Press "Enter" to skip to content

Thomas Knapp: AOC Unmasks the Ruling Class

“Working class Bronx native”  served US Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) well as “elect me” schtick in 2018.

It wasn’t true — Ocasio-Cortez is an architect’s daughter who grew up in the tony suburb of Yorktown Heights (median family income of $137,580 versus the US median family income of $68,703), attended Boston University, and interned for US Senator Ted Kennedy (D-MA) before putting together her “just your average waitress” PR package — but it got the political job done.

AOC continues to  lean on that carefully polished mythology, most recently at the annual Met Gala, where she introduced herself and the designer of her “Tax the Rich” gown as “two working class women.”

I’ve not heard anyone explain how a “working class” gal like AOC afforded the $35,000 ticket to the gala on her pittance of a congressional salary (only $174,000 per year; the ticket cost nearly as much as the US median personal income, $35,977). Unless she manages her money very well, it seems likely that someone gave her the ticket, which makes me wonder what kind of political favors such a large bribe might be intended to buy.

I have to wonder how much money the real working class stiffs — wait staff, doormen, chauffeurs, etc. — lurking in the corners of the Met Gala’s celebrity footage earn per  year.  I bet that number falls closer to US median than AOC median.

I also have to wonder what those working class stiffs look like. They were required to wear masks while catering to the needs of AOC and her fellow ruling class party attendees as they hammed it up for the cameras, bare-faced so we could admire their pearly whites and hear the bon mots that they deigned to speak rather than air-brush onto their costumes.

The masked and anonymous serving staff included one poor guy filmed trotting along behind AOC like some European monarch’s valet, holding up the train of her designer gown to keep it from touching the ground.

Marie Antoinette supposedly never uttered the phrase “let them eat cake,” or displayed the lack of awareness of or compassion for working class conditions associated with that phrase. Is her unfortunate image as manufactured and mythological as AOC’s “working class” pretensions?

While her “Tax the Rich” gown certainly attracted attention, Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez would  have been more on point with a slogan from George Orwell’s Animal Farm: “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”

Thomas L. Knapp (Twitter: @thomaslknapp) is director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism ( He lives and works in north central Florida.

About Post Author

Thomas L. Knapp

Thomas L. Knapp is director and senior news analyst at the William Lloyd Garrison Center for Libertarian Advocacy Journalism ( He lives and works in north central Florida.


  1. Traditionalist Traditionalist January 11, 2022

    Andy, there are many legitimate reasons to post pseudonymously, and as Mr. Johnson pointed out, people can and do also troll under their legal names. It’s one thing to have your suspicions, and quite another to just throw around accusations, which is presumptuous and rude. I’ve dealt with trolls as well as doxxers and snoops and pranksters – and even SWATers – for almost 40 years of computer forum discussions now. For most of that time, it was widely understood that using your legal name in such discussions was unwise for a whole host of reasons. That seems to be more and more lost on people now, but being a traditionalist, I think the old, tried and true ways are best.

  2. Andy Andy January 10, 2022

    “Traditionalist,” what you and the other guy don’t get is the this site, as well as Ballot Access News, as well as some other sites, have long had a problem with trolls.

    So if I see, or suspect, anyone posting under a fake name, I suspect then of being one of the trolls.

    According to William Saturn, he just caught Joe Wendt trolling under a fake name here. Wendt is a guy who has hopped to several political parties, and he has caused problems everywhere he goes. He has long been on my suspect list as a troll, and a plant.

  3. Traditionalist Traditionalist January 10, 2022

    Ed Johnson,

    You are letting Andy and his nonsense get to you way too much. As you noted correctly, he tries to “haze” everyone who enters his favorite old boys hangout, laughably trying to establish himself as the big minnow in a small fish bowl. I’ve brushed it off and taken it in stride.

    If you ignore the incredibly sloppy logic, Andy can surprise you by actually making good sense some times and arguing cogently from time to time. Unfortunately, you have to wade through a lot of nonsense to get to those times, but so far I’ve found him to be one of the better commenters here when it comes to actually presenting any kind of argument. I’m not giving up on him yet, and I think you should give him another chance

  4. Ed Johnson Ed Johnson January 10, 2022

    Andy, you are off the rails. Please seek professional mental help. I asked you to explain obscure references that you used which would not make sense to the average person who is interested in third parties and independent candidates but hasn’t read thousands of comments here for years and years. Instead of simply explaining what in the world you are talking about, you put my name on quotes, accused me of being a troll, and told me to go back and read thousands or maybe millions of comments from years ago. That’s just plain nuts.

