Thursday, July 28, 2016

Our terrible, horrible moment


     We, here at DtB, are fans of Bernie Sanders. We have no love of Hillary Clinton, to put it mildly.
     So, now that Bernie has been defeated and Hillary is the Democratic candidate for President, what are we to do? (I'm only speaking for myself at this point.)
     Hillary is awful. But Trump is beyond awful.
     And a large voice keeps whispering, "Remember 2000!" (Yep, I voted for Nader in 2000. I have at times regretted that.*)
     In recent months, I have tended to agree with Robert Reich in this debate. Reich is following Bernie's lead by supporting the only person who can stop Trump, namely, Hillary. That makes a lot of sense.
     But, again, Hillary is truly awful.** And, increasingly, it appears that she might be too weak to beat the Donald. And so it is difficult to listen to the likes of Mr. Hedges—who insists on viewing Hillary, correctly I think, as a tool of big business and the 1 percenters—and not feel powerfully moved to join him in screaming, No! Hillary, goddamit, is the enemy. 
     Reich and Sanders are exercising pragmatism. They're holding their noses and giving Hillary the big Embrace in order to defeat Trump. (I suspect that the Embracers constitute a continuum, with Reich on the left and Bernie way on the right. Reich can live with his compromise; Bernie probably wants to off himself. Look at him.)
     That feels like betrayal, man. It just does. 
     Well, it is.
     Dang.
     To embrace or not to embrace. Each position is compelling. Neither can be denied.
     Or so it seems to me.

*For years after the 2000 election, upon noting the latest Bushian atrocity, my colleague Rebecca W would point her finger at me and intone, "So you had to vote for Nader, didn't you!" (But see this.)
**I have never been among those who "can't stand Hillary." My problem with her fundamentally concerns her actions and her policies—e.g., her hawkish record [drones, Libya, Iraq] and her friendliness to Wall Street. Those who insist on lumping me together with the usual right-wing Hillary haters are simply committing a gross fallacy.


Cornel West: Why I Endorse Green Party's Jill Stein Over "Neoliberal Disaster" Hillary Clinton:


Nader on Hillary Clinton:


Chomsky on Supporting Sanders & Why He Would Vote for Clinton Against Trump in a Swing State:

The Democrats have learned nothing:

45 comments:

Anonymous said...

Very simple. hold your nose and vote for HRC. Why? Because the thought of a Trump presidency is truly scary. When somebody says "I alone can fix this," doesn't that ring echoes of Mussolini or even Hitler? And the worst part is that many people believe it, just like they believed it then. Trump is a demagogue and unfit to be POTUS. HRC has lots of baggage and is not trustworthy, but I'd rather take my chances with her.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure why Bernie voters think they have less in common with Hillary than they actually do. She's against Citizens United. And on the environment, women's rights, SCOTUS, the economy, well pretty much every issue, you're going to have a lot more in common with her than you do with Trump. So I'm not really sure what all the hand wringing is about.

We'll be wringing our hands for sure if Trump wins. And those 20 million people who now have health insurance due to Obamacare? They can kiss it goodbye.

Is that what we really want?

Roy Bauer said...

Did you watch the video? Do.

Anonymous said...

And now for the flipside to some of this:

1. Email Server Scandal
Hillary has long had email issues. Not that she’s not agile with a keyboard but it has more to do with “privacy.” During her time as Secretary of State she sent a number of emails via a private server when she worked from her New York residence. As such, her aides were able to decide which emails to turn over to the State Department, when requested, and which emails they did not. Due to the often sensitive nature of some of those emails, this is one of many of Hillary’s scandals.

2. Paula Jones Scandal
Paula Jones was a government worker in Arkansas, who alleged she was sexually harassed by Bill Clinton when he was Governor. She filed suit in 1994, looking for close to one million dollars in damages, although the case was settled out of court. Many years later, in 2015, the same Paula Jones told reporters that she believed that Hillary Clinton knew all about the sexual harassment yet did nothing and simply supported her husband.

3. FBI Background Scandal
After the Clinton Administration was found to have more than 700 FBI background reports on their rivals, the Republicans, a variety of questions were raised. One big question was that of the Director of the Office of Personnel Security, Craig Livingstone, and how he arrived at having that high-profile job. As the story goes, it was Hillary who pushed for him to get the job as she was close friends with his mother.

