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Tag Archives: Hillary Clinton

So Much To Say

I wrote a little bit ago about how both sides of the political divide live in their own echo chambers.  Let me add to that.  They also live in their own bubbles and liberals have just experienced the consequence of forgetting that there is a whole different world outside their bubble.

Many of us were lulled into a false sense that America had changed over the last eight years.  That somehow the election of Barack Obama and his promised hope and change heralded the dawn of a new and better America.  A post-racial America.  An America where finally people of color and of different religions and different genders and different orientations would no longer experience the horrors of hate and discrimination.

We believed that our liberal views had finally reached that point where there was no turning back.  This was America and the forces of conservatism were on the run.

If only …

What far too many of us forgot was the fundamental nature of our country and our history.  We are a divided nation and there are many, many Republicans and others out there who believe and think fundamentally differently from us.  You don’t think so?  Well, let’s go back in the way-back machine and look at our political history.  Since FDR’s death, with the exception of Carter’s four year term and the combined twelve years of Reagan/Bush I, the party that holds the Presidency has changed every eight years.  Like clockwork.  Like a perfectly tuned Swiss time machine.

It is, to repeat myself, the fundamental nature of modern day America’s politics.  The vast middle can’t decide what it wants to be and it is the vast mushy middle that holds the cards in national elections.  Give ’em eight years of a Democrat and they’re ready for a Republican.  Give ’em eight years of that and they’re ready for a Democrat again.

Which leads to thought number two …

This is what I blame the Democrat Party apparatus and the Clintons for.  A failure to recognize that Hillary Clinton was simply the wrong candidate for this year.  Much like Mitt Romney, who in so many ways represented the very thing that inspired America’s anger at the Great Recession, was the wrong candidate for the Republicans in 2012, Hillary represented just about everything the vast mushy middle didn’t want this year.  She personifies Democratic establishment politics and has been in that mold for decades.  She represented no change, no difference, nothing other than the same old, same old.

See above, rightly or wrongly, every eight years American voters want change.

The Democrats had to offer somebody who could promise the American people an evolution from Obama and they didn’t do it.  Or if it had to be Hillary she had to come up with a message, a theme, anything that could reach American voters who are fatigued by the last eight years. Instead, Hillary and her advisors basically ran on the idea that she would offer another four years of Obama.  (I don’t object to that notion, but I’m not representative of the vast mushy middle you need to win a Presidential election.)

All the while, the Clintons and their team completely refused to recognize the role her weaknesses and her fundamental flaws would play in turning the mushy middle against her.  How decisions she has made and conduct she has engaged in would turn the electorate against her.  Or at least enough of the electorate would turn to any other option that she would lose the election.

It has been suggested that the point of yesterday is how many Americans voted for hate and misogyny, intolerance and ignorance.  I agree that this is a point worth discussing and examining.  However, suggesting that is the only point while ignoring the role the Democrat Party and the Clintons played in making such a vote not only possible but also seem to be reasonable to more than 60,000,000 Americans means that we will never learn the lesson, learn from the mistake that was made this year, and ignores the responsibility the party and the Clintons have for foisting this horrible choice on the American people.

Which leads to my third point …

It has been suggested in a number of places over the course of this election that Hillary will lose, or actually lost, because she is a woman.  Again, this is an effort to avoid responsibility.  To blame this loss on the same old tired identity politics of gender, race, religion, or orientation.  And it is completely wrong.  The very same people who voted for Trump voted for Nikki Haley, the female governor of South Carolina, Jan Brewer, the female former governor of Arizona, Sarah Palin, the female former governor of Alaska and VP candidate with McCain in 2008, Judy Martz, the female former governor of Montana, Mary Fallin, the current female governor of Oklahoma, Susana Martinez, the current female governor of New Mexico.  There are also currently a handful of Republican female U.S. Senators.  To suggest that the people who voted for Trump, or the people who opposed Hillary Clinton, did so because she is a woman is simply to ignore the evidence before us.

Anyway …

Last night I was very unsettled about the election results.  Although I didn’t vote for Hillary Clinton, I did want her to win given the only other alternative.  I agree that having over 60 million Americans vote for the man says something very ugly about our country.  But that ugliness isn’t new.  It never actually went away.  Barack Obama never snapped his fingers and made it disappear.  It is as basic to our Americanism as it is, unfortunately, basic to the human existence.  There are those who hate.  There will always be.  The way to combat that is to continue to love and to spread our message and to nominate our best.  We didn’t do that this year — we nominated the one person who couldn’t beat an orange clown — and we will suffer the consequences for the next four years.

 

 

Donald Trump Needs To Stay Away From the Internet

Monday was the Presidential debate.  Towards the end, Hillary Clinton laid into Trump about his comments about Alicia Machado, a former Miss Universe winner.  “Miss Piggy” because she had gained some weight.  Trump claims she gained 60-70 pounds.  I have yet to see any picture of Miss Machado that supports that claim.  “Miss Housekeeper” because she is Latina.  Trump sputtered and had no real response.  Since then he has dug deep to go after Ms. Machado and Clinton’s invoking of her during the debate.

