5% for Jill Stein Means More than 55% for Clinton or Trump


A Vote for Jill Stein is a Vote for Democracy

A vote for Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate for President, is anything but a wasted vote because it’s a vote for democracy. In a land where democracy is lost, that’s big — real big. No vote for Trump, no vote for Clinton can even come close to matching that.

For the first time in many-a-decade a vote for an opposition party is not a protest vote but a vote to return power to the people. With courage, vision and a whole lot of organizing we can build a viable opposition party and break the stranglehold of the decaying machines on American government and on us all.

The two-party system has failed us.  Elections have been rigged, the economy is rigged, the prisons are full, the rule of law has no top and no bottom, and the dogs of war have become our masters.

The US Constitution makes no mention of political parties and what the founders feared has come to be. The parties have usurped power and they have rigged the system against “We the People.”

And nothing screams this truth louder than the current contest between fossil fuel promoter, corporate champion, war monger and election thief Clinton and bigot, infantile blowhard, climate denier and fascist pretender Trump. This is what 40 years of voting for the lesser of two evils has come to. This is what a century of two-party rule has wrought.

We will have oligarchy and empire with all the paternalistic trimmings: clever speeches and pretty window dressing. Or, we can have it straight up: mean-spirited and ugly — but we will have it. It is only democracy we can never have.

Unless of course we have the courage and vision to vote for Jill Stein.

It’s In Our Hands

It’s time for some real political competition. It’s time for a real opposition party. Jill Stein puts people, planet and peace over profit. That we think this strange or impossible in a land that once aspired to both freedom and democracy should make us tremble. Justice will not sleep forever and mother earth does not calculate profits or wait on compromise.

There is a way home but the road is rocky.

In the US, the greatest candidate in the world must still break through all the laws passed and traps set by Democrats and Republicans. We have among the most restrictive laws in the so-called democratic world regarding elections. The two parties have regulated political competition, restricted debate and placed mass media under the control of giant corporations that know their class interest always, but truth never.

This election is so wrenching because it revealed just how nasty and vulnerable the system has become. On the one hand, millions turn away in disgust. On the other, millions more are taking a stand. Thanks to the great work of the Stein campaign, the history-making movement of 14 million Bernie Sanders supporters, and the record 43% of Americans registered independents, we have a chance at restoring some measure of democracy to the electoral arena.

And we must recognize, with deep gratitude and solidarity, the role of young people who — living inside the lie that American has become — needed no one to pull back the veil. Together we have a chance at wining.

And Jill can win. With the help of Berner converts, Stein now appears on the ballot in 48 states, an all time record for the Green Party. Keep in mind that in 2008, with the highest turnout in decades, only 57.1% of voting age population went to the polls. Yes, that means that numerical minorities elect the President of the Unites States.

Revolutions happen in stages.  5% is the first stage.

In 1856 a new “third” party — the Republican Party – lost the presidency but  upset the existing two-party system by becoming a major party.  It was a time of  political realignment, deep-seated conflict and vibrant social movements. In 1860 Lincoln won for the new party but earned not a single electoral college in the slave-holding states, not even appearing on the ballot in 10 states.  In 10 states Lincoln got zero popular votes but became President none the less.

Perhaps we will make our revolution in stages too. With 5% of the popular vote, the Green Party can make history by becoming the first viable opposition party in living memory. With 5% we can begin to compete more fully on local, state and national stages. 5% is a project we can both imagine and accomplish.

Just 5% of the popular vote wins us:

  • Minimum of $10 million in public funding in 2020
  • A place on the ballot in every state.
  • Capacity to challenge on the local, state and national level.
  • National recognition for Green policies and platform

And this, of course, is just the beginning.  Four long years of Clinton or Trump will only deepen the crisis so we must prepare. The new social movements grow robust and nothing can stop us now.

We are breaking down the barriers that keep us in our places.  Native communities have connected oil with water and the sacred with the political.  Protesters have transformed to Protectors. The new civil rights movement sees occupation at home and occupation abroad through the same lens. The peace and environmental movement face interlocking enemies: war drives climate change and climate change drives war.  American workers will never prosper without prosperity for workers in Haiti, Honduras, and Columbia.  The prison laborer, the fast food worker, the adjunct instructor, and all of us, toil on same supply chain.

