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White House adds new misleading term to political debate on income inequality

Josh Earnest
Josh Earnest

It used to be that Barack Obama and his band of merry men were waging war against the haves in order to divert some of their ill-gotten gains (read: income) into the pockets of the have-nots. Now, the enemy has a new name: the well-connected. And the group whom the president has designated as the rightful recipients of the cash hoarded by the well-connected? The hard-working.

“At a news conference on Thursday,” Susan Jones of CNSNews reports, “White House spokesman Josh Earnest used the phrase … ‘well-connected’ as a synonym for the wealthy”:

The implication is that wealthy people get that way through their connections — who they know — rather than through discipline and hard work….

In his first reference to “the wealthy and the well-connected” on Thursday, Earnest was criticizing Republicans for refusing to "even consider the possibility of raising some revenue by closing some loopholes that benefit only the wealthy and the well-connected."

The second and third mentions came in the same sentence: Earnest said Republicans, in response to President Obama's "willingness to compromise," must agree to close "loopholes that benefit the wealthy and the well-connected -- tax loopholes that benefit the wealthy and well-connected," he repeated.

A video of the amusingly named Earnest’s remarks is here.

Meanwhile, this latest bit of Obamaspeak would be good for a laugh if it weren’t so galling. In the president’s distorted worldview, if you’re rich, you must have gotten there by means of connections. You couldn’t have achieved your wealth through “hard work.” Or, to borrow another Obama formulation, you didn’t build your success. Meanwhile, the genuinely hard-working souls — low wage earners — have little to show for their hard work. If only they had connections … in the White House!

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