For those of us on the left, let us never forget that despite whatever flaws you think Hillary has, this is the man we’re working to keep out of office.
Somehow there are people out there on the left, and some in the center, who seem to genuinely believe there is no real difference between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump when it comes to positions on various issues.
Well, those people are what we call, “incredibly wrong”. There’s a massive difference. It boggles the mind, really. In just about every key area, Hillary is on the side of the left and the people of America, and Trump is on the side of Trump.
Not that it’s always easy to tell what those positions of Trump’s actually are. Remember the article the other day where I shared this screen shot?
That was page one of two of summaries of Hillary’s positions on various issues. You could click each one to get bullet points, and go even further down to get actual position papers.
Trump is up to nine stated positions on various issues. I emphasize the “up to” part because until recently, it was even lower than that.
Let me remind you, this is Donald Trump, the Republican Party’s choice for President of the United States of America. I’ll let you dollars to donuts that if he loses this, they get super delegates for their convention in 2020.
So what are the differences in policy between Hillary and Trump? Well, let’s take a look at this handy chart from the Washington Post. It’s a few moths old, but as we saw, Trump hasn’t added much. Plus his positions on various things seem to change pretty much constantly, so…yeah.
When I wrote the previous article, I touched on three different positions from Hillary: higher education, jobs, and climate change. So let’s scroll down that chart and see where he matches up against her.
In the area of higher education, the chart shows…nothing. Ok, let’s zip over to his campaign website and see what he has to say.
So right away we run into a problem, since his website only has nine issue positions, and none of those are higher education or, for that matter, climate change.
Alrighty, then. Well, jobs can probably fall under the area of “economic vision”, so let’s go take a look at that. And, by the way, I am looking these things up as I write. I genuinely had no idea his website was so sparse on details.
Well, there is some overlap. Both want to reduce corporate taxes, as does Obama. To be fair, there is some bipartisan agreement that corporate taxes are quite high, especially as compared with the rest of the world.
There seems to be some agreement with both that various trade agreements may need to be renegotiated, though Trump seems more in favor of tossing them out completely. Neither of these are necessarily realistic in their goals, though Trump is significantly more off-target than Hillary.
Both of them also seem to support changes to the current childcare system and improvements in infrastructure. To be fair, that last is something almost every politician calls for, while simultaneously promising to end pork barrel spending, and so we never get much accomplished in that area. Thus our crumbling bridges and roads.
But that’s it for the overlap. Trump also wants to end the so-called “death tax”, better known to sane people as “the estate tax”. It only really effects people who have estates worth $10 million or more. Know someone like that? Their family will get a massive tax cut when they die, if Trump has his way. This will only benefit the upper 1%, and will cost the economy billions in tax revenue.
I also notice that he wants to eliminate various regulations and environmental reforms (ah, there’s the climate change stuff! We’ll circle back around to that). He also seems to want to increase coal mining, which just seems like a terrible idea.
Beyond that there just seems to be the usual right-wing masturbatory fantasies that say “all we need to do is remove regulation and taxation and we’ll live in a middle class paradise!” This, of course, flies in the face of logic and history. There is, after all, a reason that we have these various rules, taxes, and regulations.
I also love the fact that Trump seems to want to bring jobs back from overseas despite the fact that him, and people like him, are the ones that sent those jobs overseas in the first place.
Ok, so I did stumble onto that climate change stuff. It’s short, so I’ll share his bullet points. These all appear under the category of “energy reform” in that economics area.
4. Energy reform—
Rescind all the job-destroying Obama executive actions including the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule.
Save the coal industry and other industries threatened by Hillary Clinton’s extremist agenda.
Ask Trans Canada to renew its permit application for the Keystone Pipeline.
Make land in the Outer Continental Shelf available to produce oil and natural gas.
Cancel the Paris Climate Agreement (limit global warming to 2 degrees Celsius) and stop all payments of U.S. tax dollars to U.N. global warming programs.
Lift restrictions on American energy to increase:
Economic output by $700 billion annually over the next 30 years,
Wages by $30 billion annually over the next 7 years,
GDP by more than $20 trillion over the next four decades, and
Tax revenues by an additional $6 trillion over 40 years.
Ok, so here we have some real red meat. It’s all wonderful and amazing, if you don’t believe that pollution is something we need to stop, and if you don’t believe climate change is actually a thing. Trump doesn’t believe it is, so this is no surprise.
Yes, it’s all basically just, “drill, baby, drill!” I frankly don’t actually see a single thing on here I think is good (though I’m somewhat ok on Keystone), and I see tons on here that’s actively bad. More coal, more oil, nothing positive about renewable energy, and the usual right-wing swipe at the United Nations.
Contrast this with Hillary’s plan and you see someone who is hostile to the environment, and basically has his head in the sand on climate change. This isn’t just a, “if you’re on the left, you should vote for Hillary”, this is more like, “if you’re at all sane and enjoy clean air and water, and especially if you have kids, you should vote for Hillary!”
So there’s a mighty contrast. And that’s it for the three issues I explored earlier with her, so…yeah.
But let’s look at a few other things, and this time, I’m going to do bullet points, because I’m sick, and this is already a 1200 word article, so let’s not make it worse.
- Hillary will protect abortion rights. Donald Trump is a forced-birth advocate.
- Hillary will keep and improve the ACA, which does have plenty of room for improvement. Trump will throw it away.
- Hillary will work to protect the environment. Trump’s hairspray use alone has probably doomed us all.
- Hillary will continue to work with various strategic partners overseas to help end ISIS, thus continuing the largely effective strategy Obama has been using. Trump has a magical “secret” plan, because he knows more about ISIS than anyone!
- Hillary will stand by our partners in NATO, sending a clear message to Putin to stay the Hell out of the Baltics. Trump will likely hold the door open for Putin, a fellow-traveler if there ever was one.
- Hillary may or may not take us into wars. I’m inclined to think we won’t be involved in anything worse than we already are, which isn’t great, but I can live with it. Trump seems to want to invade Syria, Iran, and any place with -istan at the end of its name. He probably is itching for a war with North Korea and China as well.
But let’s ignore all that shit and remember a few other things about Trump.
- He has blocked press credentials for various media outlets who have covered him; something Hillary hasn’t done.
- He has vowed mass-firings of civil servants hired under Obama (this is illegal, by the way).
- He didn’t start the birther myth, but he sure ran with it, and then lied and said Hillary was the one who invented it.
- He’s a racist.
- He’s anti-Muslim.
- He doesn’t understand the Constitution.
- He’s in favor of torture.
- He’s promised to have American soldiers commit war crimes.
- He’s vowed to use the apparatus of the state to punish people who disagree with him.
- He has a long history of screwing-over the working class and not paying his bills.
I mean, for fuck’s sake, if you’re even slightly to the left of center, why the Hell aren’t you moving Heaven and Earth to keep this terrible, terrible person out of office? Rumor has it that even George H W Bush is planning to vote for Hillary! If he can do it, you can do it, too, and should be proud to do so!
So in summary…