A Look Ahead to the Next (S)election

We realize we are jumping the gun a bit here, after all, it isn’t yet certain which candidates will win the primaries and become presidential candidates. However, we are taking an educated guess here, based on past elections and primaries. The Democratic Party usually has a relatively non-competitive field. One or two candidates are most likely to get the nomination from the outset. Left-of-field candidates like e.g. Bernie Sanders may take part, but have no chance anyway. Last time around, Hillary Clinton faced quite a formidable opponent in Barrack Obama, who undoubtedly was a far more appealing choice from the perspective of the Democratic base.

 

Military_Industrial_Complex

We present to you the likely winner of the next election …

 

This time around, it is hard to see who could possibly stop Hillary, except perhaps herself. She is as scandal-ridden as a stray dog in the slums of Lagos is flee-ridden. So she might trip over one of her scandals, but not if the US mainstream press has anything to say about it. This is actually a bit of a word play in a sense, since she usually gets away with stuff precisely because the mainstream press isn’t saying much about it. We also know from occasionally watching the discourse on Democratic grassroots sites that they are all rooting for her this time (we admittedly can’t understand it, but there it is).

With respect to the Republicans, it seems likely that the primaries will once again see a large field of candidates competing. The only somewhat offbeat choice on the menu is Rand Paul, who is a bit like a version of Ron Paul who has shed a lot of Ron in order to become “electable”. We cannot fault him for this strategy – if he were as fiercely principled as his father, he’d have no chance whatsoever. Rand Paul is the best chance the libertarian wing of the Republican party has had in a very long time indeed. We can be 100% sure though that he is not the preferred choice of the Republican establishment – the bland, war-mongering professional political clique that is always pushing for an equally bland candidate. To wit, Mitt Romney last time around – how much more uninteresting a candidate could they have possibly picked? So who is the Republican “establishment candidate” this time? Like Hillary, he is part of what America has instead of a nobility: Jeb Bush.

 

Paul-RanRand Paul – the only possible candidate not utterly committed to statism and hence unlikely to get the nomination

Photo credit: WTVQ

 

The two major parties might as well be one party. Both are statist to the core, with only their emphasis slightly differing. The Democratic Party leans more toward welfare statism, the Republicans more toward warfare statism. A slight exception may be the small paleo-conservative and libertarian wings of the Republican Party, which would long have become a third party if the US were Europe. In the US the system is extremely stacked in favor of the two established parties though. It is extremely difficult to even get one’s candidates on a ballot as a third party – in fact, it is far easier for a non-establishment group to get onto the ballots in Russia (yes, allegedly “authoritarian” Russia) than it is in the US. Hence many of the more off-beat candidates are joining one of the two big parties, picking the one that seems ideologically the closest to their own views.

So here is the most likely “choice” in the next presidential selection:

 

Jeb-and-HillaryHillary and Jeb

 

We know one interest group in the US that is already rubbing its hands at the prospect of these two butting heads, because it will win no matter which one of them becomes president: the war racketeers, a.k.a. the military-industrial complex.

 

war-is-hell-cartoonThese guys are eagerly looking forward to a Hillary vs. Jeb election

 

Hillary the Neo-Con

Investigative journalist Glenn Greenwald, who writes for the “Intercept” these days, is philosophically sympathetic to the misnamed liberals, or let us rather say he isn’t averse to “progressive” ideology. We generally prefer to call it what it is, namely socialism. However, he has never once hesitated to criticize powerful Democrats with just as much verve as he displayed back when his main targets were G.W. Bush and Dick Cheney, and we like him for his consistency. If they are evil, he’s saying so. Anyway, as someone who is generally sympathetic to the Democrats, he may be uniquely qualified to provide us with a critical appraisal of Hillary. His assessment is certainly free of partisan bias as you will see below.

