Donald Trump is a corrupt, dishonest capitalist. So, why isn’t he liked by the moguls of Wall Street? Why did they support not only Barack Obama, but Hilary Clinton?
The answer is fairly simple. While the agenda for all elected presidents and most of Congress is the same . . . to protect the capitalist and capitalism, to use the military to expand access for the capitalist class to the resources of the world, and to enact trade agreements that will ensure continued profits and protections for the capitalist class, it is important that this primary goal of “our” elected representatives is not clearly demonstrated or understood by the working class and poor.
While Bill Clinton was very effective in subtly carrying out this agenda, Barack Obama excelled. Both men were perceived as our guys, men who looked out for the regular struggling folks.
Both men are intelligent, well spoken, and engaging, men who you would feel comfortable having to your home socially . . . just regular folk. WRONG!
Bill Clinton sponsored the destruction and Balkanization of Yugoslavia, authored the collapse of a safety net for millions of single mothers and the filling of prisons with people of color.
Throughout the 1990s, the United States sought to destabilize and dismember Yugoslavia in order to privatize its state-run industries and financial sector and dismantle its social service programs, thereby transferring Yugoslavia’s wealth to transnational corporations. In November 1990, Congress passed the 1991 Foreign Operations Appropriations Act, mandating that any part of Yugoslavia failing to secede within six months would lose U.S. financial support. The U.S. then financed separatist movements in Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Macedonia, and Kosovo, consistently backing the most fascistic elements in a strategy of “divide and conquer.”
Bill Clinton labeled Milosevic “a new Hitler,” while supporting Bosnian President Alija Izetbegovic who was a convicted World War II Nazi war criminal, and Croatian President Franjo Tudjman, who wrote a book (Wastelands of Historical Truth) praising Hitler and advocating genocide.
The portrayal of Milosevic by Clinton and other NATO leaders was nothing more than outright lies used to gather popular support for military intervention in Yugoslavia.
Bill Clinton, signed into law welfare reform, or the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996. Clinton had campaigned on a pledge to “end welfare as we know it” and today it is all too apparent that he succeeded.
The law replaced AFDC (Aid to Families with Dependent Children) with TANF (Temporary Aid to Needy Families—“temporary” being the key word). It stipulated that people could receive no more than five years of government benefits in a lifetime, though states could set their limits lower and many did, with some instituting a two-year lifetime limit. It required a certain percentage of welfare recipients in states to be working, and said that those who couldn’t find jobs would have to participate in community service or get vocational training. Those who didn’t work or volunteer would eventually be kicked off the welfare rolls.
In 1994, President Clinton signed into law the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, an act which led to the mass incarceration of low level drug users, mostly people of color. This law included “three strikes,” “mandatory minimums,” and “truth in sentencing,” the latter being a euphemism for “no more parole.”
Another interesting fact. Two weeks after Clinton signed the big crime bill in September 1994, he enacted the Riegle-Neal interstate banking bill, the first in a series of moves deregulating the financial industry and neutralizing the Glass-Steagall Act.
What about the populist achievements of Barack Obama?
From the time he took office, the Obama team wasted no time waging new wars across the globe while simultaneously escalating the Iraq and Afghanistan debacles.
They used NATO to overthrow the independent government in Libya in a racist, genocidal coup leaving that country in total chaos.
Syria was and is next in line. Results are not in yet re: Obama’s success.
Because of Obama’s expansion in the use of drones, U.S. drones are now a common cause of death and terror for North African and Middle Eastern communities.
The US African Command (AFRICOM) has further militarized Africa and is present in all but two nations on the continent.
The financial elites responsible for the largest transfer of wealth to the top 1 percent of the population from the 99 percent received trillions in bailouts, while people, who have to work to support themselves and their families, are losing their homes and jobs in high numbers.
Even in the midst of staggering levels of poverty and unemployment for all and Black people especially, public schools are being turned over for profit, and Medicare, Social Security, and Medicaid are on the chopping block.
Healthcare costs continue to soar. Obamacare has proven to do more for the profits of big pharmaceuticals and insurance companies than it does to expand coverage to Americans.
Civil liberties have been eroded to dust with the passing of the National Defense Authorization Act and the re-authorizing of the PATRIOT Act. The PATRIOT Act is now under scrutiny after the NSA was caught spying on the private lives of US citizens.
Guantanamo is not closed for a combination of reasons; part of it has to do with the Republicans blocking it, part of it is because Obama hadn’t really made this a priority for much of his time in office.
Obama helped to legitimize and streamline assassination as an essential component of US foreign policy. This includes the escalation of drone warfare where the U.S. can murder anyone at any time without having to worry about casualties to U.S. troops.
Under the Obama administration, we witnessed the militarization of local police departments and the police assault on the people of this country (especially those who are not of white, European descent.
The war on whistleblowers has been a dominant factor and result of the Obama administration’s decisions on how to implement the law. This has led to whistleblowers being criminalized and, in some cases, being accused of treason.
Only eleven Americans have ever been charged under the Espionage Act of 1917. Eight of them since President Obama took office.
President Obama deported more “illegal aliens” than any other president before him, and that includes Republicans.
Mr. Obama instituted and tried to justify the “kill list,” allowing the executive the power to identify those he deems an imminent threat to U.S. security and sentencing them to death without formal charges being made or trials being conducted to determine their guilt or innocence. This includes U.S. citizens whose constitutional rights and safeguards are therefore, ignored.
Initially, Obama declared his support for a single payer system where a public option would compete with the private companies. This was seen as a way to help keep health insurance costs down. Despite the overwhelming popular support (over 70%) for the public option, Obama folded and, before negotiations began, took it off the bargaining table.
Obama expanded our military involvement around the globe despite being awarded the Nobel Peace (or is it Piece) Prize; he brought more charges of espionage against whistleblowers than any president before him; he classified more documents than any other president, despite talking about the transparency of his administration.
Despite the records of both Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, they remain popular and respected former presidents among both progressives and members of the establishment.
Yet, Donald Trump evokes anger, contempt and ridicule not only from progressives but from fellow capitalists and Wall Street. WHY?
Donald Trump is a threat to capitalism. While Clinton and Obama subtly implemented the capitalist and imperialist agenda, Trump is blatant and in your face, thus exposing the true nature of the capitalist system allowing people to see it in the raw. He has brought capitalism out from the shadows into the light and that’s a no-no.
Despite ever increasing evidence that there is climate change that will eventually threaten life on Earth, Trump refuses to accept the data. Follow the money!
Trump has made his position on the various pipelines well known . . . he supports them despite the danger they present to the environment. Follow the money!
Trump has declared that he is in favor of allowing drilling in the Arctic despite the potential environmental dangers. Follow the money!
Trump is willing to make millions of acres of public land available for fracking for oil, coal and natural gas despite the potential dangers to the environment. Follow the money!
Trump is supporting a tax bill that would provide millions of dollars to the wealthiest Americans, including himself and his family, while lowering funding for social programs that serve the poor and working Americans. Follow the money!
While Clinton and Obama implemented the capitalist, imperialist agenda, they did so with a smile and convincing public speeches. Trump lacks that ability and is successfully antagonizing most people in this country giving us a rare view of the predatory nature of our capitalist system.
Therefore, it is evident that it matters not who sits in the White House, you and I will get screwed as long as we accept capitalism.
SOCIALISM OR BARBARISM!!
Dave Alpert has masters degrees in social work, educational administration, and psychology. He spent his career working with troubled inner city adolescents.