4. Norman Hsu Scandal
For those of you who don’t know, Norman Hsu was a big contributor and fundraiser for the Democratic party during Hillary Clinton’s Presidential campaign of 2008. It was he who collected contributions for the party, from a variety of “sources” and went quite a distance in promoting Hillary. However, Clinton was left with egg on her face when it turned out that Hsu was a criminal, and more than that a fugitive, who had been scamming people and businesses for many long years.

5. Vince Foster Scandal
This chap, a well-known Arkansas lawyer, was a childhood friend of Bill Clinton and also worked closely with Hillary at Rose Law Firm during the 1970s. When Bill became President he joined the administration as the deputy White House counsel. Foster was known to suffer from depression and in the July of 1993 he allegedly committed suicide in his Virginia Park home with a single gunshot. Most said it was suicide, while many claimed it had something to do with Hillary and Bill and some “foul play.”

6. Jorge Cabrera Scandal
Jorge Cabrera was a supporter of the Democrats in the mid-90s and even wrote them a personal check of $20,000. During that time he was even seen in pictures, taken by the press along with the then-First Lady. However, just a few short months later and Cabrera was arrested in a drug bust in Miami and was given 19 years behind bars.

7. Sniper Fire Scandal
When she was First Lady, as her husband sat in the Oval Office at the White House, Hillary went on an official visit to Bosnia and met with American troops stationed there. On her return she told the press that she had herself come under sniper fire and could have been killed at the airport when she arrived. Just one week later and Hillary took back those comments claiming she had “made a mistake” in the recounting of what actually happened.

Anonymous said...

Flipside cont'd:

8. Personal Email Scandal
When she was Secretary of State, Hillary also used a personal email address but used it to conduct official business. She allegedly used her personal email to conduct all of her official business. She claimed she never used her personal email to send or receive “classified” information but no one is sure of the real truth about this scandal.

9. Travelgate Scandal
Just a few months after Bill Clinton entered the White House the well-known Travelgate scandal ensued. It started in the spring of 1993 when seven White House employees were fired for questionable accounting practices. Apparently Hillary knew all about the sudden firings way before they actually happened and may well have had a part in them.

10. Monica Lewinsky Scandal
Everyone remembers this one, as the relationship between Bill and Monica, who worked closely with him at the White House came out. She was only an intern at the time, and apparently had sexual relations with Bill, even though he was married. Hillary totally denied that her husband did anything untoward and said on the record that the whole thing had been a “vast right-wing conspiracy.”

11. 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. Scandal
When the Clinton administration handed over the keys of the White House to the incoming Bush administration, allegations of “damage, theft, vandalism and pranks” were in abundance. When the Clinton’s moved from the White House to their New York home they allegedly took items from the White House which they shouldn’t have, totalling a shocking $190,000. The couple ultimately returned the items, but the scandal lived on.

12. Whitewater Scandal
Whitewater is the generic term for a bunch of scandals attributed to the Clintons. For example, they purchased a few hundred acres of land with their personal friends Jim and Susan McDougal along the White River in the Ozarks. That deal failed and many shady business dealings came out. This scandal led on to the Lewinsky scandal and was seen as “the first domino” that plagued the Clintons for years to come.

13. Clinton Foundation Scandal
Many people have heard of the Clinton Foundation, which was set up by Bill after he left the White House. The foundation was meant to be a nonprofit operation and was set to deal with issues like global warming and climate change. Many alleged at the time that the Clintons used the foundation to forward their own personal agendas. It culminated in allegations of back handers and dodgy dealings which prevail to this day.

14. Benghazi Scandal
This is one of the most famous scandals that Hillary Clinton found herself embroiled in. Back in 2012, four Americans were killed during attacks on a US diplomatic compound in Benghazi, including the then-Ambassador Christopher Stevens. Hillary Clinton’s conduct as Secretary of State was bought into question due to her various email accounts and the way she used them.