    I already told you, I don’t care what your crazy references that might make sense only to people who have read the comment section here for years mean if I have to ask you more than once. I was only mildly curious to begin with. Now, you’re doing to me what I’ve watched you do to other people, and I’m not going to play those games. Asking you what in the world you are talking about is not a valid reason to get accused of being a troll, being told I need to doxx myself to prove that I’m not, or any of the other crazy crap you keep throwing at people.

    Apparently you need to look up the definition of troll. Even if you are telling the truth about all the conventions you attended and videos of you on YouTube, that doesn’t say anything about whether you are a troll. People can and do troll under their real names. It also doesn’t prove that you don’t also troll under other names. I’ve seen you say that you don’t, but that’s not proof.

    Speaking of proof, it looks like you have no clue, or hope other people reading have no clue, about what burden of proof is or who has it. It’s not up to me to prove that I’m not a troll or what my name is. If you are going to throw around accusations just because I asked you a perfectly reasonable question doesn’t mean you should all of a sudden put my name in quotes and call me a troll. Logically, if you are going to accuse people, the burden of proof is on YOU not the people you accuse of being liars and trolls.

    What exactly would be the point of “proving who I am” to you? If I did, that would do nothing to prove that I am not a troll, if the burden of proof was on me to prove otherwise, which it is not. If I did give you and all the trolls you say are here – that much, I believe – the means to harass me and my wife at work or my kids at school, among other nasty things you could do. It would not do anything to prove that I’m not trolling, since I could still be trolling, either under my own name, or under other names. There’s lots of risk and zero reward, and you making such demands of people who would just dare to have an opinion, speak up, and engage you in conversation is mentally ill.

    It might make logical sense to ask for proof of someone’s identity if they make claims that rely on their personal authority or knowledge of a given subject. I have not made any such claims. You actually have, so it would make logical sense to ask you for proof. Vague statements like “I’ve been to x national conventions and there’s videos of me on YouTube” are not proof. If I actually cared who you are, it would be nuts to expect me to read thousands of posts to find this alleged proof, just like it would be nuts to expect me or anyone else to do all that just to understand what you are talking about.

    Luckily, I don’t actually care who you are, because making so many obviously crazy statements proves you are not a mentally healthy or reasonable person. It’s also not very mentally healthy to talk to such people, so I’m not actually talking to you, even though I addressed this to you. I’m only even bothering to explain obvious things which shouldn’t have to be explained because, hopefully, not everyone reading is mentally ill like yourself.

    I know nothing whatsoever about you, Andy. Not your full name, not where you live, not how old you are, not what you do for a living, not anything else. I don’t care about any of that, and I don’t care for you or whatever crazy trolls are lurking to know any more about me. Luckily, my first and last name are both common, so I already told you more about me than I know or want to know about you. Don’t believe me? I don’t care.

    Of course, to a wacko like you, not doxxing myself will just be “proof” that I’m a liar and a troll. You’ll probably “LOL” and proceed to throw out more accusations and name calling, all because I made the mistake of caring for a minute what you were talking about enough to ask you. You have now convinced me not to make that mistake again. That’s great, if your actual goal is to limit your conversations only to the same few people you have apparently been talking to for years who understand your obscure references, know and care who you are, and I guess don’t have a life since they’re o.k. with having you and who knows who else knowing everything about them. Otherwise, it’s just a way to convince people to not speak up, or maybe not even read the conversations here. Which may actually be your goal for all I know.

    So, since you asked for all my personal information , I guess I should return the favor and ask what government agency you are collecting this information for. I’m not actually asking, because I wouldn’t believe your answer and don’t care anymore what you have to say about anything whatsoever. But it would be a more reasonable question than what you asked me.

    That was way more than enough. I only bothered because I woke up in the middle of the night and needed to take a dump. Now, I am done talking to Andy and will ignore his nonsense from now on. Other than maybe to warn people that they are dealing with a crazy person.

  5. Andy Andy January 9, 2022

    “Ed Johnson
    January 9, 2022 at 22:25
    First of all why is my name in quotes and why are you calling me a troll? You sound like you have a screw loose. All I did was ask you what the heck you are talking about since I have no idea. Completely reasonable and natural question. Which naturally makes you claim that I do know which is based on what? And why is asking you who or what you are talking about trolling?”

    Who are you? Post some proof of who you are? There are multiple videos of me posted right here on IPR, and on YouTube, and I have attended 8 Libertarian National Conventions, and a bunch of other events. There are people who post here who have met, or at least seen, me in person.

    Who are you?

