Sunday, April 12, 2015

My Thoughts on Hillary Clinton

I'm obviously not American, as I assume most of you aren't, but regardless of that fact, the electoral races in the United States have a huge impact on our country - none more so than the Presidential races, and there is a big one coming up in 2016.

Thus enter in Hillary Clinton, former Secretary of State, New York Senator, and wife of two-term President Bill Clinton, the President that I more or less grew up with as a young child (again, I'm not American so its kind of a relative feeling). She confirmed the worst-kept secret in American politics today: Hillary will be running for the Democratic Party nomination for President in 2016, and has a very heartwarming campaign video to go with it that you can see above.

Now, recent controversies aside, my initial consideration of Hillary as President is not necessarily a positive one. No, I'm not a secret misogynist or raging Republican - I just like to see a little bit of change once in awhile, especially when it comes to American politics. If Clinton is nominated, as is Jeb Bush for the Republicans, you have to realize that by 2020, just two families have been in control of the office of the world's superpower for 24 out of 32 years - that is kind of appalling to think about.

There are also concerns that Clinton, despite apparent popularity, will not be much different than Obama is in office - a President who cannot get anything done because of a divided government and split electorate. That isn't her fault, but she is an extremely divisive figure in American politics, and very simply her presence at the top of the ballot will probably not help Democrats any more than it hinders them.

Let me spell it out for you as well: America needs the Democrats to win, big-time. Not because I have any particular affinity for the party, but very simply because they're the saner half of the spectrum right now. There are simply not enough moderate Republicans in high enough offices to counterbalance the absolutely crazy, science-denying mental patients running the asylum right now, thus the only way for things to move forward in the right direction - healthcare for Americans, fixing a broken political system, keeping the hands of religious whackadoos off the levers of power, etc. - is for the Democrats to get control. Is that really going to be possible with the ultra-divisive Hillary at the top of the ticket? I remain skeptical.

America will not benefit from more stagnation in its political class, and unfortunately another Clinton run is the perpetuation of it.

At the same time... I love Hillary Clinton. I personally think she's awesome, and I think her general priorities are in the right place. In fact, I think she would make a great President, and her election would put a wonderful end point on a decade of change in America. Plus, she's a meme - memes are cool. Support memes.

I just can't get over the facts of America's cynical reality, however. She might make a great President, the best since Roosevelt, but would she actually be able to get anything done? I don't see John Boehner or whatever Republican clown they get into the Speaker's chair bending with the times. Its more likely they'll fight back even harder than ever, pumping more and more wasted dollars into political action committees and railroading legislation at the state level that destroys the foundations of the progressive state that is America's underpinnings. I just don't forsee a future where President Hillary Clinton doesn't become another victim of the stagnation we've seen since her husband was in the same Office.

Then again, what choice do I have? There's no Democratic stars, save Martin O'Malley maybe, willing to challenge Hillary; and any sane Republican I'd support, along the lines of Jon Huntsman or... well, that's about it really, they're just not going to get any traction right now. Clinton is the best bet for change, and its a losing one to begin with.


  1. What America truly needs is campaign finance reform. It costs over a million dollars to run for a House seat today, tens of millions to run for senator and hundreds of millions to run for president. With money like that American politicians are beholden and dependent upon big money donors regardless of party affiliation. This dependency explains much of the political gridlock in Washington and why compromise is often so difficult to come by. Republicans can't vote for sane gun control because the financial repercussions would sink future campaigns. Democrats must intorduce tax breaks for electric cars because big Hollywood donations are dependent on them doing so, even if such acts have a very minimal effect on the environment or air pollution.

    As for Cluintons and the Bushes, it's a shame such is America's history. Interestingly, America's political system was designed upon Classical Rome, Rome was an aristocratic republic and the framers America's constitution referred to the new country as a republic not a democracy. So it is really no surprise that America's political history is dominated by aristocratic families; the Adams, Roosevelts, Kennedys, Bushes, Clintons, Cuomos, Rockefellers etc...

    As for Hilary I think she is a very flawed candidate and one who only has two campaigns under her belt (both for US senator) she is not a well experienced politicians and her record is decidedly mixed. She is not a new face and people were rightly tired of her in 2008-I for one am not sure what makes her a more desirable candidate 8 years later. Her greatest attribute may simply be she is not a Bush if Jeb wins the Republican nomination-that is not much to base a campaign on but, with the sorry state of American politics today it may be enough to win.

    1. I agree 100% - campaign finance reform is desperately needed in the US.

  2. Let me get this straight, you are saying that Hillary Clinton is too divisive of a figure to be in the White House, yet you want a Democrat in the White House?

    Who is this magical Democrat that could get their agenda passed in a Republican (gerrymandered) congress dominated by ideologues?

    Any Democrat in the White House will be seen as divisive for Republicans. Right-wingers spent eight years trying to undermine Bill Clinton and they are doing the same with Barack Obama. It will continue to happen with whatever Democrat is in the White House next.

    1. That's a fair point - maybe there will be no Democrat that can escape the wrath of the GOP. However, it is possible to have a candidate popular enough to help win the Senate and House back for Democrats - I just don't see Hillary being that candidate.