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Revolution at a Crossroad


Revolution at a Crossroad

Ernest A. Canning

After agreeing to serve as a Senior Advisor to the Veterans for Bernie organization over the past year or so, I have refrained from writing articles about the Presidential primaries here at The BRAD BLOG, so as to avoid any potential conflicts of interest for the site.


There is an unpleasant truth to this article. Personally, I live in a swing state and will vote for Jill Stein UNLESS it looks like a close call. In that case I may vote dem -- if I can bring myself to that. Thankfully, Trump may be defeating himself. If Clinton is ahead, I will vote for Stein. A strong alternative vote is vital in both denying a "mandate" and sending the message that we cannot and should not be taken for granted.

Beyond the puppet show, we must continue to organize and to stop climate destruction and war by any means necessary.


This is yet another article on Common Dreams urging Sanders backers to hold their noses and vote for Clinton, at least those in swing states.
And like all the other such articles I've seen here and elsewhere it is unconvincing. It is less an argument than a covert attempt to coerce people into doing what they don't want to do, in this case, vote for a candidate they dislike, Clinton, and not for a candidate they do like, such as Stein.
Or not vote at all. In this connection the author is particularly offensive, asserting that "Petulantly standing in place (not voting) is akin to the child who takes his football and goes home because the others wouldn't let him play quarterback. It is not a viable option."
Offensive because this passage is an effort to stigmatize people who choose the perfectly valid option of not voting. That is the option I intend to choose -- to refuse to be part of a dead political systems that offers me no good choices but only bad ones.


I live in a swing state too and plan to follow a similar path as you. Trump is a total negative, though I'm not sure who is the bigger fascist, him or Clinton, using corporate/wealthy elite-government control measure. Yet, I don't get those so-called progressive who've already decided to vote for Clinton, mostly out of fear of Trump.

It is important to continue to push hard for Stein and progressives and to pay attention closely to the polls in each of our states as well as nationally across all the states. If it is close in my state, I might vote for Clinton; but, if it seems clear that Clinton will win nationally (and I think she will), I will probably decide to vote for Stein anyway, even if that increases the chance (by a miniscule amount) that she loses my state.

As you said, it is important to have a strong Green Party showing in the elections as a platform for building a viable alternative to Dems and repubs.


I don't see any crossroad. I see the Green Party as the only rational choice. Anyone telling you to support the far right wing Democratic Party is doing so to crush the revolution.


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**"Sanders supporters have a right to be miffed by what took place during the primaries. **

MIffed? This minimizing language tells me enough about the apologia which surrounds it. One is not "miffed" at the undermining of the democratic franchise. "Furious and unsatisfied" would be a better beginning.

Tell me again how entitled oligarchy is a path to revolution. I want to be certain that my feeling "miffed" doesn't cause me to miss something coherent.


" progressives who live in swing states would do well to cast a vote for Hillary..."

It appears Canning purposely left out mentioning the 2000 election in which Nader is often blamed for the election of George W. Bush but that is certainly the prime example for making hie point. Of course there are other reasons for this outcome which led to the Iraq War and later ISIS and much of the mess in the Middle East. But if Nader hadn't run in Florida it would seem seem likely that Gore would have won and most likely today we would have had a much better world and certainly been further along in fighting climate change, which continues to grow more ominous as a threat to just about everything. And Canning also failed to point out how Trump would be a disaster when it comes to this growing problem that requires immediate increased action and not a president bent on tearing up the Paris climate agreement.


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Another condescending article that just states without proof that Trump represents the extreme right. The truth of the matter is, we don't know what Trump represents (often I wonder if he knows it himself). But we do know that Hillary represents more war with absolute certainty (I guess loss of innocent lives isn't an important issue to Mr. Canning), and more corporate trade deals again with absolute certainty. Also with absolute certainty will be energy policies that continue the traditional emphasis on hydrocarbons, i.e., further worsening global warming instead of taking serious steps to reverse it. Back to the war issue, it could take the form of a nuclear confrontation with Russia, in which case it is all over. Considering all this, Hillary Clinton is the candidate that we must fight against as our top priority, and that should be the starting point of any political discussion. That's why articles like this one are non-starters for me. The writers have not grasped the fact that Hillary Clinton represents the absolute worst that the country can offer politically.


" Abstaining from voting or, say, voting for, say, a candidate you
prefer, a minority candidate, just amounts to a vote for Donald Trump,
which I think is a devastating prospect."

And... there it is. Thanks, Common Dreams. I believe he at least uses Jill Stein's name a few times, but that's not what your readers are asking for, is it?


There must be a ton of registered Republicans who will stay home because they refuse to vote for Trump, and their party can use the EXACT same logic that when they stay home, it's the same as a vote for Hillary. Can it really be both at the same time?


Why not vote for Stein ?


"Revolution at a crossroad" ?

