Hillary Clinton’s basic conflict of interest

What's Not Happening In Hillary's MeetingsHillary Clinton asks her supporters to believe that there is no contradiction between accepting big campaign contributions from Wall Street, the private prison industry and the oil and gas industry, and promising to crack down on Wall Street, private prisons, fracking and greenhouse gas emissions.

Hillary Clinton says it is possible to take a donation to an interest group and not be captive to it.  That is true.  But it is harder to ask an interest group for money and still vote against its interests.  In any case, it is something you can only do once, and Clinton has been around for a very long time.

Either her fat-cat donors are being fooled, or her supporters are.  I wouldn’t vote for a candidate based on a hope that he or she is telling me the truth and misleading somebody else.

Hillary Clinton says she hasn’t done anything that President Obama hasn’t done.  That is true.  That is why I voted for Jill Stein, the Green Party candidate, when Obama ran for a second term.

There is one saving grace about Hillary Clinton that distinguishes her from Marco Rubio or some of the other corporate Republicans which is that she, unlike them, has to strike a balance between the sources of her money and the sources of her votes.

She never has and never will do anything to threaten the vital interests of Wall Street, the fossil fuel industry or the other vested interests that finance her campaigns and pay her six-figure lecture fees.

Credit: Chip Somodevile / Getty Images

But I do think that, within the framework of the status quo, she genuinely would like to do things for mothers and children.  She is not a trustworthy supporter of the labor, civil rights and environmental movements, but she can be pressured by these movements, up to a point.

I suspect that she is not a complete cynic.  Voters who’ve talked to her during political campaigns say she is amiable, well-informed and genuinely interested in individuals.  I suspect that she thinks of perpetual war and financial oligarchy as simply a part of reality that is impossible to change, and that she has to operate within that reality.

In any case, her motives are unknowable except to herself and her loved ones, and maybe not even to them.  Her actions are what matters, and the best guides to her future actions are her record, her circle of friends and her sources of support.


Apparently there’s a special place in hell for Democratic politicians who criticize Barack Obama as insufficiently progressive. And a special place in heaven for politicians who have accepted $133,246 from the private-prisons industry but tell Black and Hispanic voters at a debate shortly before the Nevada caucuses and South Carolina primary that they want to end the private-prison system by Beverly Mann for Angry Bear.

Hillary Clinton Plans To Raise Money From Industries With Interests Before the Next President by David Sirota for Political Capital.

The Tragedy of Hillary Clinton (and Her Generation) by Charles Ferguson for the Huffington Post.

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