Understanding our many connections and the inescapable network of mutuality is the currency of revolutionary consciousness.  We are connected in the worst of ways by the insatiable demands of Corporate Power and in the best of ways by the boundless resistance, love and audacity of “we the people.”

This could be our time but only if we don’t vote out of fear or hatred.  A vote for Jill Stein is — at long last and once again — a vote for government of the people, by the people, for the people.

5% and we move forward. 5% and we live to fight again another day. This election is a big battle but not the last battle. We will soldier on.



Posted in American Culture, Electoral Strategy for 2016, Martin Luther King, Movement Culture, Organizing Strategy, revolutionary strategy, Strategy, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Elevating Trump


Elevating Trump

The new evidence provided by Wikileaks Podesta files makes a convincing case that the Clinton team wanted extreme Republicans as the best possible opponents. They wanted not rational discourse but exactly the kind of mean-spirited bigotry that Trump has delivered so well.

The Wikileaks documents are a window into the soul of power. We can see how the Clinton machine played the strategy of triangulation on the level of action and tactic.

The Motive

For the Clinton machine to maintain power, it needs the likes of Donald Trump. It’s a package deal. The Clinton’s lesser of two evils campaign can corral voters most efficiently if their Republicans competitors are extreme, scary and incoherent. Trump is so frightening and potentially disruptive that even powerful Republican elites turn to Clinton for refuge.

So essential is the extreme right-wing to the Democrats strategy that the right-wing must be encouraged and promoted! Apparently Clinton wants and needs Trump.

The Intent

Here are excerpts from an email (click on attachments) outlining strategy and goals to the DNC dated 4/7/2015. Well before Trump officially declared his candidacy.

Force all Republican Candidates to lock themselves into extreme conservative positions that will hurt them in a general election….

The variety of candidates is a positive here, and many of the lesser known can serve as a cudgel to move the more established candidates further to the right. In this scenario, we don’t want to marginalize the candidates, but make them more ‘Pied Piper’ candidates who actually represent the mainstream Republican Party. Pied Piper candidates include, but aren’t limited to:

Ted Cruz
Donald Trump
Ben Carson

We need to be elevating the Pied Piper candidates so that they are leaders of the pack and tell the press to [take] them seriously.

Here it is: a premeditated, purposeful and extremely reckless design to bring Trump into the national spotlight. If doing so sabotages the informed public discourse that democracy depends on, so be it.

The strategy of triangulation has been moving Democrats, Republicans and public discourse to the right for three decades but rarely do we see this kind of direct evidence of intent.

The sad, truly tragic, truth is that without Trump, or his kind, the Democrats would lose one of their main forms of control over voters. Without Trump they might be forced to have a message, offer a positive program, or mobilize the millions of occasional voters and non-voters. But to do so would be to serve the people and that is incompatible with endless war and the rule of the corporations.

The Means

We need to be elevating the Pied Piper candidates so that they are leaders of the pack and tell the press to [take] them seriously.

Given the already “cozy relationship” between political elites and the corporate media the means to do the deed was right at hand.

And indeed the press did follow orders and took Trump seriously.  And for months mass media was quite comfortable broadcasting Trumps bigotry.

I always wondered why media giants, so deeply committed to the Clinton machine — big donors to the Clinton Foundation and the Clinton campaign alike — lavished so much attention and so many resources on Trump.  They are driven by the same desire to maximize profit as other corporations, true,  but it still seemed like there were other stories that could sell soap.  The candidacy of a Jewish socialist from Brooklyn was such a story but, well, never mind.  And it’s true that Trump fit the entertainment model of what we still think of as mainstream news.

The New York Times estimates that two billion dollars worth of  free media coverage was given to Trump. Half that would be astounding. The Trump campaign is a study in corporate welfare.

Well, disasters like the election of 2016 have an overabundance of causes. But the Democrats desire to elevate Trump was part of the potion.  And the media followed direction with gusto.  The Clinton’s were owed a favor and refusal was out of the question.

After all it’s just a little payback to the Clinton’s for the Telecommunication Act of 1996 that paved the way for the consolidation of mass media into the hands of a few corporations and a few hundred executives.  The corporate media knows their class interests.

The Verdict

The racism, sexism and trash-talking commentary from Trump, and its effect on public discourse, is acceptable collateral damage, a toxic side effect, of the Clintons’ will to power.

