Hillary Clinton’s Victory
I’m certain that the reader will understand that the following is an explanation, not an endorsement.
Hillary Clinton’s path to the Democratic nomination was the exact opposite of Donald Trump’s to the Republican. She entered the race as the presumptive nominee and ultimately obtained the goal. However, her progress was seriously impeded by the unexpected popularity of a 75 year old socialist from Vermont who wasn’t even a member of the Democratic Party. Whereas Mrs. Clinton struggled to generate even modest levels of popular enthusiasm, Mr. Sanders regularly spoke to large crowds of almost delirious supporters.
Over the course of the primary campaign, Mrs. Clinton eventually vanquished Mr. Sanders, with the scandalous assistance of the DNC. Along the way it emerged that no one in the Democratic Party was able (or, more likely, was willing) to provide a cogent explanation for how socialism differs from Democratic economic policy. Mr. Sanders eventually endorsed Mrs. Clinton and appears to be quickly receding into the political oblivion from which he came.
To the extent that Mrs. Clinton actually won Democratic voters approval, I believe that the following two decisive factors led to her victory.
- Whereas Mr. Sanders (eventually) sought direct state control over the means of production, Mrs. Clinton proposed indirect control, by requiring individuals and companies to use their property in the international interest defined by her and her progressive followers.
- Mrs. Clinton can be counted on to run to the head of every progressive parade to claim leadership of its social justice cause du jour.
With regard to the first point, that which separates the elite leadership of the Democratic Party from its radical Progressive base is the realization that actual Socialism is a monstrous failure. You need only look to Venezuela for the most recent practical example, although you need to go way back to the 20th Century to find the genocidal truth in the Soviet Union, People’s Republic of China, and Cambodia. As currently in Venezuela, the best case result is “only” economic, cultural and social ruin.
Certainly the base doesn’t want these outcomes either. However, unfortunately, many don’t know anything about Socialism’s bloody history and many others are convinced that ‘this time we’ll get it right!’ So, the trick during the primary season was to keep the base on board while not explicitly embracing an actual Socialist program. Mrs. Clinton accomplished this by moving aggressively to the left on as many issues as possible and by rhetorically railing against Wall Street (while keeping their massive donations pocketed and withholding the texts of her many private speeches to them).
Thus, the economic machine that creates the abundant wealth necessary for the comfortable existences to which the Western Progressive Left has become accustomed will, by Mrs. Clinton’s assurance, go on unabated. Her economic program doesn’t seek to completely destroy the benefits of nominal private ownership of property, rather, it promises to allow enough wealth to be created to continue funding her supporter’s lifestyles while maintaining the facade of government deniability for the certain negative consequences of government control (it’s those bad companies again!). All of this wealth will supposedly be created even as the culture that enables it is pulled down. Of course, this is pure fantasy. But it is absolutely necessary that both contradictory ideas be simultaneously believed in order for the Progressive project to advance. This disconnect from truth and reality brings us to the second point.
Mrs. Clinton has shown, over 25 years of public life, the ability to lie with astounding effectiveness. In the most recent scandal over her appalling negligence in protecting classified information as Secretary of State, virtually everything that she has said has been shown to be a lie. She brazenly lied over the coffins of the four dead Americans, murdered in Benghazi Libya, then called the grieving parents who objected liars.
Let me be clear. All politicians lie, and Mr. Trump also lies with a frequency and shamelessness that simply stuns. However, Mrs. Clinton’s above lies were told while and about her service as Secretary of State, the senior Cabinet Officer and person fourth in line to be the President of the United States. That raises the level of seriousness considerably.
With regard to consistency, Mrs. Clinton now pretends to care about the presumed veracity of women claiming sexual assault, but spent her husband’s two terms as President destroying the characters of the many women who accused her husband of sexual assault. Anyone who lived through Mr. Clinton’s two terms as president knows that, going in, presidential lying was considered a serious fault, but by the end was considered by many to be an admired art form.
Thus, personal truthfulness or consistency has no role in Mrs. Clinton’s political positions — from the assumed veracity of women claiming sexual assault, to economic policy, to same-sex marriage, to international trade agreements, to crime and punishment, to immigration policy (I could go on) — the only “goodness and truth” is what the progressive movement declares it to be on any given day. And, Mrs. Clinton will be in the lead, condemning anyone who deviates from that day’s progressive orthodoxy and demanding that our society uniformly comply which each and every demand.
How then does she convince so many decent, generally honest people to vote for her? I believe the answer is twofold. First, the Progressive movement gives all practical appearance of owning the moral high ground and running the show. Thus, many people just assume that they deserve this position. Secondly, they see progressives such as Mrs. Clinton speaking with utter conviction and without contradiction by the mainstream media, and assume that they must be telling the truth. This misplaced trust may well be enough to elect her President.
Then again, misplaced confidence my be enough to elect Donald Trump President.