Sunday, October 25, 2015

On Hillary Clinton Saying (During the Democratic Debate) That She is "A Progressive That Likes To Get Things Done"

When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time ~ Maya Angelou (4/4/1928 to 5/28/2014) an American author, poet, dancer, actress, and singer.

Note: This commentary concerns the 1st Democratic Party presidential debate, which was held on 10/13/2015 in Las Vegas NV at the Wynn, a luxury resort and casino owned by self-described "job creator" Steve Wynn. This would be the whiner who bitched about the Obama administration painting a "bulls-eye" on his back by promoting "class warfare" (a slight increase in taxes on the wealthy by returning to the Clinton-era rates) prior to Obama's election to a 2nd term.

Hillary, when asked by Anderson Cooper if she identifies as a Progressive, said she does. This is an example of Hillary "casting herself as a liberal fighter who has been progressive for her entire life". (Something a CNN article says her campaign is doing). However (the CNN article goes on), "to many on the left, those lines never really rang true".

To which I say yes, Hillary claiming to be a Progressive does not ring true for me. First of all, as Anderson points out, Hillary just recently said "you know, I get accused of being kind of moderate and center [to which] I plead guilty" (at a Women for Hillary event in Ohio on 9/10/2015). I think that statement represents the truth of where Hillary stands politically. She is not a Progressive, but claiming to be one because that is what Democratic presidents of late do... they run to the Left but move to the Center (Right) after they're elected. Bill Clinton did it and so did Barack Obama.

I'd like to believe Hillary on this, but, given the fact that she JUST identified as a Moderate, I can't. Does this fit in with the Right's "untrustworthy" narrative? No. They're referring to bogus "scandals" regarding her email (SWTD #313) and the phony-baloney never-ending House "investigation" into Benghazi. This would be the "investigation" that CA Rep. Kevin McCarthy recently admitted was a politically-motivated waste-of-taxpayer-money effort to damage her presidential campaign.

So, while I recgonize that these bogus scandals are no reason to find HRC "untrustable" (the palinism used by the former potential Boner replacement), I don't trust HRC to act as a "liberal fighter". Unless by "act" you mean to play a part. For example, she says that now she's opposed to the extremely bad trade deal being pushed by the Obama administration known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). But, while serving as Obama's secretary of state, she referred to it the "gold standard" (as well as exciting, innovative, groundbreaking... and numerous other superlatives).

When AC360 brought this up Hillary's response was that she had hoped it would be the gold standard, but now she has concluded that it isn't. Not a biggie, perhaps. Even though PolitiFact concludes that Hillary revising her past statements on the TPP is "half true" because "her previous remarks actually gave the impression that she had confidence in the deal as it stood". However, as a member of the Obama administration, she couldn't very well come out against it. Surely it would be awkward if she had publicly contradicted an administration she was a part of?

The important thing is that she is against it now, right? Except... is she? Remember when Obama was running for office he said "we should use the hammer of a potential opt-out as leverage to ensure that we actually get labor and environmental standards that are enforced". And, according to PolitiFact, Sherrod Brown was "absolutely confident Barack Obama [would] reopen the negotiations on NAFTA" because the administration "assured [Brown that] his [Obama's] position is constant". But did Obama do squat in regards to NAFTA after getting elected?

Not only did Obama renig on his promise to renegotiate NAFTA after his election, he "warned... against a strong impulse toward protectionism" and then BSed the American people, saying he was still "serious about changing NAFTA". Now, in the final days of his administration, he pushing another negotiated-by-and-for-the-plutocrats job-destroying (bad) trade deal? He does this as he's leaving because he won't have to face the voters to answer for his trade treachery.

But, given Obama's campaign fictions regarding renegotiating NAFTA, nobody should be overly surprised he's pushing the job-killing TPP. He is, after all, a self described Blue dog Moderate Democrat. None-the-less, I must say that I am incredibly disappointed. Which isn't to say that I regret my vote, as he absolutely was a better choice than McCain or Romney.

