Monday, January 2, 2017

The Death of Clintonism is the Death of the Democratic Party

     The political autopsies are still streaming in. Incredulity will do that.
     Democratic apologists' reactions range from impotent head-scratching to impotent rage. Witness Peter Daou's ongoing meltdown and Kurt Eichenwald being tempted to punch one of his own readers. The Democratic Party has seemingly moved on by spinning their wheels in the same muck that had kept them out of a simultaneous majority in both chambers since 2008 by firing Harry Reid as Senate Minority Leader and replacing him with Chuck Schumer (D-Wall Street) and reinstalling the aging Nancy Pelosi as House Minority Leader.
     Other people, such as Todd Purdum, simply don't get it and resort to revisionist history with an agility one usually only finds in the Republican party.
     His piece, "The Death of Clintonism" ought to be entitled, "The Death of the Democratic Party" because the Democrats' across the board failure in the last general election can't be entirely blamed on Hillary Clinton. As much as the mainstream media would otherwise have you believe, the race was far larger than Hillary Clinton, as it should be for any one candidate.
     Purdum gets almost completely wrong everything the Democratic Party stood for during the Clinton years and what it stands for now and one must wonder how this man got a job as a senior political correspondent for Politico or any publication of note.
     In his third paragraph, he states,
By all accounts, Bill and Hillary Clinton never had any such qualms, and now their quarter-century project to build a mutual buy-one, get-one-free Clinton dynasty has ended in her defeat, and their joint departure from the center of the national political stage they had hoped to occupy for another eight years. Their exit amounts to a finale not just for themselves, but for Clintonism as a working political ideology and electoral strategy.
     OK, fair enough for the most part. But this one paragraph is a synecdoche of how his entire article went wrong- Politics, at least ideally, ought to be about more than just a winning formula for a political dynasty. Democracy ought to be about bettering the lives of those who put its politicians into power. While he later rejects the suggestion that Clinton didn't fall into the trap of identity politics, that's precisely what she did. The most articulate message Hillary could put across to voters was, "I'm not Trump" and, "You owe me, Goddamnit."
     Again, a presidential election that will determine the fate of the world should be larger than any one person and Hillary Clinton simply forgot that. To those who'd kept at least one good eye open, Clinton unmistakably put forth the aura that she should succeed to the Presidency by dint of some royal fiat, because she'd cynically held on to her husband's name for the brand recognition.
     Nowhere in his article does Purdum mention the staggeringly corrupt Clinton Foundation, the hacked emails of John Podesta and only tangentially mentioned the other emails in the context of Bernie Sanders saying he was tired of hearing about them. Nowhere does he mention the rotten Democratic culture of corporate corruption that turned the Democratic Party into just an updated Tammany Hall or, in contravention of its own rules, the collusion of DNC officials with the Clinton campaign, the disrespect shown to liberals, especially Sanders loyalists.
     Weren't these all factors in Clinton losing what should've been a cakewalk for her?
     Of course they were. And these factors, and several more, were determinative in swinging the election to a joke of a human being whose campaign, as in 2008, should have been relegated to the ash heap of history as yet another attention-seeking bit of performance art.
     Purdum's other problem seems to be in assigning the correct place of the Democratic Party on the political spectrum both then and now. For instance, there's this whopper:
By 2016, spurred by anger at Wall Street, and at Washington gridlock and business as usual, the Democratic Party had moved well to the left of the one Bill Clinton had inherited in 1992.
     Unless he's talking about the anemic and virtually powerless liberal wing of the Democratic Party represented by Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, who both obediently fell in line behind Queen Hillary when she'd stolen the nomination from the latter, it's hard if not impossible to see where is this shift "well to the left" that Purdum is talking about.
     The three committees that had written the rules for the Democratic convention in Philadelphia were packed with Clinton loyalists, Blue Dogs who were either in the tank for her since the beginning or, as with Barney Frank, another chairman, had already left Capitol Hill and went to work for Wall Street. The Rules Committees had adopted what would be immediately recognized as rigidly right wing: A $12 minimum wage instead of Bernie's $15; Pro-fracking. Pro TPP. The sordid list went on. Any Sanders loyalists who had insisted on leveling the playing field by being appointed to these committees were as far and few between as Sanders' actual policy positions that had been adopted.
     A quick look at Capitol Hill's Democratic elite shows not one actual liberal in any leadership role and don't think that isn't by design. As if holding a giant middle finger to low income and middle class Sanders supporters, right after the election the Democratic Party, as stated, installed the ultimate Wall Street stooge in Chuck Schumer and kept Nancy Pelosi in place, as if such coziness and collusion with Wall Street and well-monied lobbyists/bundlers was a conspiracy theory of Millennial basement dwellers.
     Then there's this:
