"If it's a fish, I am going to call it a fish. If it's a dog, I am going to call it a dog. No amount of bull$hit propaganda will ever convince me that a fish is a dog or that a dog is a fish." - My Father, The Late Great, Craig Kent Marks (January, 1960-November, 2015)
I have to admit that as I continue to watch the media of coverage of the 2016 election season, I feel a little bit like the Suffragette in the drawing presented here. The scene depicts a woman from the late nineteenth century who, in her fight to receive the full benefits of American citizenship, namely the Vote, went on a hunger strike in an effort to get the point across to society how important the vote was to her. When law enforcement officials could not convince her, and many women like her, to quit the hunger strike, they stepped in and force fed the ladies in sometimes more gruesome manners than this. As you can see in this depiction, they had to be pretty rough about it. Consider, then, the monumental effort that is being put forth by the DNC, and the media outlets that support them, to convince young progressives that Hillary Clinton is their candidate. Poll after poll tells us that she is the candidate to beat. Each one put out by an outlet that is doing everything that it can to minimize the popularity of Bernie Sanders. Every time I log on to the internet, I see Clinton getting the most press, when it is really Sanders that is drawing the largest crowds and energizing the progressive element of the Democratic party, along with many others.
It may be a bit extreme to compare myself to a suffragette when it comes to Hillary Clinton, but I am pretty sure she has already been rejected by the progressive wing of her party once in 2008. Why, then, is the progressive element being asked, yet again, to support a candidate that they have long since rejected? Why do I hear accusations of men being labled anti-woman if they do not support Hillary? I would gladly support Elizabeth Warren in a heart beat, and in fact, would love to see a Sanders/Warren ticket in 2016, but I will not, under any circumstances, support any ticket that has Hillary Clinton's name on it. As I just pointed out, it has nothing to do with her gender. It does, however, have everything to do with her politics and her integrity. This woman is not a progressive. She is a pro big business, anti-labor, pro law-enforcement, anti-minority Centrist who has somehow recently found a progressive streak, and who is more likely to garner support from the Republican party than she is the left wing of her own party. She is also prone to scandal and controversy. The Benghazi affair is only her most recent debacle. The Clinton Foundation has also come under investigation; and of course, we cannot forget the Whitewater Scandal of the nineties.
As for her politics, the list could go on forever, but I will keep it brief. She supported NAFTA, the North American Free Trade Agreement, which has cost the American people in excess of one million manufacturing jobs. She supported CAFTA, the Central American Free Trade Agreement, which has absolutely destroyed small family farmers in both the United States and countries all over Central America. She has supported the TPP, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, which is projected to kill even more jobs, as the deal rewards American companies that send jobs overseas to partner nations. It is also projected to depress wages in the United States even further than they already have been by other pro business free trade deals that have been negotiated lately. One the most damaging is the free trade deal that was made with China, the China FTA, which cost the American people over three million manufacturing jobs. This is also a deal that Clinton has supported.
In my opinion, however, none of this can come anywhere near to holding a candle to the biggest scar on her political record. That is her involvement with the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994. The bill did many things. It put a time based banned on assault weapons, which later, was not renewed. It expanded the death penalty to sixty new offenses. It eliminated Inmate Education, where inmates could get get a college education while in jail to help prevent repeat offenses. It also created 'boot camps' for minors, fifty new federal felony offenses, and worse of all, it established the 'Three Strike' Rule for repeat offenders. This law has been a complete and total abject failure. It is responsible for more incarcerations of minorities and poor people, in general, than any other law in US history. It has led to the overcrowding of prisons, the rise of corrupt private prisons, and the destruction of the lives of millions of non-violent offenders, who were in need of rehabilitation to stay out of jail, not more jail time. Hillary Clinton helped to draft this legislation, and then she helped ensure its passage in a Republican Congress, something that would have been difficult if the law had actually been worth the paper it was written on. How could the Republicans refuse, though? The law did for them what the Democrats would not help create in the eighties, a minority population with fewer and fewer eligible voters, a gold mine for the corporate elite who knew that a voting minority community was a threat to their economic power.
So, consider the fact that the progressive wing of the Democratic party does not want a candidate representing them that is going to sell them and their jobs to the cheapest bidder. Further, our opposition is not just based on the crappy deal that we are getting out of such agreements. We also oppose such deals because they give companies the ability to not just send our jobs away but also to send those jobs to countries where they are able to treat their employees worse than they would here. They pay many of these workers less than a dollar a day, and certainly not a living wage in any modern sense. The companies involved in these deals are looking for yet another avenue to shift the expense of taking care of their workers away from themselves, so that they can then take the money saved and reward themselves for screwing the American people out of good work and victimizing starving workers in other countries who are just trying to feed themselves in a global economy that seems to have no heart for the plight of the impoverished. We want no part in this treachery. We want a fair system that is going to benefit every worker involved and still bring the companies a profit. We want a candidate that is going to fight to make that desire a reality, and we want a candidate that will stare down the barrel of the corporate shotgun that will be the retribution for killing such deals and be able to dare them to pull the trigger. That candidate is not Hillary Clinton, so quit trying to force us to like her. We are not interested.....