Not a Ringing Endorsement for Hillary

What interests me here starts with the apologist tone of the article. It is as if the author is saying, “Surrender all hope, ye who enter here, and just vote for Hillary so we can get this over with.” I don’t sense much enthusiasm for Ms. Clinton and, I think, with good reason. She is an establishment candidate, just like Cruz and Rubio on the other side of the fence. And a vote for an establishment candidate remains a vote to give the establishment carte blanche to keep doing what they have been doing to us since the late 1950’s.

If there is one thing on which we all (both sides of the political hedge) seem to be able to agree, it is that there are still a lot of problems in this country, be they the sorry state of the economy as regards the poor, working and middle classes, the spiraling costs of health care and college education, the extrication from and payment for two decades of pointless war in the middle east, our staggering national debt, the penury in which many Americans are held by the banking and lending practices of Wall Street, and a political gulf between the parties that has rendered Washington all but useless. At this point, an establishment candidate, an establishment solution, is just not going to cut it.

My mantra comes from Albert Einstein, who once said that “problems could not be solved at the same level of awareness that created them.” But here, the author is asking us to solve the problems by electing one of the key individuals who influenced their very creation. Is Dr. Frankenstein the one to kill the monster? Or do the townspeople rise up, grab their torches and set things right?

If Donald Trump gains the nomination of the Republican party, as it seems now he must, he will defeat Hillary Clinton handily in a general election. Look at how he wages his clownish campaign. His attacks on Rubio and Cruz will be turned on Hillary with claims that she is a liar, that she is dishonest, that she used the State Department to feather her own nest, and that her voting record and policies in government speak to her poor judgement and level of failure as an administrator. He will go on the offensive, day one, and will not let up. And, right or wrong, Hillary does have a problem in that a majority of Americans believe that she is a liar, that she is dishonest, and that she is a part of creating the problems that have escalated the mess that is the middle east. Trump will only play to that underlying sensibility and, with the help of the Koch brothers and Republican Super Pacs, he will slam dunk poor Hillary.

From my perspective, only Bernie Sanders can demonstrate that he has been a long time success as an outsider in government. His record in the House and Senate is one which will galvanize the left and appeal to the moderate voters of both parties. His track record of true accomplishment, human decency and the fidelity with which he has expressed and acted upon his beliefs over the entirety of his political career show Trump for just what he is, a loudmouth buffoon and ignoramus (Trump still wins the loudmouth buffoon and ignoramus vote).

And all of the paid for pundits, perhaps including the author of this article, who claim that Bernie’s proposals are not workable, are doing so because they understand that those proposals are workable if we make some fundamental changes to how our country does business. If we would stop being the world’s policeman, make large corporations and the wealthy elite pay their fair share of taxes, break the stranglehold of Wall Street and big Pharma / big Healthcare, more money would be in circulation among more people with better paying jobs, also then paying more taxes. An economic equilibrium would be reached (and yes, the rich would still be rich) and most worrying to the far right and the establishment in general, the voting American would see that we could have had this all along. Bernie is the FDR of his generation, willing and able to jump start the economy, put people back to work, and spread the wealth around in a manner that allows all of us to make our contribution. That approach pulled us out of the Great Depression and will do the same now. And the entrenched “powers that be” on both sides of the aisle will be out looking for work.


Can You Bring Yourself to Vote for a Liar?

In theory, electing a President should hinge upon that person’s qualifications to lead within a governmental framework. Trump is no more qualified to be President than Curly Howard, but the perception (and perhaps the reality, but perception is all that matters) is that Hillary is a liar. Who, in any kind of conscience, can vote for someone whom they believe to be lying to them? Among the entire Republican field, I only see Bush as a real candidate, mixing experience, wisdom, reality and political savvy. But, I see all of the Republican candidates defeating Hillary for the simple reason that her lies are demonstrable, while theirs are not yet so.


Just Whom is Hillary Running Against?

It dawned on me earlier today that we, the voters, know something that Hillary Clinton appears not to know. She is not running against Bernie Sanders. Hillary Clinton is actually running against herself. Increasingly, her campaign has been about putting out fires related to her past actions as Secretary of State.

The other day, she stated that she was looking into making some “shake-ups” among her campaign staff. In a related news item, members of her staff reported their unease with having to answer to the allegations surrounding her (not my zoo, not my monkeys).

In yet another “where there’s smoke, there’s fire” article, we see again that there are reasons to call into questions the ethics, agenda and honesty of the Clintons, both Hillary and Bill. It really is no wonder then, that the majority of polled Americans first impression of Hillary is that she is dishonest. This has become an ongoing battle for her, to try to convince the nation otherwise. To some degree, she has just stopped trying and simply laughs the allegations off.

