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Hillary Clinton’s speech about Donald Trump and the alt-right is excoriating. She didn’t need to lie, spin, or exaggerate. All she needed to do was describe Trump and the company he keeps. She did so competently.
The odds seem to me overwhelmingly high that she’ll be elected. She may well be working with a Democratic Congress. GOP primary voters handed her the only candidate in the firmament whom she could handily trounce.
Midway through, she says, “The last thing we need in the situation room is a loose cannon who cannot tell the difference — or doesn’t care to — between fact and fiction. And who buys so easily into racially tinged rumors.” Any other candidate would have been able to keep the focus on Clinton’s own inability to distinguish between fact and fiction. But Clinton’s species of dishonesty pales in comparison. Hers is the typical self-serving dishonesty of all politicians, magnified. Trump’s is that of a man living in a malign fantasy world. He seems to believe his own lies. They’re dangerous lies to believe.
And what a tragedy. The Republican Party will not easily recover from this. GOP primary voters have in effect left us with a one-party state. The party with which we’re left is full of rotten ideas, but this election won’t be about that. It will — properly — be about keeping a loose cannon who can’t tell between fact and fiction out of the White House.
I’ve read the Democratic Platform through. The word “investment” is used 74 times. In almost all cases, it’s a euphemism for “increased federal spending.”
We need an economy that prioritizes long-term investment over short-term profit-seeking.
The Democratic Party believes that supporting workers through higher wages, workplace protections, policies to balance work and family, and other investments will help rebuild the middle class for the 21st century.
We will increase investments to make quality childcare more affordable.
And we will fight for robust funding to end homelessness in our cities and counties once and for all, through targeted investments to provide the necessary outreach, social services, and housing options for all populations experiencing homelessness.
If we are serious about reversing the decline of the middle class, we need major federal investments to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure and put millions of Americans back to work in decent paying jobs in both the public and private sectors.
And we will protect public health and safety by modernizing drinking and wastewater systems. These investments will create secure, good-paying middle-class jobs today and will substantially increase demand for American-made steel and other products manufactured in the United States.
Democrats will make investments to spur the creation of millions of jobs for our young people.
Democrats will spur investment to power the rural economy.
And we will make investments in affordable housing near good jobs and good schools.
We will continue to work on a government-to-government basis to address chronic underfunding, and provide meaningful resources and financial investments that will empower American Indian tribes through increased economic development and infrastructure improvements on tribal lands.
We believe that by making those at the top and the largest corporations pay their fair share we can pay for ambitious progressive investments that create good-paying jobs and offer security to working families without adding to the debt.
Bold new investments by the federal government, coupled with states reinvesting in higher education and colleges holding the line on costs, will ensure that Americans of all backgrounds will be prepared for the jobs and economy of the future.
There is almost no discussion of the conditions that lead to private investment. There is not a single use of the phrase “national debt.” The word “debt” is used 21 times; of these, 13 involve promises to make college debt-free. In one case, it explains: “We believe that by making those at the top and the largest corporations pay their fair share we can pay for ambitious progressive investments that create good-paying jobs and offer security to working families without adding to the debt.” No hard numbers are on offer. There is the usual promise to make the shortfall appear by “[tackling] waste, fraud, and abuse.”
Suggesting that the Democrats haven’t learned a thing from experience, there’s this promise: “We must make sure that everyone has a fair shot at homeownership. We will keep the housing market robust and inclusive by supporting more first-time homebuyers and putting more Americans into the financial position to become sustainable homeowners.”
This election should have been about these ideas. Instead, it’s about keeping an outright lunatic away from the nuclear codes. “A man with a long history of racial discrimination, who traffics in dark conspiracy theories drawn from the pages of supermarket tabloids and the far reaches of the internet, should never run our government or command our military,” she said. And she’s right.
Had the GOP leadership been braver, Paul Ryan would have given the speech Hillary Clinton gave. He could have defined conservatism in opposition to Trump. But he didn’t. The failure of the GOP leadership to repudiate Trump ensures that the GOP will be tainted by him, and in all likelihood unelectable, for years to come. The GOP was given a choice between Clinton and dishonor. They chose dishonor, and now we will have Clinton.