His most recent rant — a series of tweets sent out at 2:30 this morning — show one of the most basic problems with the idea of Trump as President.  He is too stupid and too ignorant to realize that you shouldn’t believe something just because it’s on the internet.

Yesterday, I saw for the first time a suggestion that Miss Machado was a “porn star.”  This was buried in comments on the right-wing blog I read on a daily basis.  (I know, I know.  I’m still working on kicking that habit.)  I decided to google “Alicia Machado porn star.”  And there it was a 20 second video of “Alicia Machado” in a porn video.  No need to check.  Take my word for it.  The woman in the video appeared to look like Ms. Machado, but who can really tell?

Apparently, Trump saw similar comments or posts somewhere yesterday because part of his middle of the night rant was an accusation that Miss Machado was in porn and had a “sex tape.”  And that maybe Hillary should have looked into her past before relying on her in the debate.

Well, yeah, maybe she should have.

But maybe Trump should have done a little more research of his own before going off on his Twitter rant.

It’s one of the most frustrating things about the internet.  There is more propaganda, crap, and outright lies posted on the internet than actual truths and reality.  And far too many people will believe just about anything they read when it’s on the internet without doing the most basic of things.  Go to google, type in a relevant search time, and fine the alternative perspective.  That is the truth.

That Donald Trump believes whatever he reads on the internet, without first confirming it through some other source?  Best reason there is to conclude that he should not be President of the United States.  Sorry, but that’s called a hair trigger.  We don’t need a President with a hair trigger.  We don’t need a President who will believe whatever the person in front of him is saying.  We don’t need a President is so uninformed, clueless, and uninquisitive that he fails to inform himself about things — to the point where he is susceptible to the liars and fools that populate the internet (well, except for me and you, of course).

If Trump were serious about winning the election, he’d stay away from the internet for the next six weeks.  I’m guessing he won’t do that.

And in other words, I remain completely perplexed about what I’m going to do come Election Day.  I have danced with the idea of voting for Gary Johnson, but have heard far too much about him in the last week or two that is not consistent with what I want in a President.  He is too uninformed, too lackadaisical, too much of a pothead, too laissez faire when it comes to the role of government for my taste.  There are some positions he has that I absolutely love to see in a Presidential candidate.  But at the end of the day, there are far too many negatives that come along with him.

It should be clear I won’t be voting for the Drumpfster.

And I still can’t find it in me to vote for Hillary Clinton.  I just don’t want to do it.

What is a guy to do?

 

Why I’m Worried

Two words:

Donald

Trump

Until this week, I have been confident there is no way he could win the general election in November.  I’m not so sure anymore and am, in fact, worried that he will actually win the thing.  Why?

Because no charge, no allegation, no amount of criticism or attack has worked against him.  As Reagan was the Teflon President, Trump appears to be the Teflon Candidate.  The things he has said over the years that are a matter of record and keep getting exposed during the campaign don’t matter.  The things he has done don’t matter.  The outrageous and offensive things he has said and done during the campaign … say it with me … don’t matter.

Meanwhile, his attacks and criticisms, no matter how outrageous they have been, have worked against every candidate the Republican party threw at him.

I worry about how this will turn out.  I worry about what he will do to Hillary Clinton in the months between now and November.  He has demonstrated that he doesn’t care about the “rules” that typically apply to these things and that his supporters will absolutely eat up whatever he said and does. and that he will say or do whatever it takes to win.  Because winning is the only thing that matters to him.  The only thing that matters to him is winning.  He is a classic example of the ends justifying the means.  His need to win trumps (sorry for the pun) all.  I don’t know if Hillary can withstand that.  I just don’t know.  There is a wave of frustration and outrage that Trump is riding further than anybody thought possible.  Whose to say this is where that wave ends?

My only hope is that in November, enough women, minorities, and members of all the groups Trump has attacked remember those attacks and vote against Trump.   I can only hope that there are enough intelligent, thinking, rational people left in this country that he cannot win.  Otherwise, we will be screwed.  Absolutely, monumentally screwed.

I only wish the alternative was a better one than Hillary.

Why I Won’t Be Voting for Hillary Clinton

Over the past fifteen years, Bill and Hillary have made over $153 million giving speeches.  They made 729 speeches during that time.  Think about that.  By my math, that’s almost 50 speeches a year.  For which their average payment was over $200,000.

Hillary has defended this in various ways.    For instance, she has claimed that after the enforced poverty of Bill serving as President they needed to make money.  I get that, but doesn’t that seem a bit excessive?  Here are the things the U.S. taxpayers cover for ex-Presidents, including Bill Clinton:  (1) a lifetime pension that matches the salary of a current head of an executive department — currently over $200,000 per year; (2) seven months of transition costs; (3) on-going private office space and staff; (4) medical treatment offered at military hospitals at “interagency rates” and the opportunity to buy health insurance via the Federal health insurance exchange; (5) lifetime Secret Service protection.

