Green candidate Jill Stein makes her case for the US presidency

By   /   October 12, 2016  /   32 Comments

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Up until now most progressive Americans have been backing the “lesser evil” in the US presidential contest. They don’t particularly like Hillary Clinton’s establishment politics but they’ve been scared into her camp because Donald Trump is so terrible.

Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein announces the formation of an exploratory committee to seek the Green Party's presidential nomination again in 2016. during an event at the National Press Club February 6, 2015 in Washington, DC. Photo by Olivier Douliery/Sipa USA

Green Party presidential nominee Jill Stein announces the formation of an exploratory committee to seek the Green Party’s presidential nomination again in 2016. during an event at the National Press Club February 6, 2015 in Washington, DC. Photo by Olivier Douliery/Sipa USA

Up until now most progressive Americans have been backing the “lesser evil” in the US presidential contest. They don’t particularly like Hillary Clinton’s establishment politics but they’ve been scared into her camp because Donald Trump is so terrible.

Many of these progressives were Bernie Sanders supporters, some of whom are now moving to the Green candidate Jill Stein. They will feel more comfortable voting for Stein now the Trump campaign imploding and Hillary Clinton a sure bet. In most states (outside the “battleground” states) voting for a third party candidate like Stein does not affect the final result. If you are living in New York, California or Massachusetts, where Clinton has a massive lead, voting for Stein is any easy option for those who don’t like Clinton’s conservatism. Stein polls better in such states. A recent New York poll (NBC, 26 September) put her on 5%.

Of course, Jill Stein suffers from minimal coverage in the mainstream media but some of the alternative media are taking her seriously. Democracy Now’s video streaming of the latest Trump/Clinton debate was enlivened by inserting after each segment comments from the Green candidate.

Stein said that “the American people have very serious issues before us, and we need to get past this debate over whether Hillary or Donald is more corrupt, who has the more offensive history.”

She pointed out that one of the leading candidates “represents the billionaire class, the other candidate represents the donors—or, I should say, her donors represent that billionaire class.” She talked about “transformative solutions” including an “emergency jobs program” to address climate change and create “20 million good-wage jobs to transform our economy to 100 percent clean, renewable energy, a healthy and sustainable food system, and public transportation which is efficiently and renewably powered, and restoring our ecosystems.” Like Bernie Sanders she advocated “medicare-for-all”.

Funding for such needed programmes was held up because “almost half of your income taxes are going to this massive Defense Department, which is not really not a Defense Department, it is an offense department,” she said, noting that “the Obama administration is now bombing seven countries.” Stein challenged the hawkish approach Clinton took during the debate, including her proposal for a no-fly zone over Syria: “To present a no-fly zone here as a solution is extremely dangerous. A no-fly zone means we are going to war with Russia.” She noted that Clinton had “led the charge into Libya and created that catastrophe, which led to the release of huge stockpiles of arms and incredible violence and catastrophic situation in Libya, all of which helped fan the flames in Syria.”

The Green candidate was looking beyond the election and saw her campaign helping build “a strong movement and a strong political voice to that movement to continue fighting against this rule by the economic and political elite that both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump represent.” She was optimistic about the prospects for progressive change, even when the presidency leaves a lot to be desired.   Stein recalled the movement successes even under such a regressive president as Richard Nixon: “under this terrible president, we achieved bringing the troops home from Vietnam, women’s right to choose, the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, protections for workers in the workplace, because we, the people, were standing up and leading the charge towards the kinds of policies that we actually deserve. It’s important for us to lead with the politics of courage. The politics of fear, unfortunately, has delivered everything we were afraid of.”

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  1. Andy says:

    Not having a rapist as a husband is a positive virtue

    • Priss says:

      No, Andy, you’d rather support a man who feels entitled to gran women’s genitals because of his wealth/fame/privilege?

      Remind us against what you said about a similar case here in Aotearoa, where a rich man in power felt he was privileged enough to repeatedly grab the hair of a a waitress?

    • John W says:

      Policies and track record is a far more important consideration than personal attack that seems to dominate and obfuscate politics.

      Neither Trump and Killary can promote constructive change for the many.

      Jill is talking sense and has a track record which tends to uphold her integrity, a vital element that neither of the other two have. The system will keep jill out, but her contribution may help spur hope and direction for the rebellion over throwing the system.

    • Mike in Auckland says:

      The degree if stupidity displayed in this comment you have made, it is reaching new levels. Any person’s virtue has nothing to do with that person’s partner’s misguided actions or misconduct, as one person’s virtue is not really dependent on what other persons do or fail to do.

