The other day I was having a friendly conversation with a couple of friends, neither who are as much a Progressive Liberal Bleeding Heart Socialist Democrat. Both persons believed that the Clinton’s are left of center. Actually, in my mind they are both right of center. First off, more than any other couple in the political spotlight, their views are nearly identical. On social issues Hillary may be closer to the center than Bill, but on foreign policy she is certainly to his right. And on economics they both straight down the Center. On the whole it balances out for both to be on the right wing side of center.
To demonstrate, just look at how Bill got to be President and how Hillary became the first woman candidate who was a shoo in for the nomination. For those with short memories, that was in 2008. but back in 1992 Bill had put together a backroom coalition to remake the Democratic Party more like the Republican party. Just with some of the traditional liberal values shared by Northern Republicans and Democrats. The plan was to engage with business to jointly come to mutual agreements on policy. This was the start of what is now usually called a business government partnership. Over the the last 20 years we have seen that the business is usually the one controlling the partnership. A Democratic idea gone bad. An idea that pushed the people’s agenda aside as being at best equal to that of business. Also, during Clinton’s administration he led the charge to weaken welfare., an item of frequent complaint by Republicans. The new rules lowered government expenses helping to bring the budget into balance. But, Bill had one thing going for him. Early in his first administration he did actually do some smart things. He raised taxes on wealthy persons, increasing revenues. The tax increase was not enough to bring the worsening income gap back, but it did slow it down. So when welfare was weakened, the economy was starting to finally recover after 12 years of Reagan and Bush I. This hid the problems with the new limited welfare until Bush II crashed the economy in 2008. But there was more that Clinton did that were not consistent with the Left Wing Democratic agenda. He carried the banner for NAFTA. A trade agreement that has defined exactly what a pro business trade agreement looks like. There was very little to protect workers on either side of the border, but large corporations made out quite well. This is why businesses continue to put a lot of time and money into getting new trade agreements. And lastly, he went along with the elimination of the Glass-Steagall wall that kept investment banks separate from ‘regular’ banks. Removing the wall allowed the investment houses to reclassify themselves as banks and therefor be eligible to get bail out money which as an investment house they would not have been eligible for. And lets not ignore that balancing the budget was not really a good idea and running a surplus was really bad. But the problems caused by hid budgets did not appear until after the Y2K jobs bubble deflated and Bush II had already paid out bonuses to rich people by lowering their taxes. Our economy never really recovered, and of course, nearly collapsed in 2008.
Hillary has not shown any inclination that she would do things differently, on the domestic front, except fight somewhat harder for school improvements and women’s rights. But in foreign affairs, while Hillary is certainly not a Dick Cheney War Hawk, she is much more willing to put guns and troops on the ground than either her husband or Barack Obama have been. Both Hillary and Bill have continued to maintain close connections with many the banking industry’s top people, and in an era where banks have become dangerously large she must start sooner rather than later defining exactly how she would diminish the power of the banks.
And for both Hillary and Bill, both must share in the blame for the Patriot Act and the war against terror. After 9/11, Hillary in the Senate was not shy about supporting W’s war without borders or a defined enemy. Bill also supported W’s wars in many public statements at the time. The Patriot Act was mostly written during Bill’s last term. The Republican Congress was outraged at many of its provisions and so it was not enacted, until just after 9/11.
We need America to change direction. The power of corporations continue to increase daily. They can and do heavily influence the public forum. I would be ready for anyone that insists that Corporations be removed from the public forum. I am ready for candidates that will agree to the following two short statements.
People First, Nothing Else second.
When People succeed , Business success will follow. (This statement cannot be reversed)
To me, they describe all that I need to know about politics, economic and international affairs. I don’t believe Hillary is ready for either one; until I hear otherwise, I remain Not Ready For Hillary.