GUEST BLOG: Kieran Kelly – It is Not Ridiculous to Reject Hillary; It is Not Undemocratic to Disrupt the DNC


Screen Shot 2016-07-29 at 8.36.35 am

In a post on The Daily Blog, Chris Trotter has taken “Bernie’s die-hard supporters” to task for being “ridiculous”, but he seems to be ignorant of some of the reasons behind the behaviour of the people he criticises. Not only is their response valid, the circumstances that lead them to it have a significance even broader than this US general election.

Here in Aotearoa, as Patrick Gower explained to Democracy Now!, we have a “morbid fascination” with the political rise of Donald Trump, but our media have been much kinder to Hillary Clinton. I can only liken the phenomenon to US news media reporting on Israel which, notoriously, is far more obsequious and uncritical than Israel’s own media. I don’t know why our media glosses over the faults, weaknesses, scandals and crimes of Clinton, but they do. They also followed a script in which Bernie Sanders was a wannabe spoiler, threatening to hand the USA over to Trump by prolonging his primary campaign and splitting the Democrats (a narrative similar to that in which Nader is blamed for giving the 2000 election to Bush).

In reality, there are reasons that Clinton is so unpopular with the people of the USA. In fact she and Trump currently have equal pegging in dislike with both having “unfavourable” responses of 58% according to Gallup. No past Democrat or Republican candidate “comes close to Clinton, and especially Trump, in terms of engendering strong dislike.” In ordinary circumstances neither Clinton nor Trump would be electable with that level of public disdain. The very fact that either could become POTUS is purely because they face each other.

These are strange times. We should reflect on the fact that each party can afford to put forward such a loser of a candidate only because both parties are doing so at the same time. Polls clearly showed that Bernie Sanders would have been able to beat Trump overwhelmingly in the popular vote (despite the vagaries of the electoral college system, this is historically reliable as an indicator of who will win ). Even though they come many months before the election these polls are not just an irrelevance and they probably even understate the advantage Sanders would have had over Trump. Like Clinton, and unlike Sanders, Trump is embroiled in ongoing scandals (over taxes, business practices and child rape allegations) that would in ordinary circumstances have made a presidential campaign highly problematic. Moreover, his campaigning style is key to his base of supporters, but the same theatrics and incendiary rhetoric inevitably make most people dislike him all the more. The only thing that keeps Trump in the race is Clinton, and vice versa.

Instead of feeling entitled to lecture and scold from afar, Chris Trotter should have taken the time to engage with the substance behind the discontent of Sanders delegates (not to mention the masses of protesters on the streets of Philadelphia, far greater in number than those protesting the RNC in Cleveland). To be “ridiculous” or even “dangerous”, as Trotter claims, the dissident Democrats would have to have no grounds to contest the legitimacy of Clinton’s selection as Democratic presidential candidate, no grounds to contest the legitimacy of the dominance of the two main parties in the electoral process, and no grounds to reject Clinton as morally unacceptable and insupportable as an elected representative. On all three counts those who refuse to accept Clinton have very safe and justifiable grounds.

Clinton’s selection as candidate has been far from democratic. She did not, as Trotter claims, win “fair and square”. There is evidence of systematic fraud in the Democratic primaries (the source is not a peer-reviewed paper, but this Snopes article confirms that there is substance to the claims). Similar findings come from a more recent non-partisan report (written in collaboration with Fritz Scheuren, former President of the American Statistical Association). In addition there has been voter suppression, most significantly in the psychologically and politically important states of California and New York. Then there is the media bias against Sanders (not to mention CNN dramatically biasing the electorate on the eve of the California primary).

Moreover, while Trotter doesn’t even bother with any detail at all about what the Wikileaks DNC emails reveal about the primaries, they clearly show that the process was unfair. DNC officials on DNC time were conspiring against a candidate and, by extension, the democratic process itself. How could anyone in good conscience simply brush this off as unworthy of examination? How much these DNC officials biased the process may be up for debate, but the fact that they did cannot be questioned. They were acting in bad faith all along, and decisions such as when and where to debate seemed to favour the Clinton campaign throughout. Politifact fatuously claims that there is no evidence in the DNC emails that they set out to rig the debates, but it is clear that important DNC staffers were willing and able to work to get Clinton the nomination, and her weakness as an orator is well recognised. To ignore these impacts also reeks of bad faith, and to minimise the issue, in the manner that Trotter has, seems like deliberate misdirection.

