Ownership Agenda

Christopher Hayes

TAPPED's Garance Franke-Ruta offers a sharp critique of the President's rhetoric about his "ownership agenda." With this ad, Bush seems to be -- disturbingly -- equating the accumulation of material possessions with an individual's future moral behavior and even patriotism. Now, we all know that property owners are more likely to take care of their lawns than are renters, but that doesn't exactly seem to be what Bush is talking about here. Can Bush really be saying that if you rent your home, you lack the same investment in America? That if you're just one of the little people and don't own something big, that you have no stake in the future of the nation? Or that, if you're an employee instead of a business owner, you somehow lack the same vital patriotism, inhibited as you are by your relative poverty? Is he really saying the poor and lower-middle classes lack a claim to the nation's future, or concern for it, and will not have it, until they own more things? Because that's what Bush seems to be suggesting. And it's a pretty radical condemnation of those without substantial means.

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Christopher Hayes is the host of MSNBC’s All In with Chris Hayes. He is an editor at large at the Nation and a former senior editor of In These Times.
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