15. Cattle Money Scandal
This scandal dates back to the 1970s when Hillary Clinton made a tidy profit of $100,000 trading on the cattle futures market. She was in cahoots with a personal friend at the time who worked for Tyson Foods Inc. Apparently, according to a New York Times article from 1994, Tyson Foods received $9 million in government loans, deeming the whole sage very unsavory and questionable.

16. Clinton Speeches Scandal
It’s not just Bill who made a packet for giving 45 minute speeches at various institutions, but also daughter Chelsea, and of course, wife Hillary Clinton. While Chelsea’s standard fee in 2014 was around the $65,000 mark, Hillary reported a personal income of a staggering $11 million for a total of 51 speeches she gave in just a year. If that’s not outrageous, nothing is!

Anonymous said...

What's odd is that there is a lack of integrity amongst politicians yet, the public will vote dem or rep like sheep. I liked Bernie not because of his platform but because he has integrity.

Anonymous said...

I have always been an HRC fan, and she's been attacked and vilified since 1992. Never got it, except for the fact that she's a smart woman.

Please post any policy position to which you are opposed. Reproductive rights? The environment? Political funding disclosure?
Anything that is truly offensive? I'll wait, patiently.

Ralph Nader, and those who voted for him, can try and justify their hideous decision that resulted in the horrors of W, no matter how much they want to blame it on Gore. Gore won the popular vote by a half a million voters--imagine another 2 or 3 million votes? And how that would have affected the electoral college? Now we have another surge of the principled well meaning folk who despise Clinton and think that their opposition to her does not matter. It does. If Trump gets elected, I'm laying the blame, again, on you people.

Anonymous said...

Travelgate? Whitewater? Cabrera? Benghazi? 11:30 has no idea what the fuck the word "scandal" means. First, be sure the underlying bullshit wasn't all made up by obstructionists to begin with.

Roy Bauer said...

Most of you clearly failed to read the links I provided or watch the video. Utterly clueless.
E.g., I provided a link to one of the many places where Nader efffectively responds to the nonsense that he was personally responsible for Gore's defeat in 2000. You need to hear/read an argument before you can respond to it. Good grief!
The (or at any rate my and Hedges and progressives') case against Hillary, made powerfully in the video, has nothing to do with this nonsense about Vince Foster, travel gate, and all the rest. Get a fuckin' clue. She is part of a system that puts major corporations and other special interests at the helm of the nation. She gets huge bucks from Wall Street and gives Wall Street exactly what it wants. Get it?
Policies? She voted for the war. She supports fracking. She has generally followed her husband in supporting so called "free trade" agreements. And on and on.
It's not enough to have opinions. You need reasons.

Anonymous said...

Politifact has a well documented discussion about HRC and fracking. It's much more nuanced than saying she "supports tracking" and thus likes environmental destruction. She has a realistic perspective akin to Brown's, like it or not. She's also called for repealing the Hyde amendment, so good for her.

Reasons? You want reasons? Consider again the federal judiciary, the most important part of government and the least appreciated by the electorate, and not just the supreme court. Interpretations of EPA regs and voting rights, and campaign finance, all covered by constitutional interpretation. Who did her husband appoint? Ginsberg, for one, and Breyer. Top that. Bush--well, Alito, the little scourge, and Roberts. Who would Trump appoint--Huckabee? Sure, why not.


Yes, after the administration led the bullshit charge for Iraq, she voted yes. She was not a progenitor, though, and many others followed that lead. Not an excuse, but again, not enough for a blanket condemnation.

As far as Nader trying to resurrect his reputation, sure, why not. But you know, we don't live in a parliamentary system. So, instead of foregoing his ego, he should have realized how things were going, pulled back, and said something basic and decent, like "Gore's a good guy, smart and experienced, and so I'm going to endorse him so we won't have the possible horror of a Bush presidency; please sport him and I wish you all well." But, he didn't, and now we live with the consequences. Nader is a great guy, but he really fucked up on that.

I'm still waiting for all the evidence about her being such a disgusting whore giving Wall Street what it wants. She's opposed to Citizens United and supports campaign finance disclosure, so well---?

Roy Bauer said...

