ChrisWeigant.com

Ellison And Dean

[ Posted Thursday, November 17th, 2016 – 17:28 UTC ]

Change is coming soon to the Democratic National Committee. The D.N.C. will elect a new chair soon, and so far the two frontrunners for the position seem to be Representative Keith Ellison and ex-D.N.C. Chair Howard Dean. Both bring interesting skills to the table, but both also have their drawbacks. Who the party elects is going to be crucial to their chances of rebuilding and fielding good candidates for the next few elections. It will also be crucial for the Democrats' chances of getting a clear and strong message out to the public of what, precisely, they stand for. Since Democrats will have no president or congressional majority leaders for the next two years, the D.N.C. chair will become not only the leader of the party, but also likely the most prominent voice in the media as well.

Howard Dean can claim some impressive successes during his previous stint as party chair. His "50-state strategy" helped Democrats win back both houses of Congress and the White House during his previous tenure (2005-2009). However, his success also broadened what it meant to be a Democratic officeholder so wide that Democrats had to cope with a rather conservative wing (the Blue Dogs) within their own ranks. This hobbled their efforts to pass truly progressive legislation, and led to a lot of compromises in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (to name just one prominent example). Dean's 50-state strategy was not universally loved within the party itself, it is worth mentioning. Still, it did result in Barack Obama being elected with a strong majority in both houses of Congress, although Dean's critics would argue the extent to which those victories were a direct result of the 50-state strategy.

Keith Ellison, on the other hand, is a lot more pure in the ideology department. He is co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, and if you've ever heard him give a speech you know that he is fiercely committed to a progressive agenda. But he has already won support from not just Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren but also Chuck Schumer and Harry Reid. This shows he can get support of the party's pragmatists as well as staunch progressives.

Dean's strongest point is his claim that he's rebuilt the party before, and thus he knows how to do it again. That's a pretty convincing argument for Democrats facing years of wandering in the congressional minority wilderness. Dean's argument has always been a pragmatic one -- elect more Democrats, and eventually you'll get good stuff done.

But are Democrats really in the mood for pragmatism? Dean can sound awfully centrist at times, which is something that the Bernie Sanders foot soldiers really don't want to hear right now. Dean's own history is somewhat concerning, since after he stepped down as chair he became an all-but-in-name lobbyist and actually argued against some key provisions of Obamacare. Critics claim he sold out to the health care and drug industry (Dean was a doctor before he entered politics, it's worth noting). He also criticized Obama's Iran nuclear deal, although he now says he supports it. Even now that he's running for party chair, he sounds a little too conciliatory towards Republican positions.

Here is Dean in a recent interview with the Huffington Post, explaining how he would lead the Democratic Party:

"Donald Trump has proposed some things that make sense," Dean said, pointing to the president-elect's massive infrastructure pledge. If Trump drops the corporate tax rate to 18 per cent and finances it by getting rid of corporate loopholes, should also support that, Dean added. [sic -- probably meant to say "Democrats should..."]

"I don't think we should oppose any idea that comes out of Donald Trump's mouth just because it's Donald Trump."

Dean also still supports NAFTA, putting him at odds with Sanders supporters:

"The rhetoric around these global treaties is exaggerated," he said, noting they helped lift a billion people out of poverty.

"Have they cost us manufacturing jobs? No, they certainly have not," he continued. "It is true that they have cost us manufacturing jobs in Ohio and Iowa and in places like that, but it has increased the number of manufacturing jobs, in particular agricultural jobs, in North Carolina, up and down the east and the west coast."

Dean said he is open to re-negotiating NAFTA but scrapping the deal completely would be "crazy." He argued that automation was far more damaging development to sectors like the auto industry.

"The idea that we are all going to get these factories back is nonsense. I mean I wish it were true. Politicians who claim it is true, they lie right in the public's face," he said. "We've got to start over in the new economy, we're not going to back to the old economy."

This should be fairly troubling for Democrats on the national committee, because not only is it dismissive of the very states which gave Trump his victory, his message of hope to the Rust Belt seems to be: "Don't like it? Move somewhere else." To call this tone-deaf to the new political realities is an understatement.

