MSNBC’s Anand Giridharadas Says ‘Freedom-Obsessed’ Americans ‘Blind’ to Threats Like Coronavirus


MSNBC contributor Anand Giridharadas said Wednesday that Americans have a “freedom obsession” and should embrace big government after the coronavirus pandemic comes to a close.

“One of the fundamental questions to me is, what’s going to be our relationship to government, the idea of government after this?” Giridharadas said on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. “There’s a primordial American tradition going back to the founders of being freedom-obsessed, even though we’re a country founded on slavery and genocide, being freedom-obsessed to the point where we’re always so afraid of the government coming for us that we’re blind to other types of threats, whether it’s a virus, whether it’s bank malfeasance, climate change, what have you.”

Giridharadas, who describes himself as being raised between the United States and France before attending Oxford and Harvard, presently hosts a program on Vice TV and previously wrote for The New York Times. He added that even liberals could do more to embrace government, and suggested that more of them should consider taking government jobs.

“There’s also a more recent, kind of 40-year version of this, which is the Reagan war on government,” he said. “That’s not just an idea on the right. There’s a hard version on the right, there’s a small-c ‘conservative’ kind of militant version of it, but it has also infected many people on the left in this passive sense, like ‘I believe in government,’ but ‘I would never go work there,’ or ‘I believe in government but, you know, I kind of like don’t like my taxes too high, or I use trusts in the Cayman Islands.'”

Giridharadas confessed that he doesn’t like President Donald Trump’s government — but said it was voters’ fault for electing him.

“There’s the more recent Trump-era twist in this, which is the war in government becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy, you undermine government,” Giridharadas said. “You put someone who can barely read a sentence in government, in the figure of Donald Trump, and it becomes true government sucks, because you made it suck by telling everybody it sucks. I think the most important thing that could come out of this is realizing the government is not the biggest threat to our liberty.”

Watch above, via MSNBC.

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