The quote is taken from an interview Greenwald gave to GQ:

 

Hillary is banal, corrupted, drained of vibrancy and passion. I mean, she’s been around forever, the Clinton circle. She’s a f*cking hawk and like a neocon, practically. She’s surrounded by all these sleazy money types who are just corrupting everything everywhere. But she’s going to be the first female president, and women in America are going to be completely invested in her candidacy. Opposition to her is going to be depicted as misogynistic, like opposition to Obama has been depicted as racist. It’s going to be this completely symbolic messaging that’s going to overshadow the fact that she’ll do nothing but continue everything in pursuit of her own power. They’ll probably have a gay person after Hillary who’s just going to do the same thing.

I hope this happens so badly, because I think it’ll be so instructive in that regard. It’ll prove the point. Americans love to mock the idea of monarchy, and yet we have our own de facto monarchy. I think what these leaks did is, they demonstrated that there really is this government that just is the kind of permanent government that doesn’t get affected by election choices and that isn’t in any way accountable to any sort of democratic transparency and just creates its own world off on its own.”

 

(emphasis added)

Greenwald is of course not the first person to notice that Hillary is not only surrounded by “sleazy money types”, but is a war-mongering harpy ideologically indistinguishable from the neo-cons. Note here that the latter are not only America’s biggest warmongers – among their philosophical/ideological heroes are people like Leo Strauss and Leon Trotsky (yes, the communist – Justin Raimondo has written extensively about their elitist and leftist roots), and they are in love with playing the role of “philosopher kings” who are constantly pulling the wool over the public’s eyes to get what they want. They are certainly not in favor of the free market. In fact, their position vis-a-vis the unwashed masses is that anything that keeps them docile is good, hence they support not only warfare statism, but welfare statism as well. Hillary fits right in, in every respect. Hell, even the New York Times has noticed.

 

Clinton_072713Strident harpy Hillary

Photo credit: AP

 

Jeb Bush Still Likes the Iraq War

We didn’t know very much about Jeb Bush, except for the fact that he’s surrounded himself with the usual neo-con advisors that seem to be the main choice of every Republican establishmentarian. However, he is not only rightly suspected of being indistinguishable from Hillary in the foreign policy department, he just proved that as long as he can somehow get a war, he will be all for it, no matter how idiotic the choice is – even in hindsight! He might as well have announced that his middle name is “stupid”. Here is a recent Reuters article on the topic:

 

“Potential Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush said he would have authorized the 2003 invasion of Iraq, just as his brother George W. Bush had done. The former Florida governor, in an interview taped to air on Fox News on Monday, acknowledged the United States made mistakes in managing Iraq after ousting President Saddam Hussein, including lack of post-war security for Iraqis.

“By the way, guess who thinks that those mistakes took place as well? George W. Bush,” he said. “Yes, I mean, so just for the news flash to the world, if they’re trying to find places where there’s big space between me and my brother, this might not be one of those.”

Bush has said that he is “my own man” and not tied too closely to the policies of George W. or their father, former president George H.W. Bush. He also has said his brother advises him on the Middle East.

The United States invaded Iraq after making a case to the United Nations that said Saddam had biological weapons. That case turned out to have been based on flawed intelligence.

“I would have [authorized the invasion] and so would have Hillary Clinton, just to remind everybody,” Bush told Fox News. “And so would almost everybody that was confronted with the intelligence they got.”

 

(emphasis added)

Anyone who paid even the slightest attention at the time knew the so-called “intelligence” was cooked up by an administration eager to go to war against a helpless third world tinpot dictator, who incidentally happened to sit atop a lot of oil. The intelligence wasn’t just “flawed” – they made it all up from day one. Today everybody knows of course that their “intelligence” consisted mainly of stuff like the lies they were told by con-men like Ahmed Chalabi (who ironically was basically an Iranian plant). US and UK secret services were told in no uncertain terms “to fix the intelligence around the policy”. The whole affair was so transparent from the outset though, that one required an IQ below room temperature not to see through it. Anyone who as naïve enough to believe even one word of Powell’s UN presentation is high on the list of people we’d love to meet at a poker table.

