Elizabeth Warren sent a letter today asking major banks to disclose what money they're giving to D.C. think tanks. Warren vs. the banks is nothing new, but this is actually a kind of amazing innovation in the field of legislative subtweeting.
The context is that Jon Cowan and Jim Kessler of Third Way published a banal and contentless op-ed in the Wall Street Journal this week arguing ... something about Elizabeth Warren and how she's bad because a tax-hiking ballot resolution in Colorado didn't pass. There was some more stuff I didn't understand, and then they offered a made-up criticism of "the populists' staunch refusal to address the coming Medicare crisis." That one's particularly odd since one of the two populists they're critiquing was Bill de Blasio, who, as mayor of New York City, has nothing whatsoever to do with Medicare.
As for Warren, it is simply false—as in, ignorant or dishonest—to say that Democrats have done nothing to reduce Medicare costs or that they have no further proposals to do so.
At any rate, Third Way's board is jam-packed with finance guys from the investment banking and private equity worlds. So the general suspicion in progressive circles is that in these contexts the "think tank" is just acting as a kind of hatchet operation for the financial sector. So Warren wants to smoke them out. And, frankly, the way that Cowan and Kessler managed to simply ignore the role Wall Street plays in the "populist" narrative they're critiquing was just weird. So good for Warren.
TODAY IN SLATE
Meet the New Bosses
How the Republicans would run the Senate.
The Government Is Giving Millions of Dollars in Electric-Car Subsidies to the Wrong Drivers
Scotland Is Just the Beginning. Expect More Political Earthquakes in Europe.
Cheez-Its. Ritz. Triscuits.
Why all cracker names sound alike.
Friends Was the Last Purely Pleasurable Sitcom
This Whimsical Driverless Car Imagines Transportation in 2059
- Protesters Take to the Streets to Sound Alarm on Climate Change in New York, Across the World
- Knife-Carrying White House Jumper is Vet who Feared “Atmosphere Was Collapsing”
- North Korea: American Sentenced to Hard Labor Wanted to Become “Second Snowden”
- Almost One in Four Americans Support Idea of Splitting From the Union
Did America Get Fat by Drinking Diet Soda?
A high-profile study points the finger at artificial sweeteners.