Monday, June 22, 2015

The Difference Between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton in One Paragraph


Thom Hartmann discussing the Sanders campaign and media silence with Ari Rabin-Havt

by Gaius Publius

I have to thank Daily Kos diarist james321 for this find. But first, some setup.

I'm certain that Hillary Clinton is a classic "Davos Democrat," a neo-liberal savior of the world for the investor class. Krugman with a definition:
Davos Democrats are known as the people who told us to trust unregulated finance ...
That would especially include President Clinton. And I'm not conflating the two, Bill and Hillary — they're doing that themselves. The Yalta European Strategy (YES) conference is an annual European confab of the brightest of our elites, a neo-liberal gathering for pro-IMF types. Here's a unified guest list of notables:
The YES Annual Meetings have brought together heads of state and government including Tony Blair, Bill Clinton, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Dalia Grybauskaitė, Bronisław Komorowski, Leonid Kuchma, Mario Monti, Shimon Peres, Yulia Tymoshenko, Gerhard Schröder, Viktor Yanukovych and Viktor Yushchenko. Since 2004 among the speakers have been also senior ministers, politicians, and heads of international organizations like Kofi Annan, Eğemen Bağış, Carl Bildt, Hillary Clinton, Arkadiy Dvorkovich, Joschka Fischer, Štefan Füle, Herman Gref, Vitaliy Klitschko, Alexei Kudrin, Pascal Lamy, Ronald Noble, David Petraeus, Petro Poroshenko, Condoleezza Rice, Bill Richardson, Radosław Sikorski, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Lawrence H. Summers, Shashi Tharoor, James Wolfensohn, Lamberto Zannier, Arseniy Yatsenyuk, and Robert Zoellick. Politicians, businessmen and thinkers, including Newt Gingrich, Richard Branson, Niall Ferguson, Jin Liqun, Michio Kaku, Paul Krugman, Nouriel Roubini, and Muhammad Yunus have also spoken at YES Meetings.
If I recall correctly, Bill and Hillary attended together in 2013.

The kindest difference between the Clintons et al. and other "Davos" thinkers might be stated this way:
  • Hard-hearted Bigs think that Bigs should run the world, and Littles just have to suck it up.
  • Kind-hearted Bigs think that Bigs are unstoppable, so this group wants to cushion the blow, put some sugar on what the Littles forced to suck up ... like offering food stamps, but not too many of them, or "trade adjustment assistance," but not too much of it.
What unites them is this — rule by the rich is inevitable. (Note that this ignores the incentive for thinking that —the great wealth conferred on politicians who enable that rule.)

The Difference Between Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton

With that in mind, read what james321 writes. Great catch:
As you can imagine, Bernie was skeptical of a centrist Bill Clinton running for president in 1992, and immediately after Clinton won the election and appointed Hillary to lead health care reform, Bernie set to work attempting to convince her of the virtue of a single-payer, Medicare-for-all system. As you can probably also imagine, he wasn't successful.
Interesting back-story. Now this:
Still, please do read what follows. The dialogue between Hillary and a Harvard Medical School physician supporting single-payer -- accompanying Bernie to his meeting at the White House -- is important for the record.
And now the paragraph itself, from the Politico story "When Bernie met Hillary" (my emphasis):
They got their meeting at the White House that month, and the two doctors laid out the case for single-payer to the first lady [Hillary Clinton]. “She said, ‘You make a convincing case, but is there any force on the face of the earth that could counter the hundreds of millions of the dollars the insurance industry would spend fighting that?’” recalled Himmelstein. “And I said, “How about the president of the United States actually leading the American people?’ and she said, ‘Tell me something real.’ ”
The Kos writer's closing comment:
So, Democrats have a choice. One candidate believes that citizens -- and strong leaders representing those citizens -- can shape public policy. The other candidate believes that corporations -- like private health insurers with outrageously-wealthy CEOs -- have all the agency.

Choose wisely.
"The other candidate believes that corporations have all the agency" — very well said. As the Thom Hartmann clip above shows, Sanders is gaining strength.

The time to help out, if you're so inclined, is now (you can adjust the donation split in any way you wish).


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At 2:52 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The other candidate believes that corporations have all the agency" - I don't think that's at all what she said. A Daily Kos diarist may have had a good insight, but he took it further than reality would provide support for and your good Gaius took it to be the truth. The truth I think is that it was 20-odd years ago and time has moved forward somewhat. It wasn't 'real' back then for Clinton to wave that Green Lantern ring of 'leaderly leadership' and get such an Olympian or Sisyphean thing accomplished. Some people think Obama should have tried too. I wish both he and Bill had tried. At least the educating of the public regarding single-payer would have been a little more advanced than it is now. But the economic forces then and now would still have the upper hand in the debate about single-payer - not on the facts but on the persuadability of voters and therefore legislators. I think it has to be more glaringly self-evident of the need for single-payer before it is politically viable - unfortunately. Still, if Hillary wins, I hope she atleast works for it like we wish her husband and Barack had. At the least it will pull the discussion closer to the day it could pass.

At 5:56 PM, Anonymous Bil said...

I understand Hillary's comment but you have to lead if you are going to be a Good President.

I'm reminded of her shit vote to give "The Decider" more power to abuse illegally invading a sovereign Iraq. She HAD to know better, and made a political vote that was very wrong.

I hope Hillary gets surprised again LIKE Obama surprised her.

At 8:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agree with your assessment. That was then. This is now.

Personally I will take either Bernie or Hillary. Alternatives are to scary to contemplate.

At 9:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said... DUH!!!

Consider that bill was instrumental in the selling of Ds to the money via the DLC in the early '80s... and... DUH!!!

Consider also that this was 20+ years ago when corporate tyranny wasn't as much... a given... as it is now. Yet Hillary was a true believer even then.

Consider that Hillarycare was just as much a proposed boondoggle to the corporate health care (denial for profit) lobbies as obamneycare *IS* today. The Ds' strategery was to give insurance (not really CARE) to more as a way to make corporations richer... NOT to give health care to all. And in doing so, they expected to hornswaggle the masses to believe them to be the friend to the common person.

Call Hillary a Davosocrat or neoliberal or neoconservative or corrupt or a g-d liar (all accurate). But you cannot, objectively, call her liberal... certainly not progressive. Her record stands in stark contrast with that.

But you CAN call Bernie Liberal or Progressive. His record is not (in total) contrary to that.

I hope that pie chart at the end is a harbinger of actual votes. Polls can be misleading since those responding are NOT all going to actually vote. One hopes that Bernie's entry gives the dormant third of the electorate a reason to re-engage. We'll see.

The media hasn't yet begun to smear.

At 2:11 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

F.D.R., y'all.


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