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Ian McColgin
08-13-2016, 06:49 AM
[IMc - In so many ways progressives left Obama out to dry, left him with doing all the Hopey Changey heavy lifting by himself. Left on her own, Clinton is progressive like Gov Rockefeller was before he lurched right in the latter sixties - sorta could be but needs constant push. We must not only elect Clinton, but we must elect a congress that will lead her somewhat, that will give her spine for her generally ok sense on most domestic issues, that will push her progressive on the big financial institution issues, and that will help her keep her sword sheathed on the international fronts.]

Published on Friday, August 12, 2016, by The Guardian

Hate Trump? You Should Still Hold Clinton's Feet to the Fire

It will make Hillary Clinton a stronger candidate if she’s held accountable for her past and for her actions. Oh, and it’s not a vote for Donald Trump

by Steven Thrasher

Here’s a news flash: if you’re a progressive, you can and should critique Hillary Clinton right now – and that doesn’t have to mean that you want Donald Trump to be president.

It means we are still using our brains, “That we are not checkmated,” as Michelle Alexander puts it, that engaging in discourse is not just possible, but necessary in a race with less than terrific choices. No matter who you ultimately vote for, don’t stop demanding a candidate endorse policies that benefit you in order to get your support, even if you vote for them.

Clinton should be pushed relentlessly by the left on her economic policies and history, for starters. While she made fun of Trump on the stump for having “a dozen or so economic advisers he just named: hedge fund guys, billionaire guys, six guys named Steve, apparently,” she is living in a glass house funded by Goldman Sachs and should be throwing no stones.

They’re not named Steve, but Clinton’s been courting endorsements from billionaires Meg Whitman, Warren Buffett and Michael Bloomberg. Her own son-in-law is a “hedge fund guy”, and the Wall Street Journal reported that “hedge fund money has vastly favored Clinton over Trump” to the tidy sum of $122m. Being bothered by what this portends for our economic future this is not a vote for Trump.

And though Trump is hinting to his supporters that they might want to use the second amendment to possibly assassinate Clinton or justices of the supreme court is disgusting, let’s not forget Clinton saying in May 2008 that she had to stay in that primary because “Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June in California” and, ho hum, you never know what might happen to presumptive nominee Barack Obama.

I bring this all up not to draw parallels between Clinton and Trump. She is clearly the more capable person suited to preside over this corrupt, perpetually and criminally violent enterprise known as the United States of America. But let’s not act like Clinton is a dove when it comes to matters of life and death.

She has embraced the endorsement of neocon John Negroponte and is even reportedly courting the endorsement of Henry Kissinger. As secretary of state, Clinton controversially supported not designating the 2009 ouster of Honduran president Manuel Zelaya as a coup , even though he was woken up by armed soldiers and forced onto a plane and out of his country in his pajamas. She has since defended her role in that situation, which has led to hell for women, children and environmentalists, including the assassination of indigenous activist Berta Cáceres. And as senator, Clinton supported the Iraq war, a vote which helped lead to the death of US army captain Humayun Khan.

Captain Khan’s parents have valiantly and admirably taken on Trump and his ugly Islamophobia. But turning a critical lens on the presidential candidate who supported the war that killed their son does not equate supporting her opponent.

So if you’re in what can broadly called the left, you a few have choices how to spend the next three months. You can scream “Yaaaaaaas, I’m with her!” and do your part to elect Clinton without thought or critique. That’s fine if her positions on war and economics don’t bother you, and there is value in shutting down Trump’s malarkey as quickly as possible.

But there is something perhaps more valuable in withholding your support and not giving it away too early, if at all. As James Thindwa wrote of the Congressional Black Caucus, the “rush by black leadership to endorse Clinton was an unforced strategic blunder”. Instead of “robustly challenging both Clinton and Sanders on racial justice issues [during the primaries] – as Black Lives Matter activists did,” the CBC “could have sent a strong message to a party that takes black Americans’ support for granted, fails to deliver real solutions and too often patronizes them”.

The CBC would likely have gotten far better economic policies backing Sanders; and, as Trump’s implosion has made clear, Sanders would have been a contender. Instead, the CBC backed Clinton too soon and now has to take whatever crumbs it gets from the Clinton trough as she wields America’s racist id incarnate like a cudgel as the only alternative. (And the CBC will get pushed away as Clinton welcomes Wall Street, warmongers and wealthy Republicans to pay for a place at that trough.)

You can critique Clinton and vote for a third party for any reason. American sovereignty lies in the individual, and our votes are never owed to anybody. However, Trump is shaping up as the Republican Walter Mondale, and could lose badly. At the same time, Clinton will still have very safe margins in large states that are not battlegrounds like New York and California. This means 2016 will be an especially safe year to vote dissent, because millions of people unhappy with Clinton in safely blue (or even safely red) states can vote for a third party without increasing Trump’s odds.

Finally, you can critique Clinton ... and still vote for Clinton. This is possible! I love my friends and family (and, on a good day, myself), but I am still very critical of all of us. Criticism doesn’t mean I don’t love us. Furthermore, politicians are not even our friends. As citizens, we should keep politicians working for our interests and our respect by critiquing them with a level of scrutiny the power we are entrusting them with demands.

