Even though MSNBC host Chris Hayes has a history of airing his far-left views and has even admitted to being a "liberal caricature," he does from time to time ask contrarian questions from a conservative point of view, and managed to do so on the Monday, September 9, All In show during an interview with New York Democratic mayoral candidate Bill De Blasio.
On the subject of taxing the wealthy, Hayes brought up criticism from outgoing Mayor Michael Bloomberg as the MSNBC host posed:
Here he (Bloomberg) is. He's talking about the way to help people who are less fortunate. This is his comment: "The way to help those who are less fortunate is, number one, to attract more fortunate people. They are the ones that pay the bills. People that would get very badly hurt if you drive out the very wealthy are the people he professes to try to help. Tearing people apart with his two cities thing doesn't make any sense for me. It's a destructive strategy for those you want to help the most. He's a very populist, very left-wing guy, but this city is not two groups. And if it is to some extent, it's one group paying for services for the other."
What about people who worry about the tax base, who say, "Look at the actual dollars and cents here, look at the New York City budget every year, a huge amount is coming from finance. When Wall Street has a good year, the city's coffers are high, and when it has a bad year, the coffers are low, and that means cuts in schools and cops and all sorts of city services"?
De Blasio stuck to his left-wing guns as he responded:
Well, I would flip it this way and say, first, on the Bloomberg watch, with that theory in place, the free market laissez-faire approach, we have gotten 46 percent of the folks at or near the poverty level, and the mayor's own administration acknowledges that, and it's getting worse. So, by definition, something's got to give. You can't continue on this path productively.
Second, one supporter I have, I'm very honored to have is Joseph Stiglitz, the Nobel prize-winning economist, who is one of the most powerful voices in this country on the point that if you don't restructure this economy for everyone having some kind of buy-in, some kind of opportunity to move ahead, some kind of buying power, we'll continue in a structural decline. And I think here locally, we have to act on that point that we've got to find ways to get people back on track to have a decent living in this city.
--Brad Wilmouth is a news analyst at the Media Research Center. Click here to follow Brad Wilmouth on Twitter.