5:44, calm yourself.
In fact, Hillary has indeed been a great and consistent supporter of fracking; more recently, she has been forced to moderate her position owing to successful challenges from the left (Sanders).
I asked for reasons rather than assertions and fallacies, such as your attributing to me the view that Hillary “likes environmental destruction” or that she is a "disgusting whore." Obviously, I never said any such thing, nor do I believe it. Do try to avoid gross fallacies, my friend.
Yes, Hillary voted for the war in Iraq; but, more importantly, she is a consistent hawk and a strong advocate for the worst of Obama’s military and privacy excesses (see Chomsky, et al.). I’m saying this, obviously, not from the right, but from the progressive left.
Does her hawkish record deserve condemnation? You bet.
Nader’s reputation is safe; his analysis (c. 2000) of the state of American politics and the steps necessary to improve it is now widely adopted. Some of you seem to confuse his positions and policies (important, ahead of their time) with his third party candidacies. The alleged error of the latter has no bearing on the quality or correctness of the former. Essentially, Nader is right and has been right for a very long time. That's a progressive truism. Hillary is an establishment figure dedicated to thwarting the progressive agenda. She has been forced to move to the Left, owing to the surprising success of Sanders.
Look at her campaign contributors, for Chrissake. Look at her PACs. It's the same old pattern. it's the same for Republicans and Democrats.
You should be aware that the “gotta choose the lesser-of-two-evils” argument is very old and has often been rejected by various serious writers over the decades. My problem with Hillary has absolutely nothing to do with wooly theories about Vince Foster and evil machinations, which, obviously, come from the lunatic right. My critique, which is of an entirely different nature, comes from the Left, and it concerns the rather plain fact that, for a very long time now, our government is controlled by the usual suspects. Hillary plainly represents a continuaton of the status quo.
Again, no, I never suggested that Hillary is “a disgusting whore.” Yes, she does tend to give Wall Street what it wants. As any number of academic and observers have noted, she is quite plainly the anointed choice of Wall Street, given Mr. Trump’s apparent instability. They want her to win. If she wins, they win.
Did you catch Cornel West on Bill Maher's show tonight? No surpise there. None at all.

Anonymous said...

It comes down to this...
Whoever will be President this term will have a HUGE IMPACT on the Supreme Court. Those appointments will effect our lives.

Anonymous said...

Of more importance than West was the wonderful Barney Frank. Notice his take on HRH.

Roy Bauer said...

Fine, we should all vote for Hillary. But don't kid yourself. She's the establishment, and she'll continue to work hard to defeat Sander and Co's core progressive agenda. The government will continue to by and for the special interests.
Years of nose-holding ahead. Years of struggle against Hillary and her crowd.

Anonymous said...

How many years would we have if Trump were elected? Civilizations can end quite quickly and he'd be the boy to do it. Sadly.

Roy Bauer said...

You're missing the point. I will likely vote for Hillary come November, as already implied. The point here is this: Hillary is no hero. She is nothing more than the lesser of two evils. Is she seriously less evil than Trump? Likely so. Does she fundamentally represent what is and has been wrong with U.S. politics? YOU BET. The coronation of Hillary is no kumbaya moment. It is an unpleasant episode (watch Sanders' face) leading up to a very unfortunate election between an irresponsible and obnoxious incompetent and a smart but uninspired corporatist who will blunt the edges of any progressive initiatives thrust upon her.

Anonymous said...

Funny, everything here is pro criminal, higher taxes and more free stuff from the government. Anything private sector is PURE EVIL! You people are really funny.

Roy Bauer said...

12:40: as always, you offer assertions and no arguments—plus the merest of fallacies. Nobody is saying that "anything private sector is pure evil." Nothing said "here" (here?) is "pro criminal," whatever that is supposed to mean. The successful "socialist" nations of Europe judge that, if the price for a decent society is higher taxes, then so be it. To be substantial, you need to address their success and their judgment. Your crude fallacies waste every thinking person's time.

Anonymous said...

This election is the worst.

Roy Bauer said...

