Friday, September 30, 2016

Libertarians Have Long Been Waiting For A Smart, Respectable Candidate To Represent Their Values... And The Wait Continues


When MSNBC's colossal bore, Chris Matthews, sprung his gotcha question on poor, befuddled Gary Johnson about what foreign leader he admires and looks up to-- is there one YOU admire and look up to?-- he succeeded in getting himself into the next day's news flow. But did he succeed in making a dent in Johnson's 7% national support? Probably not. I'd wager that Johnson's fans like him a lot more than they like the annoyingly shrill get-off-my-lawn asshole Chris Matthews. According to Quinnipiac almost 30% of voters under 35 said they would vote for Johnson. That's gargantuan-- and a very real problem for Hillary.

What Matthews and others on Team Hillary don't seem to grok is that the vast majority of people who are willing to vote for Johnson (or Stein or McMullin), aren't voting for them because they think they should or will become president-- or even necessarily because they want them to be. It's a very legitimate expression among young people that they are dissatisfied with the lesser-of-two evils choice the two dysfunctional careerist mainstream parties are offering. Is that so crazy?

What is crazy, however, is that any Bernie backers would show their displeasure with Clinton and Trump by backing Johnson rather than Stein. Stein basically agrees with everything Bernie stands for. Berniecrats in safe blue states like California, New York, Maryland, Hawaii and safe red states like Alabama, Idaho, Wyoming and North Dakota should vote for Stein. It's a luxury they and the country can afford. Voting for Johnson is a poorly conceived protest that won't do anyone any good at all.
It's not about Aleppo or other gaffes. Is it just because Johnson is a pot head? Is that the criterion? What millennial voters might want to consider before they waste a good protest vote on Johnson is that he's, at heart, just a somewhat stoned Republican who wants to repeal Obamacare, derides Hillary and Bernie for wanting to bring back free college tuition in public universities and, as Colbert pointed out above, is a Climate Change neanderthal. On top of that, he totally backs the Citizens United decision which allows the free flow of dark money into politics, backs NAFTA, CAFTA and the TPP, says private prisons are part of the solution rather than part of the criminal justice problem and-- most Republican of all-- wants to cut federal programs to the bone and cut taxes for the very wealthy. Just scratching the surface shows someone who disagrees with millennials on just about every important issue (but pot).

When really clueless hard-core Republican editorial boards, like the Chicago Tribune or the Detroit News, know they can't endorse Trump and won't endorse Hillary, they go for the implausible Johnson. "Today," crowed the editors of the Detroit News, "this newspaper does something it has never done in its 143-year history: endorse someone other than the Republican candidate in a presidential contest." Yep, every cockamamie Republican since 1873. "We abandon that long and estimable tradition this year for one reason: Donald J. Trump." They actually cite permission from the Koch brothers to do this! And they then went on to tell their readers that Trump is "unprincipled, unstable and quite possibly dangerous. He can not be president." OK, so they then made it easier for that to happen by urging those readers to waste their votes on Johnson and calling it "an endorsement of conscience, reflecting our confidence that Johnson would be a competent and capable president and an honorable one."

The right-wing Chicago Tribube did much the same this morning. "The Republicans," the editorial board whined, collectively, "have nominated Donald Trump, a man not fit to be president of the United States. We first wrote on March 10 that we would not, could not, endorse him. And in the intervening six-plus months he has splendidly reinforced our verdict: Trump has gone out of his way to anger world leaders, giant swaths of the American public, and people of other lands who aspire to immigrate here legally. He has neither the character nor the prudent disposition for the job. The mystery and shame of Trump's rise... is the party's inability or unwillingness to repulse his hostile takeover." They wrote that Johnson's anti-progressive agenda "appeals not only to the Tribune's principles but to those of the many Americans who say they are socially tolerant but fiscally responsible." In other words, someone from the Greed and Selfishness wing of the Republican Party, which is what the Chicago Tribune has always represented. They usually play footsie with the Hatred and Bigotry wing of the party but... Trump just takes it a tad too far for them.