(Hillary) embraced bold approaches on hot-button issues like immigration and gun control that would have been shocking for a Democrat in her husband’s day, and accepted what was arguably the most liberal Democratic Party platform in history...
     Again, he seems to forget that Bernie Sanders also ran on the Democratic ticket and, save for gun control, where he was notoriously weak, he was consistently to the left of Clinton on anything else (although, it can also be persuasively argued that back in JFK's day, the Socialist from Vermont would've been merely a mainstream Democrat). Plus, how can one trust a famously triangulating Blue Dog such as Hillary Clinton when she was caught saying to a Wall St firm in a paid speech that "one needs to have a public policy position and a private policy position"?
     The Democratic National Committee's top leadership didn't do her any favors in the long term either when its head honcho, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, shamelessly and without much if any plausible deniability colluded with the Clinton campaign to hamstring the Sanders campaign, which leaked emails reveal they quickly grew to loathe. Schultz's interim successor, Clinton backer Donna Brazile, was quickly revealed in the Podesta emails to have fed Clinton debate questions in advance courtesy of a friendly at CNN.
     The corruption and collusion of the super delegate system that left a bad taste in the mouth of many Sanders backers was also a factor never mentioned by Purdum. Nor did he even pay lip service to Clinton's scorn at Black Lives Matters protesters, liberal voters in general or the unions that had endorsed her.
     Instead, we're hearing from Purdum that Hillary Clinton was just a poor victim of circumstance, that she was someone who'd unsuccessfully tried to graft a 90's palimpsest of neoliberalism over a a 2010's political landscape. While that's true up to a point, the reason for Hillary losing the election by a landslide in the electoral college is more complex and nuanced than that.
     Elsewhere, he quotes someone:
“People thought she’d been conceived in Goldman Sachs’ trading desk,” says one veteran Clinton aide, noting the irony that this was millennial voters’ jaded view of a woman often seen in the 1990s as reflexively more liberal than her husband.
     Only by right wing nut jobs.
     It ought to be mentioned to those with bad memories or for those too young to remember the Clinton years that Hillary had practically midwifed the disastrous crime bill (the ruinous effect of which Purdum sweeps away) of 1994 not to mention the doomed health care bill that was essentially ObamaCare 1.0 and would've been co-opted by the six biggest HMOs in the nation. And it was only in 2013 that a 66 year-old Hillary Clinton finally saw the light and said gay marriage wasn't so bad, after all.
     It also ought to be remembered that yes, Hillary was not a product of Goldman Sach's trading desk because, before she leaped into their pockets, she'd worked for Sam Walton on Walmart's Board of Directors for years, long before becoming First Lady of Arkansas.
     Then there's this:
It has long been a commonplace that Hillary Clinton’s retail political skills are not the equal of her husband’s, and her senior advisers would chafe this year when Bill Clinton pressed to campaign more aggressively in white working-class areas of the Great American Middle, arguing that such voters had been lost for good by the Democrats—or at least for this year, during which disappointment over Obama’s inability to deliver for them had congealed into support for Trump. The truth is that Hillary Clinton did recognize the problem, even if she was unable to translate her awareness into an effective campaign message that would appeal to working-class whites.
     If she recognized the problem, they why didn't she show the same level of support for unions they'd showed for her (such as refusing to appear at a UAW function on Election Night)? How come she left it to a stuttering oaf like Donald Trump and his belligerent populism to better resonate with those working class white voters? And, finally, there's this quote from Leon Panetta:
“They had to deal with Bernie Sanders and the left. They had to make sure they retained that base, and they wanted to build on the Obama coalition that had gotten him elected and re-elected. And in that battle, they lost sight of the larger message she had to put across to the American people that she had her own version about where this country wanted to go, and that she, in her own way, represented change.”
     Completely ignored by Purdum is how, exactly, Hillary and her stooges in the DNC chose to "deal with Bernie Sanders and the left." This included fully availing itself of the resources of the DNC, paid trolls on the internet, hired actors to fill seats at the convention when Sanders delegates were evicted from them by the DNC the third night of the convention, propaganda campaigns, noise suppressors, cyber terrorism, a corrupt super delegate system made up almost entirely of Clinton loyalists and corporate lobbyists and more dirty tricks we still don't even know about.
     Sure, Clinton did herself no favors by calling Trump's voters a "basket of deplorables" but she also did herself at least as much harm in first stealing the nomination from a better qualified candidate who actually had a better than even shot of beating Trump then alienating them behind their backs by saying in a previously undisclosed speech that Sanders supporters were unrealistic dreamers who still lived in their parents' basements.
     In the end, it has to be admitted that Hillary Clinton's failure and historic humiliation wasn't so much due to her not resonating with the right people but her resonating with the wrong people. And her loss wasn't merely a repudiation of hers and her husband's ruinous neoliberal policies but of an entire corrupt party still clinging to those policies in a new century.