10:45, I agree that this election is the worst. It is made worse still, as usual, by the phenomenon of decent people viewing the pick (in this case, likely Hillary) as though she were heroic or wise or insightful, etc., despite the plain fact that she represents what is wrong with American politics, which is the influence of big money. For as long as big money continues to impose its will on our system, there will be no fundamental movement toward sanity, common sense, or decency. Could we have a little sobriety please? Could we be adult for a change?
We've got to change the system. Clinton will pay lip service to that agenda because, politically, she cannot do otherwise. But she will not let the change occur because she is its beneficiary. Luckily, the one democraphic that strongly supported Sanders (the choice, pre-convention, of those who sought to change the system in the way necessary) is the under-30 crowd. They are the future. The revolution's flame will stay lit despite HRC. Deluded old farts will die out over time.

Anonymous said...

Ross Perot, where are you?

Anonymous said...

If HRC is so corrupt and enamored of the big money, why then is she opposed to Citizens United? I find the mantra of "Wall Street Wall Street Wall Street" to be rather tiresome. Is anyone that the entrenched system of campaign funding should be changed to public funding, yet the electorate (and judiciary) won't hear of it? My greatest concern is that we have a worthy candidate for president and now the well meaning crowd wants to toss in a third party (again) to fuck things up, yet again.

Anonymous said...

Completely agree, 10:50. Not to mention the backbreaking work HRC has done to make universal health care a reality. Does anyone not remember how hard she worked for this in the early 90's?

It's so easy to hate a candidate when she's been in the public eye for decades and has a track record to sort through. Frankly, Bernie was not capable of winning the general election. He was untested in that kind of race. It's easy to be uber liberal when you're the senator of the tiny state that created Ben and Jerry's. Most of Bernie's supporters didn't even know who he was until late 2015/early 2016.

Is Hillary perfect? Absolutely not. Obama is much easier to fully embrace. His supporters don't feel that they have to defend him all the time, as we did with Bill and do with Hillary. Obama is class personified. He gives no indication that anything he does is shady.

I don't see how Hillary represents big money. Does Obama also represent big money, then? The reality is that in today's landscape, winning elections isn't possible without big money. Electing the democratic candidate is the way to get a Supreme Court that will overturn Citizens United (and do the other important work we need, like upholding voting rights, abortion rights, and all the other things us liberals hold dear).

Anonymous said...

Thannks, 11:09, it's great to see a rational discussion about Clinton without the hysterical naivety and continued baseless ad hominems.

Roy Bauer said...

10:50, 11:09, et al. — you need to keep up better.
Hillary’s record is of an oddly muted and opportunistic critic of the Citizens United (CU) decision. In fact, since she eagerly collects corporation and big donor money, she is a major beneficiary of that decision. You might want to read the Center for Public Integrity’s Hillary Clinton: the 'Citizens United' candidate, which clarifies matters. Hillary offers lip service to CU criticism; in the meantime, she utterly exploits CU’s green light to big donor money. Are you unaware of this? Apparently so.
Keep in mind that Hillary routinely bemoans the presence of big special interest money in elections—despite her routinely collecting more of that sewer money than any one else. What she says is one thing. Who she is is another.
11:09, you state, “The reality is that in today's landscape, winning elections isn't possible without big money.” If you mean big corporate donations, then you’re dead wrong. As any number of commentators have noted, the importance of the 2016 Bernie campaign is precisely that he demonstrated that one can run a viable (i.e., sufficiently wealthy) campaign without collecting money from rich special interests. In fact, Bernie managed to collect all of those millions from small contributors like me.
How can it be that you are unaware of this? Where've you been?
That Hillary is Wall Street’s candidate is well known and has been widely discussed in the media. (See, e.g., Politico's Why Wall Street Loves Hillary.) Her campaign rests on big contributions from those people and other big moneyed interests.
See Politico’s Wall Street donors seek to block Warren VP pick, which explains that Hillary’s crucial Wall Street supporters made it abundantly clear to her that she had better not choose Elizabeth Warren as her running mate. Why? Because Warren is the chief critic of Wall Street and its well-known excesses. With EW at her side, Hillary cannot be counted on to leave Wall Street alone to plunder.
One more thing: Hillary likes to ask, “I don’t know where [Bernie Sanders] was when I was trying to get health care in ’93 and ’94.”
So where was he? Actually, back in 1993, he sponsored a single-payer health insurance bill. (See FactCheck.)
In fact, HRC thanked him for his work on the issue at the time.
Get your facts straight, people. And pay attention.

