Wednesday, December 28, 2016

A Short Rant on Our Low American Expectations & Self-Imposed Limitations

Just lately, something unusual and unexpected - but not unwelcome - happened.

On my Facebook page, a couple of my sentiments were shared by other people. 

This one was initially shared by one friend. Incredibly, 13 of her friends went ahead and shared it! The person who shared it has access to a much wider audience than I do.

So, it seemed like something worth sharing myself, since I was the one who wrote it initially, to begin with. Here is what I posted:

I'm tired of how easily convinced Americans are of their own limitations. We are indeed told that alternative energy options are not viable, even while other, much smaller nations are making it work, including Germany, the Netherlands, and even tiny Iceland, which somehow is beating superpower America in this regard! We are also told that a universal, affordable healthcare system that does not leave tens of millions behind is "pie in the sky" kind of dreaming, even though the United States stands as the ONLY industrialized nation that fails to provide it's citizens just such a system. Our schools are failing, and other countries lead in this regard, as well. College is free in numerous other countries, but here they are centers for mass profits for the elites, and sources of huge accumulation of debts for the little people trying to improve themselves. Other countries have significantly better benefits, including affordable child care and much longer paid vacation, and most European countries have far better public transportation systems, as well. In almost every meaningful field, we are either far behind or falling behind, and the so-called leadership keeps telling us that doing any serious improvements or investments to change all of this are not realistic, and Americans keep buying these silly arguments time and again! But the one thing that Americans repeatedly buy into are grandiose notions of being the "greatest country in the world" and listening to the President (pick the president, or the party that he belonged to) end speeches filled with half-truths or even outright deceit with the words "God Bless America." We need to stop being so damn stuck up, collectively, and realize that there is an entire world outside of our borders, with people actually, really living, and that we can learn something from them, instead of always assuming that they can learn better ways from us. If there is one thing that sometimes makes me feel ashamed to be an American, even more than Trump's victory or the ridiculous wars and foreign interference that we engage in, it is the collective arrogance of far too many millions of my fellow countrymen!

Now, the other commentary that was shared was one about Hillary Clinton, and how only mainstream Democrats seem to view her as some kind of a hero, and how they are also the only ones who cannot see what the vast majority of the country (two-thirds!) believed, which was that she was a corrupt Washington insider who had an extensive history illustrating how she could not be trusted. Originally, this was a comment that I made to someone's post, but that person liked this comment enough to share it on it's own, which was greatly appreciated, and was the first time anyone had done something like that, to my knowledge.

I borrowed this from Charbor Chronicles. Hehit (sic) the nail on the head about the DNC and Hillary Clinton. (Decmeber 23rd):

The only people who fail to realize how flawed Hillary Clinton was as a candidate are mainstream Democrats. They point to FBI director Comey, or to the Russians, or fake news sites, or to supporters of Bernie Sanders and/or Jill Stein. They claim that she was the most qualified candidate in history, and that only Republicans painted her as untrustworthy. But did the Russians force her to lie about coming under sniper fire in Bosnia? Did the Russians tell Bill Clinton to illegally meet Attorney General Loretta Lynch at an airport tarmac (possibly disrupting air traffic and inconveniencing thousands in the process) while Hillary was under active investigation? Did the Russians force Hillary to ask the Democratic establishment for help during the primaries, and did they also force the Democrats to comply in such an anti-democratic manner when they were supposed to remain neutral? Did the Russians force Clinton to hire Debbie Wasserman-Schultz as an "honorary" member of her campaign just mere hours after she was dismissed for failing to remain neutral and conducting a smear campaign against Bernie Sanders? Did they also force Donna Brazile to feed Hillary a question that she would later be given in the debate? All of those things, and much, much more, cast Hillary Clinton in a negative light. She had considerably more disapproval ratings than Trump, and she was distrusted by more Americans (a whopping 2/3's!). That's saying something, since almost nothing Trump says can be believed. She was the wrong pick for the Democrats, and the only ones who failed to see that, and who still fail to see it despite her loss, are the mainstream Democrats who put her in that position, rather undeservedly, to begin with.    

Then, I responded to someone's comment on this post, because he seemed to suggest that people being wary of voting for Hillary Clinton had ushered in a Trump presidency. I responded, and this response was shared, as well (again, I feel extremely flattered by it). This is what I said:

Borrowed this from Charbor, he nailed it on the head once again.

While I agree with the disappointment of seeing Trump win the presidency, I do not believe this automatically should translate to unconditional support for Hillary. Probably the major problem in American politics today is this: while politicians are increasingly, transparently bought off by corporations and promote their narrow interests at the expense of the American people, far too many of those people themselves are passionate and unconditional in their support of their favorite political party and their candidates for high office. When you get that kind of unconditional, and frankly, undeserved, support, we get very flawed candidates like Hillary Clinton. Her staunchest supporters were painting her as a hero, as the savior, and as the "most qualified presidential candidate in history." Those who were saying that, and making light of any and all accusations against her, obviously were not only not in touch with the vast majority of Americans who felt otherwise, but they actively, albeit inadvertently, pushed people away from her with these suggestions of greatness. She was a deeply flawed candidate, and only those unconditional supporters failed to see this. They also failed to see that this election was all about the outsiders, and by rigging the election in favor of her, they reinforced the notion of her being an all-powerful insider with access and friends in high places, as well as buttressing the arguments that she could not be trusted. For supporters of Bernie Sanders, like me, that was completely unacceptable and undemocratic, and eliminated any chance of her receiving my vote. We were told that this was not the time for a protest vote, although frankly, I am not convinced that there ever was a more urgent time for one. In every single election, we are told that same thing, "Now is not the time." At some point, we need a serious candidate who will actually work for the American people, particularly for the working class. When Democrats start to take their support for granted, as they clearly did this time, it does them no good, either. They need to be reminded that they are not all powerful, that they need to listen to the American people, and earn every vote. Frankly, the Hillary Clinton campaign failed miserably at that, even despite winning the popular vote by nearly three million people. She received generally luke warm support at best, and that is the problem. And again, clearly, she was part of the Washington insiders club that is the problem, with the big money that pours into their campaigns, and their de facto pro-corporate agenda. So, please don't blame Sanders or Stein supporters for Hillary's loss. That was her own doing, as well as those who lent her that kind of unconditional support. We need to be reminded that politicians are seeking public office, and are thus public servants, and not the other way around. Our job, as informed citizens, is to hold their feet to the fire, and mythologizing them, as Hillary supporters did in this election, obviously has not worked. 

No comments:

Post a Comment