We can't afford a Trump presidency. So voters in swing states like Florida, Ohio, Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, Arizona, New Hampshire, Iowa, Pennsylvania, Nevada, Wisconsin, Colorado-- and even folks up in the Alagash, down in Lewiston-Auburn or those crazy and wild college students in Bangor, Bar Harbor, Presque Isle and Orono-- just need to get a clothespin and help rescue the country from the MUCH greater and more existential evil. Everyone else: Jill Stein.

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At 2:09 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And yet we can't afford another Clinton/neo-liberal presidency. If you want more wars everywhere, fascist trade agreements, billionaire and corporate protection at all costs, endemic corruption, spying on everyone, the crumbling and sellout of the entire American infrastructure, and the end of the first world then feel free to vote for the Democrats. But we can't afford more of this craziness, not even a little bit more. If you're a believer in a Democracy itself, the only vote you have is Stein. Use your vote wisely and ignore the desperate scare tactics; that is all the Democratic party has left to offer you.

At 4:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the above commentator, do you really think Hillary is as bad as Trump? Lousy as she is in many ways, they are not in the same ball park. She dos have some positives, whereas he has none. And either Trump or Hillary will get in, NEVER Stein. This election is not about your conscience, but about the consequences of your vote on others people and this country. And Trump is FAR WORSE and will be a YUGE disaster. You will be a teeny bit responsible if he wins.

Jill Stein is a narcissistic person for sure to knowingly be potentially helping Trump. Sorry Howie. She has absolutely NO BUSINESS running in this election. She has no experience and is not a viable candidate. She thinks she is offering a conscience vote? B.S. Just because her politics may be in line with progressives does not mean she should be running for President. All she has going is face validity - nothing underneath. And the Democratic Party will not get any important message from the number of votes she gets. Nor would I. The people voting third party have their heads in the sand. Stein or Johnson. Come on! The latter is an incredible jerk who is also totally unfit for office, as much so as Trump. It is sad that people hate Hillary enough to analyze her every fault and be unwilling to vote for her even to stop Trump, but are completely blind and ignorant when it comes to Johnson, whom they are willing to vote for.

At 5:21 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


This nation DESERVES a Trump presidency. The fact that one is looming is driving many nations away from an unhealthy alliance which should have died off by 1950, instead of threatening to strangle Russia, a nation which has a history of sustaining huge losses to drive off invaders.

The Republicans did nothing to stop Trump, because they are chickenhawks with serious greed issues. The Democrats should be crushing Trump, but didn't take him seriously until all of the other GOP buffoons staggered off the field bloodied and battered.

So bring on a President Trump. It's time Americans see what their indolence and "Let George Do It" laziness has led to. We'll find out if there are any real humans remaining in either wing of the corporatist party. They will either band together, and do to Trump what the GOP (with Blue Dog/"New" Dem assistance) did to Obama for eight years, or they will show what spineless toadies they really are, ending their careers once and for all.

I am tired of my fellow citizens being so easily herded with appeals to fear. Are We Not Men?

It's time to find out.

At 5:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Clinton is going to win this election -- by a landslide -- and anybody who is a) voting for Jill Stein or b) telling anybody else to vote for Jill Stein needs to answer one question, and one question only, to be answered in the privacy of their own minds, and not even at the keyboard:

Did you vote for Obama in a presidential election? Yes or no?

If the answer is yes, in either 2008 or 2012, then you are hypocrites. Clinton is no different from Obama in matters of policy. She will continue all the neoliberal agenda that Obama promoted. I don't even have to go down the list. If you are voting for Stein, chances are you have already internalized them. And if you voted for Obama, you -- yes you -- have already expressed your support for them.

