Vacation Post

19th International AIDS Conference Convenes In WashingtonI hadn’t planned to post anything this weekend but what the heck. Here’s my response to Harry Enten’s ridiculous Hillary Clinton Was Liberal. Hillary Clinton Is Liberal at FiveThirtyEight.

This is an absurd article. Hillary Clinton is absolutely not a liberal. Since she hasn’t voted in the Senate in seven years, to determine where she falls on the political spectrum, we must rely heavily on her statements on relevant issues and on her actions as Secretary of State.

She does not call for raising taxes on the wealthy. When W was President she said she wouldn’t support raising the capital gains tax above 20%. Now, for some long-term investment gains, it’s at 28%. So, presumably she’s for cutting it.

Her refusal to take a position on TPP is not liberal, it’s cautious centrism at its worst. To the extent we can guess what her position on TPP really is, she supports it. Her major donors, e.g., Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, do. Moreover, as Secretary of State, she helped put together the unholy trinity of international lawyers, lobbyists, and corporate titans who have drafted TPP without any input from labor or environmentalists. She also supported MFN for China and some but not all of the “free trade” deals.

Her refusal to take a position on the Keystone XL pipeline is not liberal. It’s cautious centrism at its worst. To the extent we can guess what her position on Keystone really is, she supports it. The State Department, shortly after she departed but with many of her key appointees in place, green-lighted it saying it wouldn’t cause major environmental problems

She has never championed any truly progressive causes, except expanded healthcare when she was First Lady. Contrast this record with Elizabeth Warren’s or Sherrod Brown’s or Bernie Sanders’.

Her email practices at the State Department were not liberal. They were secretive and violative of the Federal Records Act.

Her employment of surrogates in 2008, like Geraldine Ferraro and Bill, to use racist code language in an appeal to white working-class voters was not liberal.

Her more recent employment of surrogates, like loathsome Lanny Davis and dastardly David Brock, to deny and deflect criticism of her email practices is not liberal. It is not liberal to use surrogate Claire McCaskill to claim that Bernie Sanders is drawing big crowds because, paradoxically, a) the media refuses to call Sanders a socialist and b) extremists, like Ron Paul and Sanders, draw big crowds.

Criticizing Obama for not sending US troops to fight Assad on behalf of the Syrian rebels is not liberal

Hillary Clinton is not a liberal.

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3 Responses to Vacation Post

  1. Shade says:

    Democrats in recent years have done their best to appear as centrists & to avoid being identified as Liberal. Isn’t it interesting then that Bernie is having so much success with his 50 state strategy of going beyond the word Liberal & identifying himself as a Democratic Socialist.

    What most Democratic politicians don’t seem to recognize (anymore) is that the public respects those that aren’t afraid to lead. Being identified as Left or Right is often secondary to the public’s desire to elect a strong leader that can effectively communicate & persuade others of their world vision.

    The upcoming election initially appeared to be Hillary’s to lose. However, due to her unwillingness to take strong positions on what her party base cares most about, I now sense her opportunity is quickly slipping away (once again). I don’t know if the inaction on her part comes from the fear of losing corporate funding, the fear of the L word, or if it really is that Hillary is out of step with her party base, but of her own doing, it appears Hillary is quickly becoming politically marginalized. If Hillary can’t excite her own party’s base & win the nomination, she certainly won’t become President.

  2. Shade says:

    Hillary may strike back tomorrow. We’ll see how successful this is.

    I for one support Bernie. I love that Bernie is not afraid to speak “off the cuff” & say what he thinks. Amazingly, unlike many others that have attempted to do this over the years, he doesn’t seem prone to putting his foot in his mouth. Bernie knows what he believes, he isn’t afraid to say it, and he expresses his opinions & ideas well. He is a real leader in my eyes.

  3. halginsberg says:

    Thanks Shade. I am optimistic that your view regarding Bernie’s chances is well-founded.

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