5 Comments:

At January 3, 2017 at 1:23 AM, Anonymous CC said...

"...back in JFK's day, the Socialist from Vermont would've been merely a mainstream Democrat."

That shows how far to the right the Dems have moved courtesy of Clintonism.

The Clintonistas attacked Sanders from the right during the primaries, accusing him of being too socialist for the general election. Just wait, they said, until the Republicans red-bait Sanders to death should he win the nomination.

Well, the Clintonistas already did a pretty good job of that, which means back in JFK's day, they'd be regarded as Republicans. In fact, some Republicans back then were more progressive than most mainstream Dems today.

 
At January 3, 2017 at 12:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How did she stole the nomination from Sanders. She was millions of votes over him and hundreds of delegates, if the dem. Can falsify that they would have won the general. Sanders and his followers are the reason for the current situation. The Clintons are best thing the party has to offer

 
At January 3, 2017 at 1:09 PM, Blogger jurassicpork said...

How did she "stole" the nomination from Sanders? Apparently, this is your first time here. Apparently, you also lack rudimentary reading comprehension skills as in this very post I'd briefly touched on some of the ways her campaign was able to do that. Collusion with the media, the DNC, super lobbyists, paid trolls. Resorting to thuggery, lies, propaganda. I went into all this and more in previous posts going back last year. I can think of times during the primaries when Bernie won states by a landslide without getting a single super delegate. How is that democracy?

Bernie's voters are to blame? Please. Many of them went to the polls and voted for Hillary with a clothespin on their nose. She had the backing of Wall Street, the DNC, establishment Democrats, women, minorities, Hollywood limousine liberals, the mainstream media...

And she still got crushed in the Electoral College by a buffoon.

But that's all Bernie's fault and the fault of his voters, eh?

You obviously don't know shit about politics. Do yourself a favor. Move over to the kiddie table and let the grownups talk about the grownup stuff, huh? Have a cookie.

 
At January 3, 2017 at 2:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Obviously I watching a different primaries. Yes him and his followers were the reason own it at least I can call honest. Yes I am new here. A mistake.

 
At January 3, 2017 at 2:33 PM, Blogger jurassicpork said...

I take it you're also new to reading and to politics.

 

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home

KindleindaWind, my writing blog.

All Time Classics

  • Our Worse Half: The 25 Most Embarrassing States.
  • The Missing Security Tapes From the World Trade Center.
  • It's a Blunderful Life.
  • The Civil War II
  • Sweet Jesus, I Hate America
  • Top Ten Conservative Books
  • I Am Mr. Ed
  • Glenn Beck: Racist, Hate Monger, Comedian
  • The Ten Worst Music Videos of all Time
  • Assclowns of the Week