This is the crime: premeditated Trump love. The Democrats had the motive, intent and means to make Trump great.

The verdict: a vote for Clinton is a vote for Trump.

Such is the twisted two-party system. A system that, unless disrupted, will continue to produce Trumps and Clintons and worse.

A ray of light: the Green Party and the social movements.

Sorry Clinton fans, but this kind of mass manipulation is deeply destructive of what little remains of democratic culture in the US. I am afraid that millions will stay home on election day. Withdrawal is a predictable outcome when politics are so debased, but so is resistance. Vote for Jill Stein, become part of the new civil rights, anti-war and environmental moments. Let’s get real political issues back on the front burner.



Posted in Electoral Strategy for 2016, Organizing Strategy, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

New Grassroots Trifold Pamphlet for Jill Stein



Grassroots resources for Jill Stein!

This trifold pamphlet emphasizes the goal of building the Green Party as a pro-democracy opposition party. We are not just a “Protest Vote.” Take a look and edit or revise as you see fit. Let get out there and talk with people!





Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

The Democrats Must Attack Democracy to Serve the Corporate Power


This article also appeared in Counterpunch


You might think that pervasive election fraud, the conversion of mass media into propaganda, and the already insignificant role that everyday people play in federal government would be enough to satisfy the elite’s lust for power.

Or, that record corporate profits, legal and illegal tax evasion, billions in tax-payer funded subsidies, unprecedented global bailouts and the resulting poverty of billions of human beings would appease the Goldman Sachs of the world and their demand for unlimited wealth.

Or, that endless war on multiple fronts, 650 major military bases,  $600 billion annual budgets, the most lucrative world-wide arms trade, a $trillion more to update our nuclear arsenal and the ritual incantation of American Exceptionalism by Democrats and Republicans alike — even in the face of military failure and environmental disaster — would satisfy the souls of the most ambitious imperialist. But no.

The corporate power is nothing if not relentless. It knows no limits except those we can impose on it. And that is why the managers of corporate power must attack what remains of representational democracy.

Colorado on the Cutting Edge

Colorado is contested turf. It is a battleground between local folks who want to drink clean water, breath clean air, live freely and exercise democracy against the fossil fuel companies that call the shots in both the Democratic and Republican Parties.

Clinton’s choice of Ken Salazar, former US Senator from Colorado and Secretary of the Interior, to lead her transition team, “means the oil and gas industry just hit a political gusher.” But, even with their unlimited funding and political control, the elites are worried about the people of Colorado.  The people have legalized marijuana and now take aim at raising the minimum wage, creating a universal healthcare system and ending the modern slavery of prison labor.

Colorado’s constitution is just too democratic so establishment Democrats have joined forces with Republicans — both bankrolled by big oil and gas — to create proposition 71.  71 is an attempt to “protect” the state constitution from citizen activism. The main media argument is that the current arrangements are far too “messy” and allows “special interests” to amend the constitution. The Democrats plan on “raising the bar” by making constitutional revisions far more difficult and expensive to enact.  In effect, the only special interest that will be prevented from revising the constitution is “We the People.”  There is good evidence that the main goal is to stop the movement against fracking.

Democratic Governor Hickenlooper, Democratic Senator Bennett and media corporations have sided with insurance companies, Republicans and the Clinton machine, to hold the line against universal health care.

It’s not just the bad example of real health care that has Democrats worried. “Amendment T” abolishing prison labor would strike at one of the pillars of profit and social control. The Colorado Constitution, just like the 13th Amendment to the US Constitution, allows for slavery — yes slavery — for people convicted of a crime.

The US currently puts nearly 1 million such slaves to task. These prison workers generate at least $2 billion a year and produce military gear. Unlike slavery of old, the new slave masters, often large corporations, do not even have to provide for food, shelter or clothing; all that is done with our tax dollars. And all this publicly subsidized slave labor depresses the labor market for every other worker.

The current Colorado constitution allows citizens seeking justice, but holding little cash, to pursue the unfinished agenda of the civil rights and labor movements.  And that worries Democrats.

So worried are they about democracy that Hickenlooper, once considered for the Vice Presidency under Clinton, and all superdelegates from Colorado maintained their allegiance to Clinton even though Sanders won Colorado’s caucus by a nearly 2 to 1 landslide.