Anonymous said...

Well, ok, for those of us who live in the real world instead of unicorn fantasy land, we have a buggered political system, not a parliamentary system, in which the winner takes all. It sucks, but there it is. All we need is for some twit to suck off a few percentage points, as with Nader, to swing the election, And there we are, in Republican hell yet again.

Elizabeth Warren is a sterling senator, and that's where she shines. I'd rather she stays there dealing with that hotbed of horror led by McConnell, whose name you may recognize. The Republicans are cheaters and will do anything to subvert democracy with this crap system the way it is.

If Clinton needs to raise bunch of money to get elected, so be it. If you think some quixotic quest by someone with no experience or qualifications to be president, like Stein, is appropriate, then get on board the reality train. Clinton stands for progressive ideals, especially choice for women, voting rights, social security, environmental protection, and medical insurance. Tell me again why she is an 'evil."

She has to do what's necessary--much of the nation has an electorate of right wing dipshits and greed mongering clowns who think that taxes and education, and science, are an anathema. They'd love a theocracy. She's a smart woman dealing with ridiculous attacks against her, when she'd be a competent and diplomatic representative of the good old US of A.

I do not want to swirl over the drain again like we did after 2000. Gore was a fine candidate, yet about all I hear is that "he didn't carry Tennessee!" So what, it's fucking Tenessee. Then we had 9/11 and warfare. Thanks, Nader voters.

If you want to have a totally different political system, have at it, I'm with you. But we don't and it ain't gonna happen. Here we have a fine and qualified candidate, and stop this crap about a "lesser of two evils." She is not evil. Stop it. She's a realist, and we're lucky to have her.

Anonymous said...

You're being kind of a jerk, Roy. Can others not share their opinions without you saying that "we need to keep up better" and asking where we've been? We're paying attention, we just don't agree with you.

Nobody in these comments has said that Bernie didn't support universal health care. The point was that "evil" Hillary Clinton is well known for her long, drawn out efforts in the early 90's for universal health care. Efforts that she was crucified for by the GOP.

Bernie did raise a record number of funds from individual donors. Good for him! Again, easy to appeal to the very liberal base when your focus for the past thirty-odd years is Vermonters. I have no doubt that Bernie can much more easily raise funds from Pfish fans than Hillary can. Good for him.

I don't agree that Wall Street in and of itself is evil. Wall Street is in New York, obviously the former senator from that state will have ties there. If she didn't, Rick Lazio would have likely beat her in 2000. Wall Street employs thousands of people.

You're jumping to a lot of conclusions there, with your assertions about Warren. It's just as likely that Hillary felt Elizabeth Warren overshadowed her, or that they didn't have good chemistry. Either way, Elizabeth Warren seems to be enthusiastically supporting Hillary now. Do you dislike her too, now?

Is Hillary perfect? No. Is the system perfect? No. But like you said, that will change in time. Demanding dramatic change overnight and vilifying Hillary only helps Trump. It's time for pragmatism.

Anonymous said...

Very good points. Still, I'm a Roy fan. But he does fan every now and then.

Roy Bauer said...

I tire of your fallacious rhetoric. I've said enough.

Anonymous said...

It's called declaring victory and leaving the arena.

Roy Bauer said...

Whether or not I am victorious, I am tired of making the same points, well-supported, only to have them ignored and mangled. The facts are what they are. I'll leave it at that. I really don't know what else I can say.

Anonymous said...

Wow Roy. The facts, as interpreted, or understood by you, must be the truth. Really? Facts can be interpreted and colored all you want to prove your point. It goes both/all ways on that one buddy. The egotistical way you dismiss others opinions and interpretations of facts only goes to prove that you are truly delusional. Need proof? Just reread your responses on this thread. Arrogant idgit!

Roy Bauer said...

9:34, you say, "Facts can be interpreted and colored all you want to prove your point."
Really? No objectvity possible? All views are on an equal footing?
Your view is rubbish.
Stay away from philosophy, my friend.

Anonymous said...

Really, 934, if someone suggests that Clinton receives big bucks from Wall Street people, that cannot be determined as true or false?
What are you smokin'?

