In a speech at a rally for the National Association of Home Builders last Thursday, posing in front of an unbuilt home that no one will ever buy because no one can get a mortgage, alleged fiscal conservative Newt Gingrich argued on behalf of home ownership and government support of it, and in the process ridiculed people who ride the subway, of which there are apparently some in this country. Gingrich determined that people who ride the subway also don’t own homes, and lazily take public transportation that, well, their tax dollars help pay for from their “high-rise apartments” to their jobs at “fancy newspapers in the middle of town.” These elitist assholes don’t see the value of owning their own home (or owning their own job?), Gingrich surmised. Maybe they should just…like…move to Paris! Where there is more subway than there is Subway, and where being a snob doesn’t get you verbally excommunicated by a windbag with too much time on his hands.
The segment in question (and here is the whole 14-minute video, if you really want it):
Those who, you know, live in high-rise apartment buildings writing for fancy newspapers in the middle of town after they ride the metro, who don’t understand that for most Americans the ability to buy a home, to have their own property, to have a sense of belonging is one of the greatest achievements of their life, and it makes them feel like they are good solid citizens…
Here are a few of the million reasons this makes no sense.
1. Implying that America should have less public transportation than it already does is … amazing/not surprising, coming from someone whose hobby involves fabricating the way things were in olden times.
2. Gingrich used to advise Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which the government/we control(s) with our monies. With this speech, Gingrich is basically back to where he stood before he ran for president, when he was an “historianian,” if you will. He now positions himself as someone who wants the government out of mortgages and everything else. Less than a month ago he was saying that very thing, calling for the breakup of Fannie and Freddie.
3. Don’t know if you’ve noticed, but there’s nothing fancy about newspapers. [Wall Street Journal]