Understanding American Presidential Politics
The winners of the respective political Parties’ Presidential nominations in 2016, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, both emphasized groupist appeals (to and for and against “Blacks,” “Whites,” “Hispanics,” “Muslims,” “Gays,” “Women,” etc. — dividing the electorate against each other), whereas the two Presidential candidates who scored at the very top of the Presidential field in all of the general nationwide polls throughout 2016 were Bernie Sanders and John Kasich, two candidates who made appeals which rejected emphasizing those internal US groupist conflicts (which are financed so generously by the aristocracy — which hypocritically condemns them even while they finance these divisions), and who focused instead on, for Sanders, the domestic economic-class conflict, between “Wall Street” and the American public; and, for Kasich, the international conflict, between America and its allies, versus Russia and its allies.
By the time of Election Day, 8 November 2016, the average finding from the most-recent US Presidential polls was for a 3.2% nationwide Hillary Clinton win of the popular vote; the actual result turned out to be instead her winning by 2.1%, which was 1.1% less than had been projected in the latest polls. She hadn’t focused her campaign on the toss-up states, but Trump did; and, so, he won the Presidency, and she lost it (by her stupidity, which was even worse than Trump’s, and which caused her to waste money on sure-win and sure-lose states but ignore toss-up states such as Michigan). At that same time, the latest polls regarding a hypothetical Sanders-versus-Trump Presidential match-up were taken in May 2016, and averaged a 10.4% victory for Sanders. He would have crushed any Republican opponent. No Democrat voted, in the primaries, for Hillary as being the stronger candidate to run against the eventual Republican, unless that voter was a blithering fool, because she was clearly the weaker candidate, throughout. Democratic Party billionaires had plenty of reasons to back her against Sanders, but Democratic Party voters had no reason to vote for her against Sanders.
The most recent poll of a hypothetical Trump-v.-Sanders matchup has been published by Public Policy Polling on August 23rd, and it found that, “Trump continues to trail both Bernie Sanders (51/38) and Joe Biden (51/39) by double digits in possible 2020 match ups. PPP never found Hillary Clinton up by more than 7 points on Trump in 2016. Sanders and Biden each win over 12-14% of the folks who voted for Trump last year.”
So: whereas Sanders would have beaten Trump by approximately 10.4% in May 2016, Sanders would beat Trump by (according to the latest poll) approximately 13% today. However, since the Establishment Democrat Biden is now scoring as well as does Sanders, the Party will probably find some way to block Sanders (or any other anti-Establishment candidate) from obtaining its nomination in 2020, and the same type of pro-Wall-Street, pro-invasion (‘permanent war for permanent peace’) US Government policies that have been in effect ever since 2000 (if not even since 1980) will likely continue after 2020, and the US Government will therefore likely continue to rot.
Sanders and Kasich were clearly the leaders in the public’s support in 2016; and their positions — and the contrasts between their positions and those of the two winners — are therefore instructive to understand accurately, in order to understand today’s US Presidential politics accurately at a deeper level.
For Sanders, the nation’s enemies were the people who had caused, and who had extracted billions by having caused, the 2008 economic crash; but, for Kasich, the nation’s enemies were instead Russia and its allies.
Both of the most popular 2016 candidates downplayed the groupist conflicts that were being pushed by the two ultimate contenders, Trump versus Clinton.
Kasich won only one state in the Republican primaries — his own state, Ohio. He had very little support from the nationwide Republican public, because he was pushing much the same program that the Democrat Hillary Clinton was pushing: Establishment liberalism (which is very pro-invasion).
The fifth debate, in the series of formal Republican Party primary campaign debates, crystallized the internal policy-conflict that existed within the Republican Party.
Kasich’s opening remarks at the 5th Republican primaries debate, December 15, 2015, were copycat Hillary Clinton, but coming from a Republican, which therefore favorably impressed the total US electorate, who believe that “bipartisanship” is what America needs above all else (i.e., that America is riven by the conflict between Republicans and Democrats, instead of by the conflict between the billionaires and the public):
KASICH: Thank you, Wolf. Just last weekend, just last week, a friend asked one of my daughters, “Do you like politics?” And my daughter said, “No, I don’t. And the reason I don’t like it is because there’s too much fighting, too much yelling. It’s so loud, I don’t like it.” You know, I turned to my friend and I said, “You know, she’s really on to something.” And when we think about our country and the big issues that we face in this country; creating jobs, making sure people can keep their jobs, the need for rising wages, whether our children when they graduate from college can find a job, protecting the homeland, destroying ISIS, rebuilding defense. These are all the things that we need to focus on but we’ll never get there if we’re divided. We’ll never get there if republicans and democrats just fight with one another. Frankly, we are republicans and they’re democrats but before all of that, we’re Americans. And I believe we need to unify in so many ways to rebuild our country, to strengthen our country, to rebuild our defense, and for America to secure it’s place it world; for us, for our children, and for the next generation.
