Yes…Donald Trump Could Crush Hillary Clinton
If I were a Democrat, I would have difficulties voting for Hillary Clinton…and I’m not alone.
The famous liberal actor Susan Sarandon has engaged in an intense Twitter battle against Debra Messing of Will & Grace fame. Indeed, in a battle between “the Hillary” and “the Donald,” despite my liberal bias, I would vote for the real estate tycoon, 10 times out of nine. (Source: “The Susan Sarandon–Debra Messing Twitter War Is History in the Making,” Vanity Fair, March 31, 2016.)
Donald Trump knows that there are many like Sarandon and he’s reveling a battle against Clinton. He’s hoping she wins, because Bernie Sanders shares too many policy points with Trump. He has even gone after Wall Street, the Democratic Left’s punching bag of choice, with more determination than even a Lenin or Marx would dare.
Was it Bernie Sanders or Donald Trump who described Wall Street political donors as “bloodsuckers?” It was Trump. (Source: “The real threat to Wall Street is not Bernie Sanders — it’s Donald Trump,” Salon, February 8, 2016.)
On foreign policy, Trump is also hard to distinguish from his libertarian former Republican primary rival Rand Paul, and even less so from Bernie Sanders. Like Sanders, Trump would avoid foreign entanglements and he would cut back and desist from pursuing free trade deals with anybody.
Trump is a skilled negotiator and understands how and where to look for his opponents’ weaknesses. In Hillary Clinton’s case, that weakness is foreign policy and her penchant for enjoying the company of billionaires, while trying to hide it. Trump makes no excuses for his wealth. He boasts about it and clearly enjoys it. Yet, he’s the one who has shown to be more in tune with average Americans in the post-subprime crisis era.
Forget the personal server and e-mail scandal. Forget the related allegations of her failure to act in the Benghazi attack. Bernie Sanders has refused to go after Clinton on these matters and so should you.
Nobody could have foreseen Benghazi, given the mess that Libya has become following the collapse of the Qadhafi dictatorship. Rather, her role in advocating for that collapse is the real problem. Indeed, while Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton engaged in one of the most aggressive periods of American foreign policy, starting with Libya.
Clinton played an enormous role in destabilizing the Middle East, despite much evidence to support contrary action, opening the path to the spread of radicalism and Islamic State itself.
But the signs of her interventionist spirit were clear years before she ran for the White House.
Hillary Clinton voted in favor of invading Iraq in 2003. She prides herself for her role in encouraging the disastrous Libyan war. She has also been more than active in urging military intervention against Assad in Syria. In short, and in a crude attempt to label her views in a single term, more than a Democrat, Hillary Clinton is a “neocon.”
Hillary Clinton stands out for strong anti-Russian policy and she has revived the Cold War. Interestingly, Donald Trump has spoken in favorable terms about Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin. Comparatively, like Washington conservatives, Hillary believes that America has won the Cold War. This is dangerous, less for Moscow than for the U.S., because it fuels an unconstructive arrogance and confidence, which has fueled Russia’s military catch-up. Clinton’s arrogance toward Russia has also prevented a more coordinated Russian-American response to the threat of Islamic State in Syria.
Hillary Clinton is an “establishment” candidate.
In the world of IS, al-Qaeda, and post-subprime Wall Street, “establishment” is a term from which most candidates should flee like the plague. Hillary might be winning, but she has failed to capture the growing disenchantment of young Americans, a fact that Bernie Sanders’ incredible run has amply demonstrated.
Hillary Clinton resided in the White House during the heyday of Wall Street deregulation and prison privatization. Americans may rush to vote for Hillary Clinton, because she’s a woman, which would clearly mark a true change. However, in policy terms, there would be no change at all. It’s nice to break social barriers, but by voting for this woman, Hillary Clinton, Americans will be electing the wrong person to the White House.
Both in her 2008 campaign and currently, Hillary Clinton ran her campaign as if the presidency was hers by default—or worse, by acquired privilege. Bernie Sanders has highlighted this arrogance by playing up the pluralist view, speaking in terms of “we” before his adoring fans. Trump has also had a very “me” campaign, but he’s done so by paying attention to the lowest common denominator, winning genuine popular support from Americans of all ranks. Hillary Clinton’s campaign smacks of “it’s my turn now.”
Hillary Clinton has also miscalculated the feminist effect. She has not fought to win the complicity and support of leading feminists and Democratic women in Congress. She merely expected it, simply because she’s a woman. That may have played well in the 1970s, but young women today are seeing through her establishment nature and choose Bernie Sanders as their true champion. And even against the unabashedly chauvinist Trump—who may start to change his tune once the nomination is officially in his grasp—Hillary’s feminist message will ring hollow.