Who Is Mistral Dawn?

Mistral Dawn is a thirty-something gal who has lived on both coasts of the US but somehow never in the middle. She currently resides in the Southeast US with her kitty cats (please spay or neuter! :-)) where she works as a hospital drudge and attends graduate school. Taken By The Huntsman is her first effort at writing fiction and if it is well received she has ideas for several more novels and short-stories in this series. Please feel free to visit her on FaceBook or drop her a line at mistralkdawn@gmail.com

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Why I'm Saying #BernieOrBust

"Freedom of the mind requires not only, or not even especially, the absence of legal constraints but the presence of alternative thoughts. The most successful tyranny is not the one that uses force to assure uniformity but the one that removes the awareness of other possibilities, that makes it seem inconceivable that other ways are viable, that removes the sense that there is an outside."

Allan Bloom - Closing Of The American Mind

Hey Everyone!! :-)

I don't know about you, but this election has made me do several things I almost never do.  First, it's made me take an unprecedented interest in politics. Most of my life, there was very little difference between the candidates in any given election, at least the ones who might have a realistic chance of winning, so I rarely paid much attention. I have always voted, however my enthusiasm for doing so was lacking.  But Bernie Sanders has taken the 2016 US Presidential election by storm, and I think and hope that his influence will be felt for years, and possibly even decades, to come.

Second, I almost never take a hard-nosed position on anything.  Oh, I have opinions. I have lots and lots of opinions. But I rarely stand up and declare unequivocally for one side or another.  That's because I can usually understand other people's points of view, even if I don't share them, and see where they're coming from.  Often, I've found what the "right" answer is depends greatly on a person's circumstances, experiences, and values.  Which means that while I may not agree with others at times, I can understand why they hold the opinions that they do.  And that usually makes it kind of difficult for me to adopt a "line in the sand" type of mentality.

That being said, this election has brought me to my limit. I have reached my "this far, and no farther" point.  The line has been drawn.  And for me, the line is that I will not vote for Hillary Clinton in the general election.  Let me repeat that.  I will not vote for Hillary Clinton in the general election.  This is a statement of fact, not an opening for a debate.  I'm not telling anyone else what to do or think, as I've said before, I'm not a political expert. I'm simply making a declaration of my position.  I will not vote for Hillary Clinton in the general election. Period.

Now I'm going to tell you how I reached that point.  Why?  Because it's my blog and I feel like it. ;-)  Also, because it is a change from my earlier position when I thought I probably would vote for her just because Trump is so awful.  Trump is still horrible, and I want to make it clear that I will not in any way, shape, or form vote for him or suggest that anyone else should do so either.  He's a monster and a danger to not only the US, but the world at large.  The problem is, the more I learn, the more I think that Hillary may not only be no better, but in some ways may be worse.

I don't mean that she's worse in the particulars of her policy positions, as far as I can discern them through all the flip-flopping.  Though on some of those positions I think Hillary may be worse than Trump, on the majority of things I think she's probably slightly to moderately better.  But the problem comes in when I think about who is more likely to be able to push through their agenda.

Hillary is beloved by the establishment Democratic leadership and their corporate overlords.  Trump is despised by Democrats and Republicans alike, and so disliked by their corporate masters that they've withdrawn their financial support from the Republican convention.  The US President has limited power when it comes to what they can do personally, without the cooperation of the other branches of government, so the question becomes who is more likely to have that cooperation?  It seems to me that Hillary is the greater danger there.

Then I looked at the things about Trump that concern me the most.  I mean, yes, he's a racist, misogynist, hate-mongerer who represents all the worst things about America, but just because he's a terrible, loathsome human being doesn't mean he would be able to do much damage as President.  After all, he's also ignorant of almost all aspects of our government and how it works. So just because he holds an opinion that doesn't mean he'd be effective at legislating it.

