I was born and raised a democrat. If there’s one thing my dad loved to do, it was to offer up commentary on whatever was happening in local and federal politics. He was pretty well-read for the times, and he never seemed to care about the popularity of his opinions. Today I find myself a little bit in his shoes: up early in the morning thinking about this stuff (though it’s the start of my day, for him, it was the end of the night shift).
The 2016 US election cycle, up until this point, has been dominated by one name: Trump. Many feel he’s the only one who can magically ‘make America great again’. The truth, at least to those of us with half a brain, is that there’s no fucking way it will happen. The great wall of mexico will never be built. The coal mines will never reopen – because there simply isn’t a market for coal anymore. Coal fired powerplants are fewer and further between now than at any other point in this countries history. Many lay in ruins, or have been demolished. Who’s going to mine a product that has no market? Trump is also a sexist, racist, bloviating narcissist. Unfortunately, narcissism is a personality disorder with no known cure. Persons with major psychological disorders are simply not qualified to be president. The world does not need a thin-skinned man who cannot take simple insults having his finger on the nuclear weapons.
Trump is also a sexist, racist, bloviating narcissist.
But this isn’t about Drumpf. Hopefully he will be a minor footnote in American history.
How the Dems lost me in one election cycle
The democrats have also lost me, completely. It actually started when I began paying closer attention to local politics. Through much of my adult life, NYC suffered under bigoted, asshole mayors. In many ways, Guiliani was a disaster for NYC. After him came 12 years of Bloomberg. Bloomberg started on a great footing, and slowly devolved over time – closing firehouses and buying himself an illegal third term in office. Now we have DeBlasio, who was, at the time of his election, the lesser of many evils (remember these words). His closest rival democrat was Christine Quinn, who basically sold her soul to Bloomberg (attempting to become Bloomberg 4.0) and proposed a busway on the Triboro RX route (stating it could be built for $20 million). I’m a transportation nerd – if you are running for office and have terrible, ridiculous ideas like that one, you’re not qualified to be elected. DeBlasio unfortunately has since proven himself to be very questionable mayor. He has kept NYPD commissioner Bratton on the job despite many horrible things (see Eric Garner’s death, for example). He has take boatloads of money from real estate developers, and has become their spokesperson by wanting to rezone all of NYC for higher density, while offering no serious new infrastructure to improve it (other than a few cheap-to-build bike lanes).
There’s a lot more to dislike about democrats in NYC, but I don’t want to get too far into the weeds. So let’s look at the presidential election.
From the very start, the cards have been stacked in Hillary’s favor within the democrat party. The democrats have a completely ridiculous ‘super-delegates’ system. 719 largely wealthy individuals who get a huge say in who becomes the nominee of the party. This is not a democratic system. It is an oligarchy.
This is not a democratic system. It is an oligarchy.
Despite this, Bernie Sanders came up in the polls against Clinton. Bernard Sanders has been a life long democrat/independent who has long fought for the working men women and children of this country. He’s a humble Brooklyn Jew who doesn’t accept truckloads of money from mega-wealthy donors and corporations via the corrupt, reprehensible “Super Pacs”. Here stands a man unblemished by scandals, who has never flip-flopped on his core beliefs, who never called black people ‘super predators’ or took money for giving speeches at major wall street firms (speeches which she will never release the transcripts of).
Despite the rare purity of such a noble individual in politics, the democratic party establishment clearly wanted nothing to do with him. They worked against him at every turn. For me, this was a disgusting show to watch, where the bad, extremely wealthy people won and the working people of this country get the shaft again.
Today, with the media pronouncing Hillary as the crowned queen of the democrat party, and a super-delegate system that assures Sanders campaign has no place in the democratic party after the convention, there are simply no major party candidates who are even close to progressive enough to solve the many problems facing this country.
Her campaign and the media are having a wonderful day today, propagating the lie that she is the first women to ever run for president. If you listen closely, you’ll note many of them say ‘the first female candidate of a major party’. So on this note, let me make this crystal clear: I don’t look at the sex of a person running for elected office. I look at their stand positions on the major issues. My dislike of Hillary has nothing to do with her vagina and everything to do with her stand on the issues.
My dislike of Hillary has nothing to do with her vagina and everything to do with her stand on the issues.
There’s a lot to not like:
1. She is for Fracking, and the continued reliance on fossil fuels. That’s great for corporate profits but terrible for the continued viability of our environment. (she’s trying to disavow herself of it, but who trusts that?)