So worried are they about democracy that top Democrats joined forces with the oil and gas lobby to oppose citizen initiatives to empower local communities to resist fracking.  The measure failed to make the ballot because the gas and oil industry spent $15 million in opposition and the Colorado Secretary of State determined that too many petition signatures were invalid. This determination was made after a 5% sample of the 107,000 signatures were evaluated. Why not count the other 95%? Too messy for sure, and too expensive since “we are broke” in the richest county in the history of the world.

And now, Hickenlooper threatens to punish any municipality that bans fracking.

Yet, the people of Colorado tend to be an independent-minded lot. Both Jill Stein and Gary Johnson are polling well. Arn Menconi, the Green Party candidate for US Senator is making a serious run against corporate Democrat Bennett who, like his role model Hillary Clinton, has support and funding from elite Republicans.

The attack on local democracy is particularly revealing given that Colorado is a so-called swing state.  We can give up any hope that the Democrats will offer anything to the millions of Bernie voters beside fear and look instead to the small slice of moderate Republicans disgusted with Trump.

The only “incremental change” will be the incremental growth of Corporate Power and the scaling back of what is left of state and local democracy. Perhaps they learned from the Koch brothers who pioneered the use of big money in small places.

What is the Corporate Power?

Most critiques of the Clinton Foundation and Clinton machine focus on the idea of corruption and scandal. True enough, but the Clintons’ corporate worldview goes far beyond greed, corruption and “pay to play.”

The deeper conflict is between a new form of corporate governance — in full command of all three branches of national government — and the remnants of the older legal and political structure. Violations of the now outmoded functions of government — individual rights, free elections, checks and balances, rule of law and the national interest itself — are called out as corruption but are in fact the “new normal.”

The managers of the new system must be above the law and the Constitution to do their job. These corruptions are but evidence of a Corporate Power that must burst the remaining shell of democracy to complete its ascendancy.

The Corporate Power fuses the corporation with the state. This new relationship — a century in the making — was formally recognized by “Citizens United” and is currently managed by the global political corporation known as the Clinton Foundation.

The boundaries between what was once “private,” such as wealth created by economic activity, and what was once “public,” such as governments, are no longer meaningful.  Corporations were born political actors that must commandeer government to claim and control the wealth created by nature and produced by all the people

The seamless interactions between the “public” State Department and the “private” Clinton Foundation exemplifies corporate rule and is the shape of things to come; unless we revolt.

And revolt we must because profit and power are also governed by the same principles.  Just as earlier forms of free-market capitalism, with its more limited profit motive, have been replaced by the corporate order and the drive for the maximum possible profit; the maximum possible power now moves the Corporate Power beyond the limits of representational democracy. There is no role for democracy in the corporate state, except as an obstacle to it supremacy.

And if you believe that democracy remains a vital part of government in the US, I challenge you to provide evidence for where it exist and how it functions.

Today, the only form of democracy worth a damn is the many growing social movements and our electoral wings: the Green Party, the local activists continuing the work of Bernie Sanders under the banner of Our Revolution and Brand New Congress and the independent Left Elect.

If only this were a simple matter of greed or bad men, but it is not. It’s a system in which each corporation must grow or die; even if ecocide is the outcome of collective corporate growth.   The world is so sick because the Corporate Power has learned to thrive even in disaster, war and chaos.

Perhaps it will die as it has lived. But that is up to us.

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.[1]

Enough abuses and usurpations for you? When will revolution stop being for other times and other people and instead become the best way to recover the greatest of American traditions? Whatever happens in November we must organzine like our lives, our security and our democracy depend on it. After all, they do.

[1] US Declaration of Independence


Posted in American Culture, Electoral Strategy for 2016, Movement Culture, Organizing Strategy, revolutionary strategy, Strategy, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Grassroots Rap for Jill Stein



We grow from the grassroots! Let’s help each other send Jill Stein to the White House. It’s in our hands!

The following is a one minute script for face-to face organizing. I am a local activist and this is not an official part of Jill’s campaign literature. Take what you like or pass it by. It is very introductory but well suited to outreach at concerts, farmers markets, and downtown street corners. Remember 40% of Americans do not vote and many people have never heard of, or thought seriously about, Jill Stein or the Green Party. Particularly the 70% of Americans that still get their news from the corporate media. Get out there and go for it. It’s in our hands!

