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Keep Calm and Vote Green: Fascism Is Not Coming

Posted on Sep 23, 2016

By Paul Street

(Page 3)

Second, it is frankly comical to think of the ludicrous, soft-fleshed, silver-spooned draft-dodger and pampered television personality Donald Trump as some kind of neo-Fuhrer. He is seen as “unfit for command” by most top military commanders and is far too monumentally unpopular with the majority of citizens to ever rally enough masses to overcome the hostility he faces with the corporate and imperial establishment.

Third, the populace would not be as pathetically supine and powerless as Gupta imagines in response to the election and policies of a vicious clown like Trump. His selection and installment as U.S. president would be understood by tens of millions of Americans as an incredibly provocative development—provocative and dangerous enough to spark protests and mass mobilizations on a scale like nothing ever seen in American history. That, too, is part of what makes Trump a different kind of Republican wolf. I suggested above that ultra-left backlash theorists (folks who think “things have to get worse before they get better”) are wrong to assume that it’s better to have Republicans in the White House when it comes to sparking popular protest. Trump would be an exception to that rule. The “deep state” has zero interest in the riotous instability that would result from Trump’s election and inauguration.

Fourth, Trump’s not going to win. For all Hillary Clinton’s obvious terrible flaws as a candidate, the big insider cash, the national electoral demographics, and the Electoral College map (just ask Nate Silver and his team of multivariate election predictors at FiveThirtyEight.com) strongly favor her. Her health stumbles and some recent homeland terror attacks have, yes, boosted Trump in the polls recently. That will fade as cold campaign finance realities and corporate media bring the bipartisan ruling class’s long-chosen candidate Hillary to the moment she has literally craved for so long. The big and smart money is still on “the lying neoliberal warmonger.”

READ, WATCH, LISTEN: She’s No Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump—Behind the Scenes With Jill Stein

Fifth, the Green Party’s Party’s Jill Stein and Ajamu Baraka are combining genuine social movement activism with an electoral campaign for a Green New Deal—a many-sided program that is much more than just another bit of progressive policy wonkery. It’s an existential necessity for a decent future, one that combines a giant livable ecology-saving program of national and energy and economic reconversion with a giant jobs program and universal health insurance paid for by genuinely progressive taxation (long overdue in “New Gilded Age” America) and massive reductions in the nation’s giant Pentagon System (which accounts for half the world’s military spending). How does any environmentally sentient and peace-advocating lefty not vote for all of that in the current age of savage inequality, rampant militarism, and ever-more imminent eco-catastrophe?

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Sixth, “lesser-evil voting” (LEV) has a “terrible track record,” as Stein reminded me last spring. The more American liberals and progressives do it, the more the Republican right wing is emboldened, the further the Democrats move into ideological and policy territory formerly held by Republicans, and the more dire the American and global situation becomes. LEV is a viciously circular, self-fulfilling prophecy that itself holds no small responsibility for the ascendancy of horrible Republican presidents and other terrible things like the tea party and Donald Trump phenomena. And one does not seriously challenge LEV only in so-called safe states. You have to draw some lines in the sand and exit left at some point: Protect the flock.

I am not so inured to the quasi-neofascistic evil of the Trump phenomenon and the ugly prospects of a Trump presidency—especially on the ecological level—that I cannot understand why many fellow leftists would mark a ballot for the hideous imperial corporatist Hillary Clinton to block Herr Trump. The intra-left bloodletting that takes place on a regular quadrennial schedule over the difficult question of how best to respond to the United States’ plutocratic electoral and party system certainly does not serve the progressive left cause. Let us join together after the latest quadrennial extravaganza to build and expand a great popular movement with a list of demands and the introduction of an election and party system that deserves passionate citizen engagement.

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