TDB Recommends

Perhaps we should also consider the fact that one of the leaks from Guccifer 2.0 showed that DNC staffers were planning Clinton’s strategy against the GOP “field” of candidates in May of 2015. This means that as far as they were concerned Clinton was already the anointed presidential candidate of their party. They were right. Even though Clinton is highly unpopular; had to fight off a Sanders insurgency; and has been plagued by scandals about DNC emails, her own emails, and an FBI investigation, they were right to presume that she would get the nomination. The implications of this are that democracy is not really a factor in Democratic primaries and that insiders do not expect it to be.

And then there is the role of money in US politics. In simple terms, Clinton was given a lot more money than Sanders. According to the BBC in March, Sanders had received large numbers of small donations, but Clinton’s money was mostly from large donations with the finance industry being a crucial source. I would call that undemocratic whichever way you cut it, and while money is so crucial to the US electoral process, it can never ever be called “fair and square”.

Even if the #NeverHillary people did not have every right to reject the Democratic primary process in itself, they would still have grounds to reject it as part of a greater undemocratic system that maintains a duopoly of political power. Third parties are systematically excluded from publicly visible politics by the corporate news media. Social media has allowed third parties make a small amount of headway, just as soapboxes and pamphlets once did for Populists and Socialists, but now, as then, it is far from a level playing field. There is a media “blackout” of third parties. This became an issue in 2012, and it will be an even bigger issue this time. Not only are they quantitatively biased, but there is a qualitative bias in the news media with mentions of third parties being dismissive, mocking or negative. If Trump wins, for example, you can be certain that they will use the spoiler argument about Jill Stein, even though the most clear and direct cause will be the alienation of voters by the DNC’s decision to put forward a right-wing corporate-linked hawkish Clinton-Kaine ticket. And then there is the money thing, because the big corporate interests and billionaire donors have a huge sway in US elections (because of “Citizens United”) and they don’t like independent parties.

Yet the two-party system has never looked more undemocratic, more ridiculous, nor more fragile. The Republican primaries have become some sort of freak show and the party itself seems to teeter on the edge of a descent into a comical mash-up where crass aspirational consumer capitalism collides with Fascism and Torquemada’s Spanish Inquisition. The Democrats, meanwhile, continue a process that dates back to 1968 (though it has changed somewhat) of carefully canvassing their support base to find who would best represent everything that epitomises Democrat ideals, and then trying their best to paint their pro-corporate elitist neoliberal candidate as being something like that person.

The chaos in both parties shows that the chronic malaise of democratic deficit that has been eating away at the US for decades, has entered a terminal phase. Chris Hedges, prophet of doom and hope par excellence, has changed his metaphorical placard by crossing out “The End is Nigh!” and replacing it with “Told You So!”.

People have every right to reject Clinton’s selection and to disrupt this burlesque parody of a democratic process because it is demonstrably undemocratic and because their rights are being violated, but they also have a clear moral claim to reject and disrupt as a matter of conscience. Make no mistake that among other things Clinton is a grade A war criminal with the blood of thousands on her hands. Even as First Lady she took a key role in Operation Desert Fox (an air war, justified with blatant lies, which killed thousands of Iraqis). She was a key exponent of the Libya intervention which, after securing UNSC approval, immediately (and with clear premeditation) exceeded its legal mandate and became a regime change operation. That is the crime of waging aggressive war, the greatest war crime that there is. Libya has been turned into a nightmare that quite literally makes Ghadafi’s period of rule seem like a Golden Age of freedom and prosperity. As Eric Draitser reports, we can now confirm that accusations of atrocities against the Ghadafi regime were lies; that the US intent was always regime change; and that Libya is now a festering sore of instability, ethnic cleansing, terrorism, militia violence, political repression and economic disintegration.