The traditional Democratic remedy for dying Midwestern towns has been to offer retraining as a panacea. But what good does it do people in towns where factories have left to train them for jobs which simply aren't available where they live? Again, the subtle message is: "Leave 'flyover country' and move to the coasts, where the real action is!" This is one of the big reasons blue-collar workers have all but given up on the Democratic Party -- because they simply have no plan to improve their lives. This stands in stark contrast to Dean's original 50-state strategy. If Democrats just give up on "Ohio and Iowa and places like that," it's going to be hard to compete in the next presidential election, to state the obvious.

Keith Ellison has his downsides, as well, but they're mostly personal. Electing Ellison to lead the Democratic Party would mean putting an African-American Muslim in charge. This would no doubt delight progressives everywhere, as a clear rebuke to Trump's positions, but how would that imagery be seen by the very voters Democrats should now be trying to win back? Ellison's past will be raked over by the right, and a few missteps will be used in an attempt to define him with the public. Ellison previously argued that Louis Farrakhan wasn't anti-Semitic, for instance, which he later apologized for and retracted in full. He has built some support among Jews since then, but Republicans will no doubt use this against him should he become party chair. His current stance on Israel may harm him among some Democrats, as well. And his defense of Farrakhan is just one example -- he's got a few other verbal missteps in his past that will be used by Republicans in an attempt to demonize him.

Both candidates are flawed in certain ways. They're human, in other words. But both have excellent communication skills and can easily hold their own in political arguments. These are the most important skills that will be necessary for the next few years from the party's leader.

Howard Dean was once the most prominent maverick in the Democratic Party. He built an impressive following of youthful supporters, but ultimately fell short in achieving the party's nomination. Then he led the Democrats at a very advantageous time to do so (as the public soured on Bush, the Iraq War, and Republicans in general). But most of that was a long time ago, and since then he's essentially cashed in on his reputation. Ellison, on the other hand, has said a few stupid things in his past but since then has been organizing and leading the progressive wing of the Democratic Party. He is a very strong voice for pretty much everything on the Bernie Sanders agenda. And now he's already secured the support not just of Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, but also from two of the party's most powerful current politicians. Dean is leaning heavily on his argument that the D.N.C. chair should be a full-time job, and he may have a point. But Debbie Wasserman Schultz was never forced to give up her House seat while she did it, so it is possible to wear both hats simultaneously.

Howard Dean would be a pragmatic choice, betting that he can recreate the magic of winning back Congress and the White House. But that was in a very different time, and the route to winning voters back right now might not to be so conciliatory towards Donald Trump and so dismissive of the very real concern of the voters in the Midwest. Keith Ellison would echo Bernie Sanders in strongly denouncing trade deals that put Wall Street's concerns ahead of workers. That might be a lot more successful in convincing people in Michigan and Wisconsin that the Democratic Party is interested in changing their lives for the better. What the Democratic National Committee has to choose is whether they want to make a strong progressive case to the voters, or retreat into pragmatism and deal-making that might wind up being counterproductive.

-- Chris Weigant

 

Follow Chris on Twitter: @ChrisWeigant

 

33 Comments on “Ellison And Dean”

  1. [1] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    I doubt Dean will get it simply because he would be a full-time Chairman. Sanders, Warren and Schumer et al are all strongly in favor of it being a part-time position (to be more precise: a casual, in-passing, put-in-an-appearance-twice-a-year position).

  2. [2] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    "But he has already won support from not just Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren but also Chuck Schumer and Harry Reid. This shows he can get support of the party's pragmatists as well as staunch progressives."

    Pragmatists?
    Sugar coating is for cereal.
    The word implies a positive, when, like Hillary, it actually means supporting policies that are extremely negative and contrary to the wishes of the majority... and by majority, I mean the majority of the country, not just the Democratic party.
    Everything from single payer healthcare to breaking up the big banks... all of Bernie's policies polled over 50%.

    Dean- "it has increased the number of manufacturing jobs, in particular agricultural jobs"?
    I'm sorry?
    Did he misspeak or does he truly think they are the same?

    As a lobbyists, Dean is no longer qualified.
    Period.
    He turned to the dark side.

    You called Dean pragmatic too?
    Somebody needs to sit you down for a long talk.

