Bloomberg’s arrogant digs on farmers spark bipartisan outrage: Too much Hee-Haw?

(Image: YouTube screenshot)

Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg can’t seem to get out of his own way as his past continues to dog his 2020 campaign.

The billionaire and former New York City mayor is under fire for past comments he made disparaging farmers and agriculture which he dismissed as not having enough “gray matter” necessary for impacting the information economy of today.

Relevant portion of video begins at the 42:00 mark:


(Source: YouTube/Oxford’s Said Business School)

“I could teach anybody, even people in this room…to be a farmer. It’s a process,” Bloomberg said during a discussion at Oxford Business School in 2016.

“The agrarian society lasted 3,000 years,” he said, simplifying the “process” by explaining, “you dig a hole, you put a seed in, you put dirt on to, add water, up comes the corn.”

“You could learn that,” he told the audience, moving on to briefly describe the industrial society in the same simplistic terms.

“Now comes the information economy,” he continued.

“And the information economy is fundamentally different because it’s built around replacing people with technology and the skill sets you need to learn are how to think and analyze and that is a whole degree level different,” Bloomberg said. “You need to have a different skill set, you have to have a lot more gray matter.”

He went on to explain how it is “almost impossible” to teach new skills to parts of the population that have been out of school for a long time and have not been equipped with the “skill sets” necessary to succeed in the modern workforce.

Though Bloomberg was initially remarking on agriculture’s history, his tone and implication that farmers do not use critical thinking skills or that the industry is not as demanding as the modern information economy, drew widespread criticism from both sides of the political divide.

President Donald Trump’s son, Donald Trump Jr., noted that Bloomberg “really hates regular hardworking Americans” in a tweet reacting to the viral one-minute clip posted by a Twitter account with the handle, Pete Mentes, who describes himself as a “Progressive Democrat.”

Fox News’ Brit Hume offered a scathing assessment of Bloomberg’s comments.

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee slammed Bloomberg’s “arrogance and ignorance” and warned, “Don’t let this guy NEAR the @WhiteHouse.”

Twitter accounts for those supporting Bloomberg’s 2020 rival, Sen. Bernie Sanders,” also blasted the former mayor.

Others soon joined the pile-on, blasting Bloomberg’s remarks which followed last week’s resurfacing of comments he made in 2015 defending the controversial “stop and frisk” policy in New York.  The Democratic presidential contender also faced backlash when a story on his “long-alleged history of undermining women” began catching attention again.

Frieda Powers

Senior Staff Writer
[email protected]

Originally from New York, Powers graduated from New York University and eventually made her way to sunny South Florida where she has been writing for the BizPacReview team since 2015.
Frieda Powers

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