Libya has also been used to ship arms and fighters to Syria, fuelling a civil war which has caused 250,000 deaths. Not only do these arms go to some very brutal people in their own right (from the FSA leader who bit into a dead enemy’s heart or lung in 2013 to the US-backed Islamists who posted video of themselves beheading a 12 year-old boy last week) but, predictably, they have also been a major source of arms for the self-proclaimed “Islamic State”. As for Clinton’s part, Jeffrey Sachs writes that “In 2012, Clinton was the obstacle, not the solution, to a ceasefire being negotiated by UN Special Envoy Kofi Annan. It was US intransigence – Clinton’s intransigence – that led to the failure of Annan’s peace efforts in the spring of 2012….” She supports current US airstrikes in Syria, such as that killed at least 28 civilians just this Thursday (only a week after a nearby strike killed at least 74 civilians). Because the Syrian government has not given permission, these airstrikes are themselves war crimes. Not only are acts such as this crimes, threatening such acts is itself a war crime. Therefore Clinton, who advocates imposing a no-fly zone on Syria, is both advocating and arguably committing a war crime as a central plank of her campaign. Given that military and diplomatic officials reject the plan as unworkable and irrational this is Clinton’s equivalent of Trumps’ wall except that it is also a war crime. She even has a bizarre “Mexico will pay” twist in that she has proposed “sharing” the no-fly zone with Russia. She should be pilloried, but she gets a free pass because people don’t understand what a no-fly zone is. This, in turn, is because they have intentionally been left in the dark in order that they think of a no-fly zone as a passive act, rather than what it is: a violent form of aggressive warfare that requires the destruction of all air defences on the ground as well as the destruction of aircraft.

Another country that owes much suffering and loss of life to Clinton is Honduras. After a coup there, as Adam Johnson of FAIR writes: “Fifteen House Democrats joined in, sending a letter to the Obama White House insisting that the State Department ‘fully acknowledge that a military coup has taken place and…follow through with the total suspension of non-humanitarian aid, as required by law.’ But Clinton’s State Department staunchly refused to do so, bucking the international community and implicitly recognizing the military takeover. Emails revealed last year by the State Department show that Clinton knew very well there was a military coup, but rejected cries by the international community to condemn it.”

Post-coup Honduras has seen the return of right-wing death squads and political murders such as that of Berta Caceres, an activist who, before her death, had herself singled out Clinton as responsible for the coup. Ironically, Clinton’s running mate Tim Kaine frequently refers to his time in Honduras in 1980, decrying the dictatorship without ever acknowledging that it was installed and supported by the US, and showing no shame over sharing a podium with someone who helped destroy democracy and unleash violence there 3 decades later.

But if there is a people that has suffered most at the hands of Hillary Rodham Clinton, it may actually be the people of Haiti. In January of 2011 Hillary Clinton flew into Port-au-Prince to resolve an electoral dispute in this manner: the person who came third in the first round of Presidential elections should be bumped up to 2nd place because the US thinks he should and he should then compete in the run-off election. That is how Michel Martelly came to be President of Haiti. After 3 years the terms of the parliament’s deputies all ended, with Martelly refusing to hold elections. He ruled for a year by decree (without the international news media seeming to care in the slightest) before holding elections that were so fraudulent that they were scrapped after 8 months (in June). New elections are set for October of this year.

All of this was happening in a country tortured by an earthquake in 2010 that killed 220,000; a UN “stabilisation” mission, MINUSTAH, that acts more like a hostile violent occupying force; a cholera epidemic brought by MINUSTAH that has killed thousands; rampant corruption; and brutal political violence against the poor and the left. Meanwhile, Bill Clinton was put in charge of a much of the overseas construction funds and Hillary announced that they would test “new approaches to development that could be applied more broadly around the world.”

Instead of rebuilding Haiti it was decided to “rebrand” Haiti. After 5 years $13.5 billion of aid had been spent with little or no assistance being given to those affected. The money is systematically disbursed in ways that make the poor poorer and the rich richer. It goes to line the pockets of US contractors. It maintains a privileged class of NGO executives who wield regnal rights (those usually reserved for the sovereign) as if they were feudal lords. It goes on constructing enterprises that destroy farms and small enterprises to return only a pittance in slave wages (incidentally, during Clinton’s time heading the State Department, US embassy staff opposed a minimum wage rise and cables released by Wikileaks in 2011 show that they helped block a law passed unanimously in Haiti’s parliament raising minimum wage from $US0.24 to $US0.61).

“Reconstruction” money also gets spent on luxury facilities for the rich on the theory (or rather the pretext) that poor homeless people will be able to get jobs. The US Red Cross raised $500 million for Haiti and only built 6 permanent houses, (note: this is not the International Red Cross, but rather the US organisation which also gained notoriety and condemnation for their response to Hurricane Sandy).

