As we’ve been reporting, the “elites” have been gathering for their annual World Economic Forum to obsess over the climate — even as they arrive by private jets and massive convoys — fret about the threats posed by former Donald Trump and X owner Elon Musk, and agonize over the possibility of a new pandemic that would have the power to kill 20 times more people than COVID did.
It’s usually a groupthink affair, with most attendees patting each other on the backs over how virtuous they are, and there’s not usually a lot of pushback or disagreement. It’s a mystery, then, why somebody chose to invite Heritage Foundation President Kevin Roberts to the party.
Heritage describes its goals on their website:
Heritage’s mission is to formulate and promote public policies based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values, and a strong national defense.
Doesn’t exactly sound Davos-ish to me. Somebody had to know that he wasn’t going to deliver a crowd-pleasing message — and he didn’t disappoint:
At the WEF, Roberts spoke on a panel entitled “What to expect from a possible Republican administration,” and was joined by ex-Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, the Wall Street Journal’s Gerard Baker and Bard College Prof. Walter Russell Mead – and offered pointed countervailing views to the majority of Davos figures that at times appeared to ruffle the moderator.
The moderator, British international affairs expert Sir Robin Niblett, at one point asked Roberts about former President Trump’s promise of “retribution” if he regains office, and that the World Economic Forum’s purported defenses of liberal democracy could be “swept under the rug” by the mogul.
“It’s laughable that you or anyone would describe Davos as ‘protecting liberal democracy’,” Roberts said.
But he wasn’t done, adding, “It’s equally laughable to use the word ‘dictatorship’ at Davos and aim that at President Trump. In fact, I think that’s absurd.”
He went on to describe how conservatives hold an entirely different viewpoint than most Davos devotees:
Anyone not prepared to take away the power of unelected bureaucrats and give it back to the American people is unprepared to be part of the next conservative administration. #WEF24 pic.twitter.com/8hRtg9Qs9L— Kevin Roberts (@KevinRobertsTX) January 18, 2024
The kind of person who will come into the next conservative administration is going to be governed by one principle, and that is destroying the grasp that political elites and unelected technocrats have over the average person.
He really laid down the hammer with this remark:
The thing that I want to drive home here, the very reason that I’m here at Davos, is to explain to many people in this room and who are watching, with all due respect, nothing personal, but that you’re part of the problem.
Ouch. I would have loved to have been in the audience and watched the faces in the crowd. I’m guessing there was a lot of uncomfortable shifting around in their seats.
Sadly, I doubt any of the John Kerrys or Klaus Schwabs of the world will pay much attention to Roberts’ concerns, nor do I think they will engage in any serious contemplation about what he had to say. Nonetheless, the left is always babbling on about “speaking truth to power” and it was refreshing to see that in this case, Roberts actually did just that.
Watch more of his remarks here:
My guess is that Roberts may find that his invitation gets lost in the mail next year. When he writes in the above tweet, “My message to the self-appointed global elites: Your time is up,” you know he’s going to set the brains of some massive egotists on fire.
I love it.
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