WILLIAM RIVERS PITT FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT
In the afterglow of Clinton's fireballing speech at the DNC last night, I feel it necessary to put a few things on the table.
NAFTA has been a disaster for American labor. DOMA was cruel, as was "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." His empowering of Fannie and Freddie laid a fair portion of the groundwork for the housing bubble. The Telecomunications Act laid the groundwork for massive media conglomeration. Glass-Steagall was repealed on his watch, and the bloody wolves of Wall Street slipped the leash.
He kept the brutal Gulf War sanctions on Iraq for eight long years, an act that consigned millions to death and suffering. The bungled attempt at health care reform opened the door for the disastrous GOP takeover of Congress in 1994...and of course, there was the Lewinsky scandal: a sitting president knew the entire right wing was hunting him, and put his head on the chopping block with an intern anyway.
My point with this is two-fold: 1. These things that Clinton did, largely with the help of Dick Morris and the GOP under the guise of "Triangulation," have had serious and dire repercussions that we all live with to this day. 2. Last night was an incredible show, full of sound and fury...but still a show that signifies nothing if we, as progressives, can't figure out a better way to drag American politics away from the abyss we teeter on the edge of today.
I really, really enjoyed the speech. Clinton said everything that needed saying, and said it well. If I were a Republican, I would not get out of bed today, for fear of having to respond to the thunderclap that exploded last night in Charlotte.
I enjoyed the speech. Can't say I've fully enjoyed the world that the man who gave the speech helped create.
The GOP has been trying with all their might to re-write and ignore history. Progressives cannot fall into the same habit.