No, this isn’t a parody article, it’s true. Bill Clinton has endorsed Mitt Romney as a successful businessman and a governor. And at the same time, he has attacked President Obama for focusing on the damage hedge funds have done to American workers and our economy.
I have tried to let Bill Clinton’s failings go once he ended his morally questionable attacks on Obama in the 2008 primary and came on board to support Obama’s campaign but he has been and always will be a member of and a defender of corporate power and private wealth. He has far more in common with Mitt Romney than Barack Obama at this point in his life and Clinton will be the first to tell you that:
Bill Clinton criticizes Obama’s Bain attacks, praises Romney’s ‘sterling business career’
“I think he had a good business career,” Clinton told guest host Harvey Weinstein, a movie mogul who is one of Obama’s top fundraisers. “There’s no question that in terms of getting up and going to the office and, you know, basically performing the essential functions of the office, the man who has been governor and had a sterling business career crosses the qualification threshold.”
Adding that he has “friends” in the private equity business,” Clinton suggested it was dangerous for Democrats to go after Romney’s record at Bain Capital—adding that in private equity, “like everything else you try, you don’t always succeed” in saving companies or making them more productive.
“I don’t think that we ought to get into the position where we say this is bad work,” Clinton said. “This is good work.”
At this moment, when corporate plutocracy is taking over our elections with over a billion dollars, when the corporations offshore jobs then pin the resulting unemployment on Obama so they can manipulate voters to reward them with more power and wealth for doing so, when the Wisconsin recall election against the hedge funded Scott Walker is just days away…and good old Bill is covering his ass by appearing out there in WI, he comes out like this to undercut the Progressive movement, Occupy Wall Street, opponents of Citizens United and of course President Obama to flack for the 1%.
Denial is a convenient thing to which none of us are immune. Many of us wanted to believe that Bill wasn’t who he is…we wanted unity in the Democratic Party…but you can’t teach an old dog new principles.
Back in the 90’s under Clinton’s presidency, many of those who were Progressive/Liberal then and were not so crazy about Clinton and his “triangulation”, which back then was the term for his becoming a pseudo Republican, promoting and championing their issues to co-opt their voters and get re-elected. It worked, despite the scandals, he won re-election. But as a pseudo Republican.
Let us not forget what Bill Clinton stood for and accomplished as President when it comes to our economy. He put the final nail in the coffin of Glass-Steagall which freed his buddies at the banks to get into speculating and get disgustingly wealthy…and allowed the crash of 2008 to occur as well as the current recession/depression to exist. He pushed through NAFTA which led to the decimation of America’s manufacturing base, union jobs and accelerated the decline of the middle class. And if these things ended up harming the majority of Americans, who did it help? Yep, you got it, big corporations and the rest of the top 1%.
Bill Clinton was (and may still be) a member and at one time, the Chariman of the DLC (Democratic Leadership Council), the corporate-friendly, conservative “wing” of the Democratic Party that has consistently fought against Progressive issues and for the interests of the wealthy against the majority. When you consider who has served as their chairmen (always ChairMEN too), their leanings become pretty clear.
- Rep. Dick Gephardt of Missouri (1985–1986)
- Gov. Chuck Robb of Virginia (1986–1988)
- Sen. Sam Nunn of Georgia (1988–1990)
- Gov. Bill Clinton of Arkansas (1990–1991)
- Sen. John Breaux of Louisiana (1991–1993)
- Rep. Dave McCurdy of Oklahoma (1993–1995)
- Sen. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut (1995–2001)
- Sen. Evan Bayh of Indiana (2001–2005)
- Gov. Tom Vilsack of Iowa (2005–2007)
- Fmr. Rep. Harold Ford of Tennessee (2007–2011)
In fact, Harold Ford also came out publicly last week to attack Obama for picking on the poor, weak and innocent private equity folks. Poor wealthy people! And of course, even Cory Booker came out to defend the wealthy from Obama’s attacks…he too has become entangled with and dependent on private equity to finance his city’s budget so when they snap their fingers, he leaps to their defense. Reminds me of the film Robocop where a struggling Detroit becomes dependent on a corporation to finance its budget and the corporation uses that leverage to essentially privatize the city, leaving the Mayor a helpless figurehead who must conform to the corporation’s will.