    A

  3. [3] 
    michale wrote:

    Ellison is a product of The Nation Of Islam through and through... Ellison is NOI and NOI is Ellison.. It's like being a "former member of The DAESCH"... There ain't no such thing...

    Yes, if Democrats want to piss off Trump and the tens of millions of Trump supporters, they should put Ellison in charge at the DNC...

    If Democrats actually want to be RELEVANT in the Trump Administration, they won't choose Ellison...

    Dean represents the past.. A good past in someways, but the past nonetheless...

    If this is all that the Democratic Party has, it IS in deep kaa-kaa...

    Don't tell me that the Democratic Party only had *ONE* Barack Obama???

  4. [4] 
    michale wrote:

    But Debbie Wasserman Schultz was never forced to give up her House seat while she did it, so it is possible to wear both hats simultaneously.

    But also always chose the path of least resistance...

    BECAUSE she had a full time job??? We'll never know...

    But the possibility needs to be addressed...

    Personally, if the DNC is that important, especially in the here and now, it would seem to me that a full-time DNC leader is what is required...

  5. [5] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    But Debbie Wasserman Schultz was never forced to give up her House seat while she did it, so it is possible to wear both hats simultaneously.

    And look at the total disaster that turned out to be. It is also a conflict of interest.

    Both Ellison and Dean are deeply flawed candidates. Backing either of them is tantamount to sabotaging the DNC, presumably in order to destroy it. One wonders why Harry Reid would want to do that but not why Sanders would.

  6. [6] 
    michale wrote:

    . One wonders why Harry Reid would want to do that

    One too many shots from the rubber bands...

    "He's loopy!! One too many shots from the snake!!"
    -Genie, ALADDIN

    :D

  7. [7] 
    michale wrote:

    Both Ellison and Dean are deeply flawed candidates. Backing either of them is tantamount to sabotaging the DNC, presumably in order to destroy it.

    I don't know if I agree that THAT is the intent...

    But I do agree it's the likely result....

  8. [8] 
    michale wrote:

    And, in other news..

    President-elect Donald Trump says on Twitter that Ford Motor Co. won't move Lincoln production from Kentucky to Mexico.

    Trump says in a tweet that Ford Executive Chairman Bill Ford called him Thursday evening with the news.

    Ford had planned to move the Lincoln MKC out of a factory in Louisville so it could make more Ford Escapes there. The company was considering a move to Mexico in a deal negotiated with the United Auto Workers union in 2015.

    Ford confirms in a statement Thursday night that the MKC will stay in Kentucky.

    Trump has been feuding with Ford over plans to move small-car production from suburban Detroit to Mexico. CEO Mark Fields says the presidential election didn't change the company's plan.
    https://www.yahoo.com/news/latest-trump-aide-says-hes-131915850.html

    A Trump administration is already making good on campaign promises...

  9. [9] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    Trump misleads the American public about the Ford Motor Company' plans.

    Reuters:

    Ford Motor Co is moving ahead with plans to shift production of small cars to Mexico from Michigan, while "two very important products" will be built in its U.S. factories, Chief Executive Officer Mark Fields told Reuters on Tuesday.

    President-elect Donald Trump has criticized Ford for the decision to shift production of Focus small cars to Mexico in 2018, and said he would consider levying tariffs on Mexican-made Fords.

    "We’re going forward with our plan to move production of the Ford Focus to Mexico, and importantly that’s to make room for two very important products we’ll be putting back into Michigan plants," Fields said in an interview on the sidelines of the Los Angeles Auto Show. "There will be no job impact whatsoever with this move."

    Ford Chairman Bill Ford Jr. said last month he met with Trump. Ford has countered Trump's criticism, saying the company, founded by his great-grandfather, makes more cars and trucks in the United States than any other automaker.

    Fields said with U.S. gasoline prices so low, "it's very difficult for us to be able to make money on a vehicle produced in the U.S." in the small car segment. If Ford decided to build the Focus small car line in the United States, and had to raise the price, "we wouldn't sell the vehicle."

    The group that represents Ford and other major automakers in the U.S. has asked the Trump transition team to review and consider easing the Obama administration's fuel economy standards, which call for automakers to more than double the fuel efficiency of their fleets to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025.

    Fuel economy and trade "are two separate issues," Fields said.

