From Young Progressive Voices, published January 29,
As the Iowa and New Hampshire campaigns continue to plow ahead full speed, Senator Bernie Sanders and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have officially dropped their diplomacy and engaged in a “no holds barred” battle for the Democratic nomination. Polls from a multitude of sources showcase both sides having a tight lead over the other, but ultimately only one will emerge victorious.
While Sanders has raised valid points about Clinton’s validity as a candidate (citing her continued ties to Wall Street cronies like Goldman Sachs), Clinton has taken to adopting a different tactic to smear Sanders; realism. Clinton (and her family for that matter) continue to raise the question of whether or not Sanders’s plans for America, such a single-payer healthcare system, would even be legible in today’s political climate.
Now Clinton has upped her game, releasing two political ads that, while not naming him directly, target the Senator’s proposals. The first claims how Clinton will be able to push reasonable legislation through Congress compared to Sanders’s ideas “that sound good on paper but will never make it in the real world.” The second highlights Clinton’s experience as the former Secretary of State, and takes small jabs at Sanders’s stance on gun control.
What’s interesting about both, particularly the first one, however, is the unintentional message they send out. Bernie Sanders has gained a lot of popularity by proposing what strategists may call “real change” ideas. It’s not just about maintaining the status quo, but fighting Wall Street for their damages on the economy, fighting for healthcare as a human right, and fighting for every kid to be given a chance at a college education. Clinton’s ad seems to suggest that all this “real change” is too idealistic, which may hold some truth.
However, by outright using that as a reason to support her, what Clinton’s ultimately saying is: “real change is impossible, so settle for me.” Not the best motivation speech.
News and opinion columns these days, because Michael Moore shamed corporate media into making it a national story, are talking about the moral failure playing out in Flint, Michigan with its municipal water supply.
As far as I'm concerned, the fundamental failure, and it very much is a moral failure, is in the betrayal by American government, in this case by Republican elected state officials in Michigan, ignoring the Social Contract. That contract essentially defines what constitutes a legitimate government.
Roughly eight months ago, Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont began in earnest to call for a revolution that actually can overcome the current corporate oligarchy -- when he declared his intent to run for President as a Democrat.
For months, "the powers that be" did not take him seriously. Cue Gandhi, or what is often attributed to him.
First they ignore you. Then they laugh at you. Then they attack you. Then you win.' - Mohandas GandhiThe first votes (well, besides early voting which apparently has already started in some states) will be cast in the Iowa caucuses tomorrow (February 1). As they sometimes say, shit just got real.
"They" are not ignoring Bernie anymore. They are no longer laughing. Now, they (Hillary, corporate media, the DNC... and whoever else has a stake in the status quo) are fighting. Much of that fight is a war of words.
You know what's next, when the shouting is over.
It doesn't take a rocket scientist (even though I know one or two of them), to trace the betrayal of the Social Contract to the rise of the John Birch Society in the 1950s/1960s, the Powell Manifesto (1971), ALEC (beginning in the 1970s), the Reagan Revolution (1981), and Grover Norquist.
That progression has undermined the fundamental purpose and legitimacy of American government.
So, back to the point of this post, as so eloquently stated by Robert Reich just days ago on Twitter,
By the way, what HAS Hillary actually accomplished in her political career? Has she been touting any specific achievements on the campaign trail?Hillary is best qualified for the system we have. Bernie is best qualified for the system we should have.— Robert Reich (@RBReich) January 27, 2016