© 2016 Guardian News and Media Limited

Steven W. Thrasher is columnist for the Guardian where he offers reported commentary on equality, social justice and more. Follow him on Twitter: @thrasherxy

CK 17
08-13-2016, 07:38 AM
I'm exercising option A. I sent a donation to Jill stein a couple of days ago. I want to see a much stronger Green Party challenge in 2020 if clinton doesn't fight for the things I think are important.

CWSmith
08-13-2016, 07:50 AM
The only effective way that I can think to critique Clinton and vote for her at the same time with any hope of having influence after the vote is to vote for more liberal congressmen and senators who will push her to the left. I have no problem with that.

TomF
08-13-2016, 07:56 AM
Thrasher does not make a convincing case for "any" progressive to vote for a 3rd party candidate for "any" reason. Sure, it is obviously Constitutional, but he dismisses the impact of "spoiler" votes without even engaging the topic. It would have been a very different start to the century had Al Gore not been impacted by Nader's campaign. And Nader's people would likely have approved of the difference.

In states where the vote is running close, the responsible option for protest voting evaporates, imo. Elsewhere, go to it.

CK 17
08-13-2016, 08:00 AM
Thrasher does not make a convincing case for "any" progressive to vote for a 3rd party candidate for "any" reason. Sure, it is obviously Constitutional, but he dismisses the impact of "spoiler" votes without even engaging the topic. It would have been a very different start to the century had Al Gore not been impacted by Nader's campaign. And Nader's people would likely have approved of the difference.

In states where the vote is running close, the responsible option for protest voting evaporates, imo. Elsewhere, go to it.
I don't get this spoiler vote bunk. If Clinton loses to trump and stein gets 1 vote, she's a spoiler? If Clinton loses to trump it's clintons fault and no one else's. No matter what state you live in, vote for the best candidate, not the one you think will win, even if some of their values over lap.

Peerie Maa
08-13-2016, 08:25 AM
I don't get this spoiler vote bunk. If Clinton loses to trump and stein gets 1 vote, she's a spoiler? If Clinton loses to trump it's clintons fault and no one else's. No matter what state you live in, vote for the best candidate, not the one you think will win, even if some of their values over lap.

One vote is a dumb exaggeration. Tactical or protest voting for a third party in a first past the post system can bring unintended consequences and cut your nose off to spite your face. It is not any one candidates fault for loosing if their grass roots base goes off and does something dumb.

Gerarddm
08-13-2016, 09:39 AM
#3 +1. She is exposed to pressure from Sanders and Warren. Drumpf is not. End of story.

PhaseLockedLoop
08-13-2016, 10:19 AM
I would never vote for a Republican for President. In my view, the contest was between Sanders and Clinton. There's a lot I don't care for in Sanders, but overall he represents my interests and values. Clinton emphatically does not. So I voted for Sanders for President. He lost. That's it for me, for this election. I voted.

I understand the lesser-evil argument, and I understand that reasonable people might accept it. People can vote, or not vote, for anyone they like, for any reason. I consider Clinton a force for evil in the world. If she can't beat a galactic jackass* like Trump, it's her fault, not mine.

*that's Matt Taibbi's entertaining and accurate expression.

SullivanB
08-13-2016, 10:40 AM
I don't get this spoiler vote bunk. If Clinton loses to trump and stein gets 1 vote, she's a spoiler? If Clinton loses to trump it's clintons fault and no one else's. No matter what state you live in, vote for the best candidate, not the one you think will win, even if some of their values over lap.

As you said, it's bunk. It's a standard Party tactic, used by the Repubs as much as the Dems, to keep the sheep in line. And it's a line also commonly resorted to by Clinton supporters here on the Forum, as they seek to hedge their bets on a candidate whose political baggage continues to pile higher each day. As the election draws closer, they're need for scapegoating will only increase. It'll be someone else's fault if Trump wins, and certainly not theirs, they'll continue to insist. Bunk, indeed. It's they who need to "man up" and accept the responsibility of their choice.

Think about it. The Democratic Party actually nominated a candidate that had already been rejected once for the presidency by Dem voters, a candidate whom they already knew was deemed untrustworthy by a solid majority of the nation's voters (and who still is), whose career has been consistently plagued with scandal (and still is), who at the time of the nomination was under investigation by federal authorities for possible crimes involved in handling/mishandling the nation's most sensitive and secret information (and who is reported to still be under investigation), who had a consistent record of making bad foreign policy decisions that have caused serious harm to this nation and others, and who is blatantly defiant in her corrupt relationships with Wall Street and other big money sources including foreign individuals and states.

And now, they actually have the nerve to tell progressives that, if Mrs. Clinton loses, it'll be the progressives' fault and not the fault of those nominating and supporting such a candidate. What they're serving up is a lie, plain and simple, the standard political smoke and mirrors intended to fool and/or scare voters into investing in their bad bet. Ironically, we see Donald Trump doing the very same thing right now, as he seeks to hedge his bet by insisting that, should he lose, it will be because the Dems cheated. A loss couldn't possibly be his own fault, he says as he looks for scapegoats. He tells those thinking about voting for others that their vote would be wasted, and that voting for the candidate one thinks would be best for the nation, instead of him, would only help elect that terrible Hillary Clinton. Sound familiar?

