Tuesday, February 10, 2015

2016 Democratic tapas

The Republicans are over here.

-- Hillary Clinton spoke last year (actually about 70 days ago) to the League of Conservation Voters and exercised her considerable temerity to praise fracking.  She also said nothing about the Keystone XL pipeline.

At a speech to the League of Conservation Voters in midtown Manhattan (in December 2014), before hundreds of deep-pocketed donors, Hillary Clinton praised the environmental legacy of Teddy Roosevelt, touted the prospect of new green technologies, and had warm words for Barack Obama’s aggressive efforts to combat climate change.

Absent from the former Secretary of State’s speech? Any sense of where she stood on the controversial Keystone pipeline project, or what she would do differently as president to steer the nation towards a more sustainable future.

But that didn’t mean that Clinton wasn’t clear about where she came down on environmental matters—she praised both her husband’s record of cleaning up air and water standards, and the Obama administrations recent efforts to strike a climate deal with China and to toughen pollution standards.


(Hillary) alluded to the need to wean the nation off of fossil fuels, but noted that, “the political challenges are also unforgiving. There is no getting around the fact that the kind of ambitious response required to effectively combat climate change is going to a be a tough sell at home and around the world at a time when so many countries around the world, including our own, are grappling with slow growth and stretch budgets.”

Clinton was vague about the kind of response needed to address climate change, coming down neither in favor of the traditional Democratic carbon tax or the Republican (pre-Obama, at least) cap and trade plan.
Instead, Clinton, much as her husband has done, pushed for market-based solutions to social problems, arguing that green technologies would enable economic growth and would slow the effects of climate change. She called for “next generation” power plants, smarter grids and greener buildings, describing a “false choice between growing our economy and protecting our environment.”

This is just ridiculous and frankly embarrassing.  It's 800-pound gorilla territory.  Without a semblance of a primary challenge, she's going to keep taking everybody for granted.  Everybody, at least, except Kanye Kardashian.

But her two main competitors -- sorry, Uncle Joe; you may be polling second but you're still in fourth place -- are unpropitious for varying reasons.

-- The effort to draft Elizabeth Warren into the presidential race got a little more desperate.

In a major boost for the liberals hoping to draft Sen. Elizabeth Warren into the 2016 presidential race, New York’s Working Families Party voted Sunday evening to join the effort to push Warren to run against likely candidate Hillary Clinton.

“Senator Warren is the nation’s most powerful voice for working families fighting against a set of rules written by and for big banks. That’s the debate we want to see, and that’s why we’re urging Senator Warren to run for President,” said New York Working Families Party Director Bill Lipton.

The party, which is based in Clinton’s home state of New York, and has been aligned with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, will join MoveOn and Democracy for America. Together, they are running a $1.25 million campaign to draft Warren. There’s also a Ready for Warren super PAC.

“This is a big deal,” said Anna Galland, executive director of MoveOn.org Civic Action. “The Working Families Party played a pivotal role in building the progressive wave in New York City that swept Bill de Blasio into office, and has tremendous electoral clout.”

Nope, not that big a deal.  She's still a pretty firm "no, I'm not running", and you people are starting to look like the kid who can't buy a date to the prom.  Booman asks the right question: if you're Joan Walsh -- a progressive Democrat in search of an alternative to Hillary, but see only Warren on the horizon... what exactly are you going to do when will you finally realize 'no' is the only answer you're going to get?

Vote for the fracker?  Vote for Keystone XL?  Might cease calling yourself a progressive then.

-- Here's the one-hundredth article on Bernie Sanders I have read in the past three months, all of which seem to have been written by the same person.  He's still thinking about running if there's a groundswell of support for him, and only if he can win.  The polls all say no chance, Bernie.

Sanders' own political pragmatism in abandonment of progressivism extends to his support of an F-35 base in Vermont, which has drawn withering condemnation from Socratic Gadfly.

If the dumb asses that keep trying to draft Warren would give that up and throw their allegiance to Sanders, then the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party (sans Howard Dean, who has already endorsed Hillary) might have somebody and something they could all get behind.  But this isn't about principle; it's about political expediency in a Citizens United era.  And Bernie is also, you know, old and not female, so there's that.  I had just let myself think that liberal Democrats were smarter than they are demonstrating with these Quixotic actions.  Guess I should let go of that.  In fact I think I'll go delete all of those "Progressive Breakfast" e-mails I get every goddamned morning.

There's an obvious choice for all of these people, but a) they can't take the partisan blinders off, and b) there will be no jobs for $10,000-a-month consultants.  Consequently the media won't be talking about the only progressive option.

It's still Clinton v. Bush in November of 2016, in case you were wondering.  You can either settle for that, or do whatever you can now to change it.

1 comment:

Gary said...

Joan has responded and urges all Democrats to adopt Warrens policies.
Democrats need to focus less on the person and more on the policies.