Meanwhile connected people from the US have found that Haiti is “open for business” (the actual slogan promoted by Clinton), with natural wealth to plunder and cheap labour to exploit. Among them is Hillary Clinton’s brother Tony Rodham, whose company scored a “sweetheart” concession to mine gold that had not been given for 50 years. The mining threatens to inflict severe environmental and humanitarian consequences. So when Clinton castigates Trump for ripping-off small businesses and workers, as she did in her acceptance speech, just bear in mind that her corruption hits people who are even more vulnerable. Like the no-fly zone issue she gets away with it because nobody knows about Haiti.

These are just some of the moral grounds on which people can legitimately refuse to support Hillary Clinton. Others have been highlighted by Black Lives Matter, often dating back to Bill Clinton’s terms as President. She was supportive of welfare reform, the drug war, and justice reform which all led to the current neoliberal security state. Complementing this are her ties to Wall Street, her immense wealth, her obscene speaking fees, and her clear political expediency and flexibility on issues that should be matters of conscience. If he really does oppose neoliberalism Chris Trotter should loathe Clinton in the same way that he should Tony Blair and George Bush. These are all warmongering neoliberal neoconservatives. They are a new aristocracy that have proven that they will steal and kill. It seems to me that Trotter has an authoritarian streak that makes him far more offended by those who try to make themselves heard by disruption from below, then he does by a stinkingly corrupt decadent system that is far more offensive. His tone suggests that he views himself as being well above the ill-behaved rabble as if, despite his evidently ignorant and vulgar apprehension of the issues, he has some paternal wisdom. It is not a good look.

And yet, Hillary Clinton and the undemocratic behaviour of the “Democratic” party are not the only things that make disobedience and disruption a legitimate response. The Democratic National Convention showed extremely disturbing signs of militarist nationalism and fanatical fervour. Eddie Glaude described it as “retooling Ronald Reagan’s morning in America, the shining city on the hill”. That day a 4-star General marched out to a military drum-roll proclaiming Clinton’s credentials as a war leader. He scowled and yelled, probably trying to look like Churchill, but actually ending up looking more authentically Mussoliniesque than Trump: “To our enemies; we will pursue you as only America can. You will fear us!”.

And then there was the unforgettable end of Joe Biden’s speech. Long considered a non-entity only distinguished by his blinding teeth, Biden became a man possessed: a fist-pumping spittle-flecked vessel for the spirit of GI Joe and John Wayne: “We are America! Second to none. And we own the finish line. Don’t forget it! God bless you all, and may god protect our troops. Come on. We’re America! Thank you.”

Most significant of all was the moment that many considered the highlight of the entire conference. The crowd erupted when Khizr Khan, the father of a GI who died in the illegal and immoral occupation of Iraq, rhetorically asked Trump: “Have you even read the US constitution?” And then proffered his own copy from the left-hand shirt pocket (next to the heart).

Judging from the response on twitter Khan’s act was adored by nearly everyone, and that itself should be frightening because the moment carried many implications, and not one of them is good. Firstly we need to recognise that this is a ritual gesture popularised by the nationalistic right-wing Tea Party movement and linked in the public mind to that ideology. Secondly, as the US-Iraqi activist and writer Dahlia Wasfi commented: “the message that a ‘good Muslim’ is one who kills for US empire, oil, and Israel is no less offensive to me than whatever Trump has to say about Muslims or Islam.” Thirdly this is a type of disingenuous appropriation of Islam equivalent to greenwashing, pinkwashing or femiwashing. Even Piers Morgan tweeted: “Something very distasteful about Hillary using Khans as political pawns vs Trump given she’s partly responsible for their son’s death”. Fourthly it signifies that in the space of just 8 years, the Democratic Party has gone from viewing the Iraq War as a “war of choice” (which has connotations, if noticeably inexplicit ones, of immorality and illegality) to viewing the Iraq War as a fight to protect US freedoms.

The entire DNC was so nationalistic and militaristic that the actor and activist Margot Kidder was evidently driven to publish a cri de coeur in Counterpunch: she begins “the words are gagging my throat and my stomach is twisted and sick and I have to vomit this out”, and ends: “And there you all are tonight, glued to your TVs and your computers, your hearts swelled with pride because you belong to the strongest country on Earth, cheering on your Murderer President. Ignorant of the entire world’s repulsion. You kill and you kill and you kill, and still you remain proud.” My question is this: if Margot Kidder can see this clearly from within the belly of the beast (well, Montana), how can Chris Trotter, an Aotearoan and putative leftist, be such a blithe apologist for a mass-murderer like Hillary Clinton.

