From the first day Sen. Elizabeth Warren showed up on the national political scene, I’ve reminisced about what a dreadful teacher she was. In post after post, I’ve noted that, while she was very nice (she is a nice lady in a one-on-one), she was totally incoherent as a teacher. She never could seem to finish a thought before bouncing on to the next, apparently random, thought that popped up in her brain. Sometimes she didn’t even bother finishing sentences.
She hasn’t gotten any better with time:
New senator Elizabeth Warren was asked by a Boston reporter the other day, “when you mention ‘middle class,’ what numbers are we talking about, in terms of income level?” The next Senate supposed financial-industry wonk first asserted, “It’s not a numbers issue. I know you’d expect a very wonky answer for me, you know, about the percentiles.”
The reporter then pointed out to Warren that, when it comes to bills like the legislation surrounding the fiscal cliff, defining the middle class does indeed involve numbers — how, exactly, did the president just supposedly shield middle-class Americans from tax increases if it is not possible to say, on the basis of income levels or percentiles, whom that group includes?
Warren then goes off on a completely unrelated tangent, saying, “When we strengthen education, when we make it possible for kids to go to college, then we strengthen America’s middle class, and that doesn’t need a dollar figure.” This is a problematic statement: If we offer more subsidies to all Americans of any income level who’d like to attend college, and to the colleges themselves (as Warren would surely like, rather than means-testing college loans and savings programs or spending less on university compensation), then that is actually unlikely to “strengthen America’s middle class” — the benefits will accrue mostly to the upper-income Americans who already win most of the slots to America’s pricey private universities and flagship state schools, and to the upper-middle-class Americans who staff them, ossifying, not eroding, America’s inequality.
Pure Warren: superficial, muddled, obfuscatory, and tangential. That she’s considered a shining star in the Democrat firmament is scary and depressing.