As the National Journal reported in 2014, even the pathetically weak anti-war left is not ready to reconcile with Hillary given her warmongering as Secretary of State. And with good reason. Scratching just lightly beneath the surface of Hillary Clinton’s career reveals the empirical evidence of her historic support for aggressive interventions around the globe.
Beginning with Africa, Hillary defended the 1998 cruise missile strike on the El Shifa pharmaceutical plant in the Sudanese capital of Khartoum, destroying the largest producer of cheap medications for treating malaria and tuberculosis and provided over 60% of available medicine in Sudan. In 2006 she supported sending United Nations troops to Darfur with logistical and technical support provided by NATO forces. Libyan leader Moammar Qaddafi was outspoken in his condemnation of this intervention, claiming it was not committed out of concern for Sudanese people but " . . . for oil and for the return of colonialism to the African continent."
This is the same leader who was murdered in the aftermath of the 2011 NATO bombing of Libya; an attack promoted and facilitated with the eager support of Mrs. Clinton. In an infamous CBS news interview, said regarding this international crime:"We came, we saw, he died." As Time magazine pointed out in 2011, the administration understood removing Qaddafi from power would allow the terrorist cells active in Libya to run rampant in the vacuum left behind. Just last month the New York Times reported that Libya has indeed become a terrorist safe haven and failed state-- conducive for exporting radicals through "ratlines" to the conflict against Assad in Syria.
Hillary made prompt use of the ratlines for conflicts in the Middle East. In the summer of 2012, Clinton privately worked with then CIA director and subversive bonapartist David Petraeus on a proposal for providing arms and training to death squads to be used to topple Syria just as in Libya. This proposal was ultimately struck down by Obama, reported the New York Times in 2013, but constituted one of the earliest attempts at open military support for the Syrian death squads.
Her voting record on intervening in Afghanistan and Iraq is well known and she also has consistently called for attacking Iran. She even told Fareed Zakaria the State Department was involved "behind the scenes" in Iran's failed 2009 Green Revolution. More recently in Foreign Policy magazine David Rothkopf wrote on the subject of the Lausanne nuclear accord, predicting a "snap-back" in policy by the winner of the 2016 election to the foreign policy in place since the 1980s. The title of this article? "Hillary Clinton is the Real Iran Snap-Back.” This makes Hillary the prime suspect for a return to the madcap Iranian policies that routinely threaten the world with a World War 3 scenario.
Hillary Clinton is not only actively aggressing against Africa and the Middle East. She was one of the loudest proponents against her husband's hesitancy over the bombing of Kosovo, telling Lucina Frank: "I urged him to bomb," even if it was a unilateral action.
While no Clinton spokesperson responded to a request by the Washington Free Beacon regarding her stance on Ukraine, in paid speeches she mentioned "putting more financial support into the Ukrainian government". When Crimea decided to choose the Russian Federation over Poroshenko's proto-fascist rump state, Hillary anachronistically called President Putin's actions like "what Hitler did in the '30s." As a leader of the bumbled "reset" policy towards Russia, Hillary undoubtedly harbors some animus against Putin and will continue the destabilization project ongoing in Ukraine.
Not content with engaging in debacles in Eastern Europe, she has vocally argued for a more aggressive response to what she called the "rollback of democratic development and economic openness in parts of Latin America." This indicates her willingness to allow the continuation of CIA sponsored efforts at South American destabilization in the countries of Venezuela, Bolivia, Ecuador, Argentina and Brazil.
It is one of the proud prerogatives of the Tax Wall Street Party to push out into the light the Wall Street and foundation-funded Democrats. The final blow to Hillary's clumsy facade comes directly from arch-neocon Robert Kagan. Kagan worked as a foreign policy advisor to Hillary along with his wife, Ukraine madwoman Victoria Nuland, during Hillary's term as Secretary of State. He claimed in the New York Times that his view of American foreign policy is best represented in the "mainstream" by the foreign policy of Hillary Clinton; a foreign policy he obviously manipulated or outright crafted. Kagan stated: "If she pursues a policy which we think she will pursue . . .", it's something that might have been called neocon, but clearly her supporters are not going to call it that; they are going to call it something else." What further reason could any sane person need to refute Hillary? A vote for Hillary is a vote for the irrational return to war.The "Giant Sucking Sound": Clinton Gave US NAFTA and Other Free Trade Sellouts
"There is no success story for workers to be found in North America 20 years after NAFTA," states AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka. Unlike other failures of his Presidency, Bill Clinton can not run from NAFTA. It was Vice President Al Gore, not a veto-proof Republican congress, who lobbied to remove trade barriers with low-wage Mexico.
