Take a closer look at these three men behind Senator Clinton’s campaign and you might agree.
Mark Penn – Chief Campaign Strategist
Mr. Penn is the worldwide CEO of Burson-Marsteller, a PR firm with ties to Blackwater and Countrywide (names ring a bell? ). Despite his position in Senator Clinton’s presidential campaign, he continues to serve as CEO of a firm with clients such as Microsoft, AT&T, Eli Lilly and Texaco. (I mean, c’mon, even Karl Rove was forced by “W” to sell his lucrative direct mail business when he came to work on Bush’s 2000 presidential campaign.)
Penn was the pollster and political adviser for Bill Clinton’s 1996 re-election campaign and remained active as an adviser throughout Clinton’s second term. He is also the pollster for the centrist Democratic Leadership Council and his clients have included Sen. Joe Lieberman and British Prime Minister, Tony Blair. In 1981, he and a partner worked in Israel to help with the reelection of Prime Minister Menachem Begin, one of the most right-wing prime ministers in Israel’s history.
Mark Penn is one of the key architects of the Democratic Leadership Council’s right-leaning political platform, a tactical philosophy referred to by Greatest Husband as “republican-lite.” From a foreign policy standpoint, one can easily dispense with the “lite.”
Sandy Berger – Foreign Policy Adviser
Berger served as the U.S. National Security Adviser to President Clinton from 1997 until he left office in January of 2001. He plead guilty to misdemeanor theft charges in 2005, after he was caught stealing records from the National Archives in Washington, D.C. In addition to serving the Clinton presidential campaign, he is currently chairman of the board of an international investment fund – just the sort of position a thief might be rewarded with when one is a wealthy and privileged white male. That, and the opportunity to try – once again – to gain a foothold in the inner circle of White House power.
Terry McAuliffe – Chairman, Hillary Clinton for President Campaign
Past chairman of the DNC, raider of union pension funds and, oh, hell . . . this article by Jeffrey St. Clair spells out everything one needs to know about what motivates this oily underbelly of a human being.
If you can’t stomach reading the entire article, maybe you can take in this much:
The young fundraiser learned an early lesson. No enterprise was off-limits, no matter how tarnished the reputation of the company: weapons-makers, oil companies, chemical manufacturers, banks, sweatshop tycoons. Indeed, McAuliffe made his mark by targeting corporations with festering problems, ranging from liability suits to environmental and worker safety restraints to bothersome federal regulators. The more desperate these enterprises were for political intervention, the more money McAuliffe knew he could seduce into DNC coffers. What about environmental groups? Big labor? The traditional core of the Democratic Party? Not only didn’t their objections (assuming they voiced any) matter, they actually made McAuliffe’s pitch more appealing to the corporadoes. After all, the Republicans didn’t have any sway over these organizations. Triangulation, the backstabbing political playbook of Clintontime, originated as a fundraising gimmick. A very lucrative one.
In the early 90s, really big money began to pour into the DNC. McAuliffe recruited robust donations from Arco and Chevron, Entergy and Enron, Phillip Morris and Monsanto, Boeing and Lockheed, Citibank and Weyerhaeuser. Many of these corporations had all but abandoned the Democrats during the Reagan era. McAuliffe lured them back with promises of favorable treatment by a new generation of anti-regulatory Democrats attuned to the special needs of multinational corporations. This was the mulch bed from which the Clinton presidency took root.
By 1994, Clinton himself had aligned himself to McAuliffe’s magic touch. He tapped him as the chief fundraiser for the 1996 reelection campaign. In this capacity, McAuliffe masterminded some of the more risqué political fundraising operations since the Kennedy era. There were the fundraisers at Buddhist temples in California. There were the notorious coffee klatches, where for a six-figure contribution to the DNC, corporate executives were brought to the White House for some face-time with Bill and Hillary, Al and Tipper, and a retinue of cabinet secretaries, with pen in hand ready to address any nagging problem. McAuliffe also devised the plan to rent out the Lincoln Bedroom to top contributors for slumber parties with the president.
Over the course of the next six years, McAuliffe was personally responsible for raising, largely from corporate sources, more than $300 million for the DNC.
It’s impossible to know whether Sen. Clinton chose these men or they chose her as their ticket back into the power halls of the White House. Either way, I don’t like the alliance.
What I fear with a Clinton presidency is a White House influenced by the same element that is directing her campaign: More hard-line foreign policy decisions and direction, more military engagement to protect and shore-up the right wing elements in Israel, more of the Republican playbook when it comes to protecting and rewarding corporate polluters, more industry/government coziness in federal oversight of public safety when it comes to our food supply, drugs and consumer protections.
I don’t see myself ever pointing to a portrait of a President Hillary Clinton and telling my young nieces that therein lies proof they can achieve anything they want as women, because I will also need to tell them about the power brokering, criminal, wealthy white men of questionable morals who helped to get her there.
I agree with Gloria Steinem that it’s time to put women first, and for me, feminism means putting the welfare of my country first. I’m looking for a candidate who will enforce all of our Constitutional rights, limit or curtail our military engagements, wage peace through diplomacy and alliances with other countries, redirect spending towards domestic policies that aid women, children and families, and stand firm against corporate greed for the health and welfare of all of our citizens.
I already know how disappointing a Clinton White House can be. It takes more than a shuffle of the deck chairs to fool this old bag feminist.