  • Links to the first 33 Assclowns of the Week.
  • Links to Assclowns of the Week 38-63.
  • #105: Blame it on Paris or Putin edition
  • #104: Make Racism Great Again Also Labor Day edition
  • #103: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Toilet edition
  • #102: Orange is the New Fat edition
  • #101: Electoral College Dropouts edition
  • #100: Centennial of Silliness edition
  • #99: Dr. Strangehate edition
  • #98: Get Bentghazi edition
  • #97: SNAPping Your Fingers at the Poor edition
  • #96: Treat or Treat, Kiss My Ass edition
  • #95: Monumental Stupidity double-sized edition
  • #94: House of 'Tards edition
  • #93: You Da Bomb! edition.
  • #92: Akin to a Fool edition.
  • #91: Aurora Moronealis edition.
  • #90: Keep Your Gubmint Hands Off My High Pre'mums and Deductibles! edition.
  • #89: Occupy the Catbird Seat/Thanksgiving edition.
  • #88: Heil Hitler edition.
  • #87: Let Sleeping Elephants Lie edition.
  • #86: the Maniacs edition.
  • #85: The Top 50 Assclowns of 2010 edition.
  • #(19)84: Midterm Madness edition.
  • #83: Spill, Baby, Spill! edition.
  • #82: Leave Corporations Alone, They’re People! edition.
  • #81: Hatin' on Haiti edition.
  • #80: Don't Get Your Panties in a Twist edition.
  • #79: Top 50 Assclowns of 2009 edition.
  • #78: Nattering Nabobs of Negativism edition.
  • #77: ...And Justice For Once edition.
  • #76: Reading Tea Leaves/Labor Day edition.
  • #75: Diamond Jubilee/Inaugural Edition
  • #74: Dropping the Crystal Ball Edition
  • #73: The Twelve Assclowns of Christmas Edition
  • #72: Trick or Treat Election Day Edition
  • #71: Grand Theft Autocrats Edition
  • #70: Soulless Corporations and the Politicians Who Love Them Edition
  • Top 10 Things Donald Trump Said to President Obama
  • Paul Ryan's Top Ten Conditions on Running for the Speakership
  • Top 10 Reasons Why Mitt Romney Won't Run for President in 2016
  • Top 10 Results of the NYPD's Work Slowdown
  • Top 10 Secret Service Security Breaches
  • Top 10 LA Radio Shows That Are Rated Higher Than Rush Limbaugh's
  • Top 10 Reasons Operation American Spring Went Flat
  • Top Ten Facts of the MH370 Air Disaster
  • Top 10 Tips for GOP Congressmen Running Against Women
  • Top 10 Signs Walmart's Mistreating its Workers
  • Top 10 Diversions John McCain Found During Syria Hearing
  • Top 10 George Zimmerman Excuses for Speeding.
  • Top 10 Reasons Paula Deen Got Fired by the Food Network
  • Top Ten Ways Pope Francis is Deviating From Convention
  • Top 10 Reasons For the Pope's Resignation
  • Top 10 Emails Hacked From the Bush Family's Email Accounts
  • Top 10 Lies Told by Mitt Romney at the 2nd Debate.
  • Top 10 Examples of How Hard the Campaign Trail is on Ann D. Romney.
  • Top 10 Ways to Tell The Boston Red Sox Are Finished.
  • Top 10 Things Mitt May be Hiding in His Tax Returns.
  • Top 10 Events at the Romney Olympics.
  • Mitt Romney's Top 10 Wild & Crazy Moments.
  • Top Ten Reasons Why Dick Cheney Got a Heart Transplant.
  • Top 10 Facts About Tonight's New England/Denver Game.
  • My Top 10 Resolutions.
  • Top 10 Rejected Slogans of the Romney Campaign.
  • Top 10 Reasons Herman Cain Suspended His Campaign.
  • Top 10 Trending Topics on Twitter During #OWS Eviction.
  • Top 10 Herman Cain Pickup Lines.
  • Top 10 Changes Since Anthony Weiner Decided to Resign.
  • Top 10 Inaccuracies re bin Laden's Death.
  • Top 10 Ways to Prevent a TSA Patdown.
  • Top Ten Things Not to Say When You're Pulled Over.
