Although I’ve voted a straight Democrat ticket in every election of my adulthood (that’s since 1974, in case you’re wondering), I’ve never really considered myself a Democrat. I’d been politicized by the time I reached 21 and, if we had a strong and viable socialist or social democrat (as in Denmark) party, my votes would always have gone there. I think Denmark has gotten it right.
I’m a bit of a realist though and I get we have a corrupt two party system so deeply entrenched it will require a revolution or some major upheaval to get rid of it. So, yes, I liked Bernie Sanders. But I knew he wouldn’t be able to do what he said he’d do — we don’t have a system to support that can kind of change. After the way the Republicans blocked Obama, I don’t understand how anyone seriously thought Bernie’s programs wold ever go anywhere.
Until Bernie came along, I’d been hoping Hilary would run. I’m aware of the insane campaign the Right has run for decades to discredit her and, although I mostly stay out of the political fray, I read enough to be aware how twisted their reporting about her has been. So a lot of the stuff that infuriates people about her I don’t believe.
I like her for being a strong woman who frightens so many men. And I don’t mind some of the “political player” stuff about which people are so bothered. We live in a country where politics is a big game so it seems to me we need a president who knows how to play it. I love Obama, but my perception is he wasn’t good enough at playing the game to get around some of the blocks. I think Hilary knows how to build a coalition.
What’s puzzling to me is why so many people are outraged by her for being good at working the system we have. Unless you’re prepared to overthrow the government, it seems to me the best you can do is find a candidate who supports at least a fair portion of the platform you prefer and knows how to make some headway with it. If you’re a Democrat and you take a good look at what she’s supported over the years, you’ll see a pretty strong record in the environmental and the social causes we generally favor.
It seems like a lot of people are mad at her for knowing how to work the system she’s in. Displeased because she plays the game so well. I don’t particularly like the game, but given the system we’ve got, I see her game-playing abilities as necessary; it seems naive to me to imagine a politician is going to get anywhere without those abilities.
The American and French revolutions notwithstanding, I’ve seen enough bad results of revolution to question the wisdom of fomenting one. Since I have no other answer for overhauling our current system, for the moment I accept the corrupt system we have as just what is and I vote as often to keep someone out whom I perceive as disastrous as because I believe my candidate will make a positive difference..
In this case, I actually think there are reasons to favor Hilary as well as keeping the horrible specter of the Donald at bay. Her political and diplomatic skills are well-honed and she knows how to use them. If she’s our first woman president I think we’ll have reason to be proud of how well the first woman did.
[Note to NanoPoblanos: if you’ve made your way to this one, I purposely left off all the tags for the group as I don’t particularly want to launch a political debate in the group]