Both of these losing potus candidates, being members of the more-plutocrat-friendly party, support exterminating American jobs via "free trade". In fact, regarding the TPP, McCain says to would be "crazy" to "squander a historic opportunity" to send American jobs to low wage countries, while Romney says expatriating US jobs so the plutocrats can become even richer is "good for America".

But polls show that, while "Americans tend to support trade, they oppose an expansion of status quo trade policies". The status quo being trade agreements (like NAFTA) that destroy American jobs. Although Americans knew NAFTA would cost American jobs back when Hillary's husband ran for president, which is why he said "American companies must act like American companies again, exporting products, not jobs" when he accepted the nomination.

Then, after his election, WJC, in a betrayal of one of his New Convenant promises, signed NAFTA (on 1/1/1994) and, as a result, American citizens heard the "giant sucking sound of American companies fleeing the United States for Mexico, where employees would work for less pay and without benefits".

This was exactly what Ross Perot warned us about. Americans knew that Perot, who ran on this SINGLE topic was right, which is why he received 18.81 percent of the popular vote, "the most won by a third-party presidential candidate since Theodore Roosevelt in 1912". (And Perot, had he had not dropped out of the race and later re-entered it, might have ended up with an even higher percentage).

"Will you say anything to get elected" the Coop asked HRC in regards to her flip-flop on the TPP (in addition to other positions she has "evolved" on... see video below). Hillary said no. But was she being completely honest or simply giving her sales pitch... one designed solely to sell her as president?

Three words help explain why Hillary Clinton now opposes the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade accord - after once laying the groundwork for it as secretary... Her newfound opposition... protects her left flank against Bernie Sanders' challenge; it helps her solidify her support with organized labor... It's also consistent with modern Democratic politics: In the 2008 Democratic primaries, both Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton railed against NAFTA and free trade accords.

But after winning the Democratic nomination, Obama warmed up to free trade... he's now made this TPP trade accord a chief goal in his final months in the White House. So it wouldn't be surprising if Clinton makes a similar move back to the middle if she wins the nomination next year. (Hillary Clinton Protects Left Flank With TPP Opposition by Mark Murray. NBC News 10/7/2015).

While I'd welcome a genuine change of position (re the TPP) and identification (Moderate to Progressive) from HRC, I frankly do not believe her reversal is genuine. It might be, and if she is the nominee I will vote for her and hope that she does not move to the center, but why take that chance when the possibility that we might get snookered again is a strong (IMO) possibility? Why not vote for the true Progressive in the Primary and make Bernie Sanders our nominee?

Bernie Sanders, the founder of the Progressive caucus, is a lifelong Progressive with a proven track record. He does not need to move to the Left for the election because he's always been to the Left. Which, IMO, is what America desperately needs... a genuine Progressive in the White House. This is what America wants, as WJC and BHO lying about their positions on free trade during their respective campaigns proves. They were saying what they needed to in order to get elected, that is. I'm not saying they did not believe what they were saying at the time.

But, that both of our previous Democratic presidents moved to the Left during their campaigns, is proof that America wants a genuine Progressive as their next president. And the ONLY genuine proven Progressive is Bernie Sanders, which is why I'm supporting him for president. At least until HRC defeats him in the primary. Which, if this happens, will mean that the American people bought her sales pitch. It will mean they listened to the naysayers who don't believe that a Democratic Socialist can win the general. But I think that he can, because he's the president America needs. And if enough Democrats realize and vote for him in the primary - he will win in the general.

BTW, in regards to Steve Wynn, US News & World Report notes that he "leans Republican but calls Democratic debate hosting a point of pride". So what's going on here? Does Wynn's pride stem from the fact that he can curry favor with both sides? Is this an indication that he'd be OK with HRC being elected the next potus? I think the answer to this question is YES, and is yet another reason why Democrats should be voting for Bernie.

