With Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton facing a barrage of criticisms over the tone of her voice during a recent speech, Media Matters looks back at the rampant sexism she faced from the media during her 2008 presidential bid.
In Return To 2008 Form, Media Attack Clinton’s Voice During Iowa Caucus Victory Speech
Commentators Complain That She “Shouts,” “Shriek[s],” “Scream[s].” Media pundits attacked Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton for celebrating her victory in the Iowa Caucus, claiming her tone during her speech was “unpleasant,” “angry, bitter, screaming,” and suggested that Clinton “may be hard of hearing.” [Media Matters, 2/3/16]
Huffington Post: This Criticism Is “Clearly Sexist,” As “Shouting … Is Not Usually A Liability For Male Candidates.” Reporting on one such criticism of Clinton’s voice from Washington Post editor Bob Woodward, the Huffington Post noted: “The former secretary of state has been criticized for her appearance and a perceived lack of approachability for her entire career. Much of that criticism is clearly sexist: shouting, for example, is not usually a liability for male candidates.” [Huffington Post, 2/3/16]
“How realistic do you think this is to get all of this done?” Devyn Harris, for example, asked the senator in Hooksett, New Hampshire, on Thursday. “You are fighting against a Republican-controlled Congress.”
Sanders often cuts the questioner short, just slightly, like he did to Harris, once he realizes the thrust of their inquiry. He knows his answer on this topic, it always the same and it goes something like this:
“If you know history you know that nothing ever changes from the top on down, it is always from the bottom on up,” he began in Hooksett. “If we were sitting here 20 years ago and someone jumped up and said you know I think that gay marriage will be legal in every state in this country, the response would have been, ‘What are you smoking?’ Today, gay marriage is legal and for many young people it is not even an issue any more.“
“My point is, if you look at politics as stagnant in a conservative way and say, ‘Wow, we’re going to have to deal with the Republicans and they’ve been obstructionist and against Obama from day one, how can you accomplish anything?’ But here’s another way to look at it. … When millions of people begin to stand up and say, ‘Hey, Congress, I don’t now want to go $50,000 in debt for the crime of going to college and you will do something about it, because look out the street, you’ve got a million people here marching on Washington and we know what’s going on.’”
Cartel: An association of manufacturers or suppliers with the purpose of maintaining prices at a high level and restricting competition.
A little over two decades ago, on December 2, 1993, the principle engineer of Colombia’s infamous cocaine empire, Pablo Escobar, was killed while fleeing police on the barrio rooftops of his hometown, Medellin. Before he died he had amassed an organization of state-like power, challenging, in fact, the government of Columbia itself over the question of its extradition policies — and winning. Dubbed the Medellin drug cartel, his international cocaine operation grew to prominence functioning similarly to the corporations which dominate today’s global economy. Escobar knew, by controlling every possible link in the drug chain from production to retail, he could corral suppliers under a single umbrella, dictate the price of his product, and severely limit any would-be competitors from challenging his power.
Escobar was not alone in learning from the strategies of corporate giants. If anything he was late. Few organizations have pervasively and durably monopolized a market as well as America’s Republican and Democratic parties. The two dominant machines steering the U.S. electorate have consistently diminished the potential for a freer America. That’s because the reality is, rather than arch rivals, liberals and conservatives are two factions of the same team. Both are capitalist. Both are imperialist. Both are white supremacist surrogates. And both are controlled by a plutocratic elite who have discovered what Escobar learned in his early twenties, that competition is best neutralized by eliminating all possible outliers. We merely perceive the two parties as markedly different because of the degree to which the spectrum of possibilities has been narrowed.
Politics, at its barest, is a market characterized by power — and the struggle for how power will be distributed. As CrimethInc illustrated some time ago, in this market ideas function similar to currency. Delineated by ideas which can build capital enough for the acquisition of more power, and those which might unbind power, political parties are tethered to the same basic operating principles of any capitalist enterprise. They must solidify market share in the realm of ideas and grow, wherever and whenever possible, or go bankrupt. Incubated within this constant power play, self-preservation becomes the party’s central priority; and it does not matter if the ideas which accomplish this outcome are beneficial to the electorate or detrimental, so long as it achieves the imperative to survive.
Political organizations which maintain growth long enough to survive often do so by normalizing their ideological framework. When they have obtained a disproportionate amount of influence over their immediate surroundings, they can metastasize into monopolies and control large swaths of the idea-economy. New ideas about how society ought to function can enter the market to contest old ideas, but usually encapsulated within reforms incapable of unseating the dominant paradigm. Characteristic of any capitalist system, once market monopolies are established “power tends to flow upward to the top of a hierarchy, from which the masters, the ones qualified to employ it, decide matters for everyone else.”