If Trump wins, the Democratic Party and Clinton's supporters will need only look in the closest mirror to see who's to blame, for it was they who insisted on her despite what they already knew. Win or lose, whatever comes with Clinton, they'll own it, lock, stock and barrel.

One other thing. That first sentence in the OP, that bit about progressives leaving Obama out to dry sounds like it might have been written by Frank Luntz. The record is quite clear that it was the other way around, that Obama left progressives behind. Despite all his progressive-baiting campaign rhetoric, he never respected them or gave a damn about them except when he needed their votes. What's amazing is just how long genuine progressives stayed with him as he continued to serve big money and big business at their expense.

PhaseLockedLoop
08-13-2016, 10:50 AM
Well said, SullivanB.

McMike
08-13-2016, 11:02 AM
As you said, it's bunk. It's a standard Party tactic, used by the Repubs as much as the Dems, to keep the sheep in line. And it's a line also commonly resorted to by Clinton supporters here on the Forum, as they seek to hedge their bets on a candidate whose political baggage continues to pile higher each day. As the election draws closer, they're need for scapegoating will only increase. It'll be someone else's fault if Trump wins, and certainly not theirs, they'll continue to insist. Bunk, indeed. It's they who need to "man up" and accept the responsibility of their choice.

Think about it. The Democratic Party actually nominated a candidate that had already been rejected once for the presidency by Dem voters, a candidate whom they already knew was deemed untrustworthy by a solid majority of the nation's voters (and who still is), whose career has been consistently plagued with scandal (and still is), who at the time of the nomination was under investigation by federal authorities for possible crimes involved in handling/mishandling the nation's most sensitive and secret information (and who is reported to still be under investigation), who had a consistent record of making bad foreign policy decisions that have caused serious harm to this nation and others, and who is blatantly defiant in her corrupt relationships with Wall Street and other big money sources including foreign individuals and states.

And now, they actually have the nerve to tell progressives that, if Mrs. Clinton loses, it'll be the progressives' fault and not the fault of those nominating and supporting such a candidate. What they're serving up is a lie, plain and simple, the standard political smoke and mirrors intended to fool and/or scare voters into investing in their bad bet. Ironically, we see Donald Trump doing the very same thing right now, as he seeks to hedge his bet by insisting that, should he lose, it will be because the Dems cheated. A loss couldn't possibly be his own fault, he says as he looks for scapegoats. He tells those thinking about voting for others that their vote would be wasted, and that voting for the candidate one thinks would be best for the nation, instead of him, would only help elect that terrible Hillary Clinton. Sound familiar?

If Trump wins, the Democratic Party and Clinton's supporters will need only look in the closest mirror to see who's to blame, for it was they who insisted on her despite what they already knew. Win or lose, whatever comes with Clinton, they'll own it, lock, stock and barrel.

One other thing. That first sentence in the OP, that bit about progressives leaving Obama out to dry sounds like it might have been written by Frank Luntz. The record is quite clear that it was the other way around, that Obama left progressives behind. Despite all his progressive-baiting campaign rhetoric, he never respected them or gave a damn about them except when he needed their votes. What's amazing is just how long genuine progressives stayed with him as he continued to serve big money and big business at their expense.

All true from my perspective, except, I can't see leaving it to chance for blind unwavering integrity. I'll vote for her this time. The game is not meant for us to win unless many more people are willing to fight to stop them, since most of the people in this country are inebriated, lulled into complacency by media, and allowed to be fed lies, the people will never win. As it's been designed.

L.W. Baxter
08-13-2016, 11:29 AM
With friends like these, who needs enemies?

Ian McColgin
08-13-2016, 11:59 AM
There’s so much coming from people too lazy or timid for the struggles of democratic self governance that we lose track of the many dynamic compromises that go into the process. This is especially apparent if we contrast the current adulation of Alexander Hamilton with the real guy - voice of banking and finance.

Our revolution worked and when our nation works (needed correction from The Gilded Age and needs the same correction now) because it allows for a balance of people democracy with capital democracy.

The latter is always better at getting what it wants because capital is more easily organized than people and because the vested interest - “more” - is more limited and readily set as a goal. The public interest is so diffuse as to be almost undefinable, despite St. Ralph’s best efforts to stick “public interest” into every acronym.

Progressives are the voice of the public interest often (take old struggles like the 8 hour work day or women’s suffrage or the abolition of slavery or equal protection under law) well ahead of the public’s actually taking up the public interest in any mass, popular or organized manner.

We can ally with and caucus with the non-ideological parties to some extent, often a shifting extent as, for example, the Republicans shifted from some progressive sense, if only for TR to save the rich from the consequences of their own greed, to the Democrats with FDR making the old alliance between urban workers and small farmers.

Right now and probably for the next generation or so, our impact is best focused on the Democrats, partly through politicians like Senators Warren and Wydon. But we must remember that it is about possible. To change a phrase, we can't let dreams of perfection keep us from the better, albeit not yet good enough.

