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Why Do Progressives Cling to Hillary?


#1

Why Do Progressives Cling to Hillary?

Les Leopold

As the primaries move into their final act, Sanders supporters confront a perplexing question: How could so many progressives vote for Hillary over Bernie?

After all, you would think that progressives would race toward the first self-declared socialist in American history who actually has a chance at becoming the nominee of a major political party, and even of winning the Presidency. What does Hillary offer to progressives that Bernie can’t provide in abundance?


#2

There are many, many, many of us who consider ourselves true progressives and more, who are not fooled by her and Bill, who have seen the truth of their triangulating, 1% ways, who will NEVER, EVER vote for her. In fact, after the despicable way she and her people have run the campaign against Bernie, she has earned our undying hatred and determination that she will NEVER be POTUS, and we will do everything we can to deny her the office. The fact that she and her corporate media backers have already decided the primary campaign is over and that Bernie should just be ignored now, makes us all the more determined to fight on to the convention. We are not inconvenient gnats to be swatted away by her "High Horseness". We will take her, and the party establishment, down and rebuild it for the People!


#4

The Hillary Rapid Response team, "Correct The Record" has Praise for Hillary Clinton

PRAISE FOR HILLARY CLINTON

This looks like a list of who she is looking for votes. Here is the order of the areas of praise.

PRAISE FROM:

REPUBLICANS
DEMOCRATS
FOREIGN LEADERS
FAMOUS PEOPLE
PRESS
EXPERTS
BUSINESS LEADERS

I only had the stomach to go to the first one which starts out with Henry Kissinger! This shows that she continue to look to him for foreign policy advice even though many consider him a criminal.

Maybe someone else has the courage to go through the list to dig up some more interesting stuff. I was stopped in my tracks with Henry, then Condelessa... in the first part.

Just to show that I did not make this up, here is Henry

Sec. Kissinger, on Sec. Clinton: “I’ve known her for many years now, and I respect her intellect.” According to USA Today, “Nearly 40 years since he left appointed office, Kissinger still can provoke controversy. Hillary Rodham Clinton, another former secretary of State, wrote a favorable review of his new book in Sunday’s Washington Post. ‘The World According to Henry Kissinger,’ it was titled, and an enormous photo of Kissinger’s face filled most of the page. ‘I’ve known her for many years now, and I respect her intellect,’ he says of Clinton. ‘And she ran the State Department in the most effective way that I’ve ever seen.’ More effectively than he did? ‘Yes,’ he says with a smile. ‘I was more chaotic.’” [USA Today, 9/9/14]


#5

"Hillary progressives seem immune to most of these facts and figures. Regardless of what the polls say, they are sure that Hillary is the stronger candidate and that she can best trump Trump."

Many, "progressives," are either clueless or out of touch, true. To somewhat lessen this depressing reality, I think it appropriate to bring a little humor to these pages. After all she works hard for her money. Watch Senator Carper, this is for real. (Thanks to Democratic Underground for the Link.)


#6

Great Video - another video from Jimmy Dore

Feel the Bern and don't freak out!

TYT Jimmy Dore Gives A Ray of Hope To Sanders Supporters: “Feel the Bern and Don’t Freak Out!”


#7

Oh what a true and well-articulated analysis!

The overarching truth is that Bernie Sanders is not running against Hillary Clinton, the candidate. He is running against the Clinton-Democratic-Republican-Establishment-MACHINE, with all of its behind the scenes tactics, the full array of which God only knows, designed and used for years to preserve the power of the 1% over the heavily-duped and often oppressed rest of the country and world.

If voters were simply given a straightforward opportunity to hear from and evaluate the character, positions, and track record of each candidate, without all the self-serving machinations of entrenched party elites and their media servants, I believe there is no question that Sanders would be winning by a landslide right now. In terms of political and social values, I think most people prefer honesty, integrity, and straightforward policies designed to serve what is good in the world rather than what is destined to destroy it. The fact that Sanders has recorded so many votes and racked up so many delegates IN SPITE OF the intense machinations is quite telling. However, the Machine's roots run deep, and its reach is broad and multi-faceted and, among other things, it has been effective in mesmerizing far too many people into blindly embracing the myths that keep them voting against their interests time and time again.

Whether or not Bernie is elected president (and I hope he and his supporters will fight like hell until the end to make that happen), as he has said from the start, the revolution that is needed to upend the status quo will only happen if huge numbers of those who are supporting him now continue to actively work to shake things up-- from the roots up, and for the long haul.


#10

If Bernie doesn't get the chance for us to vote for him I will NOT vote for HRC will write Bernie's name in on my ballot, if that means we get trump so be it. I am sick of voting for the lesser of two evils!!! HRC will vote for XL pipeline and all the trade deals she and Bill think are good for BIG banks and Business. No progressive in that suit!