In all I have written I have focussed on morals and reasons of principle. They alone should make it clear that only thing that is “ridiculous” is the conceit of loftily condemning those who refuse to be drawn by fear into supporting the insupportable. I am aware, however, that there are many practical issues I have not dealt with. I am aware that some people will think that US voters, facing the possibility of Trump, do not have the luxury of rejecting Clinton. These are very important issues, because time and again even those who refuse to be chained to the “lesser-of-two-evils” cede the realist high-ground to intellectually and morally compromised dullards; dullards who insist, like broken records stuck in the era of vinyl, that we must play the game and change it from the inside. I do not intend to leave such claims unchallenged, so check back here for Part 2 of this article in which, amongst other things, I will test how strong “chains of rhetorical steel” are (hint: about as strong as chains of rhetorical butter).
Kieran Kelly blogs at On Genocide.


  1. Awesome stuff Keiran. This is why Trump is not the bogeyman, and Clinton the ascendant paragon of virtue destined to save us from the ruthless predations of a delusional xenophobe. They’re both awful, in equal measure.

    I pity the American voter.

  2. This is one of the most accurate, thoughtful, and well-written pieces I have encountered on TDB.

    Hilary Clinton is both a domestic criminal and an international criminal. The fact that she was ever suggested as a potential POTUS is a clear indication of how utterly rotten the US political process is.

    The fact that none of Hilary Clintons crimes have been exposed by NZ mainstream media clearly demonstrates how corrupt and rotten the NZ mainstream media is (no surprises there, of course, because the NZ mainstream media is owned by globalists and exploiters).

    Of course it will make little difference what ordinary people think -it was reported that only 14% of American voters actually support Hilary (or Hi-Liar, as I prefer to call her)- because who gets installed in the White House is not decided by any democratic process, and certainly not by the ballot box.

    The US war machine marches on, taking the world ever closer to annihilation. And with Hi-Liar in charge (pretty much a foregone conclusion) we should expect to witness both civil war in America and increased international conflict.

    • Absolutely agree with “Afewknowthetruth”.

      Delightful to see a posting by a person who has DONE THEIR HOMEWORK (as opposed to an earlier posting by someone (CT) who appears to be less and less inclined to do HIS homework these days.) Thank you to whoever wrote this well-researched article.

      As you allude to in your excellent post, “the World’s greatest democracy” is an emperor with no clothes (if I’m allowed to mix my metaphors).

      My guess is that eight or nine years from now the world will have woken up to the utter farces that are the American Primaries and their selection processes. Because it is THERE that the damage is done (and has already been done, for the November election). The actual election that follows is even more of a farce than the primaries themselves.

      Eight or nine years from now, America may have woken up to that too – if America, as we know it today, bears any resemblance to the America that may or may not be around by then.

  3. Excellent post, the kind of left wing thinking we need more of!

    The Clintons are dodgy as hell, they are not a lesser evil,

    I’ll let Abby Martin say the rest for me when it comes to this supposed lesser evil:

    Also, we need to talk about what really motivated Khizr Kahn, and who his friends are. I hate Breitbart, but they got a good scoop on this one:

  4. Very good take down of Chris Trotter and his ‘lesser evil’ argument.
    Your argument seems to be that the US regime is ‘evil’ and both candidates are equally evil in pursuing its interests and so should be rejected.
    Would any candidate elected to office be able to resist this under the present system without also being a warmonger?
    I would say no. Sanders could not because he is a creature of the US political system. He endorsed Clinton after all.
    He could have rejected Clinton and stood as an independent but the lesser evil argument prevailed.
    The political system is so rigged by the capitalist ruling class that corporate power prevails whoever is selected to office. And that power is devoted to projecting US imperialist interests.
    I hope that the Sanders supporters who took him at his word that a ‘political revolution’ is needed now draw the correct conclusion that no good can come from changing that political system through its existing institutions.
    The US needs a Workers Party that can use the existing democratic institutions to rally the working majority to fight to defend democracy (Black Lives Matter is on the right track), defeat the US imperialist ruling class and advance the cause for socialist revolution to replace dying capitalism.

    • Bernie shines amid the dark stars of bigotry and wall street warmongery.