    This site has had a troll problem since not too long after it came out back in 2008. How do I know you are not one of them?

  6. Ed Johnson Ed Johnson January 9, 2022

    First of all why is my name in quotes and why are you calling me a troll? You sound like you have a screw loose. All I did was ask you what the heck you are talking about since I have no idea. Completely reasonable and natural question. Which naturally makes you claim that I do know which is based on what? And why is asking you who or what you are talking about trolling?

    Excuse me for trying to actually understand your obscure references. I should have known better than to ask you questions. The other day I saw you accusing someone else of reading years worth of old posts because they knew who you voted for in 2020. Then a few days later on another post you said you have actually said multiple times here who you voted for in 2020. Now you are directing me to read how many years worth of old posts to understand who or what you are talking about and calling me a troll and saying I probably already know instead of just explaining what you mean to me and anyone who happens to be reading and wondering the same thing? Why? Is anyone actually going to read thousands of comments going back years to understand what you mean? Does this really sound like it makes sense to you or does it sound completely crazy?

    You know what…never mind I asked. I don’t care anymore. It’s not worth the effort to try to understand. I might as well be asking some guy talking to himself on a street corner downtown what he is talking about.

  7. Andy Andy January 9, 2022

    “Ed Johnson,” you would kniw all this if you read the IPR archives. You are likely another troll though, and you probably already know it.

  8. Ed Johnson Ed Johnson January 9, 2022

    I don’t understand what you are talking about. Paul who? Who is Sean Baugh? What do they have to do with Peter Kropotkin, Joe Wendy, or any of the Nazi propaganda broadcasters who were nicknamed Lord Haw Haw or Lord Hee Haw? You are not explaining anything understandably.

  9. Andy Andy January 9, 2022

    Paul referred to Sean Haugh as Lord Hee-Haw years agon.

  10. Ed Johnson Ed Johnson January 9, 2022

    Kropotkin’s first name was Peter, not Paul. I don’t know who this “Kropotkin” is calling a skinhead. Knapp shaves his head, or at least did in the pictures of him I have seen, but he is not a fan of the Mises Caucus. I don’t know what Andy looks like or if he shaves his head, but he is a fan of the Mises Caucus.

    Lord Hee-Haw or Haw-Haw were names given by the British press to a series of nazi broadcasters based in Germany who did nazi propaganda broadcasts in English. One was a German who had a passable English accent, the rest were British traitors. The most famous “lord” was William Joyce, who was actually born American, became a British fascist, and later a Nazi subject. He was executed after the war. There were also two women nicknamed Axis Sally and a group of women who did broadcasts for the Japanese who were nicknamed Tokyo Rose. Jane Fonda has sometimes been called Hanoi Jane because of her propaganda efforts on behalf of the North Vietnamese communists.

  11. Andy Andy January 9, 2022

    Probably me since he referenced the Mises Caucus.

  12. Nathan Norman Nathan Norman January 9, 2022

    Who is Kropotkin calling a skinhead? Tom Knapp?

  13. Andy Andy January 9, 2022

    Is “Kropotkin Caucus” Paul? He cited Lord Hee-Haw in the past.

  14. Kropotkin Caucus Kropotkin Caucus January 9, 2022

    Comrades, why accept the criticism from a self-identified skinhead who is a lackey of the Mises. He is Lord Hee-Haw spouting propaganda. These lackeys will be Smashed. Abolish money! Abolish the State! Abolish the Police! Libertarians of the World, Unite!

  15. Andy Andy January 9, 2022

    It could be something to do with her wearing political slogans.

  16. Sammy H Sammy H January 9, 2022

    Why is the right always so fascinated with AOC’s clothing?

  17. E Pluribus Unum E Pluribus Unum January 9, 2022

    This whole thing is just RW nonsense

    -Just because the median income of an area is X, does not mean her families income was that
    -AOC’s Family came from lower income Parkchester before moving there after saving up
    -She paid for her college by taking Student Loans that she is still paying off
    -After her father died she got her job as a bartender to help her mother who was a cleaner/bus driver because college isn’t even a guarantee you’ll get a good job
    -AOC was a invited to Met Gala and did not have a ticket
    -She went there SPECIFICALLY to call out the elitist rich folks there

  18. Robert Milnes Robert Milnes January 9, 2022

    All of a sudden I am having unusual difficulty finding Knappster on the interweb.
    I do not think it is my internet rig. HP 10th gen I7 laptop. ATT service.
    Can you point me in the right direction?
    What is going on?
    Never had this problem before.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

6 + 4 =