#13

Whether we wish to admit it or not, the way Hillary is perceived and discussed and then supported by many progressives is primarily because the media has framed the debate about her. Had Bernie received the free publicity offered to Trump Bernie would have been so far ahead that Hillary would have dropped out of the race by now. Virtually all of the points mentioned in this article are points established by the media many of which were initially provided by Hillary herself and dutifully picked up by the pro Hillary media verbatim or at least never challenged by criticism. Hillary gets things done? Where was that? She said it and the media ran with it. Hillary has the experience? She said it and nobody challenged her record. Call her Billary perhaps since his record is somehow hers. Her own foreign policy experience is not a success but the media never challenged her claim.

The real reason that so many progressives support Hillary is simply because they were told that they supported Hillary repeatedly in the media. Say it often enough and it becomes repeated even more often by others as if it were accepted truth.

The media chose Hillary and they actually created Trump as a factor mostly to avoid mentioning the ever bigger crowds flocking to Bernie's banner. They gave Trump plenty of coverage expecting him to shoot himself in the foot with his bizarre and fascistic bombast but he got away from them. He was entertaining and started to take it seriously and the media chose to feature his getting crowds rather than Bernie getting bigger crowds and the Trumpenstein monster got away from them and ran amok.

The media created Trumpenstein and the media forced Hillary on to the voting public. The amazing thing is that the media never talks about her being corrupted by the big money, her speeches mattered and so did her poor performance in foreign policy but the media brushed all that aside. The mainstream media has no real opposition and is perhaps the real power in our country. Everything we know comes through the media and we have yet to develop an immunity to what we are forced fed.

Aside from the fact that Hillary may lose to Trump...the media will have only themselves to blame.


#14

First of all, there are so many definitions of progressive that it is hard to answer the question without a specific definition. But I think here progressive largely refers to liberals who have switched to the more acceptable label of progressive and not to progressives who are socialist and certainly not those who are anti-capitatist and believe the government should own the means of production. Perhaps the question could be phrased as why does someone like Senator Sherrod Brown, considered to be one of the most progressive members of Congress, endorse Hillary Clinton. To answer that one would probably have to ask Senator Brown. In any case, I think there is a real fear among the more progressive Democrats (not Green Party types of people who could probably care less) that Sanders has never been exposed to all out attacks by Republicans as Hillary Clinton has for many years and they do not know what would happen. So why take a chance? They know Clinton can deal with it successfully. What if Sanders can't? Also, I think few of the more progressive Democrats believe the so-called "political revolution" will actually occur. After campaigns people tend to go back to their own lives and leave the organizing up to the usual existing groups. So basically, they think Clinton with more modest and less disruptive policies will be able to accomplish more. On foreign policy I don't think they see much difference between Clinton and Sanders. On the main issue, what to do about ISIS, their differences are rather small. Neither has had to make final decisions on foreign policy such as those that only the president makes so nobody really knows for sure what either would do when faced with a critical decision.


#16

How true all of this is.


#17

It is like we have woken up from an evil spell only to find that everything we once believed was true has changed. Once the press was objective but not anymore, once the media would try to be fair but now they act like they are supporters of a particular candidate openly. Fairness doctrine? I remember that don't you?

We've woken up to find we are living in a surveillance state, that oligarchy is deciding who governs in what used to be a democracy, that our represntatives are unbelievably and shamelessly corrupt, revolving doors and corporate coup. We woke up to widespread voter suppression and tainted elections where a few insiders decide instead of the voters, coin tosses? Pick a card? Is this a joke?

tigress2... I think we overslept!


#18

"Progressives for Hillary" is like "Pacifists for War."

Ain't no such animal.

You can't be a progressive and support a neocon warmonger.

War is not a progressive value.

And Clinton has praised Greece's austerity program on numerous occasions.

Greece's austerity program cut pensions, social programs, and government jobs.

So Clinton's not a progressive on Economic issues either.

Clinton isn't a progressive and her supporters aren't either.


#19

"Progressive" might be the most empty word in American politics. Some on the left use it to include everyone who is to the left of moderate Republicans. That's a very large group that includes people with wildly divergent opinions and ideologies. Clinton supporters are not "progressive" in the same way that Sanders supporters are "progressive." While, they tend to share the same desired outcomes on social issues, they do not share the same desired outcomes on other issues. They do not necessarily share a common ideology.

The Democratic Party has attempted publicly for the last 25 years to pretend that the ideological differences don't exist and that any differences in desired outcomes are really minor. Hillary has seemingly 5,000 talking head surrogates who will be happy to tell you how close everyone is. That doesn't make it true.