    Ford also is moving ahead with plans to use factory capacity in other markets to fill gaps in its U.S. lineup. Company executives used the auto show to promote a small sport utility vehicle called the EcoSport that the company plans to ship from India.

    "We already have the plants and investment in other parts of the world.

    From Fortune magazine:

    In September, Ford confirmed that all of the company’s small-car production will leave U.S. plants and head to lower-cost Mexico by 2019, but no plants would be closed as a result.

    Ford has repeatedly said no U.S. jobs will be lost because of the move – and it will produce two new vehicles at a Detroit area plant that built the small cars.

    In October, Bill Ford said he had met with Trump to talk about his extensive attacks on the automaker’s investments in Mexico.

    Ford said Trump’s criticism was “infuriating” and “frustrating” because of the company’s extensive investments and employment in the United States.

    Ford had no intention of ever moving their Kentucky plant to Mexico; they have a contract with United Auto Workers Union that guarantees they will stay in Kentucky. That contract will not expire until 2019.

    In his tweets, Trump knowingly misrepresented Ford's position in order to falsely boost his image.

    As far as the auto industry in the US is concerned:

    "The auto industry is scared," says Paul Eisenstein, publisher of The Detroit Bureau, on online newspaper that covers the industry. "[It] is very seriously scared about the possibility of seeing barriers and trade wars like before the Great Depression."

    Under the new republic regime, they have good reason to be scared.

  10. [10] 
    michale wrote:

    MS,

    Your article was from 3 days ago...

    According to TODAY's news, Ford is keeping it's plants in the US...

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-11-18/trump-says-ford-called-to-say-keeping-lincoln-plant-in-kentucky

  11. [11] 
    michale wrote:

    Ford had no intention of ever moving their Kentucky plant to Mexico; they have a contract with United Auto Workers Union that guarantees they will stay in Kentucky. That contract will not expire until 2019.

    That's what Ford says NOW, now that Trump has been elected..

    But Ford was singing a different tune back when they expected a President Hillary Clinton...

    I can find the links if you wish....

  12. [12] 
    michale wrote:

    Ford confirms small car production moving from US to Mexico
    http://ktar.com/story/1271234/ford-confirms-small-car-production-moving-from-us-to-mexico/

    It's hard to find reliable media reports because the vast majority of the MSM are still reporting that Trump is losing the election.. :^/

  13. [13] 
    altohone wrote:

    Troll

    Ford never was going to move the factory to Mexico.

    They were going to move small car production to Mexico, and build other cars in the US factory.

    Ford claimed there would be no lost jobs... this is true.
    However, the NEW jobs that would have been created by keeping all of the production in the US is the issue.

    If Trump actually did convince Ford to keep all the production in the US, in other words increasing the number of US jobs, then Trump deserves praise bigly.

    I hope you are right.
    It would be good news for US workers and our economy.

    A

  14. [14] 
    michale wrote:

    Poopyhead

    Ford claimed there would be no lost jobs... this is true.

    And, of course, Ford would never lie!! :D

    If Trump actually did convince Ford to keep all the production in the US, in other words increasing the number of US jobs, then Trump deserves praise bigly.

    Agreed....

    I hope you are right.
    It would be good news for US workers and our economy.

    Again... Agreed...

  15. [15] 
    michale wrote:

    “We are encouraged that President-elect Trump and the new Congress will pursue policies that will improve U.S. competitiveness and make it possible to keep production of this vehicle here in the U.S.."
    -Ford Statement

    The Trump administration is off to a good start...

  16. [16] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW

    Not sure if you could keep up with some of the discussion the last few days, but I wanted to ask you to consider another column on the issue of wages and income.

    I posted this tidbit and people seem to be in denial about it-
    The US Census Bureau reported a median personal income of $30,240 for all workers over age 15 with income based on the Current Population Survey for 2015.

    The median personal income works out to be about $15 per hour.
    Median means half of Americans make more, half of Americans make less.

    The median household income is about %58k per year... but that generally includes two or more earners income combined... still around $15 per hour.

    Some here seem to believe that $30k per year per individual doesn't qualify as middle class. I disagree.
    The reality is that many in the middle class aren't being paid fairly, but people making $30k don't qualify as poor.