The things that concern me most about Trump are his stated intention to squash civil liberties (such as freedom of speech, freedom to assemble peaceably, freedom of religion, and freedom of the press), who he might pick for the US Supreme Court, and the fact that he's a self-indulgent, immature, short-tempered, ignorant man-child who shouldn't be trusted with a box of matches, never mind the most powerful military in the world and the nuclear launch codes.  So let's take them point by point.

First, Trump's position on civil liberties and human rights.  I don't think I need to say much about this.  Anyone who has repeatedly stated that an entire nation of people are "mostly rapists and criminals" and that an entire religion should be "banned" from the United States has already said everything they need to say to make their position clear.  And it is quite clear that he is utterly despicable.  No question.  But what about Hillary?

Hillary hasn't been quite as flagrant in her bigotry, most of the time.  Putting aside her declaration that African-American children are "super predators" and the fact that she canvassed for Barry Goldwater, a pro-segregationist, in her younger years (and, uh, yeah, that's sarcasm, you can't really "put aside" such things, can you?), her suppression of civil liberties has been a bit more subtle than Trump's.  Though, to be fair, she would have been hard-pressed to be more flamboyant than him, wouldn't she?

And yet, in 2005, just eleven years ago, she co-sponsored a Bill that would have criminalized the burning of an American flag and punished flag-burners with a year in jail and a $100,000 fine.  So, it's not as though she can claim to be a huge supporter of the First Amendment, is it?  In fact, I really have no way of knowing if she's any better than Trump on civil rights and liberties, or if she just has the sense to keep her mouth shut about her true thoughts. And, again, between the two of them, I think she'd be far more successful at getting any repressive legislation she wanted passed through the legislative process and onto her desk for a signature.

Second, the next Supreme Court Justice.  I think Hillary would likely support Merrick Garland, or someone like him, a pro-corporate, center-right Justice. Not who I'd like to see on the Supreme Court, especially as a Democratic appointee.  Are there worse possibilities? Yes, absolutely.  But there are far better possibilities too. Trump has said he would look for the next Antonin Scalia, which would be horrible.  But the House Republicans have already proven they're willing to just refuse to do their jobs if a President they don't like appoints someone to the Supreme Court, so I have no reason to believe they'd approve anyone Trump appointed.  I don't know that they'd approve a Hillary appointee either, so that's kind of a wash.

Finally, the fact that Trump is wholly and utterly unqualified for the position of US President and that he is dangerously ignorant and arrogant.  Well, that's true.  But, again, as President he'd be limited in what he could do without the cooperation of the House and Senate and the corporations that own them.  He has said he would allow the US to default on our loans.  Which, since the US dollar is the world's reserve currency, would crash the world economy.  Talk about a reset button. Do you think the corporations that own the US government would allow that?  I don't.  I don't even think The Donald, as big of an idiot as he clearly is, would want to bankrupt himself quite that thoroughly.

As for him being in charge of the military, I agree that's a scary prospect. After all, it's entirely possible he might throw a tantrum over someone making fun of his tiny hands and push The Button...assuming he could find it.  That's the thing, Trump's ignorance of how the government works might very possibly significantly limit how much damage he would be able to do.

Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, knows exactly what she's doing.  She voted in favor of the Iraq war, the end result of which was the creation of ISIS.  She says, now, that it was a mistake, and yet she opposed President Obama's negotiations with Iran until they succeeded, and has repeatedly stated that she wants to up the ante in Syria and also get our troops involved in Libya.  So, to me it seems she's bound and determined to continue and increase our military interference in foreign conflicts and to keep the anger of the extremist religious groups in those areas focused squarely on the US.  Now, the extremist groups in question (Al-Qaeda, ISIS, etc) have already proven over and over, both here and abroad, that they are not comprised of the most psychologically stable people on the planet.  So, how many times can you kick a hornets' nest before you get stung?

What I'm saying is, at this point, I'm honestly not sure who would be more likely to cause a devastating outbreak of violence, Clinton or Trump.  Again, a wash as far as deciding if it's worth putting aside all my principles to vote for the likes of Hillary Clinton.  So, as I said, I will not be voting for her.

