Radio libtalker and MSNBC action hero Ed Schultz used to be conservative, as he'll occasionally remind his audience. Earlier this week on his radio show, he lapsed back.
The occasion was a discussion with a caller over President Obama's apparent support for the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a trade pact that would involve the U.S., Canada, Mexico and nine other nations in South America and Asia. (Audio after the jump)
Schultz has been an outspoken opponent of the proposal, as have many labor unions, and he cited a curious reason for why Obama should oppose it as well (audio) --
CALLER: Hey, big Ed, I'm confused, my brother, and I'm hoping you can help me here. You know, I keep listening to all this stuff with Obama pushing this TPP, pushing this Korean trade deal (already in effect since 2007) and I have to ask myself, you know, he's a politician -- what is in it for him? None of this stuff sounds like it's going to be good for the U.S., for our workers, for our policies and stuff. But he's still a politician. Politicians don't do anything unless there's something in it for them. What is he getting out of this?
SCHULTZ: Uh, I don't know. I, I, that's a good question. ... I mean, does President Obama want to be remembered as the guy that butchered the economy even further by doing a lousy trade agreement because the corporatists want it? This is nothing but a Wall Street deal.
Is there much difference between what Schultz says here and Ann Coulter asking if Obama wants to push through immigration reform and damage the economy "even further"? Or Bill Kristol suggesting that Obama risks hurting the economy "even further" with a higher minimum wage? Or Rush Limbaugh warning that higher taxes on the wealthy are a sure path toward hampering the economy "even further"?
In all likelihood, Obama has resigned himself to an economy that will be remembered as lackluster and aptly bear his name. A robust economy has never been Obama's priority. Transferring wealth in the guise of "fairness" has been this presidency's raison d'etre.
For those of us used to hearing Schultz get it wrong, it's refreshing when he gets something right, regardless of whether he stumbles into doing it.