Video: Hillary Clinton says she is a "progressive who likes to get things done"... but does she mean that she's a progressive (only while running for the Democratic nomination) and that what she'd like to "get done" is getting elected potus #45? (transcript).

SWTD #315

Friday, October 23, 2015

Thom Hartmann on Fox So-Called News (AKA Fox Nooz) In The Context Of HRC's 10/22/2015 Benghazi Questioning

A continual circulation of lies among those who are not much in the way of hearing them contradicted, will in time pass for truth; and the crime lies not in the believer but the inventor ~ Thomas Paine (2/9/1737 to 6/8/1809) as quoted in The American Crisis (1776-1783).

The following is an excerpt from the Thom Hartmann Radio Program, 10/23/2015, which I edited for brevity and clarity. Thom discusses the Fox "news" coverage of Hillary Clinton's testimony before the House sham Benghazi "investigation" committee.

Thom: Fox News cut away from the hearings once it became obvious that Hillary Clinton was owning these guys. Instead they went to just playing the clips in which Republicans would lay out a fantasy scenario and then Hillary Clinton would say - no, that's not true, that didn't happen. But they didn't include Hillary's response.

This is what Fox so-called news does. They are not a news channel. They are the official media arm of the Republican Party. This is how it was proposed to Richard Nixon by Roger Ailes to back in the 70s, and that's what it is. And it's obscene that they're allowed to call themselves NEWS.

[End Thom Hartmann Rant]

From Media Matters...

Washington Post opinion writer Erik Wemple noted that while Fox News has often heavily covered the 2012 Benghazi attacks, "the Benghazi network", as he called it, abandoned live coverage of Hillary Clinton's testimony before the House Select Committee this evening in favor of general political commentary on The Five.

Wemple described Fox's decision as "conceding that today's marathon congressional hearing on the topic is going nowhere". (Wash. Post's Wemple: Fox "All But Acknowledges The Benghazi Hearing Is A Snooze" by the Media Matters Staff. 10/22/2015).

Going nowhere in regards to furthering their Benghazi narrative, that is. The narrative being that Hillary Clinton issued a stand down order and is therefore personally responsible for the deaths of Chris Stevens, Sean Smith, Tyrone S. Woods and Glen Doherty. In fact, it is virtually the same as if she had murdered them herself. Making these yet more murders Hillary is responsible for. Previous murders including that of Vince Foster (in addition to the dozens of other people Hillary and her husband bumped off)!

Obviously Benghazi disqualifies Hillary from being president. Because 4 Americans died and she was Secretary of State. Even though, as Hillary pointed out, attacks on diplomatic outposts have occurred under Republican administrations, and Democrats responded by working with Repubs to try to fix the problem. As opposed to "investigating" to, as the House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy put it, damage HRC politically.

Kevin McCarthy: Everybody thought Hillary Clinton was unbeatable, right? But we put together a Benghazi special committee, a select committee. What are her numbers today? Her numbers are dropping. Why? Because she's untrustable. But no one would have known any of that had happened, had we not fought. (Source: The Washington Post 9/30/2015).

And where did Kevin McCarthy accidentally utter this truism? Why, it was on Sean Hannity's program! This is a prime example of why, even though Fox may do some actual news (with it's defenders citing Shepard Smith, among others), their main agenda is to act as the official media arm of the Republican Party.

While msnbc, the other channel on which political opinion can be found, has recently decided to move to the Right (SWTD #305). According to Talker's Magazine, NBC News Chief Andrew Lack "plans to rebuild MSNBC to focus on breaking news coverage and to be less of a left-leaning talk outlet"... so I don't think a similar accusation can be made against them. At least not any longer. Not that I think they have BEEN a mouthpiece for the Democratic Party.

Fox, on the other hand, CLEARLY is. Which is why I've referred to them in the past as Fox Nooz (DSB #12). And why I will continue to do so. It's because there are not "two so similar nooz channels"... despite what dissemblers on the Right (who attempt to present themselves as "consistent and non-partisan") may claim.

SWTD #314