His closing statement was equally Hillarious:
KASICH: No Republican has ever been elected president of the United States without winning Ohio. Let me give you a little tip on how you win Ohio, it’s reform, it’s hope, it’s growth, it’s opportunity, and it’s security. The people of Ohio are the people of America. The people of America are reflected in Ohio. Our message has to be big, and bold, and positive, and connect, not just with people’s heads but also connect with their hearts. If we do it, we will beat Hillary Clinton, and we will run the White House, and we will strengthen and fix America, I promise you.
In between those statements, were many very clear policy-differences between the candidate, Donald Trump, who had the most backing from the Republican public, versus the candidate, John Kasich, who had the most backing from the general public, such as was displayed in these excerpts from that debate:
KASICH: I don’t understand this thing about Assad. He has to go. Assad is aligned with Iran and Russia. … Assad has got to go. … We can’t back off of this. And let me tell you, at the end, the Saudis have agreed to put together a coalition inside of Syria to stabilize that country. … He must go. It will be a blow to Iran and Russia. …
TRUMP: I think Assad is a bad guy, a very bad guy, all right? Lots of people killed. I think we are backing people we have no idea who they are. The rebels, we call them the rebels, the patriotic rebels. We have no idea. A lot of people think, Hugh, that they are ISIS. We have to do one thing at a time. We can’t be fighting ISIS and fighting Assad. Assad is fighting ISIS. He is fighting ISIS. Russia is fighting now ISIS. And Iran is fighting ISIS. We have to do one thing at a time. We can’t go — and I watched Lindsey Graham, he said, I have been here for 10 years fighting. Well, he will be there with that thinking for another 50 years. He won’t be able to solve the problem. We have to get rid of ISIS first. After we get rid of ISIS, we’ll start thinking about it. But we can’t be fighting Assad. And when you’re fighting Assad, you are fighting Russia, you’re fighting — you’re fighting a lot of different groups. But we can’t be fighting everybody at one time.
Neither of those Republican candidates focused on America’s wide and widening wealth-inequality and class-conflict; but, one candidate, Bernie Sanders in the Democratic Party primaries, did. He just couldn’t get the backing of the Democratic National Committee (which virtually controls most of the US ‘news’media), which stole that Party’s nomination from him (see here and even here) and delivered it to Clinton (and top Democrats know it).
Though Clinton’s program was almost entirely the same as Kasich’s, she did not, as Kasich did, win support from the millions of Americans who loved Kasich’s bipartisanship (voters who were suckers for the Establishment’s ‘bipartisanship’ propaganda); and, therefore, she was sufficiently weak in the final election, on November 8th, for her to lose a close election to Trump. If the Democratic National Committee had not stolen the nomination for Clinton, the US would almost certainly have today a President Bernie Sanders. But, since Biden now would be nationally competitive against Sanders, a similar outcome is likely in 2020.
Anyone who doesn’t think that the US Government is that rotten, is just a fool for the propaganda. We’ve even got media-whores who used to service only Republican billionaires but who now will service only Democratic ones (and vice-versa), but just never will service the public-at-large, with the truth — which is an unpleasant but essential reality: that both political Parties are (and at least since 1980 have been) thoroughly corrupt. If a third political Party were to become viable in America, only billionaires could make it become so; and, then, there would be three thoroughly corrupt Parties. The Parties aren’t the source of the corruption; they result from it, because they now all represent only the billionaires — the people who fund politics, in each of the viable Parties. Some fools vote for third Parties, in the delusion that this is somehow a way to address the problem. It’s not. The problem runs far deeper than that. Bernie Sanders is correct that “Getting big money out of politics is vital.” This is why they won’t allow it. Once an aristocracy takes over a country, the situation is in extremis, because no aristocracy ever lets go of its control over a country, without a war, and it’s always bloody. Americans should know this, but don’t even know American history — instead, the American myths are pumped to the masses as ‘history’. Getting big money out of politics would be at least as bloody as the end of the slave-trade here was, and as the creation of the organized labor movement was, and as the end of formal racial segregation here was. It would be nothing less than a Second American Revolution.
That’s the reality, and there’s no way of getting away from it.
By Eric Zuesse
Source: Strategic Culture