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Thursday, July 7, 2016

The age of miracles has not passed.

I, for one, have suffered the chronic illness called Clinton Fatigue for a very long time. I would prefer another choice for president, but the two major parties have denied me that.

I have had this problem before. In 2004 the parties gave me the choice of a Harvard-educated snob who married money, or a Harvard-educated faux-cowboy who inherited money. I held my nose and voted for the snob; America got the cowboy, more war, and an economic collapse (he turns 70 today, and makes a good living giving motivational speeches at fundraisers for homeless shelters for one hundred thousand dollars each).

So here we are. I am struck by how the most vocal of Mrs Clinton's social media critics have experienced miracles this week: they have all been turned into career prosecutors and criminal analysts. People who, in all seriousness, will pass along news stories from fake news sites, and instructions on how to get my share of Mark Zuckerberg's $2 million-a-head giveaway, people who have no idea how to manage their own page security, are suddenly experts on the intersection of national security and setting up email servers, and are now opining that Mrs Clinton should be in jail.

I'm also struck by how judgmental and unforgiving are her most vocal critics, most of them Christians so ostentatious even the Pharisee  loudly praising his own piety in the Temple might wince.

These are practitioners of secondary virginity and multiple marriages. Every problem can be despatched by a reminder they are born again, and God forgives them, if not Mrs Clinton. She they hold in purdah, forever encased in her worst moments, incapable of learning from mistakes, condemned to a life of deceit, fraud, dissimulation and moral laxness they are fortunate their choice for president does not share.

Most of all, however, I am struck by how Mrs Clinton's critics fail to see that she is a product of exactly the America they have demanded, with their votes, for decades. They demanded the dismantling of campaign finance laws, banking regulation, pollution, employment discrimination and tax laws, and they got it. Let business flourish! Kill the job-killing regulations! The government can do nothing as well as the private sector! Let billionaires fund presidential candidates, and corporate oligarchs run for office.

All the cozy backscratching that goes on as those with political power and those with money, well, when you end progressive taxation of income and estates by pandering to the envy of small businesses the big ones will wipe out in a heartbeat if the right deal comes along, one shouldn't be surprised when they and their heirs look to lawmakers to keep such an agreeable, and fair, system of life going for generations. After all, it's what the people said they wanted.

So when the private sector outsources your job, finagles with regulations- what few are left- to defund your pension and deny your health coverage; when banks decide access to the powerful is worth cutting a check for $600,000 to a Clinton for a speech, or forking over a million or two to their foundation- that's free enterprise. It's what you said you wanted more of. They can spend their money any way they like.

When the children of the rich get all the spots in the best universities, and leverage their connections and degrees into outrageously-paid jobs, that's the American dream: using their God-given talents, and remembering that, according to Franklin Graham, God has blessed the Republican Party platform every quadrennium since at least 1964.

When they mock Mrs Clinton for her cackle, or for her dowdy clothes that mean she is trying to seem like regular folks, or her very expensive clothes that show she is lording her wealth over the rest of us, it's all a manifestation of the celebrity culture they have voted for, for decades, with TV clickers and subscriptions to People; with their lionization of riches, beauty, louche behavior,and serial divorce (If you're a woman who has ever mocked the Clintons' daughter for being plain, update your BMI and sin no more).

When they line up at Wal-Mart for the cheap everything, they're rewarding the companies who moved overseas to cut costs enough to provide it. The trade deals that facilitate that? They voted for the party that provided them, after secret negotiations and virtually no public discussions (oh- the idea that rejecting the TPP will bring China to heel? That's just being a dumbass. China's not a party to it, and its purpose is to ringfence the neighboring economies that are willing to make your next pair of sneakers even cheaper).

This week, Donald Trump put his golf club in Puerto Rico into bankruptcy. As he has explained, he just uses the system. It's there. It's legal. It's what you wanted. Corporations get fresh starts, even if Mrs Clinton doesn't.

1 comment:

  1. Very good. Accurate.

    Old Jill in N.C.