing and influence peddling is just in reverse of the norm. He is buying their decision not to voice displeasure or make trouble. Bloomberg’s moves were akin to Gelbaum’s $100 million donation to the Sierra Club if they dropped their anti-immigration stance. Since this is what kept NYC quiet and kumbaya the last twelve years, Ben Smith was right to assume De Blasio’s tenure would be rocky. Let us all move up the descent of glittering NYC into Warriors NYC predictions.
A political joke is that the three greatest patronage jobs in American politics are president, governor of a southern state and the mayor of New York City. Bloomberg was a billionaire before becoming mayor, and has seen his wealth only grow while mayor. The article is right to point out how different billions of wealth is compared to millions, and this should be a greater lesson for the concentration of wealth and increase in top 1% or 10% holdings. Bloomberg’s thousands here and there can buy off the little rabble rousers, and his millions to Cory Booker and Terry McAuliffe should be viewed all in the same manner. Bloomberg’s wealth combined with the new fundraising and donations rules for politics allows politically minded millionaires and billionaires to wield immense clout different from even just twenty years ago. Bloomberg and Koch are roughly seven times as wealthy as Ross Perot who mounted a national presidential campaign. Think of what they can do in soft or behind the scenes efforts compared to Perot’s direct moves.
Bloomberg’s antics hit at the phenomenon that some have written about in the fringe right of how the left will attack how you make money and provide for your family to silence you. Bloomberg became a patron of museums, donor of social organizations and medical services angel. As cited in the article, some organizations wanted to argue or combat Bloomberg on an issue but, shucks, he was a recent donor or had made expansion of services possible through his philanthropy. They did not want to upset him. This article timed right after the TIME magazine profile on Bloomberg and his flood of small donations and philanthropy point out how TIME lacked follow through or even dared to follow through on how much dark money he donates, where does it go and what results does it buy. The money was hush money.
Extrapolated out, this is the financial sector’s political playbook for how they bought the left to do their bidding without criticism. The handouts and minority puppets are keeping that multiracial underclass quiet as the laws and enforcement of regulations are tilted to favor the FIRE economy and the FIRE economy’s clients. Never fixing their dysfunctional neighborhoods, they can bribe them with section 8, SNAP and make work government jobs, while the feds backstops large risks, provides tax breaks and fails to enforce the financial criminal statutes. The asset inflation of the FIRE era has helped those who hold the assets in question disproportionately.
The media is paralyzed by a combination of financial need and blindly supporting the candidates that implement their progressive desires. Activists enjoy not having the worry about fundraising, so money from JP Morgan Chase will keep them focused on their ethnonarcissist pet issues. Bloomberg can do this on a national scale because of the money he commands. Trump is a billionaire but not liquid. Bloomberg is a different beast.
There is no limit to what he could do. Just look at the banks for an example. Despite many commentators predicting its demise or break up, Citigroup remained intact and received three separate bailouts and a tax forgiveness deal between fall of 2008 and Christmas 2009. Citigroup made sure to set their donor network to work for candidate Obama to placate the little people and in return, get Citi cronies into top econ policymaker positions. Bloomberg can do this with the entire DNC for a pittance. Then he can threaten every swing district US representative and US senator if he chooses. Buy off just enough of the people with a low price tag so they look the other way and stay quiet while you loot the cookie jar. If worried it won’t work, find a smiling face that looks like a commoner to distract the lumpenproles. We will see if he can do this, but Bloomberg’s immense outlay has taken us a step deeper on our imperial path.