TomF
08-13-2016, 09:58 PM
Look, I get the idealistic perspective. I think that I have voted for a candidate who won my own constituency exactly one time, ever.

But strategic voting is not bunk, it is risk management, and fairly basic math.

Had Gore been elected by just a few Nader voters actually realizing that Bush was the more awful alternative, Our world would look very different. I strongly doubt there would have been an Iraq war, and thus the destabilized Iraq and Syria... well, you get it.

Trump would not be Bush, he'd be a helluva lot worse. If you live in a swing state and it is close, think very carefully about what you are willing to risk, for all of us.

Ian McColgin
08-13-2016, 10:17 PM
Most here know I supported Sanders as long as he was in, always with the same proviso Sanders had: If Clinton is the nominee, I'm working for her and I expect to be joined by most other progressives in this, just as we will be joining to work on her when she's president.

Notwithstanding, I understand people voting for Jill Stein. I don't believe that "spoilers" matter compared to an honest and determined campaign on the issues that matter. Clinton must act firmly on the progressive agenda set in the platform. If she does not, the number of Republicans voting for her will not come close to the number of progressives she drives away.

It's her call.

It's also, of course, important that progressives not be like spoiled brats who take their vote and go home the first time they don't get it all their own way. Democratic self-governance is about compromise, accommodation, and self-discipline. It's not for children and not for totalitarian ideologues.

Sky Blue
08-13-2016, 10:37 PM
I'm a progressive working for her

No. One cannot support Mrs. Clinton and serve progressive values at the same time.

Ian McColgin
08-13-2016, 10:56 PM
Sky Blue, your writings have established that you've no standing to address authenticity whether conservative or progressive.

Ian McColgin
08-13-2016, 10:59 PM
An aside: My computer does not reveal a track back to the source of a claimed quote when it's captioned as it was in #16. Anyone know who wrote that line?

SullivanB
08-14-2016, 08:47 AM
Look, I get the idealistic perspective. I think that I have voted for a candidate who won my own constituency exactly one time, ever.

But strategic voting is not bunk, it is risk management, and fairly basic math.

Had Gore been elected by just a few Nader voters actually realizing that Bush was the more awful alternative, Our world would look very different. I strongly doubt there would have been an Iraq war, and thus the destabilized Iraq and Syria... well, you get it.

Trump would not be Bush, he'd be a helluva lot worse. If you live in a swing state and it is close, think very carefully about what you are willing to risk, for all of us.

Presumably, you're suggesting that not voting for HRC and/or voting for Stein/the Greens is "idealistic" and, by definition, an unrealistic and wasted vote. That's just more of the same bs the political parties have tossed out since they've existed to keep voters from actually thinking for themselves.

Without commenting on whether voting idealistically is a good or bad idea, rejecting what HRC and her party have come to represent, and working in support of a political party that would actually represent in government the interests of those being left behind by the Dem and the Repubs is hardly "pie in the sky" idealism. Indeed, it's infinitely more realistic, more practical, more logical, more intelligent than "wasting" one more vote, one more dollar, and one more moment on a candidate and a political party that does not and absolutely refuses to genuinely represent the interests of the "just plain folks" of us. That's today's Democratic Party. It's the clear lesson to be learned from this Obama administration and the Party's conduct leading up to and during its 2016 presidential campaign.

I'll say it another way. It simply could not be more obvious, at least to anyone with two or more functioning brain cells, that Mrs. Clinton and her Democratic Party (more aptly named the DemoClinton Party) is thoroughly and irreparably corrupted by the influence of big money donors, that their primary focus is representing the interests of Wall Street, the other big corporations and the billionaires, and that they are not and will never again be "the party of the people" the Party once was.

Once one is prepared to acknowledge this truth (seems to be the hard part for so many), then it's just as clear that continuing to invest in and vote for the Democratic Party is an exercise in futility and a vote against one's own interests. Ironically, Dems repeatedly criticize the voters on the right for their capacity to vote against their owns best interests, yet so may supporting the Dems do exactly the same thing as they continue supporting a party that, for decades now, has been leaving them behind as it supports its real constituents, their big money donors.

You mention the concept of "strategic voting" as if a "real" strategic vote must be for the Clintons. That's ridiculous. At least for progressives, especially those who've been left behind and are worried about their kids and others they care about being left even farther behind with each election cycle, voting for the Clintons is just about the dumbest thing they could do. Talk about voting against one's own best interests.

From the perspective of strategy, the only logical, rational vote is to support and vote for the only party that would represent progressives' interests in Washington and our other seats of government. Failing to do that, continuing to support the Dems when we know exactly what they've become and that they offer no real hope for genuinely progressive government, only guarantees that one will fall farther and farther behind, with their children having to start from an even deeper hole. That's anything but strategic and realistic voting. It's the classic example of voting against one's own interests.

Peerie Maa
08-14-2016, 08:58 AM
An aside: My computer does not reveal a track back to the source of a claimed quote when it's captioned as it was in #16. Anyone know who wrote that line?

