I Prefer Less Evil Myself, How About You?

So, somebody posted this article on Facebook:

Hillary’s Supporters Really Sweating Over Bernie Or Bust

Here are some choice pearls of wisdom by the author, one Russ Belville:

Really, the election, should it come down to Hillary-> Clinton against Donald Drumpf, ought to be a cakewalk for the Democratic nominee. Just listen to the guy. He’s a moron, a clown, an orange-faced micro-digital anthropomorphic internet comments section.

So the fact that so many Hillary-> supporters are hurling tomatoes at me for my #BernieorBust stance is quite telling.

They’re actually afraid they could lose that match up. What does that say for their candidate?

I dunno, Russ. Maybe they don’t believe Hillary is invincible. Maybe they don’t believe that just because something ought to be the case means it necessarily will be. You and I agree, I think,  that if things were as they ought to be,  Trump wouldn’t be the Republican front-runner and Hillary wouldn’t be the Democratic front-runner. Yet here we are. How about we deal with the world as it is?

Belville goes onto argue that because Democratic Presidents have done bad things and Republican presidents have sometimes done good things that there really isn’t that much difference between the two parties in the current election which, um…simply doesn’t follow. Sorry, Russ.

He goes on to to tell an irate e-mailer:

I believe where you and I differ most is in evaluating what the greatest threat to our democracy is. I feel the oligarchic control of our political process is that number one threat, and Hillary Clinton is just the latest Democrat to be a servant of that system. She may be a preferable bribe taker to the Republican options, but when nobody in the 99% can pay any bribes, what difference does it make?

So let me get this straight. Both Clinton and Trump are both part of a corrupt system, therefore there’s no difference between them? Seriously?

In the comments on the article, many Bernie-or-Bust partisans derided the “lesser of two evils” approach to voting, although frankly if I’m presented with a choice between two evils it’s a simply a no-brainer to go with the lesser one. I’m not expecting to achieve perfection in our politics. I’m not expecting the election of one man to single-handedly put an end to the corrupt system that has developed over centuries. I would like to minimize evil in the government.

Here’s what Russ has to say on the subject:

Voting lesser of two evils acknowledges that both candidates are on the same team, and that evil is the corrupt nature of our politics. Giving votes to Democrats as default gives them no incentive to ever move leftward to collect my vote — they can keep behaving indistinguishably from Republicans on foreign policy and business issues so long as they’re better on women’s, LGBT, and minority issues.

Yes, apart from those minor differences- which are literally matters of life or death to many of the people involved, as we see from the Black Lives Matter movement. Those and other minor differences such as climate change (the future of life on this planet), health care (depriving millions of health insurance)…oh, and certain minor details of foreign policy and business issues such as tearing up the treaty with Iran and most likely starting a war soon after, and massive tax cuts for the 1% and increases in military spending to be paid for slashing the social safety net (what little remains).

Also, whoever said all “evils” are necessarily “on the same team”? As I recall, Nazi Germany was defeated in World War II with the help of the Soviet Union, then led by the indisputably evil Josef Stalin.

Many think that not voting for someone who they don’t particularly like or agree with shows personal integrity. I asked one such person the following recently:

Suppose Bernie wins the primary. To beat Trump in November, he will need votes from centrist and center-right voters who may not much like the idea of voting for a socialist, but would still prefer Bernie to an authoritarian bigot flirting with fascism. What do you say to such voters? Should they decide “I will never sully my personal integrity by voting for a dirty socialist”?

I never got an answer from him.

Look, I’m no fan of Hilary Clinton or the Democratic Party. But seriously, Russ, if you’re going to decide that the most important thing you can do with your vote in November is to register a purely symbolic protest at the main choices on offer, you’d better come up with a better argument for it.




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