Which is not to say that I won't be voting.  I do intend to vote in November.  If Bernie Sanders gets the Democratic nomination, which is a really long shot at this point but still possible, I'll be voting for him.  After all, Hillary may still be indicted for whatever crimes she was trying to hide by deleting her emails. If Bernie Sanders decides to run as an Independent, I'll be voting for him in that case as well.  And if Bernie Sanders isn't on the ballot, I'll be voting for Dr. Jill Stein, who is the nominee of the Green Party.  If you'd like to know more about Dr. Stein, I'd suggest you watch this excellent interview The Young Turks did with her:

So, that's my take on the situation. As I said before, I'm not telling anyone else what to do or think, but I wanted to lay out my reasoning.  And before I go, I'd also like to share with you this song by The Ultimate Rage. It's definitely worth a listen. :-)


  1. I am in total agreement for who you want to vote for. It is too late for Sanders to run as an independent since he has missed the deadline in a dozen states. But he can be easily president in 4 years. I have also liked Jill Stein for many years and she in almost total agreement with him.

    1. Yes, on domestic policy they're pretty much in lock-step. On foreign policy they're a little different, but I think I actually agree with her a bit more there. The only problem is she doesn't have Bernie's name recognition, but maybe we can all help change that before November. ;-)

  2. I have learned from this election and Obama how politics work. Politicians (Sanders is the exception) want more money like Trump has. So they do what the corporations want and make a lot of money. Example: Obama said before he was president that GMOs will be labeled since that is what Americans want. But he learned that it is profitable to do want the corporations want.

    Nobody wants wars that cost $2 trillion and kills and injures thousands of people except those that make billions from it. So when it comes to presidents (Republicans or Democrats) the question is how much money will it take for you to to war. The U.S. that is not under attack spends almost as much in defense sa the rest of the world combined.

    If Sanders does not win then it is vital and crucial that Trump wins. Now I do not disagree with anything of what you said about Trump. But Sanders was cheated by Clinton's people making a mockery of democracy and America. So if Trump runs against Clinton then Clinton will try it again with Trump and much more of this nonsense will be revealed.

    Why are so many voting for Trump (all his competitors dropped out). Because they are sick and tired of establishment politics. Also all this stuff you talk about like racial and misogyny is totally invisible. But Clinton is much better at hiding it than Trump. Trump is like retarded at hiding things.

    We have no idea how much Clinton hates blacks and women who are not rich. Also who is the stupidest? Just by using a government email Clinton could have saved the government and herself countless hours and dollars and not be under investigation by the FBI. Clinton is the war monger and has already threatened to to go to war with Iran and make it a great business opportunity like Iraq. Any president is better than Clinton since they will be elected president while Clinton will be a dictator but appear to be elected.

    1. I absolutely agree that we need to get money out of politics, nothing will change until that happens. But I don't agree that Trump should be elected. I don't think Clinton should be elected either, but Trump is dangerous and needs to go back to reality TV.

      It would not surprise me in the slightest if Clinton tried more dirty tricks against Trump, but I think he's just as likely to try them against her. Neither of them deserve to be President, and I honestly don't think our country can afford even four years of either of them.

      I think that if Bernie doesn't get the Democratic nomination, the best thing all of us can do is flock to Dr. Stein. Everyone "knows" it's impossible for any candidate to win a Presidential election if they aren't a member of a major party, but that's only because people don't vote for them. Just like with Bernie, if people vote for Dr. Stein, she'll win. And just like with Bernie, the establishment media is NEVER going to give her the coverage she deserves.

      The only way to get her name and policy proposals into the public consciousness is for a populist social media blitz about her. In other words, thee and me...and as many other people as we can get.

      As for money in politics, I think WolfPAC is on the right track with a constitutional amendment, which bypasses the need for cooperation from House and Senate politicians. If you haven't heard of them, you can check them out here, http://www.wolf-pac.com/