Remember the age-old question, what do all those with power want? More power. As such, two monopolies have dominated American politics for over 150 years — the Democratic Party, founded in 1828, and the Republican Party, founded in 1854. Together, they form a political cartel, or an association of political parties with the purpose of maintaining concentrated power and restricting or repressing competition. Throughout the past century its loosely managed agreements, often wholly unofficial, but embedded deep within its standard operation, have been the quasi-coordinated production, distribution, and enforcement of a set of normalized choices which reflect only the range of needs of private corporate power.
Essentially, to solidify and gain greater control, the two parties staked out a set of positions within a predetermined and standardized framework which express the basic ideas of the status quo. This way any “new” solutions about what might be possible tend toward ideas which pose no serious danger to the framework itself, which produce reforms only capable of gutting radical resistance while leaving the underlying problems intact. Any outliers are assimilated or positioned to enhance the strength of current institutions. In other words, all ideas must first be filtered through the umbrella of the Democrat-Republican cartel, which dictates the pedigree of ideas both old and new, and therefore severely limiting any competition from threatening its hegemony.
Central to the project of any cartel is control. And within most drug cartels there is an armed group responsible for carrying out violence in an effort to maintain it. In Colombia they were called sicarios. Though the violence is systematically different, American sicarios are most accurately found in state institutions like the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Such an observation should not be seen as hyperbole. Even the most marginally informed American should know their government frequently has been involved in shameful acts of violence, whether it was the assassination, framing, and political neutralization of black, brown, indigenous, and left-radical movements and their leaders, or organized coups in the Middle East, Africa, and Central or South America.
Without enforcers America’s political cartel simply could not exist. As I wrote in Gangs Of The State: Police And The Hierarchy Of Violence, our society operates on a clearly defined, yet often unarticulated, hierarchy of violence; and the function of politicians and police agencies is to normalize and enforce that violence. As an institution, these agencies act as state-sanctioned gangs, or, in this instance, the sicarios of America’s political ideology, charged with the task of upholding the violent, racist hierarchy of white supremacist capitalism. Wherever and whenever possible, they are tasked with solidifying a monopoly of power where all violence from/by those higher on the hierarchy upon those lower can be normalized into business as usual. Any deviation from the status quo, any resistance whatsoever, is met with brutal repression.
“If Clinton carries Iowa, she can absorb a defeat to Sanders who has a home field advantage in New Hampshire and then move on to South Carolina. But, if Sanders carries Iowa and then New Hampshire, this contest will, indeed, be a marathon,” says Lee Miringoff, director of The Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.
…”Mr. Bush finished a fiery riff about protecting the country as commander in chief — “I won’t be out here blowharding, talking a big game without backing it up,” he said — and was met with total silence.
Bernie Sanders in Iowa: "The People of Iowa Have Sent a Very Profound Message"
Nine months after launching his long-shot bid for the Democratic presidential nomination, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) found himself locked in a dead heat with frontrunner Hillary Clinton in Iowa’s caucuses on Monday — a result that pointed to the resonance of Sanders’ anti-establishment message and could portend a long slog ahead for the two candidates. With 95% of precincts reporting, Clinton stood at 49.8% support, just ahead of Sanders at 49.6%. Speaking to supporters in Des Moines, Sanders all but claimed victory. Recounting the early days of his insurgent campaign, Sanders said, “We had no political organization. we had no money, we had no name recognition and we were taking on the most powerful political organization in the United States of America.” “And tonight while the results are still not known, it looks like we are in a virtual tie.” Arguing that his strong showing underscored a hunger for action to combat wealth inequality, Sanders reveled in what he framed as a setback to the establishment — a bugaboo of both the democratic socialist senator and Republican candidates like Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.
source I hope that Bernie will win. It would be a turning point in American history. In the whole world history!
“Political organizations which maintain growth long enough to survive often do so by normalizing their ideological framework. When they have obtained a disproportionate amount of influence over their immediate surroundings, they can metastasize into monopolies and control large swaths of the idea-economy. New ideas about how society ought to function can enter the market to contest old ideas, but usually encapsulated within reforms incapable of unseating the dominant paradigm. Characteristic of any capitalist system, once market monopolies are established “power tends to flow upward to the top of a hierarchy, from which the masters, the ones qualified to employ it, decide matters for everyone else.”
Remember the age-old question, what do all those with power want? More power. As such, two monopolies have dominated American politics for over 150 years — the Democratic Party, founded in 1828, and the Republican Party, founded in 1854. Together, they form a political cartel, or an association of political parties with the purpose of maintaining concentrated power and restricting or repressing competition. Throughout the past century its loosely managed agreements, often wholly unofficial, but embedded deep within its standard operation, have been the quasi-coordinated production, distribution, and enforcement of a set of normalized choices which reflect only the range of needs of private corporate power.”