With reflection I’m starting to think this election has been terribly underrated. Not only did we see Hillary Clinton completely destroyed politically for all eternity, and thoroughly humiliated, she entertainingly coughed, siezed, tripped and collapsed all the way to the surprise ending. She’s clearly in the grip of some serious, though delightfullly slapstick-inducing health problem that we can happily trust will get worse, especially now that her spirit is irretrievably crushed.
Green Party prez candidate Jill Stein seems entirely free of entertaining health problems, but I am getting a giddy suspicion that at least her political death is at hand and that she may take the Greens with her. Watching her disgustingly reactionary and partisan appeal for a recount makes me realize I have been far too easy on third parties, when it’s painfully obvious they’re just a heat sink for lefties too woke for the Democrats. Since the Democratic Party is no longer taken seriously by anyone who isn’t a complete waste of oxygen, let’s go scorched earth on all its enablers, starting with riff raff like Stein.
I’m lazy so I am grateful that Stein has, in the past week or so, made the case for burying her next to Hillary all by herself. It’s really rather sad — well, no, more like repulsive and sickening — to watch people offer 11 dimensional chess theories to explain Stein’s striking resemblance of late to the worst DNC offal. Why are people so desperate for famous allies that they tell themselves stupid stories to avoid the obvious? Grow up, you big babies. The sooner you realize you have only enemies in high places, the better off we’ll all be.
Look at this petition Stein provided to Wisconsin. Featuring talking points about nefarious “foreign operators” — looking at you, Vlad! — breaching voter databases and — horrors — infiltrating the “email systems of the Democratic National Committee and a campaign official for Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton” it could have, and may well have, been written by a DNC staffer or one of its patrons. Most sickeningly, Stein cites the joint statement of the Department of Homeland Security and The Office of the Director of National Intelligence, which, without offering any evidence, intimated that the email breaches were an attempt by Russia “to interfere in the US election process.”
Stein includes the full joint statement from the Homeland Security web site among the petition’s exhibits, along with articles from Wired, the New York Times and the NBC Nightly News fingering Russia as the source of the DNC email hacks. Indeed, the email breach and other alleged breaches unrelated to voting machines make up Stein’s entire “case” for the Wisconsin recount, which claims there were voting irregularities without stating what they were and is entirely bereft of any evidence there was tampering with the state’s voting machines themselves.
Stein’s Exhibit 1 is an affidavit from University of Michigan professor J. Alex Halderman who led the group of scientists that kicked off this effort when they called on Clinton to seek a recount in battleground states. His affidavit, like the petition to which it’s attached, provides no concrete evidence of vote irregularities or tampering, and builds its case on the email breaches and the alleged Russian hacking of Ukraine’s 2014 presidential election.
Even if Stein’s focus weren’t entirely on three states Clinton lost and even if her petitioning didn’t recapitulate evidence-free DNC scare-mongering about Russian interference, the recount campaign would still be some seriously shitty shit. Who can justify prolonging an election cycle that seemed endless months ago, with yet one more “transparency” spectacle that, by focusing on minor details, whitewashes systemic cancer.
Let’s recall that in 2012, Stein and her running mate that year, Cherie Honkala, were arrested and handcuffed to chairs for eight hours, when they attempted to enter the presidential debate site at Hofstra University. Did that experience teach Stein nothing? Like that there may be better things for her to do in late 2016 than antfuck the “integrity” of a contest between two ruling class monsters, on behalf a thoroughly corrupt candidate that cheated her way to the nomination and threatened a military response to Russian cyberwarfare?
There are only two possibilities for what’s going on here. One is that Stein is a complete fraud and is simply running errands for a Clinton campaign concerned about the “optics” of seeking the recount on their own. The other is that Stein is pursuing some other agenda, and, with uncharacteristic pragmatism, framing the recount in a way that will attract maximum financial support for that agenda from Clinton’s supporters.
Since she has said surplus money raised for the recount will go toward “election integrity efforts and to promote voting system reform” there seems to be no potential outcome to redeem her partisan, russophobic clowning, and indeed, even Stein’s party has officially abstained from endorsing the project. The Green Party Steering Committee also laudably rejected her request that the Party open up a bank account to accommodate much larger single donations than finance rules permit for the Stein-Baraka campaign account. Since the projected fees for Stein’s hand-picked attorney keep going up, it could be that Stein is simply in the can’t beat ’em join ’em phase of her political evolution and taking a cue from the peerlessly self-dealing candidate on whose behalf she’s now making an ass of herself.
Whatever her game is, it’s been a financial boondoggle. On the first day of fundraising, donations poured in at a rate of over $125,000 per hour and the total haul is now around 5 million. This hardly seems like the kind of grass roots, small donor effort Stein’s crunchy brand sits well with. Of course Stein can’t possibly know where all this money is coming from, but that hasn’t kept her from sneering at George Soros theories, with characteristic witlessness. Since this kind of sneering is fast becoming the calling card of the professionally duplicitous, like risibly phony “communist” Taryn Fivek and the anti-Russian “fake news” clowns, it’s one more reason to conclude Stein is a pernicious charlatan that will, with any luck, soon self-destruct.
In the interest of fairness, I offer this just-discovered defense of the recount from Bruce Dixon of Black Agenda Report. I respect Dixon, and no doubt a lot of my readers do too, but this is an evasive, entirely unpersuasive one-noter about voter disenfranchisement that entirely ignores the russophobic, DNC stench of Stein’s appeal; the exclusive focus on battleground states in which Clinton lost; and the undemocratic way in which Stein is going about her campaign in relation to her party. Disappointing to see Dixon on this bandwagon.
There are significant electoral reforms needed to make elections more democratic and more representative of the people. While we support electoral reforms, including how the vote is counted, we do not support the current recount being undertaken by Jill Stein.
The decision to pursue a recount was not made in a democratic or a strategic way, nor did it respect the established decision making processes and structures of the Green Party of the United States (GPUS). The recount has created confusion about the relationship between the Green and Democratic parties because the states chosen for the recount are only states in which Hillary Clinton lost. There were close races in other states such as New Hampshire and Minnesota where Clinton won, but which were not part of the recount. And this recount does not address the disenfranchisement of voters; it recounts votes that were already counted rather than restoring the suffrage of voters who were prevented from voting.
As a candidate, Dr. Stein has the right to call for a recount. However, we urge the GPUS to distance itself from any appearance of support for either Democrats or Republicans. We are well aware of the undemocratic actions taken during the primaries by the DNC and the Clinton campaign. Greens cannot be perceived to be allied with such a party.
Read the full statement.