Anonymous said...

Or if Clinton receives financial donations to run a strong campaign, which does not preclude her as being a well qualified president who will serve respectfully and efficiently, cannot that be looked upon as a fact? Again, try a dose of reality.

Anonymous said...

An interesting read from a Bernie supporter, who realizes that he bought into and was participating in the GOP's narrative of Clinton:
https://hulshofschmidt.wordpress.com/2016/08/01/dear-hillary-how-very-dare-you/

It might not jibe with what you think is acceptable opinion or fact, but it's still a worthy read from an educated person. Not sure if he is a philosopher.

Anonymous said...

Well, at 11:10, to call Clinton "evil" as in lesser of two evils, how is this objectively sustainable?

Roy Bauer said...

The notion that all opinions are equally valid, which seems to be suggested by some commenters above (e.g., "Facts can be interpreted and colored all you want to prove your point"), is precisely the kind of anti-intellectualism and anti-rationality that fuels the Republican base. Facts don't matter to them. You cite them, and it means nothing. Ironically, the great "relativists" or non-objectivists of our time are not progressives; they are the sort of under-educated Neanderthal of the Tea Party crowd.
Plus some deluded defenders of HRC for whom all positions equally find support with "facts."
You might notice that I am in the habit of citing sources—typically reporting with a good reputation—when making my points. So, when I say that Hillary is in Wall Street's pocket, I refer (see above) to one of many articles that have established that fact.
No, my benighted friends, rational discourse is not just the spouting of opinions. It is the offering of arguments in support of one's view.
Those who refer to Berners and critics of HRC as unrealistic fantacists who have an irrational hatred of Hillary, need to offer arguments, not just opinions. Opinions per se are worthless. That's a critical thinking truism; one would think self-described progressives would understand that. Rational people respond to the reliable reportage of facts, among other things.
It amazing to me that I need to say this. It's at moments like this that I feel like abandoning DtB. Why bother to say anything when "points" are judged good simply because one likes them, whether or not they are based on anything?
Some of you have a love for Hillary that is seemingly beyond reason. In truth, the facts (if one knows how to find such things) line up very definitely in support of a critique of HCR according to which she is the epitome of a candidate that does the bidding of powerful special interests.
Please do your homework. We live in a society in which it is still possibe for the careful thinker to discern the facts.
Discern them.
Respond to them.

Anonymous said...

"So, when I say that Hillary is in Wall Street's pocket, I refer (see above) to one of many articles that have established that fact."
You may declare this as a fact, but it's actually an opinion. If you think that she'll void environmental protection because she's been paid off,ok, but I don't see it. Provide an actual quid pro quo when she took money and changed her perspective.

We don't have a "love for Hillary" that is beyond reasons, and that's pretty poor argumentation. Those of us who support her have a perfectly educated, finely tuned perspective as to the reality of the horror of the political landscape in this country, and we're lucky to have her taking on this role with the attacks she has to continually endure, and which she has since 1992.

Roy Bauer said...

4:41: lame, lame, lame (I'm borrowing your level of argumentation here; how'm I doing?).
If you confuse facts with opinions and deny the possibility of identifying opinion-independent facts (as you seem to do), then you are an irrationalist. Rationality, and knowledge generally, depends on the distinction between good grounds (for a view) and poor grounds, and, among grounds, are facts, independent of thinkers.
Surely you've heard it said (usually against right-wingers): "you have a right to your own opinion, but you don't have a right to your own facts!"
That point is significant exactly because, among intelligent people, there are facts, and everyone involved in a discussion needs to honor them and opine in terms of them. That's part of the basis for supposing that some positions are better than others. Or did you suppose that good positions are those that please you?
Either Hillary takes money from Wall Street or she doesn't. Look at the facts. She does. And in a big way.
And your response is—what? That's just an opinion?
You seem to be the "Straw Man" guy we encountered earlier. (One commits the straw man fallacy when one distorts or weakens one's opponents views; it is considered a fallacy of irrelevance; that is, one who commits this fallacy has nothing of consequences to say, since he fails to touch the thing he claims to be refuting.) I've never said or implied that HRC will "void environmental protection." Please take a basic logic course. You are wasting everyone's time.
I suggested that some have a "love of Hillary" for some (above) seem to be acting out of loyalty or affection, not reason. If you attend to the facts (which, again, among educated people, EXIST) you will understand that

Hillary routinely takes big money from big corporate interests
Her positions and policies (relatively speaking) protect and serve those interests
She and her crowd cheat (see the Wikileaks emails; examine her rhetoric; look at her record)

If you can't discern these facts, your "fine tuning" and "education" isn't worth shit.

