How to talk about Jewish money influencing politics without getting into trouble

Here is Matt Yglesias talking about how Jewish money is what is making Congress so pro-Israel, my brackets and bolding:

What drives the overwhelming congressional support for Israel that’s such a striking element of American politics? For some members, it’s genuine passion. For others, it has to do with public opinion [shaped by whom?]. But another real consideration that’s rarely discussed in daylight is fundraising. Memos written by consultants working for Michelle Nunn, the Democrats’ candidate in Georgia, and leaked to National Review in an effort to make Nunn look bad lay it out. This excerpt, in particular, is a great window into how it works [note the casual-yet-patronizing SWPL-speak]: Screen_Shot_2014-07-28_at_1.42.54_PM This is getting spun in certain circles as a damning indictment of Nunn or her staff, as if she is planning to tailor her entire foreign policy around fundraising concerns. But really it’s just people doing their jobs. Sheri and Steve Labovitz are wealthy individuals who are active in the Atlanta Jewish community, as is Elaine Alexander. The author of the memo is informing the campaign that these individuals are likely sympathetic to Nunn’s broad policy outlook, and are promising candidates to help Nunn raise money. But they are also cautioning that taking the appropriate line on Israel is likely to be a litmus test for these donors. It’s not the place of a finance memo writer to come up with Nunn’s Israel policy, but the memo cautions that there are fundraising implications to what Nunn chooses to say about this. To anyone who’s familiar with Democratic Party fundraising — particularly for non-incumbent underdogs, who typically have trouble raising money — this won’t be too surprising.

So plutocrats’ using their financial clout to exploit U.S. foreign policy to further ethnic interests and politicians’ pandering to said interests are normal, basically. Yglesias also mentions the (self-)censorship:

Jewish donors are very important to Democratic Party finances, some of these donors have strongly held hawkish views on Israel, and the financial clout of AIPAC is the stuff of legend. At the same time, talk of rich Jews throwing their financial muscle around to influence policy in favor of Israel touches far too many anti-semitic tropes to be regularly mentioned in political discourse. But the concrete world of political fundraising doesn’t leave a ton of time for beating around the bush, so we get a little window here into how it looks to the finance people: if Nunn wants to maximize her donations, she needs to take the right stance.

Of course none of this is news to anyone who has been paying attention for the past 30 (40, 50, 100, 200, 500…?) years. But it is interesting to see this discussed in the mainstream. Vox is run by Ezra Klein. The article was tweeted by Glenn Greenwald. Philip Weiss chimes in: “Right. Everyone knows it, no one can talk about it. It’s been estimated that on the Democratic side at the congressional level on up, Jews account for half to two-thirds of the funding.” Vox also recently aggregated some interesting stats on campaign finance.
So Sheldon Adelson contributed more money to the Republicans than the other top 10 contributors put together.

And the Dems aren’t “too surprising,” as Yglesias pointed out. It does seem however, at least since the mid-2000s, that the Israel lobby’s grip has somewhat weakened with the Walt/Mearsheimer book and the Anglo-dominated National Security State/military not being terribly excited at the thought of going to war with Iran on behalf of Israeli supremacism. Also there seems to be a growing split between assimilating (i.e. intermarrying) Western liberal Jews and the more chauvinist Israelis. Nevertheless, it’s clear that neither party can do without Jewish money and that Jewish financial clout continues to have a powerful influence on American policy in the Middle East. And, since Jewish liberals and conservatives favor the transformation of America via immigration and multiculturalism, they are also a powerful force in the displacement of White America.

The best advice is that if one wants to talk about Jewish money influencing politics without getting into trouble, it’s best to be a left-wing Jew and not critical of disproportional Jewish influence as such.

18 replies

Comments are closed.