I know Hillary supporters really, really, really want to believe that they are "progressive" and the differences between her and Sanders aren't that big; she's just more realistic and pragmatic, blah blah blah. But, there is a gigantic gap between the ideology behind the Obamacare and the ideology behind Medicare for all, for example. A progressivism that includes both of them is a meaningless word.


#20

I like this article. I wish it was in my morning newspaper but I know that that will never happen. My newspaper was acquired by the family that owns Cablevision. The first thing that they did was to fire all the Opinion Columnists. (They somehow had the funds to keep on about a dozen Sports Columnists, though.) The only opinion columns they print now (if they print any) are from a Heritage Foundation member, a Republican Strategist and various other less than left wing voices. Turn on the TV, the Radio (with the exception of Pacifica) and the only voices you hear are the corporate Echo Chamber, unleashed by the repeal of the Fairness Doctrine under Reagan. It seems to me that unless people feel compelled to dig for information (through a computer, if they even have one) they will get all their news from these insidious, prejudiced sources and eventually come to these mistaken conclusions.


#21

I have a number of "issues" with this article.

On several occasions I put forth the proposition that voters should vote on issues. Then, how they respond to issues should match them to candidates who represent those positions. That, rather than BRAND would go a long way.

Recently, (and I can't remember the source), it turns out that someone put this type of "vote" into effect as an experiment. And people were surprised by who their policy
The first is the casual way that the term PROGRESSIVE is utilized.
positions matched them up with.

I don't see anything remotely Progressive about Hillary. If preserving a woman's right to control her reproductive destiny and NOT bashing gays = Progressive, it sure leaves a lot off the table.

In Hillary's case, she's as much pro-business as any Koch-funded Republican and she's as much pro-war as the most callous of McCain style Republican hawks.

What Leopold leaves out, and it's significant are 3 things:

  1. The Clinton machine has enormous clout in the mass media. The constant meme that Sanders CANNOT win and that Hillary is going to tie up the nomination impacts listeners.

  2. That for the most part, those states where Hillary won were won due to closed primaries meaning that the hugest voting segment--the nation's 40-50% of independents--never got a chance to weigh in.

  3. That there were numerous suspicious obstacles at voting sites (like Brooklyn) used to ensure that Hillary got majorities.

So rather than turn the various encumbrances set up by the Establishment System into the "problem" of "Progressives" choosing HIllary, I find this to be a disingenuous frame.

It's like asking why the Fire Department didn't do more to preserve the integrity of an old building AFTER a Mafia Hit burned it down.


#22

The above is an unfair indictment of people who HEAR all the Progressive sounding promises that Hillary makes now, and who also don't have access to Alternative Media. That means they are CLUELESS about her true record in Honduras' coup, and her eager support for foreign wars and "regime changes."

I put the blame on the mass media! If citizens were informed about the TRUE conditions and TRUE blow-back for numerous foreign entanglements, engagements, and invasions, they'd have a FAR clearer view of Mrs. Clinton.

Because YOU (and other regulars) have the LUXURY of sitting here during work-day hours and the capacity (and that includes time, and whatever financial resources support your mundane needs) to scope out alternative media cannot be assumed of others.

The vast majority are working jobs designed to ROB them of their energy, soul essence, and hope.

Lots of people who slug it out in the workplace (and for many, that also means carting kids to school, cooking, doing housework, preparing homework with the kiddies, etc.) have very little energy when they finally can just sit down. That's why TV delivering FALSE narratives should be the target of indictments.

When people are given SHIT as "food for thought" they CANNOT make wise determinations.


#23

Interesting list.

"You are known by the company you keep."


#24

By Jove, I've got it!

The new term...

NLPRA...

Neo-Liberal-Pseudo-Republican-Asshole.

I think that fits Clinton and friends. Right?


#25

or...there haven't been enough of us awake and fighting!


#26

Why do progressives cling to Hillary?

This very good article brings up another question that I have asked and have never had answered: If the Sanders candidacy is indicative not of a single man's run for office, but a political revolution that is so long overdue, why have progressives never taken to any of the others who have been talking about the same things for decades?

Ralph Nader, Dennis Kucinich, the Green Party under several different candidates, and any number socialist parties are historically ignored, laughed at, denigrated and demeaned. But let a former almost unknown independent junior senator run as a Democrat and we have "a revolution." Why?

Why was there no revolution when there has been income disparity and neoliberalism in full swing since the 80s? Why are the very same policies that drove progressives to condemn the Nixon and Reagan administrations now embraced since they have become Clinton policies? Why is the holy grail of progressive politics, single payer health coverage for every citizen, now too expensive and therefore unattainable? "It will never happen," Hillary stated emphatically.

Why do progressives cling to Hillary? Why have progressives abandoned progressivism?

Why do progressives cling to the Democratic Party?