The record of free trade is clear. Multinational corporations and Wall Street speculators realize incredible profits, wages remain stagnant in the US, poverty persists in the developing world, and the remaining industrial corporations in America and Canada are increasingly owned by Chinese, Indian and other foreign interests.
America's free trade policy is upside down. Besides Canada, Australia and Korea, most of our " free" trade partners are low-wage sweatshop paradises like Mexico, Chile, Panama, Guatemala, Bahrain and Oman. The US does in fact apply tariffs on most goods and on most nations of origin--rates are set by the US International Trade Commission (USTIC), a quasi-public federal agency: http://hts.usitc.gov/
Since a German- or Japanese-made automobile would under USITC's schedule be taxed 10% upon importation, Volkswagen and Toyota can circumvent taxation by simply building their auto assembly plants for the US market in Mexico. In Detroit, an auto assembly worker is paid between $14 and $28/hour, ($29,120-$58,240/yr); hard work for modest pay. In Mexico, the rate varies from $2-5/hour.
In China, all automobile imports regardless of origin are tariffed as high as 25%. This allows the Chinese to attract joint ventures with Volkswagen and Toyota, and to paraphrase Abraham Lincoln, " keep the jobs, the cars and the money."
NAFTA-related job loss is not a question of productivity, currency manipulation, "fair trade," environmental standards, etc. While these issues are not trivial, free trade--as Lincoln's advisor Henry C. Carey proved-- is a matter of simple accounting. Can an American family survive on $4,160/year ($2/hr)? If not, cars and their components will be built in Mexico. If we want cars built in the United States, the only solution is a general tariff (import tax) reflecting the difference between those wage standards, like the very tariffs repealed by Bill Clinton.
In the United States the "runaway shop" under NAFTA and CAFTA has sent trade deficits and unemployment soaring while wages drop relative to the cost of living. Yet Mexico and other "partners" receive no benefit either. Many manufacturing sectors in Mexico pay wages lower than the equivalent sector in China. Mexico is now the world leader in illegal narcotics exportation and weapons importation. The poverty level between 1994 and 2009 remained virtually identical. (52.4% – 52.3%). The shipping of raw materials to Mexico comprise the majority of so called American "exports". The finished products from these exports are assembled and sold back to the United States at slave labor prices.
Don't expect Hillary to behave differently with the coming "Trans-Pacific Partnership," which seeks to replace an ascendant China with less-developed Vietnam and Malaysia. Vietnam would overtake India-allied Bangladesh in the global apparel trade, and Malaysia has a high-tech manufacturing sector poised to rival China's. With America's manufacturing economy in shambles, the Clinton machine can now be redirected to geopolitical maneuvers.
The Clintons Abolished Welfare c.1995. Their Record the Same
Thanks to Bill Clinton who abolished welfare in 1995, 50 million Americans were cast into the human outer darkness. In order to get himself re-elected Clinton " ended welfare as we know it" . Clinton destroyed Aid to Families With Dependent Children (AFDC), which was one of the titles of the Social Security Act (SSA) of 1935 and replaced it with the shell of former self Temporary Assistance for Needy Families or TANF. The 2016 GOP House Budget submission aims to finish off the project by ending TANF.
In September of 1995, Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and Chairman of the Senate Budget committee Pete Dominici of the Senate Budget Committee, and more than 154 Republican House member began to agitate for a Treasury default on the public debt of the United States. Such a default had never occurred in recorded history. Nevertheless, Gingrich and his fellow enthusiasts of the Conservative Revolution were threatening to use the need to raise the $4.9 billion on the public debt to force Clinton to accept a reconciliation bill that would include a capital gains tax plus savage cuts in Medicaid, Medicare, Social Security and (in Title 4a, Aid to Families with Dependent Children, commonly known as welfare), farm support payments, student loans, and other entitlements.
