For better or worse, I’m following through on my idea from yesterday to write about this fall’s presidential election in the USA. It’s an itch that’s got to be scratched, so for the next several days there’ll be no fiction, no lame poetry, no prompt responses, no reblogs. If politics ain’t your thing, you might want to check out for a while; catch up with you later.
If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you probably know that I’m no fan of the man I call The Fraud. As I’ll explain in a future post, I’m also not in favor of voting for any of the third-party candidates that will be on the ballot. (Odd to use that term for multiple candidates; shouldn’t there be a fourth-party, fifth-party etc?) That leaves one candidate, the nominee of the Democratic Party, former First Lady / Senator / Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. That’s who I’ll be voting for on November 8.
But, in the best tradition of high school debate, I’m going to start this series of posts by outlining the case against my position. It’s a useful exercise, demonstrating an understanding of the opposing argument and thereby strengthening your own. (At least that’s what I always said when teaching Freshman Composition.) About thirty seconds of Google searching will yield a wealth of negative information about Clinton — some of it based in fact, many of it motivated by bias, and quite a bit that is pure fabrication. I’ll try to stick to the facts in my list of reasons why I sometimes wonder if I’m making the right decision:
- She is too friendly with Wall Street. “Too big to fail” financial institutions commit massive fraud which leads to a global crisis, and Washington bails them out and prosecutes nobody. Wells Fargo violates a series of laws, and gets a slap on the wrist. Too many lawmakers are in the back pocket of Wall Street, and too few are speaking out against the corruption. Clinton has talked about financial reform (mostly inspired by her struggles in the primaries against Bernie Sanders), but she has also accepted millions in campaign contributions from Wall Street. Corruption in Washington is rampant, and Clinton (whose husband advocated many of the financial “reforms” that led to the 2008 crisis) is probably not the person to effect change.
- She’s a foreign policy hawk. Clinton says she regrets her decision as Senator to vote in favor of the Iraq invasion in 2002, although judging by her subsequent foreign policy decisions, it’s hard not to believe that she only regrets the political impact of her vote. Our military is weary and overstretched; the last thing we need is a President who believes the United States needs to act as the world’s policeman.
- Her obsession with privacy is disturbing. It’s not in the Constitution, but anyone who wants to be President has to understand it is the most public job in the nation, if not the world. It may not be fair, but it’s not going to change. Clinton has had legendary battles with the media over the decades, and many have been rooted in her refusal to divulge information that many consider to be in the public domain. Her recent bout of pneumonia is a case in point; she attempted to conceal her sickness with a cover story (she was visiting her daughter) after abruptly leaving a campaign event, which was followed by another cover story (she was dehydrated) to explain why she abandoned her press corps, and only revealed the full truth after a disturbing video of her stumbling was made public. She’s got pneumonia, and needs rest — say that at the outset, and there’s no controversy. A government wanting to act in secret is, shall we say, a danger to the public, and I don’t believe Clinton will be any less secretive as President than she is now.
There, my job for today is done. Tomorrow’s task will be more difficult, but it’s gotta be done.