If you are a regular reader of this blog, you will know that I have very little respect for Secretary Clinton as a politician (I choose to make no judgement of her personal life, as that is between her and the Divine). And no, I’m not thinking that way because of any supposed “smear campaign” by conservatives. On and off for my entire life, this woman has had an impact on our political scene. Because she has had that impact, I have watched her political life unfold. But, because I cannot stomach Trump’s politics or ethics, I have to figure out a way to stomach voting for her while still holding to my principles.
From day one, this woman has either been subtly groomed (or has placed herself in the right positions) for political leadership and power. While she is not to blame for the direction her parents chose for her, she took that direction and has utilized it her whole life, which to my mind is questionable.
I do not deny that she did some very good work in relation to children and women’s rights. Nor that she has done a number of other good works.
There are two main issues that I have about Secretary Clinton (actually, not just her, but anyone else of any gender).
- Since a child, she has consistently gathered power and influence. Being the child of a successful businessman, she built on that by going to Wellesley College (a woman’s college with a large history of turning out successful business women and women of power), and followed up with attending Yale Law School. Both of these colleges (and those like them, Ivy League or not) allow students to interact with the hopes that they will be able to trade favors when they enter the post-college world.
- While her parents may have come from poverty (her mother definitely seems to have had that background, but her father was able to attend and graduate from college DURING MIDDLE OF THE GREAT DEPRESSION) she herself does NOT.
Let’s take these one at a time:
Prior to the end of World War II, only approximately 5% of America’s population attended college. Amusingly enough, the genders were approximately balanced (as many women as men). However, the financial background of that 5% was overwhelmingly among the “rich elite” of our country. There were, perhaps, some scholarship students but those were hit-and-miss and usually only when a rich person felt a sense of responsibility to some poor person.
In 1944, Congress passed the Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944 (commonly known as the G.I. Bill). This was not limited just to student loans but also mortgages, business loans and unemployment loans.
So, given that Secretary Clinton’s father graduated from college in 1935, he must have either come from a family who was at least comfortably well off or possibly as a scholarship student (however, given the information about her father comes primarily from her, you would think she would give that information since she claims to come from “modest roots.”). On her website (below the photo of her on a tricycle) she describes herself as coming from the middle class. This is technically correct but misleads the reader into equating our currently struggling (and poverty stricken) middle class with her UPPER middle-class beginnings.
What’s the difference? Well, the upper middle class makes at minimum $100,000 per year (this puts them directly in the top 1/3 of the financial classes in America). The middle of the middle class? The highest they earn is $60,000. The LOWER middle class (the group that Hillary wants you to assume she is part of) makes between $23,050 to $32,500 (and is considered to be the financial support of the supposedly normal family size of 2 parents and 2.5 kids).
Let me tell you something about that number. My ex and I never had kids, and together our average income for most of our lives was perhaps $27,000. And even without any “luxuries” (like clothing), our combined paychecks were long gone by the time we even got them. I can’t even imagine attempting to raise children on that combined income.
Being part of the upper middle class, she had the ability to “network” with other children of the same or higher financial class as her own. There is a cachet that attending specialty schools like Wellesley and Yale (parts of the Ivy League or the Seven Sisters of social elitism) which gives the alumni something to automatically feel a kinship. This is part of what greases the wheels of corporate and political life.
I don’t have to argue the reality of social elitism, anyone who has been paying attention can see that it has become more and more corrupt as time goes on. It allows the “plutarchs” to simply pass power and influence between each other while mouthing the platitude that “with enough sweat and hard work” the rest of us can join this elite group.
The true issue between the rest of us and the social elite comes down to what we are taught as children. Children who have grown up in poverty struggle not only with financial issues limiting their success but also that the overwhelming answer to taking absolutely ANY kind of risk is: “You can’t!” because all we know are rules, regulations and limitations. We are taught that in order to absolutely anything in this world we must sacrifice ourselves for it. On the other hand, children of the social elite are taught that they can — and SHOULD — do absolutely anything with their lives. Choosing to take a risk for success is not traumatic to these children, because there is always a safety net if they fail. The poor don’t have that safety net, so risks become more of a “life or death” situation. This would be the main reason more of the poor hope for a miracle like winning the lottery, because we KNOW there is no other way we will be able to succeed.
Do I blame her for her classism? Not really. What I do blame her for is gathering as much power as she can not only openly and honestly, but also in those very back rooms and closed-door agreements. Far from being the lower class champion she claims, she is part of the status quo.
None of my issues are about her gender. I am just as offended by the men in this race as I am by her. She is held to exactly the same standard as I hold the men by.
We don’t need more status quo. We need REAL leadership to put us back on track.