This rap is meant to go with a flyer that has the issues listed. I suggest the 1/4 page handouts on at Jill2016  They are easy to download, print and cut.


Hi, I’m supporting Jill Stein for President. Jill is the candidate for the Green Party. She is not a Democrat or a Republican. I support Jill because I think the two parties have failed us, and don’t like either candidate.  What do you think?  Jill Stein is a great alternative.

Or, if you are the kind of person that votes for the quality of the candidate rather than the party, Jill Stein is far and away the best presidential candidate we have. And that is because Jill is totally independent and takes no corporate money. It’s all small donors like us.

For me, the trends on climate change, war, and economic inequality, are so troubling that four more years of “more of the same” will lead us to disaster. We need to change course now.

(And/Or) I was a big Bernie supporter. After the Democrats pushed him aside I decided that Jill Stein was the best way to continue the effort to get money out of politics and the people back in. Jill’s politics are a lot like Bernie’s but even more so.

The Green Party sides with everyday Americans not the corporations and billionaires.

Our democracy is in such deep trouble that we really need more voices and more choices. It’s up to us now.

What do you think?

Would you like to sign up for our email list for more information? Local Facebook group? Come to our meeting?


People have been so heavily propagandized by the corporate media that the negative comments or questions are fairly predictable. Here are some standard Q&A.

Q. “Electability” If they say: But third parties can never win. or Can Jill win?

It’s hard for sure, but now 40% do not vote and for the first time 43% of registered voters are independent. That shows that its time for change. People have already had enough of the Democrats and Republicans. Clinton and Trump are the two worst candidates ever. And, we don’t have to win the election to make a real difference. If we get just 5% nationally the Green Party will get federal funding and we can continue the debate. A vote for Jill is a vote for the long-term project of building a real opposition party.

Q. “Spoiler” If they say: “But this will split the Democratic vote like Nader did.”

I know this was repeated by the media a million times but it does not stand up to the actual history. You may have never heard the fact that 12-13% of registered Democrats in Florida voted for Bush. That is 300,000 votes for Bush by Democrats in Florida alone but the media did not mention it.  Nader got 97,000 or so in Florida about 24, 000 of which were Democrats and that was supposed to be the reason Gore lost? Not the 300,000 Democrats that voted for Bush?  53% of white women voted for Bush in Florida. Why? Those votes were Gore’s to lose. And 40% of the people stay home. Why didn’t the Democrats get them? Gore lost his home state of Tennessee where Nader was not a factor and the Clintons’ home state of Arkansas where Nader was not a factor. The real spoiler is that the two parties don’t represent us anymore and run weak campaigns because they have nothing to offer. Gore failed to excite his base just like Clinton is failing now.  So they resort to fear instead.

Q. “Lesser of Two Evils” if they say: I am afraid of Trump.

A. Trump is scary, but on all the really big issues of importance to me, the differences between Clinton and Trump are so small it’s hardly meaningful. Trump denies climate change, Clinton supported fracking around the world as Secretary of State and is in the pay of the fossil fuel industry. Trump talks war, Clinton makes war and has destabilized Libya, Yemen and Syria leading to more terrorism and more refugees. Trump cheats his workers and opposed unions, Clinton has held down wages when she supported NAFTA, TPP and ended welfare. While Trump talks racism, the Clintons were architects of mass incarceration, the biggest form of institutionalized racism today. It’s like a choice between arrogance and blatant racism and the abuse of power and institutionalized racism.

As a county we have been voting for the lesser of two evils for decades and these two candidates is exactly what that way of voting produced. By telling Clinton that she does not have to earn your vote, the Democrats are free to turn into Republicans and serve Wall Street instead of the American people.

Posted in Electoral Strategy for 2016, Organizing Strategy, Strategy | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

The Party is Over


This article also appeared in Counterpunch.

The Party’s Over

Well, the party is over and the machine has prevailed. Our attempt to revive democracy in the electoral arena failed. Still, we owe Bernie so much. He has raised consciousness and expectations while others appealed to fear and told us there is no alternative to the corporate power. But, the struggle continues both within and outside the electoral arena.

The corporate elites and the Clinton machine have no idea how deep the divisions go. Trump not Clinton will most likely be the beneficiary of the election fraud, voter suppression and discontent. The DNC has made a historic blunder and it’s not going to be pretty either way. Fighting Fascism with the corporate power seems a doomed project since it is precisely the merger of the corporation and government that sets the conditions for the rise of fascism. That is the historical moment we are in and paradox we face.