As a result of this synthetic debt crisis described above, a draconian welfare reform bill was proposed by Representative Clay Shaw (R-Fla.), passed by Congress, and signed into law by President Clinton in 1996. This reform came to be known as the Personal Responsibility and Opportunity Act and represented a direct frontal assault on the most vulnerable groups of the American population. But the secondary impact and medium-term potentials of this misbegotten law, also made it a sneak attack against the American middle class. In blunt terms, international finance capital appear to be preparing a reserve army of homeless, unemployed, destitute, with the intention of hurling them against the living standards of suburbia. Middle class voters who supported such a welfare reform because they had been blinded by their propaganda-stoked resentment against the inner-city and rural poor, might soon come to regret their own gullibility.
Peter Edelman was the former assistant secretary for planning evaluation at the US Department of Health and Human Services who resigned in protest in 1996 over what was then still the welfare bill. Edelman had been an advisor to Robert Kennedy in 1967, and was proud that he has spent 30 years trying to fight poverty in America, Edelman kept silent until after Clinton had been re-elected in 1996, but then spoke out in an article entitled "The Worst Thing Clinton Has Done," which was published in the Atlantic Monthly. In the Edelman's judgement, "the bill that President Clinton signed is not welfare reform. It does not promote work effectively, and it will hurt millions of poor children by the time it is fully implemented. What's more, it bars hundreds of thousands of legal immigrants – including many who have worked in the United States for decades and paid a considerable amount in Social Security and income taxes – from receiving disability and old-age assistance and food stamps, and reduces food-stamp assistance for millions of children in working families." The bill, he pointed out, was stigmatized by Senator Kennedy as "legislative child abuse."
Edelman cited data from the Urban Institute showing that even under the unrealistically optimistic assumption that two thirds of long-term welfare recipients would find jobs, the current welfare law would move 2.6 million people, including 1.1 million children, into poverty. Further, the 1996 law reduced the incomes of 11 million low-income families, fully 10% of all the families in America. Of the families thus impacted, 8 million families with children would suffer losses of an average $1,300 per family as a result of food stamp cuts. Many working families slightly above the official federal poverty line of $12,158 for a family of three would lose income.
But these statistics turn out to understate this vast problem. The fact is that jobs were not available in sufficient numbers to accommodate the welfare recipients that were going to have their benefits terminated in 1999, when the welfare law's draconian two-year limit on welfare payments to many current recipients would expire. This was the point stressed by the US Conference of Mayors in late November 1997, with a warning that unless there were increased investments in job-creation, transport, child care, and health coverage, huge numbers of Americans risked abject poverty in 1999. These were the conclusions of a 34-city survey commissioned by the mayors.
Philadelphia Mayor Ed Rendell, the chairman of the mayors' task force on the welfare-to-work issue, stated that "By the summer 1999, for the first time since the great depression, there will be large numbers of Americans in American cities without any subsidies at all, without any cash payments. We cannot let that happen," Rendell pointed to a "serious mismatch" between the large numbers of welfare recipients seeking employment and jobs available to them. " Regardless of the training and child-care available, it is too much to expect that these numbers of welfare recipients are going to finds jobs in this market," said Mayor Rendell. [Financial Times, November 22, 1997] One key problem was that inner city welfare victims had no cars and could not reach jobs at shopping malls and industrial parks in the suburbs given the lack of any serious urban mass transit system in many metropolitan areas where welfare was most common.
President Clinton failed the American people when he capitulated to the fascistic tendencies of Newt Gingrich and the profoundly reactionary proposals of the self styled conservative revolution. Clinton was a key part of the process of stripping away the economic rights of the American people. This was a direct assault on the New Deal and one of the most extreme assaults on the economic rights of the American people.
As Americans we each have the right to not to be destitute. A society of destitute people is on the way to a dictatorship. If Madame Clinton wants your vote she must be asked- What would you have done in order to stop ending welfare as we knew it? What advice did you give your husband in 1995 when he signed the Personal Responsibility and Opportunity Act?
