It’s such a ludicrous proposition to my Boomer mind as to seem satirical. But it’s the sincere belief of a great many Democrats.
And the genuine, flagrant opinion of a 20-something state politician from New York. And the bold-faced bullet point of a proposed government/cultural overhaul of our elemental economic system for the coming generations. A shady bullet point, to be sure. A copy-pasted add-on designed to test the limits of what’s acceptable in the modern parlance of political discussion.
Deliberate confusion, manipulative framing. Some call it “gaslighting.” I call it cynical obfuscation.
Economic security to all who are unable or unwilling to work
Yes, that’s right, a “what do you think” supplement to the broader Green New Deal resolution proferred by Alexandria Ocasio Cortez last week. Get out your checkbooks Americans, the brave new Socialist world is dawning and you may be footing the bill for the lazy, indigent and useless flotsam and jetsam of American society.
This week, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Sen. Ed Markey unveiled their roadmap for the Green New Deal, an ambitious policy proposal to fight climate change, spur economic growth, and improve social welfare.
Alongside the five-page nonbinding resolution, co-sponsored by 9 senators and more than 60 House Democrats, Ocasio-Cortez’s office published a six-page document of Green New Deal talking points.
The “FAQ” talking points differed in some key ways from the resolution.
Bold font is my own to illustrate the confusion injected by the Architects of the GND.
“‘Green New Deal’ suggests welfare for those ‘unwilling to work.’ Is that a mistake?” The Daily Caller’s headline read.
Later on Thursday, the talking points were deleted off of Ocasio-Cortez’s site.
Saikat Chakrabarti, Ocasio-Cortez’s chief of staff, said the document was “bad copy” that was mistakenly published on the website.
On Friday, Ocasio-Cortez retweeted screenshots of clearly doctored versions of the FAQ that had been making the rounds online.
Robert Hockett, a Cornell University law professor and adviser to Ocasio-Cortez, told Fox News’ Tucker Carlson on Friday evening that the document with the “unwilling to work” line was “doctored” and that Ocasio-Cortez had “never said anything like that.”
But the document with the “unwilling to work” provision was also sent to reporters, including NPR, which also published it.
On Saturday evening, Chakrabarti acknowledged that his team had authored the document and that the “unwilling to work” provision was written with specific recipients in mind, including retired coal miners.
“We were essentially thinking about pensions and retirement security,” he said. “E.g. economic security for a coal miner who has given 40 years of their life to building the energy infra of this country, but who may be not be willing to switch this late in his career.”
OK, Cornell University says no, never; Saikat Chakrabarti, subcontinental boy-toy chief of staff for AOC says, “well…yeah, we did it, but…”
On Twitter, AOC perpetuated the strategic confusion (an integral element for shifting the Socialist Overton Window).
There are multiple doctored GND resolutions and FAQs floating around. There was also a draft version that got uploaded + taken down. There’s also draft versions floating out there.
Point is, the real one is our submitted resolution, H.Res. 109: https://t.co/ZlgWmNQn57
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) February 9, 2019
And confusion is an easy default state when there are some clearly fake versions of the GND trolloping around in the public mind.
Blame alt-right trolls, blame the Russians, blame anyone, but the foundation is clearly set for quackery with which to frame all denials. Each blatant case of fakery broadens the space with which to plant “legitimate” fakery with which to nudge the Social Overtone Window along.
Convenient fakery like this is fantastic for AOC’s team because they can thwart scrutiny by referring to “doctored” documents, even those doctored by their own office, and the specifics are swallowed by the diffuse blather and chaos shrouding the whole damned Socialist experiment.
How do you accidentally publish a draft document, and accidentally leave it online? Anyone who maintains website fully understands the point-of-no-return import of clicking the “publish” button.
Concomitantly, they also understand the effect of planting information in the public mind and then withdrawing it to clear the palate of malfeasance.
It’s a bitch move.
Ultimately, you cloud the issue(s) with your spokespeople contributing to a morass of conflicting responses and causes.
Ocasio-Cortez and her chief of staff, Saikat Chakrabarti, also took to Twitter on Saturday to address the controversy, arguing that people should focus on the legislation, and not the since-deleted webpage.
Both argued that there was indeed at least one doctored version of the FAQ, but that the authentic page on Ocasio-Cortez’s website was published “by mistake” after a lengthy brainstorming and drafting process.
“We did this in collaboration with a bunch of groups and offices over the course of the last month. As a part of that process, there were multiple iterations, brainstorming docs, FAQs, etc. that we shared. Some of these early drafts got leaked,” Chakrabarti tweeted.
He continued: “There separately IS a doctored FAQ floating around. And an early draft of a FAQ that was clearly unfinished and that doesn’t represent the GND resolution got published to the website by mistake (idea was to wait for launch, monitor q’s, and rewrite that FAQ before publishing).”
He finished by noting that “mistakes happen,” and that the text of the legislation accurately represents the Green New Deal.
Ocasio-Cortez, too, tweeted that there were “multiple doctored GND resolutions and FAQs floating around,” as well as “a draft version that got uploaded + taken down.”
“Point is, the real one is our submitted resolution, H.Res. 109,” she said, adding, “When I talk about the GND, this is what I’m referring to – nothing else.”
Still, nothing works better than simply removing the page less than two hours later.
February 7, 10:51pm