None of this is monumentally significant and I have no quibble with an ex-President needing to do something to fill his time and his bank account.  But Bill and Hillary did all sorts of other things as well.  She ran for U.S. Senate and won, earning a salary and benefits while she served.  He wrote his memoirs for which he was paid millions of dollars.  She probably did to.  She served as Secretary of State, earning another salary and benefits while serving.provision

Isn’t there a point where enough is enough?  I’d say there is and the problem with these speeches is … well.  As Elizabeth Warren pointed out way back in 2004 in an interview with Bill Moyers, there is a potential for something here.  According to Ms. Warren, there was a bankruptcy bill that the big banks favored.  When Bill Clinton was President, he vetoed the legislation with his wife one of the strongest voices urging him to do so.  Fast forward a couple of years and Bill is out of office, the two Clintons are making their millions giving speeches, and Hillary is a U.S. Senator — she voted for the bill.  As Ms. Warren stated:

As Senator Clinton, the pressures are very different. It’s a well-financed industry. You know a lot of people don’t realize that the industry that gave the most money to Washington over the past few years was not the oil industry, was not pharmaceuticals, it was consumer credit products. Those are the people, the credit card companies have been giving money and they have influence.

It’s one thing for the special interests to provide campaign contributions — that creates enough of an appearance of corruption and influence-peddling — but when they are also directly compensating elected officials and their spouses in what is so clearly an effort to buy their influence, it just smells.  Smells like a whole lot of crap, to be honest.  There is something about the Clintons that just dances along the edge of ethics and honest behavior.  Their speechifying and claims of purity and innocence just don’t ring true.

The Clintons needed to make a living after Bill left office.  I’ve got no problem with that.  What I do have a problem with is how they went about doing it.  And it’s why I won’t be voting for Hillary this year.  I’m fortunate to live in a very blue state that will send its electors to vote for the Democrat no matter who it is.  As a result, that I won’t vote for her won’t matter in the big picture.  If I lived in a battleground state, I might have to hold my nose.  I don’t and I won’t.

I Really Can’t Stand Hillary … Why I May Just Vote for a Republican

I have written before about my dislike of the fact that we have spent the last 26 years in a vortex of Bushes and Clintons being a part of Presidential tickets.  Actually, now that I think about it, it goes back 34 years, because the first Bush was VP under Reagan.  Think about it, seven of the last nine Presidential elections have included either a Bush or a Clinton or both on the ballot.  And, now, with 2016 fast approaching, it looks like Hillary is inevitable and Jeb Bush may just throw his hat in the ring as well.  I’m hoping that Hillary is as inevitable as she turned out to be in 2008.  I am done with the political family dynasties that seem to have developed over the past few decades.  Maybe it says something about us and how we have destroyed our political system, or maybe it says something about those two families and their never-ending quest for power.

Anyway, I want them both gone.  I really can’t stand Hillary and wish there was another reasonable option on the Democrat side.  Hillary has all of the cold, political calculation of her husband, but none of the charisma or political skills that mask that calculation.  If she’s the Democrat nominee, all it would take is a Republican who is willing to depart from the Republican orthodoxy and I would seriously consider voting for a Republican — to keep Hillary away from the Presidency and end the Clinton dynasty.

So, along comes this guy.  I still worry that he’s a bit of a whacko.  He has definitely wandered along the edge of the fringe element of the right wing here in this country.  But there is a lot I like about him.  He has a more isolationist approach to foreign policy that recognizes that we can’t solve the world’s problems and shouldn’t keep trying to do so.  And when it comes to what government can and cannot do, I’m okay with somebody who may shake things up a bit.  I’m a bleeding heart liberal who firmly believes in the value of social programs and interventions, but I also think that there is an inevitability to the  overreach and bloat of government and I wouldn’t mind a bit of a revolution in the way things happen in this country.

That’s one of the reasons I was so excited by the Obama candidacy back in 2008.  He offered an alternative to the status quo, the way that things had happened for decades.  The problem he ran into is that he didn’t have the power to overcome the status quo and the rock solid opposition to his quest for change.

So, fine, let’s roll the dice again.  Because the reality is that our system is fundamentally broken and I’m ready for a revolution in how we govern this country.

And Rand Paul challenges the Republican orthodoxy.  Read the article I linked to.  He challenges law enforcement.  He recognizes that race still plays a huge role in our criminal justice system and in our society.  At the same time that he clearly plans on running for the Republican nomination for President in 2016, Rand Paul is willing to say that law enforcement has gone too far.  Tell me the last time you’ve heard a Republican say that.

I know that a lot will happen in the next two years and that Rand Paul has said some pretty crazy things in the past, but I’m intrigued.

 

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