That isn’t going to play well in Poughkeepsie. Imagine the field day the Republican Super-Pacs are going to have attacking her (instead of each other). At this point, unless something miraculous happens to change the nation’s opinion of her, I do not see Hillary becoming President.


The State Department / Clinton Foundation Link

Another day, another few million dollars. This has become just shy of ludicrous. Even if reality is somehow different from the appearance, the appearance is that the State Department under Hillary Clinton was for sale to the highest bidder. And it is because of those appearances that when polled, the first thing that comes to the mind of the majority of respondents on “Hillary Clinton,” is “Dishonest.” Stack “Dishonest” against “Blowhard” (Trump), “Weasel” (Cruz), “Naive” (Rubio), or “Plodding” (Bush) and “Dishonest” loses the election every time (those appellations are my own first take on the Republican candidates). And don’t be fooled by “contributions to a charitable foundation.” Bill, Hillary and Chelsea are officers and employees of that foundation and draw a paycheck from it. Couple “graft” with a sense of “entitlement,” stir in some hypocrisy, filter out any shame and you have the Clintons.


Missing the Boat on Hillary

This puff piece on Hillary fails to really address the concerns that most Americans have with her. The author selects a small handful of instances where it is possible that Hillary has been misunderstood by the media, by the Republicans, and now by the supporters of Bernie Sanders. The real issue though, is one of perception.

In this day and age, perception truly is reality. What you believe, supported by the sources you choose to read, listen to or view in the media (as inaccurate or biased as they may be, and for whatever reasons they may be so), is just as real as what the other guy believes, with his own sources. And the perception of Hillary is that she is crooked, manipulative, fundamentally dishonest, and not above causing the destruction of other people to further her agenda.

The political life she has carved out with her husband has been one scandal after another. From the Arkansas governorship and the silencing of the women with whom Bill had his affairs (or just sexually assaulted), to Whitewater, the drug dealings of Bill’s reprobate brother (aided and abetted by the Arkansas attorney general’s office) and then on to Washington and Travelgate, Filegate, Vince Foster’s mysterious demise (remember that they found Hillary in Foster’s apartment, rifling his files?), Monica Lewinsky, the definition of “is,” the impeachment process, the looting of the White House when they left, and then her turn as Secretary of State and all that we are now learning about her failures in Benghazi, the sale of fissile Uranium to the Russians in return for large donations to the Clinton Foundation, the insecure emails and the growing suspicion that the State Department was for sale to the highest bidder.

Along the way, there have been no fewer than 19 suspicious deaths of aides and associates to the Clintons. Add to this, the perception (based on her reported campaign funding) that she is in the pocket of Wall Street, big Pharma, the Media and the Health Insurance industry. In her term in the Senate, she put her name on three bills that managed to pass (Sanders has his name on over 200).

Should she prevail and become the Democratic nominee, the Republicans will try her in the court of public opinion on circumstantial evidence and they will absolutely convict her. Where there’s the perception of smoke, there is certainly the perception of fire. And that will be good enough for the majority of voters.

Time and again, her own words, her own responses to direct questions on important matters, are her undoing. When asked (in a Senate sub-committee hearing) whether or not it was terrorists or an unruly mob who attacked Benghazi, she flippantly answered, “What does it matter?” When asked if she would release the transcriptions of her speeches to Goldman-Sachs, she just laughed. There are countless videos of Hillary openly lying in response to direct questions about her actions, lies that are borne out later under investigation. There is no “case for Hillary Clinton.” Americans have been fooled one time too many and are now greasing up the pole on which she will be ridden out of town.


Waist Deep in the Big Muddy?

Hillary has stepped into it this time, waist deep. This story is not going to be laughed off. Bernie is absolutely right in attacking Wall Street for its predatory practices. The bastards there destroyed our economy and stole our future and our children’s future, all with the help of their cronies in Washington. Chief among them, of course, are the Clintons.

Realize that if this had been the 1600’s, they would have gone to the block. Even today, there are many countries in the world who would have had thieves like these summarily executed. Today, in America, the best we could do is to send them to a low security prison. But, with the help of their allies in Washington, not even one of them went to trial, let alone served time. The middle and working classes of this country may finally be prepared to take our country, our economy and our government back from the filthy rich, hopefully at the polling station but, if need be, at the barrel of a gun. Pissing off American working people is never a good idea and people like the Clintons will never understand that.


Turning of the Tide?

