Tuesday, November 1, 2016

The Clintons Treat Jill Stein Beastly

Having bitch-slapped Bernie, emasculated Marty, and put themselves in a position to watch the Donald hang himself with his own rope, the Clintons are now dealing with another e-mail controversy that involved newly discovered e-mails about the e-mail issue, found on a laptop shared by Hillary aide Huma Abedin and her estranged and strange husband Anthony Weiner.  On top of that, the FBI, as I've been led to understand, had tried to get a search warrant for Wiener's electronic devices without success but decided to push ahead anyway, suggesting that either FBI director James Comey is trying to influence the outcome of the election or Attorney General Loretta Lynch is trying to keep damning information from hurting the Democratic ticket.  With the campaign entering the home stretch, and with Hillary Clinton to win, the Clinton campaign has been counting on trying to run out the clock before anyone else or anything else trips them up.
And even before the latest e-mail issue broke, the Clintons were already working to make sure that Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein doesn't trip them up.
A recent piece in the Daily Beast by Yashar Ali unmasked Dr. Stein, just before Halloween, as a hypocrite because she and her husband, Richard Rohrer, have investments in mutual funds that in turn are invested in oil companies and big pharmaceutical corporations.  Well, there's just one thing wrong with that - the investments that Rohrer and Dr. Stein are retirement accounts, which as many as fifty million Americans, including teachers, police officers, tradesmen, or anyone who works for a company whose benefits include 401ks or IRAs, have.  These Americans are saving money for their retirements, and sometimes the mutual funds that the accounts are tied to are invested in big companies.  There's little if anything that the people with such accounts can do about that.  One would have to wonder why Ali sees this as big deal, until one notices that Hillary Clinton's daughter Chelsea is on the board of directors of the the Daily Beast's parent company.
What a devoted daughter Chelsea is.
So why shouldn't Dr Stein be considered a hypocrite because of her investments?  Well, let's look at comparison Dr. Stein herself has cited. Fox News has sneered at environmental activists who work to combat climate change yet drive cars.  Yeah, well, in America it's pretty hard to get around without a car, because public transportation in this country has been all but decimated.  And yes, I myself am a big Volkswagen enthusiast who supports public transit.  So what?  I've never been against cars, I just think we Americans rely too much on them.  If I could take a light-rail line to get somewhere, and if it had frequent reliable service, I would take it, because even people who love cars don't want to rely on their cars all the time and want to save wear and tear on them.  But just as we have to use less energy-efficient means of transportation because better alternatives don't exist - while we work to bring those better alternatives into existence - we also have to deal with economic reality as it is before we can change that reality.  Or as Dr. Stein explains, "The Daily Beast is suggesting that participating in the American economy is incompatible with working to change it . . ..  Unfortunately, to change public policy, one must participate in the economy enough to generate the resources to create change, ideally in a way that minimizes damage and maximizes change."
But, you'll probably believe the Daily Beast's spin, and you'll probably forget about the time Hillary said that anti-fracking activists should "get a life," or maybe you'll overlook her distinctions between a private position and a public position (remember her husband's promised middle-class tax cut, and how we didn't get one?), or maybe you'll even overlook her support for a no-fly zone over Syria that could provoke a military confrontation with Russia and lead to the world war she says Trump would instigate . . . because Hillary's media mouthpieces have already convinced you that a vote for Jill Stein is a vote against your personal interests, and maybe even a vote for Trump, and if you know what's good for you, you'll vote for Hillary.  
Don't buy it.  Hillary is not going to lose the presidential election because of Dr. Stein.  She's comfortably ahead in the polls, and she's even farther ahead in a few swing states, as well as in reliably Democratic states like my own New Jersey.  The Clintons aren't afraid of Jill Stein being a spoiler.  They're worried about Dr, Stein getting five percent of the vote and thus qualifying the Green Party for federal matching funds to make it competitive for the future.  This would actually allow a real progressive party to challenge the Democrats for the liberal voting bloc in this country.  That would be a disaster . . . for the Clintons.
"Let's be clear: this attack wasn't to point out a conflict of interest with Jill," Stein campaign manager Gloria Mattera wrote in a fundraising e-mail to Dr Stein's supporters.  "It was to silence all dissent to the coronation of Hillary Clinton."  "Coronation" is an appropriate word, since one prominent Hillary supporter once said that the Presidency is not a crown to be passed between two families like the Bushes and the Clintons.  (Alas, that prominent Hillary supporter was Martin O'Malley.)  Now, more than ever, we must resist efforts by the Clintons to silence the liberal opposition.  Now, more than ever, we must work to make the Democrats go full Whig if they keep pushing their disastrous neoliberal agenda.

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