2. She’s for the death penalty – despite the fact that it deters no crimes and is generally a huge waste of money.
3. She is nowhere near as progressive as we need for the elimination of the war on soft-drugs, like marijuana. The illegality of which is used primarily to repress urban minorities via pointless arrests.
4. The minimum wage: up until recently, she has stated that it should be lifted to no more than $12 an hour, while $15 per hour is a much more realistic number.
6. She’s not even 100% for a woman’s right to choose (abortion). I’m a fucking guy, and even I know this is 100% not my decision.
7. She has no plans to do anything about the ridiculous issue of student loans. Most people with loans are not looking for a handout, but they should be able to get a loan at drastically reduced interests rates. Going into 100k in dept to go to college, plus 5% interest? We have an entire generation who at best will struggle well into adulthood with student debt. Some may never pay off this debt. It is completely disgusting that Hillary was all for bailing out her friends on wall street, and will do nothing to bail out our best and brightest students and young adults who are saddled by insurmountable debt and simply unfair, mafia style interest rates.
8. She’s a war-hawk. The United States needs to disengage and stop meddling in foreign affairs. She voted for Iraq. That tells me everything I need to know.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m 100% for a strong American military. My father and uncle both served in the united states army. But having a big stick doesn’t mean you have to use it. Last I checked, the population of Earth did not elect the united states to be its policeman. We naively took that role after WW2, with disastrous consequence in Vietnam and Iraq. Do we need to be on guard and ready to help our friends against potential aggression from nutcases like Kim Jong Un? Definitely. Do we need to go on the ground in Syria? No. Let Syria’s neighbors end ISIS, and if they can’t, let them find someone else to give them money and weapons.
I don’t see Hillary suddenly deciding all of these issues matter to her. And even if she did, there’s no way in hell I would believe her.
I don’t see Hillary suddenly deciding all of these issues matter to her. And even if she did, there’s no way in hell I would believe her. At the end of the day, it’s all about trust. If I can’t trust you, I don’t want you. This is Hillary Clinton’s biggest fault. She’s simply not trustworthy. She has done shady things to get where she is today, and I don’t believe in rewarding that type of behavior. Yes, she’s a female, and yes, there should be a female president of the united states (there should have been one decades ago). But that’s nowhere near enough for me to vote for her.
At the end of the day, Hillary Clinton is much more like a 1980s Reagan Republican than anything else. She is a symbol of how far to the right American politics have shifted.
So who the fuck are you voting for then?
Well, about that…
First, according to the NYS Board of Elections, I have no right to vote. My registration – which they illegally nullified – apparently won’t be reinstated until November 15th. That’s after the election. Keep in mind, I registered to vote in 1992. I was born and raised in NYC. I pay my taxes every year. I likely won’t be able to vote because the New York State Board of Elections is a corrupt, disgusting organization that should be eliminated. If you pay taxes, you should be able to vote. Period.
Second, if I do vote (because not voting at all makes a whole lot of sense – especially in an election where your votes don’t actually count), I’m going to vote for Jill Stein.
Jill Stein is the only candidate that is even close to in line with my political views. She’s also a third party candidate, and if there is one huge take away from this election, it’s that both the democrat and republican parties no longer represent much of the population. Poll numbers consistently show at least 1/3rd of the population of this country wants someone else to vote for.
And don’t come at me with that ‘Third-Party-Spoiler-Trump-Will-Win”. This gets said every election cycle and we’re always stuck with candidates that don’t represent the diversity of this country. It’s a myth, and it’s exactly what those who want to hold the working class men women and children of this country down want us to believe. Both major parties are beholden only to the rich. If common sense, barely-hanging-on middle class people want a seat at the table, we have to take it. I never want to vote for ‘the lesser of two evils’, because both are inherently evil and will do do little to nothing for the future of this country, this planet, and humanity on a whole. The only way to take it is by creating a new political party that truly represents the only people that should matter: We, the people.
If I lived in a battleground state, I might think a little differently. I know Jill won’t win, and even if she did I’m not 100% sure she’d do all that great in a political system stacked against outsiders. But I see this as the long game. the more votes groups like the Greens get, the better their chances at getting federal election funding and not having to fight to be on the ballot. the better their chances at being included in debates. No one can sanely argue that we have a great choice between Hillary and Don The Con this year. Imagine if in 4 or 8 or 12 years we had 4 real parties to choose from? That’s what I’m talking about.