But why Bill, why isn’t the Man From Hope on the side of the 99% who have had their pensions stolen from them and jobs off shored by these hedge funds? Why would he be willing to praise Romney and attack Obama over the issue of the immorality of private capital? Chelsea, talk to your Dad, explain to him what OWS is all about and the danger that hedge funds pose to the majority of Americans…wait…I’m having a flashback to 2006…
Chelsea Clinton joins New York hedge fund
Former first daughter Chelsea Clinton has joined Avenue Capital Group, a $12 billion hedge fund manager whose founder has contributed to many Democratic Party campaigns, a person familiar with the matter said Friday.
Clinton, 26, the only child of former President Bill Clinton and U.S. Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, has taken a post at the New York-based fund manager in an undisclosed capacity, the source said.
Whoa…now I’m totally having a flash forward from then to 2011…
Chelsea Clinton’s Husband Launching His Own Hedge Fund With “Two Guys From Goldman”
Chelsea Clinton’s hedge funder husband, Marc Mezvinsky, is reportedly close to launching his own firm after he quit 3G Capital last year and shacked up in Jackson Hole, the Daily News reports.
Mezvinsky has “decided to spearhead his own private [hedge] fund with two other guys,” one of his buddies said. It will apparently launch in the next few months. He’ll be setting up shop with “two guys from Goldman Sachs.”
For Bill Clinton, blood and gold are apparently thicker than the welfare of the majority of Americans.
Bill Clinton is a talented speaker and politician. He is a smart strategist. But as he has evidenced again and again, he is not committed to Progressive values and places his gratification above what’s best for the nation. This is Bill Clinton though and that is reflected even today in his undermining of Obama to defend the image of the wealthy…throwing Obama under the train to protect those who are driven in limos. That is who Bill Clinton is. Recall the racial and vicious comments he made throughout the 2008 primary, to the astonishment of most Democrats and the media? Yep, same guy. He feels just as entitled to what he wants as Romney does and can be just as single-minded and unethical about going after it.
During and after his Presidency, Bill Clinton has damaged his claim to moral authority. He is an inspiring speaker and though there are some questionable donors to his foundation, good work is done by it. He is not a bad person. He is however a devoted member of the top 1% and after this recent statement, he has made clear where his primary loyalties lie. And this is greatly disappointing though it has helped dissolved a bit of denial about the way things really are.
We have a much tougher fight on our hands to resist plutocracy when the GOP and a good part of the Democratic Party are on the side of corporate power and wealth. And despite her great work as Secretary of State, it does raise concerns about who Hillary Clinton would prioritize if she was to run for and win the Presidency in 2016 (would she attack her daughter and son-in-law’s livelihood and stand in public opposition to her husband? Wouldn’t it be more likely that she shares her husband’s friends and views of them?).
Greed and corporate class warfare have infected both of our political parties and many of our leaders. It may be too endemic to be cured and if that’s the case, it will need to be excised. One way or another, there will need to be a long term and powerful populist movement to break the grip of the wealthy and corporations on our society and political system and replace many of those in our government who are loyal to the wealthy, with those who will represent the people.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen this year. Instead, the theme of this year’s election seems to be fighting to fend off the coup de grace of plutocracy cementing itself over America. As upsetting as that is, it does give this generation a noble battle to be engaged in and great cause for enthusiasm in this fight.
Obama was right when he campaigned on this slogan in 2008, we have to accept that there is no cavalry coming over the hill to save us, it’s up to us, indeed, “We are the ones we’ve been waiting for.”
And now, it’s time to stop waiting, this year we need to come together and act.