There is already lots of suffering and there is going to be more; much more. We are just going to have to own up to what this country has become. The system is so rotten and dysfunctional that there is no easy way out. No amount of moralizing is going to change anything — that will take political action and organizing.

I plan on working for Jill Stein and I will count it a victory if we can get 5%. That will allow the Green party to get federal funding for next time and maybe help to create a viable opposition party. But this is no 20th century election. The trend lines on war, class warfare, propaganda, the failure of democracy and the vast militarized penal system all point toward deep trouble. On environmental issues alone the crisis will deepen and most likely in a dramatic way. We are woefully unprepared for what lies ahead.

But at least millions more have learned that the political system and the economy is rigged. That the lesser of two evils argument or the spoiler are forms of social control that have led us to exactly the choices we now have. If we do not have serious social change it is likely the Trumps of the world will just keep coming right out of the social conditions the Clintons of the world have created. I hear a lot from Clinton supporters, reluctant or not, about how they will continuing the struggle. I hope they are serious. How hard you worked for Bernie or other social movements this past year might be one indication of the value of your claims.

No one said revolution was easy, if fact its the hardest thing in the world. I hope mother earth has the patience for us to learn.

People will say I am privileged or childlike or a dreamer for dissenting. In some ways I am all three. And you? I listen to people’s claims of moral superiority, or paternalistic authority, or “realism” as they endorse and obey the political machine of the rich and powerful. We will all have to live with the consequences of our actions. All of us.

And, if you decide to persist in building an opposition movement, brace for a fear campaign unlike any you have seen. It’s all they has left.

“Fear,” Gandhi said, “is the enemy. We thought it was hate but it’s fear.”

Posted in Uncategorized | 14 Comments

Mr. Halle, Mr. Chomsky: Our Actions Express Our True Priorities


This article also appeared in Counterpunch

Actions Express Priorities*

It is far easier to criticize the social order than to change it. And our actions express our true priorities.  The Halle/Chomsky article advocating lesser of two evils voting demonstrate the poverty of radical strategy that does not seek alternatives to the two-party system and the existing order.

The authors do get two big things right: tactics are provisional and there are serious consequences to political choices. But they act as if only those that refuse to vote for Clinton face the consequences of their action. Every political act leads to consequences intended or not. No one is free of that. There have been plenty of negative consequences from four decades of lesser of two evil voting that the authors fail to reckon with. Tactics should be provisional but it is the lesser of two evils has been the in-grained routine tactic for decades.

At the core of the argument the authors damn dissenting voters as selfish moralists seeking only to feel good. Yet, the authors are every bit as involved with selling a morally correct argument that encourages people to feel good about voting for Clinton because it will, they seem sure, results in less oppression of already exploited people. But a truly political and strategic choice is not between voting for the lesser evil and feeling good. The choice is between continuing four decades of failed lesser of two evils voting or attempting to create a strategy and a movement to return the US government to the people.

It is vitally important that we protect historic gains made by the social movements, but that does not require us to sign on to the established order of endless war, mass incarceration and corporate power by voting for Clinton. Quite the opposite — it requires movement building and opposition. The failure of the lesser of two evils is a strategic failure.

One of the political problem with the lesser of two evils line is that it blunts criticism of the two-party system, a system the authors certainly claim to oppose. Not a word is said about the failings of the Democratic party machine. By insisting on a deeply flawed political boss instead of a reformer that would handily beat Trump, by all the evidence at hand, they are counting on compelling people to vote for candidates they despise. Sanders and a vigorous movement is the solution to Trump that we already have at the ready. The writers never mention that. Why? Only the opposition is criticized.

So the opposition is blamed for mass disgust with the two parties candidates not the disgusting candidates of the two parties. Instead we are taught to fear. But, the Clinton Democrats are not afraid of Trump, at least not afraid enough to give up their positions of real political power, control and immense privilege.

One basic fact undermines all the lesser of two evil arguments. There is no scarcity of voters. Why does the vote of a small percentage of activists and dissidents matter so much when 70-90 million people do not vote in America? Why doesn’t Clinton go get them? Why doesn’t Clintons supporters or Halle and Chomsky go and get them? Bernie did and many others helped.