      But Bernie is still a product of US exceptionalism and he pledges to work within that system – which may be realistic but will stave off real political change needed to protect the world and the US people from growing Fascism and poverty.

      Chris has spoken out on the bankers racket which is indeed brave and career limiting. He has the Clinton / Trump saga wrong. His black and white view IS ridiculous. One asks why he has gone down this path.

  5. Sorry, Kieran Kelly – I looked in the wrong place for the authorship of this excellent article. No offense intended.

  6. When the choice is to do a deal with Satan or with Lucifer either way you will get burned. Chris in his application of real politik fails to recognise this. To compound his error he asks the flocks silence and acquiescence to be demonstrated by the doing of good deeds under the umbrella of evil.

    Bad strategy methinks.

  7. Greetings Kieran. 🙂

    Just wow.

    Guess I need to thank Mr Trotter’s pitiful piece since it resulted in this tour de force.

    Roll on part 2. And please don’t feel you have to wait for another ignorant letdown to respond to.

    A comprehensive treatment of the Project For A New American Century would be most welcome, some day if you have time.

    Also, by writing at this level you make it just too hard for trolls to keep up, and hopefully they’ll stop bothering.

  8. “Polls clearly showed that Bernie Sanders would have been able to beat Trump overwhelmingly in the popular vote”

    Yep. I’ve calculated the monthly poll averages for one-on-one match-ups (Clinton vs Trump / Sanders vs Trump) from Real Clear Politics. Here are the stats:

    Calculated from Real Clear Politics
    Clinton vs Trump match-ups
    Sanders vs Trump match-ups
    Monthly Average Lead

    Month ……… Clinton Leads Trump ……… Sanders Leads Trump
    May …………………..C.. + 2…………………………………S.. + 10
    April ………………….C.. + 7…………………………………S.. + 14
    March ……………….C.. + 10……………………………….S.. + 17
    February ………….C.. + 4………………………………….S.. + 8
    January …………….C.. + 3………………………………….S.. + 15

    Sanders had far greater cross-over appeal – able to attract significantly more Independent and erstwhile Republican voters than Hillary, while at the same time maintaining the allegiance of the vast majority of Clinton Democrats.

    Looking forward, I think one of the key problems with Chris Trotter’s argument is his remarkably naïve belief that Sanders has somehow tied a Clinton presidency to his agenda ( Trotter: “Like Wendy reattaching Peter Pan’s shadow, Bernie fastened Hillary to the Democratic Party platform with chains of rhetorical steel. The revolution would go on.”) and that therefore (to quote Chris again): “If Hillary wins … then the United States will begin the long, slow process of leading the world away from the self-destructive shibboleths of neoliberalism”

    Now, that really IS Peter Pan Fantasy-Land, Chris.

    • Useful stats Swordfish. 🙂

      Would seem to show that the public had already decided who they trusted more, even before the MSM decided to admit Sanders’ campaign existed.

      I understand that Sanders recently left the Democratic party, having done what he promised to do by endorsing Clinton when she ‘won’ the primary. Presumably he is now free to do something he would have been able to plan for ever since he realised the primary result was predetermined.

      Kieran has indicated that part 2 will include explaining why ‘chains of rhetorical steel’ (perhaps of the Todd McClay kind) are more like rhetorical butter which can be broken at any time. Knowing that being reminded what it said it would do tends not to stop our government from doing whatever it wants and to hell with promises, it’s likely that the same would apply to a Clinton government and that Sanders knows it.

      He has 2-3 months in which to ‘make his move’ and if we like we can have fun speculating what it might be. The longer he waits (up to a point) the more damage the top two can do to each other – after all, they both have so much material available.

  9. Hurrah. Finally a piece of fine objective journalism exposing Clinton for who she really is and represents.
    Clinton herself vowed in a letter to the Democratic Party billionaire funder,Haim Saban and in her speech to AIPAC, ” she will do everything possible to oppose a boycott of Israel ” in order to end the occupation.
    The grand 4 year pantomine continues.

    [Mathilda/Pedro, use of multiple pseudonyms is frowned on. It does not improve the credibility of your argument one iota. Please stick to one username only. – ScarletMod]

  10. A good summary of the dismal failings of Chris Trotters post and the hypocrisy and weakness of his argument for “compromise” if any revolution is to prevail.
    Unfortunately you didn’t touch on another example of the murder of innocents and destruction of a country resulting from U.S. regime change policies.
    The encouragement and funding of Nazi and Neo- fascist thugs to overthrow the democratically elected Ukrainian Government (albeit with a corrupt leader) to destabilize eastern Europe and encircle Russia with both NATO and U.S. military forces is yet another example of U.S. corporate sponsored militaristic imperialism.

