FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

President Hillary

by PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS

 

If polls are reliable, Hillary will win the Democratic nomination. The Democratic groups that prefer Obama are not sufficiently numerous to give him the nomination.

Of course, anything can happen in a political campaign, but the latest Field Poll of likely California Democrats and independent voters gives Hillary a 39 to 27 percent lead over Obama. This is bad news for Obama, because California is a progressive state where race is less likely to be a handicap.

Obama is favored by those who rank the Iraq war and foreign policy as the most important issues, by blacks, college graduates, and those with higher incomes.

Hillary is favored two to one by women, two to one by lower income groups and three to one among Latinos. Hillary has a further advantage. At the 2004 Democratic National Convention approximately 50 per cent of the delegates were women. As Democratic delegates are invariably feminists, they are not going to miss the chance of putting a woman in the presidency.

Are the Democrats choosing Hillary because she has the moral integrity to stop an unjust war and to hold war criminals responsible for leading America into war based on lies and deception? Are they choosing Hillary because she defends the US Constitution from usurpation by executive power? Are they choosing her because she is public-spirited instead of personally ambitious?

No. The Democrats are choosing Hillary because of gender and race. Despite all the efforts of Democratic activist groups, the majority of Democratic voters are more concerned with race and gender issues than with their country’s reputation and their civil liberties.

If elected president, Hillary will bring no more change than did the Democratic congressional majority elected in 2006.

Obama might not bring any change either. But he is the only candidate in the running who has expressed concern over Israel’s mistreatment of the Palestinians and who voted against the Iraq invasion. Clearly, he is a better bet for change than Hillary. However, Democrats are more attuned to race and gender issues than to war crimes and loss of civil liberties.

This is not to argue that Republicans are an improvement. Their likely nominee is McCain, who has recently said that he is OK with a hundred-year war in Iraq. McCain is as willing to attack Iran as Bush and Cheney, and he would not be adverse to conspiring with Israel and the neoconservatives to pull off an attack. Republicans don’t even have a “change” candidate in the running. They have worked to marginalize Ron Paul precisely because he would be an instrument of change.

Even if Obama were elected and was sincere about change, what could he do? Probably very little. The pool of candidates from which he could staff an administration is not that much different from that of any other candidate. He can pass over a neocon architect of the Iraq invasion and settle on an architect of President Clinton’s bombing of Serbia.

Moreover, Congress will still be controlled by the same interest groups. If Obama were to appoint people opposed by the military-security lobby, the Israel Lobby or the offshoring lobby, the Senate would be unlikely to confirm them. No president wants to nominate people who cannot be confirmed. Presidents have to staff their administrations according to who can get the approval of powerful interest groups.
This makes if difficult to change the status quo. It only takes one senator to put a hold on an appointment. Change in Washington requires breaking many iron grips.

In the presidential race, Hillary would defeat McCain, who without any doubt is the war candidate. Hillary will get the women’s vote, the minorities’ vote, and the anti-war vote. McCain will get the vote of angry macho white males.
What Hillary has to worry about is a major terrorist attack, whether real or orchestrated, that would revive the 9/11 fears and send voters scurrying to put the presidency into the hands of a war hero. As Hillary is not regarded as a threat to Israel’s territorial expansion or to the interests of the military-security complex, the only wild card is some terrorist action that would require the failure of US security in order to succeed.

Of course, all of this ignores the salient fact: No one knows how the Diebold electronic voting machines programmed by Republican operatives with proprietary software will count the votes.

If it hasn’t become a stolen affair, the American presidency has become a family affair, one that is passed from a Bush to a Clinton to a Bush and back to a Clinton. The interest groups are satisfied, and nothing of importance changes.

After Hillary will we have Jeb?

PAUL CRAIG ROBERTS was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration. He was Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal editorial page and Contributing Editor of National Review. He is coauthor of The Tyranny of Good Intentions.He can be reached at: PaulCraigRoberts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

Paul Craig Roberts is a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal. Roberts’ How the Economy Was Lost is now available from CounterPunch in electronic format. His latest book is The Neoconservative Threat to World Order.

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

January 23, 2017
Clancy Sigal
Who’s Up for This Long War?
Weekend Edition
January 20, 2017
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Divide and Rule: Class, Hate, and the 2016 Election
Andrew Levine
When Was America Great?
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: This Ain’t a Dream No More, It’s the Real Thing
Yoav Litvin
Making Israel Greater Again: Justice for Palestinians in the Age of Trump
Linda Pentz Gunter
Nuclear Fiddling While the Planet Burns
Ruth Fowler
Standing With Standing Rock: Of Pipelines and Protests
David Green
Why Trump Won: the 50 Percenters Have Spoken
Dave Lindorff
Imagining a Sanders Presidency Beginning on Jan. 20
Pete Dolack
Eight People Own as Much as Half the World
Roger Harris
Too Many People in the World: Names Named
Steve Horn
Under Tillerson, Exxon Maintained Ties with Saudi Arabia, Despite Dismal Human Rights Record
John Berger
The Nature of Mass Demonstrations
Stephen Zielinski
It’s the End of the World as We Know It
David Swanson
Six Things We Should Do Better As Everything Gets Worse
Alci Rengifo
Trump Rex: Ancient Rome’s Shadow Over the Oval Office
Brian Cloughley
What Money Can Buy: the Quiet British-Israeli Scandal
Mel Gurtov
Donald Trump’s Lies And Team Trump’s Headaches
Kent Paterson
Mexico’s Great Winter of Discontent
Norman Solomon
Trump, the Democrats and the Logan Act
David Macaray
Attention, Feminists
Yves Engler
Demanding More From Our Media
James A Haught
Religious Madness in Ulster
Dean Baker
The Economics of the Affordable Care Act
Patrick Bond
Tripping Up Trumpism Through Global Boycott Divestment Sanctions
Robert Fisk
How a Trump Presidency Could Have Been Avoided
Robert Fantina
Trump: What Changes and What Remains the Same
David Rosen
Globalization vs. Empire: Can Trump Contain the Growing Split?
Elliot Sperber
Dystopia
Dan Bacher
New CA Carbon Trading Legislation Answers Big Oil’s Call to Continue Business As Usual
Wayne Clark
A Reset Button for Political America
Chris Welzenbach
“The Death Ship:” An Allegory for Today’s World
Uri Avnery
Being There
Peter Lee
The Deep State and the Sex Tape: Martin Luther King, J. Edgar Hoover, and Thurgood Marshall
Patrick Hiller
Guns Against Grizzlies at Schools or Peace Education as Resistance?
Randy Shields
The Devil’s Real Estate Dictionary
Ron Jacobs
Singing the Body Electric Across Time
Ann Garrison
Fifty-five Years After Lumumba’s Assassination, Congolese See No Relief
Christopher Brauchli
Swing Low Alabama
Dr. Juan Gómez-Quiñones
La Realidad: the Realities of Anti-Mexicanism
Jon Hochschartner
The Five Least Animal-Friendly Senate Democrats
Pauline Murphy
Fighting Fascism: the Irish at the Battle of Cordoba
Susan Block
#GoBonobos in 2017: Happy Year of the Cock!
Louis Proyect
Is Our Future That of “Sense8” or “Mr. Robot”?
Charles R. Larson
Review: Robert Coover’s “Huck out West”
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail