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A Billionaire Scion: Tom Friedman

Tom Friedman’s opinions on the Iraq war have long been proved bankrupt (here, here and most recently, here) but if you still put stock in his economic analysis about free trade and outsourcing, keep in mind that he’s the heir to a multibillion-dollar real estate fortune, and may not be speaking for the little guy. Political strategist Dave Sirota has the goods.


Dave Sirota:

I’ve documented repeatedly how New York Times columnist Tom Friedman parrots the propaganda of Big Money, using his column to legitimize some of the worst, most working-class-persecuting policies this country has seen in the last century – all while bragging on television that he doesn’t even bother read the details of the policies he advocates for. I have always believed Friedman’s perspective comes from the bubble he lives in – that is, I have always believed he feels totally at ease shilling for Big Money and attacking workers because from the comfortable confines of the Washington suburbs he lives in and the elite cocktail parties he attends, what Friedman says seems mainstream to him. But I never had any idea how dead on I was about the specific circumstances of Friedman’s bubble – and how it potentially explains a lot more than I ever thought.

As the July edition of the Washingtonian Magazine notes, Friedman lives in “a palatial 11,400-square-foot house, now valued at $9.3 million, on a 7½-acre parcel just blocks from I-495 and Bethesda Country Club.” He “married into one of the 100 richest families in the country” – the Bucksbaums, whose real-estate Empire is valued at $2.7 billion.

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