This morning, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) took to Twitter to criticize the preposterously inflated price of airport food — and to make an important point about how little most Americans are paid on an hourly basis.
The federal minimum wage, stagnant for a decade, is just $7.25. That is a minuscule amount of money that cannot pay for a 2-bedroom apartment anywhere in the United States. While the top 1% has seen their wealth increase exponentially over the past decade, the American worker has seen their purchasing power stagnate, their real wages barely any better than what they were 40 years ago.
That’s why progressives have rallied around increasing the minimum wage to $15 an hour (though if wages kept pace with worker productivity it should be around $21) and giving Americans wage workers the chance to earn something resembling a living wage before it inevitably is rendered inadequate by rising rents and cost-of-living increases.
But as they do with everything Ocasio-Cortez says, the right-wing quickly leapt at the chance to make fun of her for it in the laziest and most brain-dead ways possible. One of the worst offenders was Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), who immediately went for the “oh look AOC wants free croissants who’s gonna pay for it” joke in a painful and sad attempt to own the Congresswoman.
Oh the humanity! Here’s the answer: government-mandated FREE CROISSANTS FOR ALL. And we’ll just force the bakers to give all of their time for free. #SocialistLogic #AprilFools https://t.co/1mx00FegwS
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) April 1, 2019
The majority of the rest of the responses from figures like Ben Shapiro and Matt Walsh are equally terrible and aren’t worth sharing here.
But she saw right through their idiotic complaints and disingenuous deflections and cries of “HOW MUCH ARE CROISSANTS IN VENEZUELA” and fired back by exposing what they really mean when they criticize her tweet: people who aren’t them don’t deserve to have a living wage.
She hit the nail right on the head with her comeback. The GOP and modern conservatism, in general, exists largely to provide an ideological framework to obscure and disguise the way that the wealthy elites are pillaging this country and suckling the lifeblood from the American people.
The callous cruelty and disregard they show for the struggle of regular folks are written into every policy and every move; just look to Trump’s latest efforts to kick tens of millions of people off their health insurance if you need a primer on the disposability of American lives to Republicans.