    • Andrew says:

      Excellent point Andy

      The Clinton’s have a 30 year record of dirty dealings:

      Monica Lewinsky,
      Payment for Pardons,
      The Clinton Foundation,
      Pay to Play,
      the 30,000 emails,

      It’s a long list of endemic filth and corruption.

      Yet the media are worried about a recording of a lewd conversation! 😉

      Let me tell you all how the world works:

      That recording has been in the Democrats hands for months, waiting for the right time to bring it out.

      Neither Democrats nor the Republican insiders want Trump because he will upset the comfortable bipartisan deals done in DC. He has promised to close tax loopholes for their sponsors. He has promised to clean up the medical insurance industry. He has promised to get Goldman Sachs out of the Whitehouse.

      This is really bad for business!

      If, by some fluke, he won this election he would be a target for assassination.

      • Mike in Auckland says:

        And Trump now has many disgruntled women at his tail, that will really make things work our for him, will it not?

      • phillip ure says:

        and andy..(and i call you andy..?..)

        u shd hold onto your hat – as a person on my twitter feed who up to now has proved she is close to sources of information – is telling me that the ‘two big bombshells’ to drop against trump have not yet happened..but will..
        this current lot is just the apertifs…

      • phillip ure says:

        and just a factcheck on yr bullshit claim the dems ‘had the tape for months’..
        the actual facts of that release is that it was given to nbc..who were sitting on it – so someone pissed about that leaked the story to the print media – who published..
        (so you won’t need to repeat that particular falsehood again..will you..?..)

  2. Afewknowthetruth says:

    ‘She talked about “transformative solutions” including an “emergency jobs program” to address climate change and create “20 million good-wage jobs to transform our economy to 100 percent clean, renewable energy, a healthy and sustainable food system, and public transportation which is efficiently and renewably powered, and restoring our ecosystems.”

    That all sounds meritorious. Unfortunately that agenda is physically impossible within the framework of anything that remotely resembles present economic-social arrangements or current population levels.

    For a start, there is no such thing as ‘100 percent clean, renewable energy’, except that derived from photosynthesis -effectively wood or dung. Everything else is a sub-set of the fossil fuel economy.

    ‘public transportation which is efficiently and renewably powered’

    Would that be wooden barges towed by horses, and wooden carriages pulled by horses? Perhaps a few mule trains and camel trains? Alpacas and llamas as appropriate? Anything made of metal via fossil fuels or powered by electricity is neither efficient nor renewable.

    The fact is, the progress trap was set and triggered more than 200 years ago, and there’s no way out at this late stage in the game. All we can say is that if all these issues that needed to be dealt with had been dealt with in the late 1960s, when they were clearly identified, we may have stood a chance.

    But not now, Keith. Far too much sequesterd carbon has been burned and the human population is in very severe overshoot.,_Jr.

    Jill Stein will not mention any of that. Nor will anyone in the NZ Green Party.

    The difficult aspect is to come to terms with the fact that there is no hope within the framework of current political-economic-social arrangements, and almost no one is prepared to abandon them. Indeed, billions of people around the world have been conned into aspiring for a life of fossil-fuel-facilitated consumerism.

    Now at 402 and headed for 450. Then 500.

    And there is NO POLITICAL WILL to do anything about any of it.

    • LOSTRELIC says:

      There is no personal will either. I agree with what you’re saying, but in order to achieve what you’re pointing out here, there would need to be a mass exodus from supporting the current systems, towards agrarian, land-based, extremely materially simplified lifestyles. Outside of a very very tiny *actual* handful of activists, and a few traditionalist indigenous peoples, no one is willing to let go of the comforts and pleasures of “progress”. There are very small pockets of utopian activists who talk about such things, but the reality is they tend to be excellent at fantasizing up kumbaya fantasy worlds where everything is honky-dory and under control, and demonstrate zero interest in actually getting their hands dirty – literally – with the reality.

      I don’t condemn Stein, or Sanders for that matter, for their positions on such matters – they’re sticking their necks out far more than most, and that’s still better than nothing. But I agree in that the political – and personal – will required needs to be far, far more ambitious.

      Political will mostly only comes from the bottom – from individuals, from me and you, doing things on the ground. Right-wing politicians just feed off the ignorance of the general population. Some politicians might unify progressives, as Sanders largely did, but he was only able to do so due to a critical mass of disenfranchised populations. In my view, the Left is almost always a reaction to right-wing politics undermining itself. What you’re talking about is just way out. And those who would choose such a path would probably get branded as terrorists, have their land taken from them, and/or bombed by drones. But I agree with what you’ve said. But for me, it can only come from individuals, creating a mass movement – and if such a thing should reach enough of a critical mass, a politician such as Stein might get on board.

