Friday, July 29, 2016

Democrats Make History - Become First Major Party To Cheer Nominee Who Doesn't Wait Til After The Election But Gives Them The Finger During Her Acceptance Speech

Unions and activists had tried to get Hillary Clinton to denounce the draconian "NAFTA on steroids" TPP trade treaty -- the Trans Pacific Partnership -- during her acceptance speech last night, but Clinton refused to do it.

Activists signed petitions and union leaders made personal appeals to Clinton and hoped that getting her to denounce the TPP by name would thwart plans by President Barak Obama -- who has advanced the treaty thus far largely with Republican support -- to again team with Republicans to try to pass the TPP after November's general election.

Clinton, who as secretary of state helped negotiate the treaty and called it "the gold standard" for trade deals switched her position on it when Leftist Bernie Sanders entered the presidential election campaign to run against her on a platform that included opposition to the TPP. People who know her record as a Neoliberal, fiscally conservative Democrat who was instrumental in the Democratic Leadership Council, under whose influence the party abandoned working people and aligned the party with the interests of big business, have little doubt about her true intentions regarding economic policy.

Clinton at this point in time doesn't want to alienate Obama or his supporters and no doubt is hoping congress will kill the TPP when Obama makes his final push for it, but since the push will take place after the election expect many Democrats to support the TPP knowing their constituencies will have a long time to forget their betrayal of them.

Note: I've read several personal accounts of Clinton's speech and watched to first ten and last two minutes of it on YouTube but didn't watch the whole thing. It's reported she only said we must oppose "unfair trade deals."

What struck me about the speech were two things, one being the number of empty seats. Many delegates had already gone home by the time Clinton showed up. Another was the lackluster acceptance of the speech. Normally delegates cheer for many minutes after a candidate takes the stage and after they're done speaking, but not last night. The applause ended after less than a minute and the DNC organizers had to start playing loud music to compensate for the lull. 

Cameras zoomed in on several women who were in tears during the speech. Whether they were crying because a woman has broken through an important glass ceiling, or whether they were crying because they knew the cost of helping her do so was to sacrifice their hopes that their children could ever attend college or get a job that paid more than a minimum wage, I do not know.

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