When Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) donned a gown emblazoned with “Tax The Rich” to attend the $30,000 a ticket Met Gala, she may have been trying to land campaign cash along with media attention ahead of the 2022 midterm elections.
Following her stunt, AOC’s campaign recently sent out a fundraising email in an attempt to profit off the attention by hawking her “Tax The Rich” merchandise collection, according to The Boston Herald:
“The New York progressive congresswoman — hot off her Met Gala political fashion statement — launched an email campaign Tuesday night offering up a policy paper and ‘Tax the Rich’ merchandise pitch.”
— Marxian Dialogues (@MarxianDialogu1) September 16, 2021
The items being sold by AOC are billed as “a movement you can wear,” assuming you’re willing to drop $58 on a sweatshirt or $27 on a t-shirt, tote bag, or mug. In any case, the merchandise is priced to deliver a profit for AOC’s campaign, despite her past comments that “Capitalism is an ideology of capital — the most important thing is the concentration of capital and to seek and maximize profit” which, to AOC, means “capitalism is irredeemable.”
Apparently not irredeemable enough, though, to keep AOC from seeking to maximize her profit on the sale of merchandise aimed at demonizing the rich.
AOC’s Tax The Rich collection is not new — her campaign first started selling the overpriced items in 2020. But clearly her political staff saw the attention her dress drew and decided to, again, maximize their profit in the free market.
Wearing a dress that says "Tax the Rich" isn't just promoting AOC's personal brand, it's also literally promoting her merch sales: pic.twitter.com/z27FeurEfh
— Spacebar-tender (@RandLuttenberg) September 14, 2021
Interestingly, the tax the rich collection also includes a $28 “dad hat,” despite the New York congresswoman’s woke rejection of binary parenting roles. In December 2019, for example, Ocasio-Cortez implied in a hearing that not just women can bear children, choosing instead to speak about the need for maternity leave for “women and people who give birth.”
The campaign merchandise is not the first controversy to bubble up following AOC’s dress stunt, either.
As Katie reported, “there are questions about the legality of her attendance, especially when it comes to election laws, donations and what she may owe to the IRS if her ticket was a gift. Or, Ocasio-Cortez purchased the ticket herself, putting her well out of the ‘working class’ category she claims to be a part of.”
And the dressmaker who created AOC’s gown is in some hot water with the IRS, as Matt explained: “The 37-year-old fashionista who made waves at the Met Gala with Democratic-Socialist AOC last week is a notorious tax deadbeat with unpaid debts dogging her in multiple states, records show.”
Thanks to the free market Americans enjoy, AOC is free to hawk any merchandise she wants. But as Matt well put it, “You can hate the rich, just don’t make that your political schtick and then go to literally the ritziest party that the upper crust holds.” And for crying out loud, don’t try to capitalize off such a stunt to turn a profit on overpriced sweatshirts and dad hats while claiming to be a democratic-socialist and saying the capitalist system is “irredeemable.
Author : Spencer Brown