Bill Clinton's repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act—which dissolved the firewall between commercial and investment banks—clearly indicates that Hillary would only serve the interests of Wall Street if elected president. Glass-Steagall prohibited low-risk commercial banks that dealt in managing deposits and providing loans from engaging in predatory high-risk speculation. The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act, signed by Clinton in 1999, effectively nullified Glass-Steagall and opened up the savings and pensions of the working class for looting from parasitic bankers. Although this repeal was among a larger wave of Greenspan era deregulation that sowed the seeds for the 2008 crisis, it fundamentally altered the nature of banking by normalizing overly risky practices and therefore expanding the scope of the shadow banking cabal.
Moreover, it is near impossible to imagine Hillary reinstating Glass-Steagall considering that some of her biggest donors–most notably, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, and Citigroup–are the same financial madhouses that lobbied heavily in favor of the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act. In fact, according to the National Review, Hillary netted $400,000 from two speeches delivered at a conference hosted by Goldman Sachs in October of 2013. Hillary knows where her bread is buttered, which means there would no be no honest banking under another Clinton presidency. For the TWSP, the return of Glass-Steagall is only one of many regulations needed to tame the infinite greed of Wall Street vultures.
While the roots of our present crisis stretch back over many decades of free trade, privatization and shifts of power to the financial sector, no one act bears more blame for the 2008 financial panic and ongoing global turbulence than the Commodity Futures Modernization Act (CFMA) of 2000.
Following the repeal of Glass-Steagall and under continued pressure from Wall Street and reactionary senators like Phil Gramm, Clinton established the 1999 " President's Working Group on Financial Markets," chaired by Lawrence Summers, Alan Greenspan, Arthur Levitt and William Rainer. Summers' and Greenspan's reputations as Wall Street hatchet men precede them; Levitt went on to advise the Carlyle Group and Goldman Sachs; and Rainer – who replaced the courageous, ousted Commodity Futures Trading Corp. chair Brooksley Born – went on to found a derivatives exchange and several investment funds.
The CFMA proposed a series of " modernizations" (deregulations) of derivatives coinciding with the emergence of computerized " flash trading" capabilities that allowed Wall Street to steal untold billions from the productive sectors of the economy. Notoriously, it allowed for the creation and black-market trading of many synthetic derivatives, under the so-called " Enron Loophole." Soon insurance companies, pension funds and other investors previously confined to stocks and bonds were involved in oil and food futures, credit default swaps, mortgage backed securities, and other forms of volatile speculation that wrecked many of these funds and led to the events of 2008.
In recent years, Bill Clinton has attempted to distance himself from the CFMA (" I think they were wrong and I was wrong" ), claiming he and treasury secretary Larry Summers were misled by Alan Greenspan and that a veto-proof majority in Congress would have defeated his attempts at regulation anyway. Filmmaker Charles Ferguson, who interviewed Clinton for his film " Inside Job" chronicling deregulation and the 2008 crash, believes Clinton is simply lying.
Tellingly, Ferguson had to cancel a planned documentary on Hillary Clinton, presumably touching on similar themes, as he was unable to secure participation from neither Clinton's friends nor enemies. " I also saw one reason why Hillary Clinton might not be thrilled about my movie," Ferguson says. " In Arkansas, she joined the boards of Walmart and Tyson Foods. One of the largest donors to the Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton Foundation is the government of Saudi Arabia. The Clintons’ personal net worth now probably exceeds $200 million, and while earned legally, both the money’s sources and the Clintons’ public statements indicate a strong aversion to rocking boats or making powerful enemies."
The Clinton Foundation receives millions from Wall Street banks, hedge funds, cartels and their related foundations. How can Hillary to have any independence on fighting Wall Street when her palms are greased by Barclays, Fidelity, Citibank, Duke Energy, ExxonMobil, George Soros' Open Society Institute and countless other Wall Street tentacles? Even Chelsea Clinton's own husband, Mark Mezvinsky, is a hedge fund operator currently trying to recoup millions in lost investments in Greece.
Simply put, whether Bill and Hillary Clinton have the intellectual power to have stopped derivatives, free trade, financial deregulation or any of a number of wars is immaterial. They have proved themselves to lack the moral courage required to bite the many hands that feed their political machine.