  • Top 10 Reasons Why Donald Trump Bowed Out of the Presidential Race.
  • Top 10 Ways Evangelicals Will Prepare for the Rapture II.
  • Top 10 Revelations in Today's Parliament Inquiry into News Corp.
  • Top 10 Reasons Why There Was No Vote on the Debt Ceiling Last Night.
  • Top 10 Revelations in Dick Cheney's Upcoming Memoir.
  • Top Ten Ways Americans Will Observe the 10th Anniversary of 9/11.
  • Top Ten Advances in Women's Rights in Saudi Arabia.
  • Top Ten Inaccuracies in Bill O'Reilly's Book About Lincoln.
  • Top Ten Suggestions From the Cat Food Commission.
  • Top Ten Worst Moments in George W. Bush's Presidency.
  • Top Ten Facts in George W. Bush's Memoir.
  • Top Ten Reasons Terry Jones Postponed His Koran Burning
  • Top 10 Causes for Dick Cheney's Congestive Heart Failure
  • Top Ten Ways That Jan Brewer Will Celebrate Cinco de Mayo
  • Top Ten Demands in Sarah Palin's Contract
  • Top Ten Whoppers in Karl Rove's New Book
  • Top 10 Items Left Behind in Rush Limbaugh's Apartment
  • Top Ten Things Barack Obama said to Rush Limbaugh in the Hospital
  • Top Ten Bizarre Promos Offered by the New Jersey Nets
  • Top 10 Bush Executive Orders Labor Wants President Obama to Repeal
  • George W. Bush's Top Ten Lesser Achievements
  • Empire Of The Senseless.
  • Christwire.org: Conservative Values for an Unsaved World.
  • Esquire's Charles Pierce.
  • Brilliant @ Breakfast.
  • The Burning Platform.
  • The Rant.
  • Mock, Paper, Scissors.
  • James Petras.
  • Towle Road.
  • Avedon's Sideshow (the new site).
  • At Largely, Larisa Alexandrovna's place.
  • The Daily Howler.
  • The DCist.
  • Greg Palast.
  • Jon Swift. RIP, Al.
  • God is For Suckers.
  • The Rude Pundit.
  • Driftglass.
  • Newshounds.
  • William Grigg, a great find.
  • Brad Blog.
  • Down With Tyranny!, Howie Klein's blog.
  • Wayne's World. Party time! Excellent!
  • Busted Knuckles, aka Ornery Bastard.
  • Mills River Progressive.
  • Right Wing Watch.
  • Earthbond Misfit.
  • Anosognosia.
  • Echidne of the Snakes.
  • They Gave Us a Republic.
  • The Gawker.
  • Outtake Online, Emmy-winner Charlotte Robinson's site.
  • Skippy, the Bush Kangaroo
  • No More Mr. Nice Blog.
  • Head On Radio Network, Bob Kincaid.
  • Spocko's Brain.
  • Pandagon.
  • Slackivist.
  • WTF Is It Now?
  • No Blood For Hubris.
  • Lydia Cornell, a very smart and accomplished lady.
  • Roger Ailes (the good one.)
  • BlondeSense.
  • The Smirking Chimp.
  • Hammer of the Blogs.
  • Vast Left Wing Conspiracy.
  • Argville.
  • Existentialist Cowboy.
  • The Progressive.
  • The Nation.
  • Mother Jones.
  • Vanity Fair.
  • Salon.com.
  • Citizens For Legitimate Government.
  • News Finder.
  • Indy Media Center.
  • Lexis News.
  • Military Religious Freedom.
  • McClatchy Newspapers.
  • The New Yorker.
  • Bloggingheads TV, political vlogging.
  • Find Articles.com, the next-best thing to Nexis.
  • Altweeklies, for the news you won't get just anywhere.
  • The Smirking Chimp
  • Don Emmerich's Peace Blog
  • Wikileaks.
  • The Peoples' Voice.
  • Dictionary.com.
  • CIA World Fact Book.
  • IP address locator.
  • Tom Tomorrow's hilarious strip.
  • Babelfish, an instant, online translator. I love to translate Ann Coulter's site into German.
  • Newsmeat: Find out who's donating to whom.
  • Wikipedia.
  • Uncyclopedia.
  • anysoldier.com
  • Icasualties
  • Free Press
  • YouTube
  • The Bone Bridge.
  • Powered by Blogger