SB. I believe he cut and edited your post #15. Misquoted you in effect.

Gerarddm
08-14-2016, 09:00 AM
SullivanB, I respectfully disagree. Whatever Clinton's failings are, she is subject to pressure from the Sanders/Warren wing, which is growing. I am not interested in tilting at windmills. I am interested in pushing the progressive agenda forward. It will be incremental, sure, but so what, this is a compromise-filled democracy. Look at the Democratic platform, a rather remarkable effort of compromise that nevertheless pushes the Democrats closer to the angels.

Incidentally, I agree with the earlier observation that Obama left the progressives, not the other way around. He had a mandate in 2008 and basically blew it.

George Jung
08-14-2016, 09:03 AM
Sky Blue, your writings have established that you've no standing to address authenticity whether conservative or progressive.
Amen. As for our idealists, your petulance is palpable, and may yet get us Trump. Guess that'll show 'em.

Ian McColgin
08-14-2016, 09:03 AM
Were one to be serious about reforming our electoral process to limit the dictatorial power of capital, one would work to ensure two things:

Elect a president who will appoint Supreme Court judges who reject the special personhood of corporations that invests in them human rights without human responsibilities; and

Elect a congress that will actually vote financial and corporate reform.

Jill Stein has the platitudes. Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton (sometimes a bit reluctantly depending on the issue), and some others are actually at the front.

I'm remembering that even a majority does not get you dictatorship unless you want to go the way of Egypt and now Turkey. Democratic self-governance is indeed, like sausage making, at times a bit disgusting. Grow up and join in.

Sky Blue
08-14-2016, 09:12 AM
SB. I believe he cut and edited your post #15. Misquoted you in effect.

Yeah? What, exactly did I cut and paste? Whose name did I attach to the quote?

Take a break.

CPF
08-14-2016, 09:14 AM
No. One cannot support Mrs. Clinton and serve progressive values at the same time.

Oh, bullsh!t.

If I may, I would offer a suggestion, nay a request, to CK17, SullivanB, PhaseLockedLoop, and any others who are considering letting their aversion to Mrs. Clinton take precedence in this election. Please, for all our sakes, this is not a popularity contest; forget your reactions to the personalities, and spend a little time imagining the world with a President Trump, and then with a President Clinton. What would he do; what would his validated followers do? Ditto for her. What would their respective court appointees do? What would they do to the system of restraints that keeps this country on an even keel? Whose fault anything is, whose personality is what, are unimportant save as they bear on the future of the country and the world. Let your imagination run wild, but be honest. Would he/she really do that, or is it just an expression of your personal aversion to the candidate? What we will be voting for in November is the choice between those futures. Surely it's worth spending a couple of hours constructing them fully in our imaginations.

Best,
Chris

P.S. If that sounds patronizing, it's not meant to. Nobody votes, I hope, without doing a lot of the above. Only I see a lot of posts that seem to stray far afield into personalities, and I think it's vital that we be more pragmatic, this time around.

Peerie Maa
08-14-2016, 09:15 AM
Yeah? What, exactly did I cut and paste? Whose name did I attach to the quote?

Take a break.

I was talking to Ian.

If it was not a quote of someone, why put it in quotes?

Can't answer that can you? Huh?

Sky Blue
08-14-2016, 09:17 AM
progressives who don't vote for Hillary need to grow up by compromising their progressive values

Again, not a terribly progressive viewpoint. There are many loud Forumites calling themselves progressive down here, but if they vote for Hillary, it simply cannot be said that to do so serves progressive values.

McMike
08-14-2016, 09:20 AM
Again, not a terribly progressive viewpoint. There are many loud Forumites calling themselves progressive down here, but if they vote for Hillary, it simply cannot be said that to do so serves progressive values.


No, I dont

Clearly you don't serve progressive values; why would you think your twisted perspective or malformed judgement matters on the subject?

No, it doesn't.

Sky Blue
08-14-2016, 09:25 AM
I was talking to Ian.

If it was not a quote of someone, why put it in quotes?

Can't answer that can you? Huh?

Save your credibility, Nick. Take a break.

George Jung
08-14-2016, 09:26 AM
Our rip apologist is fighting for your votes, 'progressives'. Flailing but hopeful! Don't let her down!

Peerie Maa
08-14-2016, 09:26 AM
As I thought, you can't explain your self.

Carry on.

ccmanuals
08-14-2016, 09:35 AM
Again, not a terribly progressive viewpoint. There are many loud Forumites calling themselves progressive down here, but if they vote for Hillary, it simply cannot be said that to do so serves progressive values.

It sounds like you are suggesting progressives should vote for Trump or stay home because their candidate, Hillary, is not pure enough.

If that is what you are saying then you actually have no clue as to how liberal democrats think.

TomF
08-14-2016, 09:43 AM
I cannot begin to see how progressives' key issues would be advanced by a Trump presidency. I agree, actually, that most such issues would also not be advanced by a Clinton presidency, but they would likely have a status quo effect.

