Sunday, April 24, 2016

Still Not Feeling the Love for Hillary, Part 2

I'm getting just a little pushback from people I generally respect about my decision not to vote for Hillary. I decided this when I saw her say she wouldn't keep any school open that wasn't above average. Later, her aides "clarified" or something, saying she wouldn't keep schools open if they weren't good, or something.

I was also kind of disappointed when she announced that America was never going to get single payer. After all, it's plainly horrifying that Americans, unlike a whole lot of other countries, are still going bankrupt over catastrophic medical emergency. But then, of course, when I read she took $13 million from the health care industry, it became a little easier to understand.

It certainly gives me pause when I read that hedge-funders, you know the guys who support all things reformy, are supporting Hillary. I mean, even our good friend Charles Koch is starting to look favorably at a Clinton presidency. And of course our good friends from the Walmart family, you know, the ones who hate us and everything we stand for, are pumping money into her campaign. And why shouldn't they? After all, she was on the Walmart board for 6 years, right up until Bill became President. She's also got pretty longstanding connections to reformy Eli Broad, which concerned a whole lot of teachers. Broad was going to deny her contributions, but when she promised to support charters, he reconsidered.

Hillary's also come out in full support of Common Core. Like everyone who backs bad ideas, she blamed the disaster it's proven to be on the "rollout." In her favor, she's yet to say she'd punch us in the face and push us in the dirt if we opposed it, but even the guy who did that is no longer pushing Common Core. So what can educators expect from someone who talks school closings, supports not only the charters that undermine public schools, but also Common Core? Her new notion of experimenting with poor children by sending them to boarding schools is repugnant. 

A big argument, the one that trumps anything you can possibly say to Hillary supporters, is that she'll appoint someone better than Trump or Cruz to SCOTUS. I certainly hope that's true, but it's tough to say. After all, her top aides have lobbied for a whole lot of things that are antithetical to those of us who actually support working people. In fact, her top aide, John Podesta, is a big supporter of pretty much all things reformy. Maybe I'm slow, but it's hard for me to understand how a person like that could possibly have our interests at heart, let alone those of the students we serve.

As for trade, we all now know how well NAFTA is working out for working Americans. What about TPP? Well, she now opposes it, and I'm grateful for that, but here's a clip showing 45 times that she pushed for it. So I guess it's not popular anymore. But she's unable to let go of her support for fracking.

A lot of people insist that Hillary has never been influenced by the millions of dollars she takes from special interests (and no, unlike John King, I don't mean parents and teachers). Well, there was this bankruptcy bill that now-Senator Elizabeth Warren persuaded her to oppose. But waddya know, after Hillary took millions of dollars for her campaign, and millions of dollars in speaking fees from the industry, she came around and supported credit card companies over consumers.

I don't suppose I need to go into a lot of detail on her speeches to Goldman Sachs at 225K a pop. I mean sure, she and Bill made a few bucks giving speeches. But who knows? Perhaps Hillary will protect us from predatory banking practices. Perhaps they only hired her because they enjoy the dulcet tones of her speaking voice. Maybe it relaxes them. Of course, it that's the case, I'm mystified as to why she won't release the transcripts.

So maybe Hillary will do the right thing by us. Maybe she will appoint someone to SCOTUS who represents our interests, rather than those of her contributors and campaign aides. Maybe she will be guided in education policy by voices that aren't insane, as opposed to those of say, her campaign manager or well-heeled donors.

But I've yet to see the remotest evidence of any such thing. If you have any, please share. I'm all ears.
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