Roy Bauer said...

What is your point, Hannibal (5:10)?
In politics, goals are often achieved over long periods of time. The goal of eliminating Big Money from politics will take time and effort. Sanders came close to beating HRC in the primary; that means that lots of people, at least within the Democratic people, are open to Sanders’ ideas, among which is the idea that big money must be removed from politics.
How would one go about pursuing that end? Well, it sure would help if someone could demonstrate that it is possible to run a viable campaign without acquiring Big Money (done, by Sanders himself). It would help if a progressive were voted into the White House, for he or she would be nominating at least one, perhaps more, Supreme Court replacements. Placing reasonable persons on the Supremes (thereby increasing the reasonable person delegation there) would create the possibility of overturning Citizens United. Will President Clinton nominate reasonable jurists? I sure hope so.
The important thing is to understand that eliminating Big Money from politics is a crucial goal. We don’t make progress toward that goal by electing the likes of HRC, an uncommonly voracious consumer of Big Money, and the most obvious beneficiary of Citizens United, her critique of which is muted and irregular at best. (She’s got to keep the Dems happy.)
Luckily, the demographic most impressed with Sanders was the youth. The future (if not the immediate future) looks bright for progressive ideas. It’s only a matter of time; Citizens United will be overturned eventually; the U.S. will eventually join other nations in preventing Big Money.

Anonymous said...

It's your usage of your "facts" that are really opinions, dressed up as something else. She takes donations, ok, sure, that's a fact. But to what purpose? It's your attached opinion that she's doing bad things because of that and thus earns our disapproval. All part and parcel of your "facts." And, yes, not much of an argument without some real facts to back up your umbrage. So, once again, point to a documented source of money given to her with a specific quid pro quo. Give it a shot--use actual facts instead of opinions masked as facts. You'll find it liberating once you actually do it.

And please tell us more of the "uncommonly voracious consumer of big money." If someone else said that, you'd be self righteously calling said person a "dispenser of ad homonyms" who should "learn to think like a philosopher." Still waiting for some actual facts here, pal.

Roy Bauer said...

An "ad hominem" (not "ad homonym") is committed when a speaker notes a negative feature of his opponent when said negative feature has no relevance to the correctness or soundness of the opponent's position/argument.
Obviously, I did not commit that fallacy by describing HRC as a "uncommonly voracious consumer of big money." I am describing her, and I am describing her accurately. That she can be thus described is relevant, given that she claims to seek eliminating big money from politics. If so, why doesnt she eschew such money, as Sanders does?
Is she a consumer of Big Money? Clearly she is. Look at her campaign finance records. They're readily available. Does she collect more of this kind of money than others? Well, yes, as a matter of fact, she does. Again, look at campaign finance records.
I do not recall suggesting that anyone should "learn to think like a philosopher." I might have rebuked a commenter who opined concerning philosophical issues, offering sophomoric notions that would produce horse laughs among those who know something about the discipline.

Anonymous said...

Really, 7:19? Clinton has a long history as a politician. The pattern in her career is consistent: she gets big bucks from special interests A, B, and C. She pursues her job in a manner that satisfies precisely those interests.
This is not enough to reasonably infer that she is responding to the desires of big donors?
Look at it this way. You DENY that there's a quid pro quo. What possible reason can you provide to defend the reasonableness of that judgment?
It is obviously an unreasonable judgment. It is, in fact, the judgment of a dullard.

Anonymous said...

OK so who are special interests A B and C? What has she done specifically to satisfy these unnamed interests? It's easy to use accusations about made up facts, you know.

The origins of our college district, Part 7: <i>the Tustin-ness of the district's early years</i>

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