I tend to think that the fight will be protracted (unless the FBI steps in), but it seems clear that the tide is turning against Hillary “the inevitable.” Heady days. There is more than a whiff of the fresh aired idealism of Robert Kennedy’s campaign in the air.


Observations from the Democratic Debate

A few observations from last night’s debate. First, there was a very telling moment when Hillary Clinton said (and I paraphrase) that her plan would be to fix the problems in the country from within the existing system. As we know, Bernie comes from a point of view that there is far too much corruption in the system (campaign financing, health care debacle, economic disintegration of the middle and working classes) to fix it properly from within. In his view, we must make significant changes to the system that IS, his “political revolution.”

I think he might make that position clearer through the analogy of fixing a car (the car being the country, moving forward). Hillary wants to fix the car with parts that are known to be broken, while Bernie is calling for new parts. What is the evidence that the parts are broken? The economic disintegration of the middle and working classes is the evidence that the government is not and has not been working for ALL of us for quite a long time. The influence of billionaires on the political process is evidence as well.

I often quote Albert Einstein who once said that “problems can not be solved at the same level of awareness that created them.” Hillary (and the rest of Washington’s establishment) is content with that same level of awareness and, as a result, no progress is ever made in terms of solving our problems.

Second, we should take notice that Hillary makes many assertions that she will stand up to Wall Street, that she will strive to fix the broken health care system, that she will work to make college more affordable for our young people. But talk is cheap. She has been a figure in the public eye since the 1990’s and has had ample opportunity to actually achieve some results. I don’t see any major legislation with her name attached to it. I only see a series of political scandals following her family.

Third, I am beginning to think that the Washington establishment looks on the country as if from the walls of the Bastille, and we are the rabble attempting to break in. Their thinking is that if they throw us a bone, we’ll quiet down and they can get back to pillaging our economy from within. Hillary is a liberal, probably a moderate, doubtfully a progressive. But most significantly, she is as establishment as establishment gets, she is another broken part on the car.

Back in the 60’s, we used to say, “If you are not part of the solution, you are part of the problem.” She is part of the problem and her assertions that she is better qualified to lead us because of her “insider” experience of Washington, only confirms this.

Lastly, a point of difference between Hillary and Bernie with which Bernie has been hitting home, has to do with the money that Hillary has been taking in speakers fees and in contributions from Wall Street. One point he could be making is this, not only has Goldman Sachs contributed heavily to Hillary’s campaign, they are also one of Ted Cruz’s largest contributors. Think about that. If Goldman Sachs believed that Hillary was the best candidate to run our government, that same belief would exclude Ted Cruz, a very different candidate from Ms. Clinton. If they believed that Ted was the man, Hillary would not merit their contributions. The only way to understand this is that Goldman Sachs does not care who wins the election. They only care that they own a piece of that candidate. Taking large sums of money from institutions that are playing both sides against the middle, strikes me as a form of political prostitution. There is something inherently evil in this.


Playing Both Sides Against the Middle

An interesting consideration. As we all know, most political candidates these days rely on Super PACs to enhance their funding and to do a lot of dirty work on the campaign trail that can be held at a safe distance from the candidate him or herself. And, it is certainly the case that a tremendous amount of campaign funding comes from extremely wealthy individuals and corporations which want to hold some degree of influence over the candidate once they become elected.

This past week, we came to know that Senator Ted Cruz was “loaned” a million dollars from Goldman Sachs. Oddly enough, Goldman Sachs is one of Hillary Clinton’s top contributors. In fact, when you look at where Goldman Sachs has been spending its campaign donation money, you’ll see that it has been fairly evenly split between Republican and Democratic candidates.

How should we see that? Is it the case that Goldman Sachs (which we are using in this example, but you could insert your favorite campaign contributor here) has a political ideology that is both conservative and liberal simultaneously? Probably not. I think it might be fairer to say that Goldman Sachs does not care who wins an election. They care only that they have “stock” in that candidate and can expect to reap dividends in return.

These candidates, whether at a Senatorial, House or Presidential level, are auspiciously “representatives.” But whom do they represent? Many of you know that I am supporting Bernie Sanders. Part of my rationale is that Sanders represents us and does not take campaign contributions from big corporations or donors like the Koch Brothers. This is part of the homework we must all do for ourselves.……


Battle Lines Being Drawn

Thanks, Bill Moyers. Hillary’s owners (big Medicine, big Banks, big Media) have called the tune and now she must dance, this time through her surrogate, Chelsea. But, in what is rapidly turning into Hillary’s “Groundhog Day,” every distortion of Sanders’ record by the Clinton campaign is coming back to bite her. Hillary’s “ship of state” is turning into the Titanic.