    Anyway, the problem seems to be that some are delusional or ignorant about how little money half of Americans actually make... or they run in upper middle class circles and view everybody who makes less than them as poor, or something. Getting a straight answer has been difficult. Maybe they will explain it differently finally.

    So, will you consider a column that goes into some of these details?

    Your previous column on the $15 minimum wage would be well served by a follow up that spreads this knowledge beyond the comment section here. You seem to think the Fight For $15 is a good idea, so a better explanation of the need in our true reality would be nice.

    Thanks
    A

  17. [17] 
    altohone wrote:

    Troll

    If Trump is weakening fuel economy standards or other regulations in order to convince Ford to increase US jobs, then Americans as a whole will be paying... for more gas, pollution, possibly lower wages.

    It's the corporate America "heads we win, tails you lose" scenario.

    If that's the plan, then Trump would NOT deserve praise.

    A

  18. [18] 
    altohone wrote:

    Whoops
    16

    That should be $58k per year not %58k.

    A

  19. [19] 
    michale wrote:

    Poopyhead

    :^/

    If Trump is weakening fuel economy standards or other regulations in order to convince Ford to increase US jobs, then Americans as a whole will be paying... for more gas, pollution, possibly lower wages.

    If he is then you MAY be right...

    Since there is no evidence he is, you are probably wrong...

  20. [20] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    [10]

    Michale -

    The information I gave you was correct in every particular. It said, if you read it, that at no time did Ford ever intend moving the Kentucky plant yet Trump is taking credit for Ford not moving their Kentucky plant. Well d'uh!

    I'm sure there's hundreds of thousands of businesses that have no intention of ever moving to Mexico - is Trump going to take credit for every one of them?

  21. [21] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    CW-
    Neither Dean or Ellison will save the Democratic Party. It will not be saved until you and all others that are now talking about what the Democrats should learn from their loss and what they can do to win again recognize that the Democrats did not lose in 2016.
    I am not talking about the popular vote in the presidential contest.
    Despite what the Democratic Party and those that write about it claim, the Democratic Party does not think it lost in 2016.
    They are a willing participant and defender of the Big Money two party duopoly. The duopoly won, keeping the election close enough to make sure that third parties did not get enough votes for citizens to believe third parties provide a viable alternative.
    The hand-wringing about the "loss" is just part of the show.
    The only thing they would consider a loss would be a loss to an independent or third party candidate or a loss to a small contribution candidate either within or outside of the two party system.
    As the most basic principle of democracy is that citizens have the ability to replace legislators that do not do what citizens want and need with legislators that will do what citizens want and need, then the Two Party system that the Democratic Party is part and parcel of is clearly not promoting or in favor of democracy.
    If you want to change this or save the party (however you want to phrase it), it can only be changed saved through the application of democracy.
    And that is what Voucher Vendetta is- citizens applying the basic principle of democracy.
    It will do more to improve the Democratic Party than anyone dead or alive taking over the reigns of a corrupt and anti-democratic Democratic Party.
    You need to decide if you are part of the show so that you can be invited to the conventions and such or if you are part of the solution.
    As Bernie quoted in a recent speech-
    "Which side are you on ?"

  22. [22] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    [11]

    No, Michale, that's what Ford has always said.

    Fortune magazine:

    Ford has repeatedly said it has no plans to close any U.S. plants and likely could not do so under the terms of the current United Auto Workers contract that expires in 2019.

    Then there's Ford's Twitter stream: https://twitter.com/Ford/with_replies
    Scroll down to 27 September 2016

    There is no impact on US jobs. Ford’s American workers will build 2 new vehicles at the US plant where small cars are made today.

  23. [23] 
    Mopshell wrote:

    [12]

    Michale -

    the vast majority of the MSM are still reporting that Trump is losing the election..

    But that's being deceptive, isn't it, Michale. MSM are actually - and correctly - reporting that Trump is not winning the popular vote, not that he is losing the election. The American electoral system allows a president to be elected by a minority and that is what happened this year.

    Incidentally, why is there no transparency and accountability in the US election system? It's being reported here that US voting and vote tallying units are not checked before or after an election. There's no way government would ever be allowed to get away with such dodgy practices here!

  24. [24] 
    altohone wrote:

    Troll
    19

    "If he is then you MAY be right...