  3. Pasupial says:

    It’s a good thing that your opinion is totally insignificant Andy, otherwise I imagine you’d regret omitting that; the allegations against Bill Clinton have no legal standing, and your assertion is thus defamatory. I can likewise refer to Trump as an alleged rapist, as well as an self confessed adulterer, sexpest, andlikely serial assaulter of women.

    An enduring marriage, even when modeled so solidly by the Clintons, seems to be denied the label of “Christian” — not for lack of faith on the Clintons’ part, but for a lack of grace in those who hold them in judgment.

    • Andy says:

      I find it interesting how “progressives” wail about rape and then jump to defend Bill Clinton.

      OK, he never got busted, but those women are lining up and also claiming that Hillary threatened them if they went to the law.

      Furthermore, Hillary defended a child rapist who forced himself on a 12 year old in a brutal way (she was in a coma for a week) and then laughed about the guys guilt that she know about (audio evidence of this exists)

      I will be the first to accuse Trump if he is busted for rape too, I am not into tribal politics and certainly not into defending sexual assault, especially by those in positions of power

      let me guess, all this is a “right wing conspiracy’… whistles

      • Andy, did you ever stand up for Amanda Bailey, when it came out in public that Key had been assaulting her for a period of months, before he was forced to stop?

        Or are you selective in your morality, like so many other right-wingers?

      • Pasupial says:

        Do you think that the accused does not deserve legal representation and a fair trial in a rape case? What does that do to the legal system? In fact, I believe that the footage of Clinton laughing was in reference to the state of the legal system, rather than at the child victim as some have implied.

        In any case Hillary Clinton is not herself a sexual predator, while her husband and presidential opponent are both alleged to be so. Should she be condemned for a crime she did not commit? She has flaws enough (especially warmongering and participation in extrajudicial murder – Bin Laden and others), that it seems unnecessary to condemn her for staying married to an adulterer.

        • Andy says:

          Yes, an accused deserves a fair trial, even if the victim was brutally assaulted, raped and left in a coma for a week, as happened in this case.

          However a fair trial isn’t one where there is forensic evidence that proves the guilt of the accused, and where the evidence is mysteriously “lost”

          Anyway, it doesn’t matter does it, because rape, sexual assault, and even murder are OK for democrats.

          Literally the worst thing that anyone could do is be seen to support Trump and therefore be “racist”. Therefore people would rather ignore sexual assault, rape and murder. This is quite common, I have seen many people take this position

          I used to think rape was a big deal. My aunt was raped at age 16 whilst in a war camp in Prague. She had an abortion and never had a relationship with a man for the rest of her life.

          The message I get these days is: “rape doesn’t matter”.

          This is the message I get from “progressives”

          F**k the lot of you, if that is your position.

          [“F**k the lot of” us, Andy? In which case you won’t mind a brief holiday from posting on this Forum until you cool down a bit. Consider your posting privileges rescinded for the next 48 hours. (I’m tempted to make it longer.) – ScarletMod]

          • Mike in Auckland says:

            See ya, after 48 perhaps, thanks Scarlet Mod.

          • Pasupial says:

            You are willfully misrepresenting my position.To simpify for you: All assaults are bad, sexual assault is a particular kind of bad because it so rarely leads to convictions (and some even argue that we live in a “rape culture” that enables male violence against women). Rape is a particularly vile extreme on the continuum of sexual assault, not least because of tragic pregnancies such as you describe.

            However, I think that Bill Clinton’s actions are largely irrelevant to Hillary Clinton’s campaign (her “crime” there seems to be standing by her man through good and bad – some might call it; “stamina”). However, Trump’s pattern of sexual predation and misogyny is all down to him, and I wouldn’t blame his spouses for it either.

            Now, seeing as you are all about the baseless assertions and have failed to provide any links or other evidence proving your claims. Over on Snopes, I found this well referenced piece that demonstrates the inaccuracy of your description of Clinton’s involvement in the Taylor trial:

            Clinton can be heard describing the case as “terrible.” She did audibly laugh or chuckle at points, not about “knowing that the defendant was guilty” or “getting a guilty guy off” (which makes little sense, given that the defendant pled guilty) but rather while musing about how elements of the case that might ordinarily have supported the prosecution worked in the defendant’s favor (i.e., observing that the defendant’s passing a polygraph test had “forever destroyed her faith” in that technology)


      • Mike in Auckland says:

        Now, what is the topic of this discussion? Have you actually read it, Andy?

  4. Pasupial says:

    I’m only partway through that Democracy Now “expanded debate”, even with skipping through much of the Clinton/ Trump sections. It’s not that it its bad, but two hours is a long watch!

    I think I’d vote for Stein myself if I was a US citizen in a non-borderline state (in which case, I’d vote against Trump; preferring evil to crazy). I think it has consequences for funding and debate presence in the next election, but can’t give a link on that.