The answer I am afraid is simple. Mobilizing the 70-90 million non-voters, as Sanders and Stein have started to do, demands a program directed at their interests. This the Clinton machine cannot do and serve the 1% at the same time. Instead the social control discourse of the lesser of two evils, the spoiler, and the horserace are deployed to attack dissent.

Despite the highly rational style of writing the authors use, Halle/Chomsky’s core arguments drag the discourse onto the ground of moral politics and psychology instead of the terrain of politics we so desperately need to understand better: evidence, history, strategy, conflicts of interest, community of interest, and questions of power. A more useful political version of the lesser of two evils argument would raise issues of representative democracy, not just feelings. Should people vote for candidates and parties that represent their interests and values? If not, then we are forgoing the basic assumption about how representative democracy is supposed to work in favor of some clever tactic that will, in some unspecified way, allow us to reclaim democracy in some unspecified future despite all evidence to the contrary.

The one attempt at a historical analogy offers a dubious and hotly contested interpretation of the Sixties. in 1968 the liberal democrat Hubert Humphrey gave no indication he was going to do anything but continue the war in Vietnam. Keep in mind it was a Democrat’s war for years under Kennedy and Johnson. Nixon actually ran to Humphrey’s “left” as a kind of peace candidate seeking an “honorable peace,” or what was refined into “peace with honor.” And it is likely that Trump will run to Clintons “left” on a number of issues. Writers like Halle and Chomsky attribute the decline of the left to anti-war opposition to the Democratic war managers.

It was the civil rights revolution and opposition to the Vietnam war that lead many to realize that the war was part of deeply rooted systemic problems: empire, racism and exploitation. The anti-war movement was the passage beyond the liberal consensus into revolutionary territory for millions of people. Martin Luther King and others spoke it aloud.

[T]he Black revolution is much more than a struggle for the rights of Negroes. It is forcing America to face all its interrelated flaws—racism, poverty, militarism, and materialism. It is exposing evils that are rooted deeply in the whole structure of our society. It reveals systemic rather than superficial flaws and suggest that radical reconstruction of society itself is the real issue to be faced.[1]

The radical movements the authors wrongly see as dying after 1968 never disappeared but were slowed and challenged for many reasons: the giant triplets of racism, militarism and economic exploitation could not be overcome, to say nothing of government repression and the so-called war on drugs.  Of course, if the authors recognized the powerful institutional obstacles to change then they would also have to reckon with the Clinton machine’s role in continuing and expanding the many forms of power and social control.

Lesser of two evils is an admission that we can never expect fundamental change and must stay forever on the road we are on. Except that road is increasingly unsustainable and crisis ridden. We cannot avoid serious consequences in any event.

Despite the authors moralizing, there is no moral clarity here. It’s just judgement. Some people think that voting for the Green Party will create more suffering. I think that given the history of the last half century that voting for the lesser of two evils has created plenty of suffering we can document in abundance. I blame you, you blame me and the machines are off the hook. Morally, we are all implicated in the existing order. Every one of us. Moral politics of this sort are a political dead-end.

Yet, its true that we cannot completely dispense with moral politics and feelings. So let’s give feelings their due. Its is not “feeling good” but feelings of fear and fatalism that are the psychological and emotional states that contribute most to social control. Halle and Chomsky rely on fear and fatalism and the promise of feeling good to corral people back into line.

If we overcome our fear of change and our fatalism, be that through political vision or sheer desperation, we have a chance of creating a winning strategy. Tactics and strategy are provisional as the authors claim. After four decades of failed lesser of two evils, it is time to create a workable strategy based on mobilizing our latent power.

The inside/outside strategy is a possible starting point. Some of the most productive organizing of this electoral cycle exerted leverage along the inside/outside borderline.  Revolt Against Plutocracy and its Bernie or Bust strategy has urged people to vote Green Party as a counterweight to the Clinton machine. Thousands have already made that move and the Green Party is growing rapidly. “Bernie or Green in 2016” has already changed the face of this election.

We are, by the millions, overcoming the fear and fatalism of the lesser of two evils. We will make mistakes but we will, at long last, be the authors of our own history.

*”Actions express priorities.”  Mahatma Gandhi.

1. Martin Luther King, A Testament of Hope.

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