  11. Chris Trotter is right wing. His centre of gravity is skewed, probably because his lifestyle is too comfortable.

    • Rubbish Castro. He’s only “right wing” in your eyes because he dared disagree with your own myopic worldview. Ok, your a Trumpista, we get that. How about you come out openly and declare your support for a playboy billionaire who treats women like flesh and denigrates ethnic and religious groups?

      Fact is, that while Kelly has raised valid issues, that this has become an echo-chamber of anti-Clintonites. The real politik here is that under America’s two-horse race, it’s a clear choice. Not a good choice, but that’s it.

      It’s up to our American comrades to sort their shit out and democratise their electoral system. Until then, good men like Bernie Sanders are sidelined and we get people like Trump and Clinton.

      In this race, Trump is definitely the greater of two evils. As others have pointed out, a racist, misogynist bigot who is also possibly a rapist (according to Kelly), has no place with his hands on the nuclear launch codes and is no friend of the working class.

      If Trump is the answer, god help us all.

    • “Chris Trotter is right wing”?

      I think you’re being a bit mischievous, “Castro”. Maybe you’re a right wing troll engaging in a bit of pseudo-political soundness?

  12. Hmm. A lot of people here are still smarting after being pilloried by Chris Trotter.

    His point was not that Hillary Clinton is as true as the North Star, like you lot, but, after decades of watching progressives take unerring aim at their own feet, that sometimes the goals are worthy of informed compromise.

    The art of the possible.

    Need I remind you of the ill-fated, apocryphal William Jay.

    (Here lies the body of William Jay
    Who died maintaining his right of way –
    He was right, dead right, as he sped along,
    But he’s just as dead as if he were wrong.”

    “You know”, as my old Granddad didn’t use to say, “that’s not only true about cars and some idiot, but it is also true about life and how it is lived”.

    Actually, I may have stolen that one from Melania.

    His point was that, good as it feels at the raging moment, angry, self-righteous rants and a few dollars (not sure how many these days) will get you a cup of good coffee in Wellington and slop in Auckland.

    (That was, perhaps also Chris’ point).

    Accusations that Chris is some sort of Right-wing waste of space is utter nonsense and entirely self defeating, (as Trotsky scrawled out in his own blood on the living-room floor). You may not like the message, used as you are to the black and white company of the equally enraged and Trolls, but when did you last do anything constructive? When did you last wonder if there are any flaws in your own air -tight reasoning.

    The truth is inevitably complex and the answers, should there be any, are likely to be so nuanced that you might need to use the back of the T-shirt too.

    Hillary is a good example. As you all know very well, the polemic reasoning of Kieran Kelly is only part of the story. Decisions, good or bad, are made by powerful actors without the benefit of hindsight. Some decisions are self-serving, may are based on mistaken assumptions, some are altruistic (sort of) but they all have in common that the deciders have nothing but best-guesses of outcomes to guide them.

    Armed, therefore, with a partial array of facts and guided by a blurred vision of eventual outcomes, my guess is that Clinton will be way better for the world that Trump. Not perfect, probably, maybe not even very good, but sufficiently better to consider the Baying Bernie or Busters to be little short of traitors to progressive politics.

    • Well said, Nick.

      If the method for selecting Clinton was flawed,. then that should be addressed. But undermining her chances and allowing Trump to slip through to the White House would be the worst possible outcome.

      The man is mad.

    • It is never more of the same, It usually gets better or worse.

      More of the same will be worse as the hegemony and war expand.

      If you are satisfied then say so.

      Opposition allows change and often motivates change.

    • Nine times out of ten I agree wholeheartedly with Chris Trotter. This is one instance when I don’t. (I also believe his bizarre compulsion to write political limericks is slightly disturbing, but that’s neither here nor there.)

      If you vote for a candidate, you share responsibility for that candidate coming to power. You, through your participation in the electoral process, contribute to their ascendance. (Are you responsible for what they do while in office? Not really, but I’m convinced there are those who voted for John Key who now believe it was a Faustian pact and are probably feeling just a little guilty.) Given what I know about Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump both, I could not, in good conscience, vote for either one of them. Moreover, claiming that Donald Trump is the Anti-Christ, while simultaneously playing down Hillary’s track record of political expediency and continued preference for the most incendiary course of action available, is disingenuous at best.