Instead of wasting your time and everyone else's on an unqualified, incompetent unicorn candidate like Jill Stein, who is nothing more than a glorified platform committee, that time would be better spent in your communities, building a grass roots movement around any number of issues, like humane policing and police accountability, clean air and water, supporting the tribes against the Dakota pipeline, adequate educational opportunities in underserved communities (which means opposition to charter schools), minimum wage legislation, an end to private prisons, etc., etc. -- and most important, identifying, supporting, and developing candidates to run for local offices around these efforts.

Only by starting at the local level, electing candidates there, and establishing some record of superior governance to run on the next time, will cracks start to appear in the dreaded major party "duopoly." It won't happen any other way, no matter how fervently you wish it.

The Clinton administration will be far from perfect. A Trump administration will come for you in the middle of the night and put you in a private prison, where the guards will be straight out of Stormfront.

Angela Davis gets it.

Too bad some of you lot still don't.

At 8:06 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Did you vote for Obama in a presidential election? Yes or no?"

Emphatically NO! - TWICE!

Not after that lying rat bastard boasted he'd filibuster FISA only to vote for passage.

Trying to scare me with those losers from Stormfront only shows what a loser you are yourself.

Cower before your corporatist goddess if you must, but many of us refuse to surrender meekly to evil.

At 9:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

They're all trapped in a system. They no longer have beliefs or policy to vote for, they can only vote out of fear. They will sigh if they win and cry if they lose, but they are incapable of changing their wretched system. No one needs to come in the middle of the night if they already control the political process. Vote for what & who you want, but change will not happen until both party's are threatened. Once elected the corporate masters will instruct what is allowed and what isn't. Hysteria is not good policy.

At 10:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 806, 9:48:

Your accusations that my vote for Clinton will be a vote made out of "fear" are no different than the accusations made by Likud supporters against Jewish Americans who oppose Netanyahu's racist policies -- that they are all "self-hating Jews." A classic case of projection.

Hooray for you, Anonymous@ 8:06. You didn't vote for Obama. I'd bet you are about one in a hundred of Stein's Special Snowflakes who didn't.

If you want to be part of the solution, vote to stop Trump now and worry about the other stuff later. That would be our task in any event.

At 12:26 PM, Blogger Anon said...

Hugh? Is this Hugh?

Love the Team Hillz Talking Points.

At 12:35 PM, Blogger Anon said...

Ha, your "logic" is crap.

2008 yes, but I didn't know he was a neoliberal, he sure didn't run as one, remember?

Fool me once...

All this #Poutrage at the tiny sliver of folks choosing Jill. Is Hillz that close to losing to Trump? She really needs the few hundred per state choosing Jill?

What a fucked-up campaign she's running if she's not 20 points up on Trump, huh?

At 12:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't you guys just LOVE the smug self-righteousness of our resident Hillary Troll? Must be nice to believe that one is SO superior that he can denounce everyone who doesn't see his world in his colors.

When you extract your cranium from your dorsal port, Hillary will have something to insert in its place so you don't feel unloved.

At 6:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anybody not doing their best to stop Trump risks the future of the planet. Jill Stein is a mirage. Anybody can write a wish list. It takes a real politician to turn goals into effective action. How long before global warming destroys the future? You wanna play you get your planet The Trump Edition?

At 7:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Hillary troll,

Do you actually believe your smug, self centered, nasty demand to vote for Hillary actually will convince anyone to agree with you? Do you really think most people here just don't see you as a fool instead? If only you actually believed in anything remotely like liberals do, you'd see how pathetic and sad you and your demands really are. And how much you actually sound like the very republicans you claim to be against.

At 5:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Hillary Troll,

I voted for Obama in 2008, only, precisely because he was an alternative to HRC. Her policies/votes/actions were a complete disaster then and were (and were further proven to be) approximately 50x worse by the end of her reign as Sec of State.

Re: dealing with climate change. Please give us a break. Anything HRC "accomplishes" will be done incrementally (with MUCH fanfare, to be sure) when drastic, immediate action is required.

If there is anything done, it will only be with the approval of the GOP-controlled congress, with whom she's so proud to claim she can "get things done," and whose majorities she doesn't acknowledge need be reversed.

John Puma


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