Senator Clinton: Marxist or the Return of Robert Rubin?

Let’s start with what Senator Clinton actually said back on May 29. There are a lot of great lines under this title of Modern Progressive Vision: Shared Prosperity but the passage that is catching folks attention is:

It’s time for a new beginning, for an end to government of the few, by the few and for the few, time to reject the idea of an “on your own” society and to replace it with shared responsibility for shared prosperity. I prefer a “we’re all in it together” society. Now, there is no greater force for economic growth than free markets, but markets work best with rules that promote our values, protect our workers and give all people a chance to succeed.

T. W. Farnam catches Mitt Romney distorting what Senator Clinton said so he can call her a Marxist. This reminds me of the standard Don Marek comment around this place. I suspect Max Sawicky sees this speech as a movement to the right of what he was hoping for. One of Max’s readers points to David Sirota suggesting the Senator is the Democratic version of the K Street candidate. If you are not confused enough already, Brad DeLong laments a protectionist tone from the Senator.

I sort of like the progressive position the Senator staked out on May 29 but even this supposedly Marxist bear is saddened to see the protectionist tone that Brad brings our attention to. But did we have a clue back on May 29. Let’s review what the Senator said on China:

because India and China have begun to harness the power of technology, they are on their way to becoming economic super powers. Like it or not, that is the reality of globalization. And it isn’t going away. However, if managed properly, globalization may offer the promise of new markets, new growth, and new opportunities for broadly shared prosperity to young people like Colleen. Unfortunately, we’re not managing globalization properly. Instead of working for all of us, globalization is working only for a few of us … You know, people ask me all the time, “Why can’t we get tough on China?” Well, the answer is, because China is one of our bankers. We’re their debtor. How can we truly enforce trade laws against a country that manipulates it currency and puts us at an unfair advantage when our economic stability depends on China’s massive loans to us every single day?

This didn’t sound very protectionist back then. Let’s hope she avoids future calls for trade protection. But hey – I’m a ProGrowth “Marxist”.