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When the hand that feeds you also bites you

When the hand that feeds you also bites you

From the WSJ:

Wall Street may have lost its appetite for Mario Batali.

Mr. Batali, the celebrity chef famed for his orange Crocs, red pony tail and bold ragus, has long been one of the premier restaurateurs to the New York financial elite….  Speaking on a panel at a Time magazine “Person of the Year” event on Tuesday, Mr. Batali compared Wall Street bankers to Stalin and Hitler, citing their destructive impact on the world.

Asked about his choices for “Person of the Year,” Mr. Batali mentioned Steve Jobs and food writer Michael Pollan before citing his top choice: bankers.

“I would have to say that…who’s had the largest effect on the whole planet without us really paying attention across the board and everywhere is the entire banking industry and their disregard of the people they’re supposed to be working for,” according to a Time magazine video of the event.

He added that, “the way the bankers have kind of toppled the way money is distributed and taken most of it into their own hands is as…as good as Stalin or Hitler and the evil guys that you guys…have. They’re not heroes, they’re just people who have really had a huge effect on the way the world is operating.”

Ah, yes, those nasty bankers who provide loans to small businesses and comprise most of Mr. Batali’s clientele.

I’ve been eating at Babbo & Del Posto for friend’s birthday parties since I was 18 or so, and I really like Mario Batali’s food. It doesn’t surprise me that he would have bad politics. If I discriminated my tastes based on that, I’d be very hungry in Manhattan. Thankfully, in New York, there are so many people that each one is essentially evaluated by the merits of their work and not their politics.

I suspect that, if the city was infested with Stalin and Hitler-types, that wouldn’t be the case.

(Also, good luck finding a commie willing to shell out $100 for a tasting menu.)


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I’m wondering how the money is distributed in Batali’s restaurants. Are they operated as workers’ collectives?

Batali’s comment was barely coherent. It would probably be a good idea if he shuffled back into the kitchen now.

    Malonth in reply to angela. | November 10, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    Waddled would be more accurate. But after exposure to such hypocrites and frauds as Nancy Pelosi and Michael Moore, can any one be surprised at Batali’s rant? This is what passes for deep and polite thought in Manhattan and San Francisco.

    Yes … back to sausage making

    Kathleen McCaffrey in reply to angela. | November 10, 2011 at 7:32 pm

    There may or may not be a rumor that he has a problem with what may or may not be drugs.

He is the Michael Moore of the Restaurant Industry, over-bloated hypocritical bourgeoisie Jubba-da-hut who rips off the workers, over-charges the customers all the while portends to be some magnificent champion of the ‘lower class’ proletariat.

But like Michael Moore’s movies, people will show up anyway just to be seen with duplicitous elite VIP crowd.

Two points:

First, given OWS propensity to destroy every eatery that doesn’t give them anything/everything they want, this is a very smart move by Batali to preserve his investments.

Second, Wall Street has been bashed non-stop by Obama for years, and that hasn’t stopped the cash flow from Wall Street to Obama’s campaign coffers. Wall Street has Stockholm Syndrome bad.

You claim to like Mario Batali’s food. Could you elaborate? In particular, do you prefer his sweet or savory dishes?

If you want to eat well reasonably in NYC, go to Les Sans Culottes, 1085 2nd Avenue. $25 for a 3 course dinner. Try it. You’ll thank me.

Oh, and if the owners have any unsavory political opinions, PLEASE DON’T TELL ME! I’ve loved that place for decades.