Trump would not bring status quo on your issues. It is far more likely that they would regress, and regress badly and explosively. If the objective is, as was said some months ago, to toss a lighter behind you while walking out the door because it is better to rebuild from nothing than to try to save the existing structure, well, that is a choice. Trump - and a vote which does not actively prevent his presidency - will take you towards that.

Jim Mahan
08-14-2016, 09:55 AM
Oh, bullsh!t.

If I may, I would offer a suggestion, nay a request, to CK17, SullivanB, PhaseLockedLoop, and any others who are considering letting their aversion to Mrs. Clinton take precedence in this election. Please, for all our sakes, this is not a popularity contest; forget your reactions to the personalities, and spend a little time imagining the world with a President Trump, and then with a President Clinton. What would he do; what would his validated followers do? Ditto for her. What would their respective court appointees do? What would they do to the system of restraints that keeps this country on an even keel? Whose fault anything is, whose personality is what, are unimportant save as they bear on the future of the country and the world. Let your imagination run wild, but be honest. Would he/she really do that, or is it just an expression of your personal aversion to the candidate? What we will be voting for in November is the choice between those futures. Surely it's worth spending a couple of hours constructing them fully in our imaginations.

Best,
Chris

P.S. If that sounds patronizing, it's not meant to. Nobody votes, I hope, without doing a lot of the above. Only I see a lot of posts that seem to stray far afield into personalities, and I think it's vital that we be more pragmatic, this time around.

Hear, hear.

Ian McColgin
08-14-2016, 10:01 AM
I see. Like Trump Sky Blue fabricates something to look like a quote but then hides in his aw shucks deniability. What a petty coward.

Despite Sky Blue's utter contempt for honest dialog, when I quote him I will continue to do it by C&P with the post number in brackets. I don't know how to do the blue thing anyway.

Like: "but if they vote for Hillary, it simply cannot be said that to do so serves progressive values." [#27]

All mature value systems have at some point conflicting values. The value conflicts are resolved by both one's hierarchy of values and by one's mode of reasoning. For example: We value free assembly. We value law and order. Sometimes we might value drawing attention to our point by using an "arrest strategy" such as chaining ourselves to the Harrisburg PA courthouse back then.

For this progressive, indeed for most progressive and liberals and those authentic conservatives but not "righties" as they are today, about the deepest value in the social/political universe is "democratic self-governance". That means that when we win we don't do an Egypt because majority rule does not mean majority tyranny. And when we lose, we don't default into utter negativity as the Republicans have done for the last over seven years, much less default into violence as Trump with full deniability of cowardice has called for.

An important realization one must come to in any representative democracy is that even the rep or political leader you most like and agree with is a different person from oneself and will on something vote another way. Only totalitarians make their rather pointless judgements on a basis of ideological or political purity. We are, after all, human and we all use one hand or the other to wipe our own butts.

Some progressives will vote for Jill Stein in the belief that such a vote will strengthen progressive influence in congress and with a Clinton presidency. Other progressives will vote for Clinton with similar expectation plus perhaps a greater urgency to block Trump. The claim by one sort of progressive or the other to be "more authentic" at least has the value that it can be true of the choice for that claimant, especially if he or she does not also claim that another progressive coming to the other decision is less authentic. There will be some who don't rise to that level of mutual respect but in fact most do.

People who are not even remotely progressive and whose words indicate that they are immune from making an authentic or honest choice about any candidate anywhere really have no credibility in their casually flung falsehoods.

Dave Wright
08-14-2016, 10:05 AM
A Green has something to say to SullivanB:

Peter Singer is Professor of Bioethics at Princeton University and Laureate Professor at the University of Melbourne.


https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/jill-stein-should-withdraw-battleground-states-by-peter-singer-2016-08?utm_source=Project+Syndicate+Newsletter&utm_campaign=3e022f355c-Rogoff_Americas_Looming_Debt_Decision_14_8_2016&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_73bad5b7d8-3e022f355c-104296697

Sky Blue
08-14-2016, 10:05 AM
It sounds like you are suggesting progressives should vote for Trump or stay home because their candidate, Hillary, is not pure enough.


There are several persons here who have quietly indicated that they'll be voting for Jill Stein. I have the deepest respect for these people. Their political integrity is self-evident and they recognize that accompanying their consent to power is the idea that their vote is an act of free expression, their "voice" if you will. It will be heard. Inasmuch as that is true, they won't need to take any responsibility for the regressions no doubt to come while also affirming the coalitions they want to see built. These are the people that are at the foundation of any positive changes that may be forthcoming in the coming years for progressives. Those voting for Hillary Clinton? I don't think so.

Pie-in-the-sky as it may be, their example challenges some on the other side to have a long look at Gary Johnson and maybe send him a few bucks to see him get into the debates. Because, diversity.

Sky Blue
08-14-2016, 10:11 AM
I see. Like Trump Sky Blue fabricates something to look like a quote but then hides in his aw shucks deniability. What a petty coward.

Stop whining, Ian. This is really beyond the pale for you, and intellectually negligent. Think of what you and Nick are silly enough to argue here. I've done something wrong because I didn't put your name on something you didn't write. Do you actually even listen to yourself?