Perhaps for a few hours after Sanders was coralled by the Democrats at CLINTONCON in Philly. Within a day or so the Revolution that Sanders advanced during the previous year was on a GREEN superhighway with no crossroads to break momentum.

Don't let Clinton spoil Stein's victory in November !


Canning's final paragraph summarizes an approach to elect Clinton and progressive Congressional Democrats, presumably to wrest control of Congress from the GOP.

As Bill Clinton and Obama proved by handing control of Congress to the GOP during their first two years in office, the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) playbook requires minimal control of Congress by Democrats and Hillary will make sure Democrats lose control of Congress in the 2018 election even if Democrats control Congress from 2017-2018.

Although Stein will (by a wide margin) be the best choice for president, the best second choice would be Trump in the White House with Democrats in control of Congress, thereby assuring that little to nothing gets done which is a far better alternative than Clinton in the White House (irrespective of who controls Congress) destroying what is left of the New Deal, expanding corporate welfare, wars and occupations, and unloading what remains in the US Treasury into the hands of her bankster buddies, while her base makes excuses for her every action.


More of voting for the lesser of two evils. With the media polls showing Clinton with double digit leads over Trump, why are her media embedded acolytes still trying so hard to convince Sanders supporters to vote for her? Given all of the hysteria and fear being generated about a Trump presidency, could it be that Clintonites are still finding it difficult to secure strong voter support for her? I am voting for Jill Stein and the Green Party because I agreed with Bernie when he said that real change comes from the bottom up and that we need to build the kind of grassroots movement of millions of Americans that can stand up and demand an economy and politics that works for all of us. I see no evidence that Hillary Clinton and the current Democratic Party are vehicles for doing that.


The 2016 primaries and CLINTONCON in Philly proved that "Clinton and the current Democratic Party ARE vehicles for DESTROYING that." High performance vehicles at that.

The only "grassroots candidate" in the POTUS race is Jill Stein.


I agree with the points you make. Also, I think A Clinton presidency would be bad for efforts to build a movement for real progressive change. Such a movement would certainly be a threat to her Wall Street backed neo-liberal agenda, as evidenced by Bernie's efforts. No doubt as president, she and her supporters would move to further co-opt and/or repress activities geared toward advancing progressivism.


In one of his columns in Salon a while ago, Patrick L. Smith called Hillary Clinton "the most contemptible" of all the candidates. Smith's speciality is foreign policy and he was commenting on Clinton in that context. I agree with him in terms of Clinton's terrible foreign policy record and in terms of her record overall.
If we were able to hold politicians accountable for their actions, then people such as Clinton would be driven from public life for the crimes they have committed. But we are not. Instead we are reduced to impotent anger as we watch reckless, self-serving politicians such as the Clintons wreak havoc on our nation and the world.


Boy did you hit the nail on the head. Couple this with another well written piece today, For Progressives Thinking About the Election, and my anybody but Hillary stance is softening. Before the conventions, when Trump was less scary, I thought that if the movement materializes, a Trump presidency would be the kick in the butt USamericans needed to get active. Post convention, Trump is getting far scarier as he moves ever more rightward, not towards the center, and the movement doesn't have the capacity it needs to face down what Trump now promises to offer up. The movement simply needs more time.

I swore a long time ago I would never vote for Clinton, and I won't this time. I swore I would work to defeat her and I will vote for Stein, happily. These two articles convinced me that without a better congealed movement in place, a Trump presidency should be avoided over a Clinton presidency. (Although it would be so wonderful to avoid them both, I'm afraid that's water under the bridge.) The Supreme Court thing has been niggling at my conscious should I have been forced to vote for Trump to defeat Hillary--I wasn't too sure I could sell out my principles, not that I expect Clinton to appoint any liberal lions.

In my state, where the Clintons are disliked by many voters and rightly so, Trump is way ahead with 37%. Johnson picks up support every time Trump opens his mouth. Clinton, is at 25% support, and Johnson picks up support every time she opens her mouth. Johnson's at 16% and surging. ( 20% or so are for other candidates or undecided.) Hillary could come in third here, just like her husband did with Perot in the race. Stein is only polling at 1% though. I have no illusions Stein will win, and Clinton won't come close here, and that takes a lot of pressure off his lefty. My vote for Stein has the added value of splitting Clinton's vote; it helps Clinton lose to Gary Johnson, likely one of the few stings she will feel from here on out, who will also go on to lose. I'm relieved that I won't have to use all these arguments to assuage my conscience, while I can help Hillary lose big time somewhere in this country, even as she likely goes on to become the next president.

Which is of no comfort to those of you in swing states. Truly inform yourselves and let your conscience be your guide. You are the one who has to look at yourself in the mirror. Every one of us on these pages, trolls excluded, wants to do the right thing and none of us have crystal balls. It's the movement that matters at this point, it always has been. The sun will rise the day after this election and there's a lot of work building power to perform between now and the next election. I'm certainly not going to tell anybody how to vote from my catbird seat.