Howard Schultz’s Strange Old Brew

By | 2019-01-31T12:10:22-07:00 January 31st, 2019|
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Howard Schultz, former CEO of Starbucks and registered “independent,” would make the perfect presidential candidate for the Democratic party in 2020. Described as a socially liberal deficit hawk, Schultz is the ideal combination of loose liberalism on cultural issues with a libertarian view toward taxes, big business, and budget deficits.

When President Trump signed tax reform into law in 2018, liberals from across the party unanimously opposed the bill because it raised taxes on the country’s biggest earners, those who make over $730,000 a year. Howard Schultz has now come to their rescue.

Schultz opposes the burgeoning socialist tendencies in the Democratic party. In fact, the troubling proposal of a 70 percent tax hike on the rich from Alexandria Ocasio Cortez is precisely what made him consider running.

Schultz is also an unapologetic billionaire, something he sees as an achievement of the American Dream. Schultz said Wednesday:

Let’s talk about that. I’m self-made. I grew up in the projects in Brooklyn, New York. I thought that was the American dream, the aspiration of America. You’re going to criticize me for—for being successful when in my company over the last 30 years, the only company in America that gave comprehensive health insurance, equity in the form of stock options, and free college tuition? And Elizabeth Warren wants to criticize me for being successful?

No suburban liberal disagrees with this!

But, like the Clintons in the 1990s, Shultz will not give an inch on issues of sexual politics that have become the test of respectable opinion.  He endorses every liberal shibboleth on sexual inequality, gay marriage, transgender rights, and other new diversity issues like immigration.

Schultz is a member of our new oligarchy, a class who have achieved massive levels of wealth and are happy to pay for “diversity” initiatives so long as they can live free of the consequences of these policies. As a former CEO, Schultz sits comfortably with the tech barons, financial executives, and thousands of others working in private equity markets that make up this new class.

With a safe liberal like him in office, the limousine class would continue to enjoy their wealth at unprecedented levels and do so with a clean conscience. Their president will have led a company which is on the cutting edge of corporate progressivism and goes out of its way to educate employees in trendy diversity issues. Schultz is not only safe, but, from their point of view, would continue to provide cover for our wealthy, dissonant overlords by mouthing all of their pieties in a calm, polite manner.

Yet what exactly has changed in the Democratic landscape? Wasn’t Schultz happily giving money to progressives like Bill Clinton and Barack Obama when their campaigns took in astronomic funding from Wall Street? Isn’t he part of that scene?

Schultz sees that the Democratic Party, in the aftermath of Obama and the failed challenge to the Clintons from Bernie Sanders, has moved too far left and now believes that combining real socialism with hard-core identity politics is a winning proposition. He envisions himself the grown up standing up to tell them it is a losing proposition. Democratic candidates have embraced both sides of the radicalism, Schultz, the “independent” will only embrace identity politics plank of Democratic radicalism as that is the socially permissible radicalism in vogue with suburbanites, the same people who drink his coffee.

Schultz knows where the money is, and he could find a path to victory if he sticks to the cultural side of Marxism. Populist Marxists will have no viable alternative but to content themselves with his brew.

About the Author:

Jackson Yenor
Jackson Yenor, a former Ashbrook scholar at Ashland University, is a project manager for the Association of Classical Christian Schools.