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Elizabeth Warren: We Need Big Government, ‘Nobody in America Succeeds on Their Own’

Elizabeth Warren
AFP Photo/Getty Images/Robyn Beck
PENNY STARR

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) would like to follow in Barack Obama’s footsteps by winning the White House in 2020 and she seems to be taking a cue from the former president’s now infamous “If you’ve got a business—you didn’t build that” speech in 2012. 

Like Obama, Warren believes it is not American ingenuity and hard work but the federal government that makes the people and the country great.

Warren wrote in an op-ed for CNN Business Perspectives:

Nobody in America succeeds on their own. Government-funded labs are fueling world-changing innovations. Much of American wealth was built through government-sponsored home equity. Strong American businesses are powered by American workers educated in public schools. Their goods are brought to market on roads funded by taxpayers.

Warren’s commentary was inspired by a Chase Bank tweet giving customers advice on saving money. 

Warren wrote:

Chase Bank fired off a tweet last week staging a hypothetical conversation between one of its customers and her bank account. The customer asks why her account balance is low, and the bank tells her not to go out for food or coffee when she can make it at home instead, or to spend money on a cab when she can just walk. The customer pretends not to listen. “I guess we’ll never know,” she says, brushing off her low balance and the bank’s “advice” on how to manage her money.

When I read that tweet, it hit me like a punch in the gut — but not for the reason Chase intended.

Warren goes on to talk about growing up on the “ragged edge of the middle class,” and how her family struggled, but she was luckier than a lot of Americans who are even worse off.

Then Warren attacks JPMorgan Chase for suggesting Americans could be more frugal by eating at home, walking instead of taking a cab, and not spending money on expensive coffee.

She also slams President Donald Trump’s tax cuts that have made the economy stronger than it has been in years and have also has led to record-low unemployment.

“Chase’s tweet wasn’t just mean and misguided. It perpetuates the myth that millions of Americans are in dire financial straits because of their own poor choices, or because they spend money irresponsibly,” Warren wrote. “That’s a story designed to let the ultra-wealthy off the hook and pretend they bear no blame for the crisis facing workers and families.” She went on:

Americans don’t need flippant tweets from giant banks about how to spend their money. They need Washington to make investments that will allow them to succeed. Hard-working families need a higher minimum wage, strong unions, universal child care, affordable housing, and trade deals that invest in American communities instead of shipping good jobs overseas. They need guaranteed health care so that no more families are forced into bankruptcy because of an unexpected medical expense.

Warren concludes that “families across the country are struggling” and that she is the one who can make the “big structural changes” that can help them succeed.

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