      I don’t believe it’s as complicated as people like to make out. To my mind, it’s relatively simple. They’re both wholly awful people. One’s a narcissistic blow-hard with the temperament of a petulant child, and the other’s a manipulative, self-serving corporate shill whose recipe for global harmony appears to consist of war, war and yet more war. You can immerse your genitals in a cauldron of boiling oil, or you can chew on a bucket full of broken glass and used syringes. Or… you can opt for something altogether different.

      And for anyone who hasn’t yet seen it, here’s Abby Martin tearing strips off Hillary Clinton.

      • Portentous music does not a coherent critique make. I’ve always quite liked Abbey: she is a bit of a humourless John Oliver, but she’s on a bit of a weak one here.

  13. Excellent piece.

    Accepting the “lesser evil” has got us to the stage where we only have a choice of evils!

  14. Most of the nasty gossip on Trump comes from the Clinton camp, they tell lies, the media picks it up and embroiders it.
    The Dems have thousands of people combing everything Trump says and “oh joy” they find a piece they can twist, Trump never had a bust up with the Kahns .The Kahns were promoted by the Clintons to get at Trump and political correctness of the most dubious kind was brought into play.Mr Kahn is a immigration lawer or similar .
    A lady who is also a Gold Star mother,she praised Trump and said she didnt think gold star mothers have any right to expect others to bow down to them any more than ordinary mothers who sons lost their lives,her words were ignored by MSM because is wasnt a benefit to Clinton .
    Obama plagerised parts of a speech Don junior gave,no outrage there,
    not a mention in the MSM.

    Clinton wont be president in anything in other than name and the profit she can make out of the title. the “globalists” ,”elite” “one world order”
    will lead the USA on the path they want,total control.
    The increase in immigration and possible increase of ISIS in their ranks will lead to chaos in USA,if the “money “can stop the public from owning guns,and black lives matter people can kill police,(Obama a Clinton encourage the black lives matter people to believe they have valid grievances).

    The chaos will allow the Dems to bring in Marshall law to control the people ,the aim of One World Order is to control the people.
    Dems want incite Russia into a war because Russia is holding up the One World Order from achieving total domination,Russia dosnt want war, Trump wants to bring peace by befriending Russia, USA is the warmonger not Russia,MSM promotes the idea of Russia being the enemy.
    Hillary Clinton is narcissitic, (check the definition) a pathalogical liar,
    and a manic depressive,she sleeps for hours in afternoons according to staff, and has massive rages so that people are very wary of her,she has mental health issues ,not her fault but she is in no way fit for the White House.
    The “money” who promote her care little for her problems they can control her for their benefit.
    Sallys husband say Trump is mad ,its Hillary Clinton who fits that description!
    Keiran Kelly ,well done, great article.

  15. Read todays article in WAKE UP NEW ZEALAND to see how the world is being conned by the Clinton camp.
    Obama believes that the Clintons have overplayed their hand in “fixing” the election against Bernie Saunders and he thinks that Trump can win.
    Bernie Saunders it seems should have won ,so why did he capitulate?could be he has something up his sleeve.
    Joe Biden just visited NZ to pave the way for nuclear ships ,and to push the TPPA.
    Key will harm NZ to let USA have place in the Pacific to counter China this will make NZ a target,in USA wars.
    China who is a major trading partner for NZ, although Key is a poor negotiator,China runs rings around Key.
    The world is on a rollacoaster ,Clinton is the Clown who will start the ride.

  16. Todays Wake up New Zealand is a real eye opener. The paid for polls in USA are rigging the polls for Clinton, Trump is really 72 against Clintons 28. See video of rallies for Clinton ,she is speaking to empty halls.
    Julian Assange tells some of the crimes Clinton has committed,and there’s much more to come. Claims that Clinton is very ill and could die soon ,
    the MSM is hiding everything, just read it and get a different perspective on the USA elections.
    Read how Mrs Clinton deals with anyone who crosses her,they die suddenly ! six in last few weeks.

  17. I’m a little suprised that so many seem to be sucked in by Trump’s racist, misogynistic, jingoistic demagoguery. I thought we were above that sort of silliness. I guess not!

Comments are closed.