The Mystery of the Rich

| Fri Nov. 4, 2011 10:59 AM EDT

From Brad DeLong:

The 1% have an interest in full employment, high capacity utilization, and general prosperity just as the rest of us do....The 1% have a strong material interest in the passage of the American Jobs Act. In acting to block it, the Republicans — and Senator Nelson — are betraying the interests of their contributors in the top 1% as much as they are betraying the interests of their constituents.

But here's the thing: this has been true all along. Hell, it's been true for the past decade. Sure, the rich want low taxes for themselves and they want income inequality to rise so they get most of the returns to economic growth. That's in their own self-interest. But they also want — or should want — an end to the recession and a thriving economy, and they should be pressing both Congress and the Fed to do everything possible to make that happen. But they aren't.

Is it just pure blinkered ideology? Ignorance and stupidity? Or do they really not care as long as the brightwork on their yachts stays polished? It is a mystery.