    Since there is no evidence he is, you are probably wrong..."

    You posted this
    "“We are encouraged that President-elect Trump and the new Congress will pursue policies that will improve U.S. competitiveness and make it possible to keep production of this vehicle here in the U.S.."
    -Ford Statement"

    "US competitiveness" is their code for sticking it to workers, consumers or the environment.

    But, you are right.
    Until the change is made, there is no "evidence".

    A

  25. [25] 
    michale wrote:

    But that's being deceptive, isn't it, Michale. MSM are actually - and correctly - reporting that Trump is not winning the popular vote, not that he is losing the election.

    Popular vote, Schmopular vote...

    Has absolutely NO meaning because candidates didn't campaign for the popular vote, they campaigned for states..

    To put it in the proper context, it's like saying that the Cubs really didn't win the World Series.. It was REALLY a tie because, even though the Cubs won the best of 7, as per the rules, the combined score from all the games was 27-27, therefore the Cubs didn't really win... It is tie..

    Something else to consider is that there are outstanding votes that traditionally lean GOP (ex. 2 million Military Absentee ballots) but are not being counted because even if they are 100% one or the other they will not alter the outcome.

    So, winning the popular vote and $34.99 will get you a latte at SeaTac.... :D

  26. [26] 
    michale wrote:

    "US competitiveness" is their code for sticking it to workers, consumers or the environment.

    Ahhhh code-words, dog whistles and magic decoder rings....

    Really GREAT arguments that are awesome because they require absolutely NO FACTS to support.... :D

  27. [27] 
    michale wrote:

    Mopshell,

    Having said the afore... I understand what you are saying about the MSM vis a vis their reporting and I do acknowledge that you are correct...

    My point is, is that it's as useless, reporting wise, as their reporting BEFORE the election that Trump was gonna lose and HRC was gonna win....

  28. [28] 
    michale wrote:

    And irregardless of all that..

    The MSM has a long LONG way to go before they even come CLOSE to any kind of credibility when it comes to reporting negative things about Trump....

  29. [29] 
    Don Harris wrote:

    "The MSM has a long LONG way to go before they even come to close to any kind of credibility." would have sufficed. The alternative media is not much better, if it is at all.
    I have never understood why anyone would make up negative things about Trump or Clinton when there is so much negative stuff about both that is true.

  30. [30] 
    altohone wrote:

    Troll
    26

    These words are widely and well understood.
    I have a vivid imagination, but corporate speak was not my invention.

    And, since you are quite fond of Trump's anti-establishment approach, on these issues at least we should be allies... so you might want to temper your instinctively adversarial responses to me (which are normally justified).
    I know, I know.
    I'm such a dreamer.

    A

  31. [31] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    altohone -

    Yeah, I have been remiss in reading and answering comments for a few weeks now. Hey, it's been a tough few weeks...

    Interesting point on minimum wage and what is considered "poor" -- I've usually focused on what is considered "rich" personally.

    Case in point, Dems want to protect the income of all making approximately $120K to $250K from any tax increases. They consider this "middle class" while I consider it to be "upper middle class" at the very least. Look at the donut hole in most Dem's plans to adjust the Social Security tax ceiling, for proof.

    To me, someone making $150K or $200K a year qualifies as someone who can afford a small tax increase. Especially if it benefits those at the lowest end of the scale, but maybe that's just me.

    In any case, I'm busy writing today's column, but I'll check out the previous comment thread later, promise.

    -CW

  32. [32] 
    michale wrote:

    Troll

    and

    so you might want to temper your instinctively adversarial responses to me

    Why on earth could I POSSIBLY be "adversarial" towards you?? :D

  33. [33] 
    altohone wrote:

    Hey CW
    31

    Thanks for the response.

    Your interaction here is the best part, but I understand obligations and priorities.

    I agree that anybody who can make a million bucks in four years is rich.
    That cutoff is of course about minimizing political costs, not reality.

    On the other end, making more than twice as much as the official poverty level can only be considered poor on a relative basis to those doing much better.
    Our (the US) self image would certainly suffer if the median income is considered poor.
    Having half of our working population in poverty would be an embarrassing reality to admit.

    I suppose a new category between poor and middle class could be invented, but until then, people are either one or the other.

    A

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