Ian, I can take your ideas, concepts and beliefs, especially when they are representative of commonly-held views or current argument, and raise them to larger discussion without a direct quote attribution if I'm not quoting you directly.

Grow up.

SullivanB
08-14-2016, 11:32 AM
SullivanB, I respectfully disagree. Whatever Clinton's failings are, she is subject to pressure from the Sanders/Warren wing, which is growing. I am not interested in tilting at windmills. I am interested in pushing the progressive agenda forward. It will be incremental, sure, but so what, this is a compromise-filled democracy. Look at the Democratic platform, a rather remarkable effort of compromise that nevertheless pushes the Democrats closer to the angels.

Incidentally, I agree with the earlier observation that Obama left the progressives, not the other way around. He had a mandate in 2008 and basically blew it.

In general, I agree with your suggestion that she'll advance the status quo though I'm convinced she'll accelerate current policies and practices in at least a couple of areas and make things notably worse.

For example, she'll very likely expand the nation's military involvement in Syria and other parts of the region. And she'll march hand in hand with Netanyahu's right wing government in Israel. Any momentum Obama had established towards extrication from that quagmire and any headway he made in standing up to the militaristic Israeli lobby here at home will be reversed. These are just examples of the enhanced potential for military misadventure that comes with a Clinton presidency. The suggestion that Mrs. Clinton resorts too quickly to military force and is prone to repeating even her big mistakes in foreign policy is not theory. It's fact, well established by her dismal record , not to mention her continuing and bellicose saber rattling.

All that goes well beyond the status quo. She's also likely to cut Wall Street and the big internationals even more slack than has the Obama administration, and that'll only set the 99% back further. A Clinton presidency increases the likelihood of another financial crisis coming on the heals of the last one, at a time when the 99% still struggles to recover from the financial crisis largely caused by Bill Clinton and the very same policies she'll favor. That's another policy area where she'll actually prove to be notably worse than Obama.

To me, your suggestion that Mrs. Clinton and her party are going to be meaningfully pressured by Senators Warren and Sanders is based more on hope and not so much on the facts. Once in office, Clinton and the Party's elite are good to go for four years, having already well demonstrated that (1) they don't respect Sanders or, for that matter, Warren and (2) that they'll do just about anything to make sure that the "establishment wing" of the Party stays in control. There's little reason to expect that Sanders and Warren are going to turn the Party around, in terms of big money influencing Party policy and in terms of its steady movement to the right. It's clear to me that it ain't gonna happen.

Folks invested in the Clinton candidacy, whatever their motivation, say that rejecting what the Dems are offering and supporting a third party is "pie in the sky" stuff. I'd say placing hope in routing the corruption from this party and having it genuinely embrace progressive policies, in the face of the Party's record, is the real pie in the sky. What we got from Obama, especially in the light of his campaign promises, and the underhanded way in which the Dems have conducted this 2016 presidential campaign, clearly tell us that the Party is not interested in becoming the party of the people, and that it'll do whatever is necessary to make sure it doesn't happen. It's the hope of turning this party around that's the "tilting at windmills".

And there's this thing about biding one's time, supporting Clinton and sticking with the Party at least until the danger of Trump is behind us. I guess we're to think that once this election is over and the threat of a Trump presidency has passed, the Republicans will conveniently come to their senses and join the world of reasonable politicians, and they'll put up someone minimally reasonable next time.

It behooves us to remember that there were even less attractive candidates in the clown car than Trump this time around. Brother Cruz, for example, would likely be a far worse president than Trump. There's absolutely no reason to assume that, next time around or the next or the next, that the Repubs will put up a candidate whom we can expect to be at least minimally responsible in the position. There's little reason to assume or expect that of the Republicans. In the meantime, the momentum for the Green Party, however great or small, would be wasted on voting for a party many progressives believe is irredeemable.

Ian McColgin
08-14-2016, 11:33 AM
Aw shucks, if it's all to "raise them to larger discussion" [#38] I feel so ennobled.

TomF
08-14-2016, 12:28 PM
If that is so, Sully, is the answer for people who live in swing states to cast votes in ways which facilitate a Trump win?

Stein is not going to become president. Voting for Stein in a state which is evenly split between Trump and Clinton supporters assists Trump, whatever the voter's own motivation.

This is why our friend SB is emboldening "real progressives " to vote with their hearts. You are being manipulated by people who are not interested in your actual ideals.

Sky Blue
08-14-2016, 12:39 PM
You are being manipulated by people who are not interested in your actual ideals.

Yes, primarily by the DNC, as the hackers have proven. When will you become tired of being lied to? Haven't you watched the news about what the party has done to progressives? And those who object are being manipulated? Delusional.

Nothing in Mrs. Clinton's record indicates a substantive commitment to progressive values, as SullivanB has so appropriately showed. So-called progressives that vote for her are either virtue-signaling establishmentarians or they may actually have been manipulated, but that manipulation comes from the DNC and the Clintons. Bernie Sanders had a popular campaign for a reason. That reason is that Mrs. Clinton is not a progressive.

