For all the trashing of TNR I’ve done lately, I think Jon Chait’s article on Harold Ford is the best one I’ve seen so far:
Casting about for a champion, Wall Street’s eyes turned to Ford.
The Tennessee expatriate turned out to be the perfect man for the job. He already had a foothold in the city through his financial services committee connections, a $1.8 million East Hampton vacation home his father had purchased in 2003, and a lucrative part-time job at Merrill Lynch. Ford breakfasts regularly at the Regency and relaxes at upper-class redoubts like the Waverly Inn. “Ford started hearing about [the backlash] at cocktail parties,” reports Politico.[….]
Ford’s candidacy is an epiphenomenon of Wall Street’s retreat into a fantasy world. In this alternate reality, the titans of finance are innocent victims of a freakish accident, the Democrats’ struggles result from their hostility to these victims, and the people are clamoring for a leader who will openly cater to their demands. The notion that Democratic primary voters in New York will embrace Ford may be more fantastical than the wildest investment scheme that predated the crash.
I was talking with a few bankster friends of mine a few weeks ago and the whining about the proposed bank tax was unbelievable. These assholes really and truly believe that they are the engines of our economy, that they are being treated badly, and that if they hold their breath long enough, they’ll get their way. I’m not for scapegoating anyone unfairly, but they really are living in an alternate universe.