  5. Unfortunately, the US is locked into a two-horse race with it’s antiquated, first-past-the-post system.

    If they had STV or Preferential Voting, a case could definitely be made for voting as foillows;

    [1] Jill Stein

    [2] Bernie Sanders (write-in)

    [3] Hillary Clinton

    [4] Donald “Grab’em by their Genitals” Trump

    But FPP makes no such allowances and US voters are stuck with a two-horse race. Ms Stein’s influence could only put a racist, misogynistic bully into the White House.

  6. Mike in Auckland says:

    Looking at the crowds that support Trump, and hearing that he can get about 40 percent of the votes, no matter what nasty attacks he may throw at Hillary and others, I think that Jill Stein is a lone voice in a desert of common sense.

    She seems to be a bit like a prophet of ancient times, who can see the light and what dooms on humanity if people do not change behaviour. But we learn that such prophets were often driven out of communities into the lonely desert or into the mountains, to seek refuge.

    The US is such a commercialised and still largely too poorly informed, insufficiently enlightened country (the population that is), too few will understand what is necessary to happen, and vote for such a progressive candidate. And there are not enough grassroots supporters and possible candidates in many parts of the US, which means Congress and the Senate will continue to be the home of many fossil age heads.

    Massive changes are needed very soon for the US to be saved from self destruction, same as most of the rest of the planet, I seen the 5 percent polls as proof of what an uphill battle Greens in the US still face. Time is running out fast for solutions, but look at what we have as leading candidates, it is truly a kind of disaster.

    • Garibaldi says:

      I couldn’t agree more with you Mike(and afewknow…).Mike your description of the US reminded me of NZ…..sad eh?

      • Mike in Auckland says:

        Well, with all the shopping malls, suburbia connected with wide roads and highways to the rest of cities and the country, fast food franchise outlets everywhere, probably the Golden Arches having a ration per population similar to the US, and the obsession with cars and petrol, we are simply not much else but a kind of CLONE of the US, are we not?

        The only difference is a law, a political system, and some other bits, that tie us to a former colonial power based on the edges of Europe, and migrant stock that still largely originated in much of Europe, and that has a slightly different history to the US, where they rather shot and took the land off the natives, while here they offered a fake “treaty”, to make it look a little “tidier”.

        All else are trivial matters, I fear, not much difference, really.

    • Afewknowthetruth says:

      Mike, the people you refer to are called Cassandras, after the mythological Trojan Cassandra, daughter or Priam, who had the god-given gift of prophesy and the curse of not being believed by those she warned; thus she was driven mad by those around her who refused to accept her wisdom. In some version of the myth she was locked up for speaking the truth no one wanted to hear.

      Ugo Bardi, the Italian Chemistry professor who highlighted peak oil back in the days when The Oil Drum and Energy Bulletin were still running calls his website Cassandra’s Legacy.

      Most people in NZ are so dumbed-down and stupid, uninterested in the health of the planet or even their own health, they adopt and celebrate every stupid invention or cultural idiocy that comes out of America, e.g. Americarna -an annual celebration of ruination of the environment via oversized gas-guzzlers is enthusiastically endorsed by NPDC. (It’s all about filling beds in hotels and motels, and bums on seats in bars and restaurants, of course, and bugger the future -literally.)

      A decade ago I prophesied, rather tongue in cheek at the time, that the last programme to be broadcast before on television before the screens in NZ go blank will be motor racing. The level of idiocy we now witness in NZ suggests that prophesy may well come true.

  7. save nz says:

    Hope for a miracle – Jill Klein makes president and restore some sort of respect, peace and decency to America.

  8. ALH84001 says:

    What a choice!!!

    A racist misogynistic bigoted demagogue vs a puppet of Wall Street. Congratulations America, this is what you have been reduced to.

    I feel like it’s been April Fools Day for the last six months!

    • Mike in Auckland says:

      Chin up, Guy Fawke’s Day is coming up, perhaps some reason to feel “inspired” for alternative action?

  9. Andrea says:

    That anyone would either turn up to a rally, or endure two HOURS of listening to spite, bile, lies and venom… See, children, what a culture of movies and tv will do to the average voter. Be warned.

    Meanwhile an Aussie Green labelled the charismatic Mr Trump as a slug.
    I see what he means:

    Were I an American I would not vote for Dr Stein. She has too much of the playground sneak about her. Elizabeth Warren looked to be the better fighter. Bernie reminded people to be at least half way decent instead of hiring people with the resilience to trawl through the bottom of an over-ripe long drop for smut.

    Donkeys and elephants. Hard-working and honest beasts. What awfulness did they do to be used as symbols for impolite politics?