It isn’t a big surprise that Hillary did indeed vote in favor of the war, but what Jeb Bush is basically saying above is that he too would have been naïve enough to have believed in this so-called “intelligence” at the time (we will refrain from insinuating that he would have been party to cooking it up, we simply don’t know enough about him to come to any conclusions in this respect). Meanwhile, the fact that his brother is “advising him on the Middle East” is downright terrifying.

 

Conclusion

It would be both funny and tragic if indeed Hillary and Jeb were to end up facing off against each other in the next election (personally we would classify it as a nightmare actually). What it definitely wouldn’t be is a proper choice. We haven’t yet completely given up on Rand Paul’s chances though, so at the moment there is still a sliver of hope, tiny as it is. Maybe the fat cat seen below can still be deprived of its prize.

 

Military-Fat-Cat-Complex-Cartoon

 

 

 

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3 Responses to “America’s Pitiful “Choice””

  • Mark Humphrey:

    True Glenn Greenwald is a socialist progressive who deludes himself about economic reality. The delusion is self indulgence, obviously, since it isn’t that hard to figure out that socialism guarantees impoverishment and capitalism enables self improvement.

    But libertarian anarchists also indulge their fantasies about Nirvana in the wake of abolishing government. They repeat ideological talking points about the “non-aggression axiom” as though they had proven something about ethics. But they don’t understand ethics, don’t bother with careful philosophical groundwork, and are oblivious to the obvious–just like Grenwald–when their pet notions are challenged. They just can’t accept the obvious fact that government emerges naturally as a monopoly of sorts, due to the heightened utility made possible by a universal standard of justice and procedure, as compared with “competing” ideas of right and wrong. That government has been transformed into a terrible and destructive force by bad ideas doesn’t much impress them. Everything will be perfect, they imagine, if we just abolish government. This resembles Grenwald’s progressive notion that the world will be ideal if we just get rid of selfishness.

    I like libertarians of all stripes, despite stupid anarchism and other weaknesses, because they mostly favor what I value. Similarly, I like Glenn Greenwald, because he opposes a lot of bad stuff–he helped Snowden, for instance–though he’s delusional about ethics and economics.

  • rodney:

    Yes, the neocons are a disgrace to the human race, and war is the ultimate evil. But “well-meaning” lefties like Greenwald are nothing but delusional. Their “good intentions” are the stepping stones on the road to hell: It is ironic that the dreams they have in mind actually lead to the warfare state as well.

    The assumptions behind their reasoning, if you can call it that, are way beyond naïve. The mother of all silly ideas is the assumption that government works for our own good. The second ridiculous notion is that their plan can be imposed without force. It can’t, and then they spend the rest of their lives hating the police state that their plan calls for. And the third ludicrous concept is their dream that elected officials will actually implement their plan.

    Leave it to H.L. Mencken to eloquently explain:

    “The government consists of a gang of men exactly like you and me. They have, taking one with another, no special talent for the business of government; they have only a talent for getting and holding office. Their principal device to that end is to search out groups who pant and pine for something they can’t get and to promise to give it to them. Nine times out of ten that promise is worth nothing. The tenth time is made good by looting A to satisfy B. In other words, government is a broker in pillage, and every election is sort of an advance auction sale of stolen goods.”

    “People constantly speak of ‘the government’ doing this or that, as they might speak of God doing it. But the government is really nothing but a group of men, and usually they are very inferior men. They may have some better man working for them, but they themselves are seldom worthy of any respect.”

  • rodney:

    For the sake of completeness, you should have mentioned that Glenn Greenwald is only upset about the war-mongering because that prevents the government from wasting as much as he would like on welfare and his other pet programs. He is in no uncertain terms just another statist with a better plan … Same piece of crap, just a different kind of foul stench.

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