Peerie Maa
08-14-2016, 12:47 PM
Yes, primarily by the DNC, as the hackers have proven. When will you become tired of being lied to? Haven't you watched the news about what the party has done to progressives? And those who object are being manipulated? Delusional.

Nothing in Mrs. Clinton's record indicates a substantive commitment to progressive values, as SullivanB has so appropriately showed. So-called progressives that vote for her are either virtue-signaling establishmentarians or they may actually have been manipulated, but that manipulation comes from the DNC and the Clintons. Bernie Sanders had a popular campaign for a reason. That reason is that Mrs. Clinton is not a progressive.
She is till a better bet than that manipulative incompetent Trump. The US will lose all credibility if he becomes POTUS. Him trying to be statesmen like when meeting other heads of state is a joke.
I am surprised that you can give your support to someone who obviously holds you in such contempt.

Sky Blue
08-14-2016, 01:07 PM
Vote for Hillary if you must, but let us dispense with the fiction that doing so is in any manner in furtherance of progressive causes. It isn't.

McMike
08-14-2016, 01:10 PM
Vote for Hillary if you must, but let us dispense with the fiction that doing so is in any manner in furtherance of progressive causes. It isn't.

It does, actually. The cause being that we don't allow a regressive like Trump to take office. So yeah, you're wrong again . . . but you were so sure you had it right this time. I think your new nickname is Wile E. Coyote.

SullivanB
08-14-2016, 01:13 PM
If that is so, Sully, is the answer for people who live in swing states to cast votes in ways which facilitate a Trump win?

Stein is not going to become president. Voting for Stein in a state which is evenly split between Trump and Clinton supporters assists Trump, whatever the voter's own motivation.

This is why our friend SB is emboldening "real progressives " to vote with their hearts. You are being manipulated by people who are not interested in your actual ideals.

Well, they'll have to decide that for themselves, though I'd say their best option would be to support the political party and candidate they believe will genuinely represent them and theirs. Should they choose to vote for Stein or Johnson, they can do so knowing that a Clinton loss will have been the direct result of the Democratic Party establishment's insistence on putting up a candidate so thoroughly flawed (see my partial list of the more serious deficiencies in post #9). If Clinton loses, we can all thank Bill Clinton and the rest of the Party machine for their arrogance and gross negligence in the face of clear and exhaustive evidence that Mrs. Clinton was and is a terribly flawed candidate.

Tom, has it occurred to you that maybe Mr. Blue's expressed interest advancing diversity and fair play and progressive values is genuine. Perhaps he's had a true epiphany. Isn't he entitled to the benefit of the doubt, here? I still remember how shocked I was as a new member, how quickly and unfairly folks here rushed to judgment, when that poor soul Memphis Mike opened his heart to us, sharing with us the news of his personal epiphany or metamorphosis or whatever the hell one might call it. Surely, we don't want to make that mistake again. Let's give SB a chance. More importantly, do you actually believe that SB's posts, as entertaining as they are, are motivating anyone to vote in any specific way?

L.W. Baxter
08-14-2016, 01:13 PM
...but let us dispense with the fiction that doing so is in any manner in furtherance...

Hey, thanks for all the published content, Bluey. Your credentials are impeccable.

George Jung
08-14-2016, 01:17 PM
By all evidence, sully is no more the progressive than is blooey. Hmmmm

Gerarddm
08-14-2016, 04:13 PM
To me, your suggestion that Mrs. Clinton and her party are going to be meaningfully pressured by Senators Warren and Sanders is based more on hope and not so much on the facts. Once in office, Clinton and the Party's elite are good to go for four years, having already well demonstrated that (1) they don't respect Sanders or, for that matter, Warren and (2) that they'll do just about anything to make sure that the "establishment wing" of the Party stays in control. There's little reason to expect that Sanders and Warren are going to turn the Party around, in terms of big money influencing Party policy and in terms of its steady movement to the right. It's clear to me that it ain't gonna happen.


Well, it's clear to me that it can, viz the head of Debbie Wasserman Schultz, for one. She is a long time pal of the Clintons, yet Bernie dug in his heels and poof she is gone ( in the wake of the email dump, true, but nevertheless...).

The Clintons are political animals, and " don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows ". Example: when it became apparent that Bernie was mounting a serious challenge to her, she shifted ( inartfully, but shifted ) her stance on TPP to shore up the left side of the base. If progressives start winning down ballot races, she is no dummy, she will take note. Obama calls her whip smart, after all. The Democratic establishment has been able to get away with stuff because the base has been co-opted or supine; but a growing percentage won't be. As I said in an earlier thread, if she reverts back to mid-90s triangulation, she will get primaried in 2020. Destiny is demographics.

oznabrag
08-14-2016, 04:20 PM
It does, actually. The cause being that we don't allow a regressive like Trump to take office. So yeah, you're wrong again . . . but you were so sure you had it right this time. I think your new nickname is Wile E. Coyote.

I can run with that.

TomF
08-14-2016, 05:00 PM
By all evidence, sully is no more the progressive than is blooey. Hmmmmprogressive is as progressive does. If the net impact of one's prescribed voting behaviour is a retreat from existing progressive positions, one is hardly an effective politico. However your ballot looks.