J.D. Vance, author of Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis and Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate in Ohio, says the nation’s ruling class “actually enjoys plundering the greatest country in the world” rather than investing in American communities.
In an exclusive interview with SiriusXM Patriot’s Breitbart News Saturday, Vance said a “fundamental problem” in the U.S. is that economic and political elites have no obligation to America’s working and middle class.
“I think a lot of these people have unfortunately convinced themselves that they don’t owe anything to the country that gave them so much wealth and so much power,” Vance said:
It’s not just the bad policies of the Biden administration that we have to push back against, that’s obviously important, it’s the entire leadership class in this country in the government, in the bureaucracy, in the private sector … these people do not see themselves as Americans first, as owing an obligation to the country that gave them all the incredible opportunities. And that is maybe the fundamental problem in this country: The ruling class that instead of investing in this country — building institutions, making the people who live here wealthier, happier, more prosperous — it actually enjoys plundering the greatest country in the world because it doesn’t see that it owes anything to the people who live here, to the previous generations that actually built this country. [Emphasis added]
On immigration, for instance, Vance said economic elites are stripping investment from middle America and sending that money to the coasts as a result of their desire for mass illegal and legal immigration to drive down U.S. wages.
I was at a dinner in 2017, 2018 with a lot of corporate leaders. I was sitting next to the CEO of one of the largest hotel chains in the world. He said ‘Look, President Trump’s immigration policies are forcing me to raise wages for my workers’ and he was complaining about this. And I said ‘Okay, well explain this to me.’ And he said ‘Look, in the past, if I wanted workers, I could just go across the southern border and get a bunch of Central American foreigners to do this job for poverty wages but now because I can’t tap into those people, I have to go to Americans and I have to give them higher wages to do it.’ And again, this guy was talking about this like it was a bad thing but this is what the elites do with immigration is they use it to undercut the wages of American workers. [Emphasis added]
The other problem is that it actually takes investment away from our own communities. The whole way that our economy grows is by investing long-term in the American worker and American productivity. But if you can just get cheap people at poverty wages anyway, you’re not going to invest in your own communities, you’re not going to invest in your own country and that makes us poorer over the long term. It’s no surprise that maybe the biggest competitor to the United States right now is China — a very low immigration society that has generated its economic gains by investing in its own economy, not foreign workers. [Emphasis added]
Vance also railed against President Joe Biden and the national security establishment for their botched withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan after former President George W. Bush launched the war in October 2001.
“I’m sick of sending our people to that country to die and to bleed and to suffer, to spend our money for a country that clearly doesn’t want the things that our leaders want them to have,” Vance said.
“This should be a national scandal. We have been told for 20 years that if we just invest a little more in this far-fledged region of the world that we’re going to turn this place into a flowering democracy,” Vance continued:
We have been gone for a few weeks and Afghan army has revealed itself to be a total farce … why isn’t it a national scandal that this army that we built for 20 years folded in the face of the Taliban in a matter of a few weeks. Heads should roll over this. This is the biggest problem with our country. When our leadership screws up, there’s no accountability. Why is there no accountability for the people who told us that Afghanistan was heading in the right direction? Clearly, it wasn’t and they should suffer the consequences for lying to us. [Emphasis added]
On inflation, Vance said he is “so sick” of Biden and elected Democrats proclaiming themselves to be defenders of the working class when they are attempting to drive up federal spending at the risk of raising prices on working and middle class Americans, and specifically, senior citizens.
“This is a disaster for middle class Americans and you know who it’s really a disaster for is seniors who live on a fixed income,” Vance said. “This inflation, which is really just a tax on the middle class, is the biggest tax on our seniors that you could imagine.”
“I think about the Democrats, they have this self-confident assurance that they stand for working people and I get so sick of it,” Vance continued. “Let’s go talk to the grandparents who are raising their grandbabies in southeast Ohio and tell them that you stand for working people when the basic essentials that they depend on are going up 5, 10, 15 percent. It makes me sick and these people, our people, need somebody to fight for them.”
Breitbart News Saturday airs on SiriusXM Patriot 125 from 10:00 A.M. to 1:00 P.M. Eastern.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter here.