Letters From the August 1-8, 2016, Issue

Letters From the August 1-8, 2016, Issue

Letters From the August 1-8, 2016, Issue

Remembrance of elections past… No justice, no unity… Sign of the times…


Remembrance of Elections Past

D.D. Guttenplan encouragingly describes Bernie’s “soldiers” as energetic, intelligent, and realistic in “The Future of Bernie Sanders’s Grassroots Army” [June 20/27]. Yet too many of them are planning to duplicate my mistake of 48 years ago. In 1968, I worked for Gene McCarthy. You all know what happened. Hubert Humphrey was not my candidate, and I chose going down in flames over selling out. Richard Nixon became president.

I know it isn’t solely my fault that we ended up with Nixon. Still, I will vote for Hillary—as will Howard Dean, Elizabeth Warren, Jerry Brown, and, no doubt, Bernie. To do otherwise risks killing what remains of the New Deal. We need a progressive Supreme Court. We need Obamacare. Hillary’s coziness with Wall Street and hawkish international posture give me pause. However, voting for her is the best we can do in 2016. A Trump presidency will make the Nixon presidency look like the good old days.

Ken Esch

No Justice, No Unity

The Nation’s case for Sanders supporters to “unite” behind Hillary Clinton in order to thwart a Trump presidency is beguiling and articulate, but hardly compelling [“A Future to Believe In,” June 20/27]. The fears of a Trump presidency are unwarranted. Virtually every day, his epic incapacity for public office is magnified by one outrageous action or another.

You mention the accommodations to the Sanders campaign made by Clinton and the Democratic National Committee: Clinton’s partial move to the left on policy, Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s progressive appointments to the platform committee. To think these will result in substantive change is either hopelessly optimistic or profoundly naive. The Sanders-versus-Clinton contest is not about choosing between two candidates with marginal policy differences; it is a clash between two entirely different versions of the Democratic Party. One is the party of FDR and JFK, in service to the American people and to the nation’s working families in particular. The other is the party of today’s “New Democrats”; it was created by the Democratic Leadership Council and the Clintons in the 1990s and demonstrably serves the nation’s elite. These two parties cannot be “unified.”

Richard W. Behan
corvallis, ore.

Sign of the Times

Eric Alterman’s detailed article “‘Both Sides’ Do It” [June 20/27] states clearly what many New York Times readers like myself have been noticing: One of the major American newspapers has become a timorous provider of platitudes. If we are to have an aware citizenry, we need to find in the press clear and courageous statements about current events. This is especially true when a dramatic electoral season heralds the coming of a new president. Being objective does not mean refusing the responsibility to analyze and judge fairly actions and events.
Angela M. Jeannet
chapel hill, n.c.


Seth Freed Wessler’s “They Knew Something Was Going On” [July 4/11] attributed to Doug Martz allegations that former Bureau of Prisons director Norman Carlson attempted to influence the BOP’s contracting decisions after joining the leadership of a private-prison company. Other former contracting officials at the BOP charge that Carlson influenced decisions, but Martz did not make that claim.

Thank you for reading The Nation!

We hope you enjoyed the story you just read, just one of the many incisive, deeply reported articles we publish daily. Now more than ever, we need fearless journalism that moves the needle on important issues, uncovers malfeasance and corruption, and uplifts voices and perspectives that often go unheard in mainstream media.

Donate right now and help us hold the powerful accountable, shine a light on issues that would otherwise be swept under the rug, and build a more just and equitable future.

For nearly 160 years, The Nation has stood for truth, justice, and moral clarity. As a reader-supported publication, we are not beholden to the whims of advertisers or a corporate owner. But it does take financial resources to report on stories that may take weeks or months to investigate, thoroughly edit and fact-check articles, and get our stories to readers like you.

Donate today and stand with us for a better future. Thank you for being a supporter of independent journalism.

Thank you for your generosity.

Ad Policy