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Does Green Party two-time retread Jill Stein still have a hypocrisy problem?

Two weeks ago, I blogged about Stein, the Green Party's 2012 and 2016 candidate, jumping back in the race this year after Cornel West did his Lucy van Pelt and pulled away his football. I did, per a commenter elsewhere, note the angle that not only would this help the Green Party — more than half of whose other filed presidential candidates did not meet GP filing requirements — but it would also help her pay off 2016 campaign debt the Federal Elections Committee said she owed and that courts have agreed. (Option B is that she's using her campaign fundraising to also get money for a Supreme Court appeal on this issue, which looks as stupid as her 2016 recount. And as hypocritical.)

I forgot the biggie, although I did tweet about it after my initial post.

That is, that in 2016, Jill Stein had a hypocrisy problem like Ralph Nader in 2000, and that is, via mutual funds, having investments in oil, tobacco and defense contractor stocks. The last is the biggest this time, given her rightful but presumably hypocritical attacks on Genocide Joe over Israel and Gaza, and her stance on Russia-Ukraine before that.

Eight years ago, Stein did, partially, address Yashar Ali. But, she kind of petard-hoists. (And, it's linked in his piece.)

  • The biggie is, why didn't she divest earlier, before Ali, already divest?
  • Second and related? You're a medical doctor, not a public-school teacher whose investments are made by a state pension fund, not themselves.
  • Third? If there are "green" mutual funds that invest in fracking, they're not so "green," right, but why is that an excuse to stop looking further?
  • Fourth, and relevant to today? You don't mention the defense stocks.

Oh, for Naderites? All of this applies to St. Ralph, too.

It next notes that, contra the "gotcha," even if Clinton's campaign gave this a push, that duopoly candidates have also been questioned for their financial holdings, and links to one about GOP candidates.

There are a few Stein-specific things. She mentions she inherited half a million. Good. The story already mentions that itself.

Re the no "gotcha," it turns out that the bankster-investments include ones with Goddam Sachs, for which she criticized Clinton, and also for which, in the link immediately above, GOP candidates were criticized.

Yes, I know Hillary's oppo research dumped that in Ali's lap, or at least nudged him that way. Ditto with the Gore campaign and Nader in 2000. Doesn't make it any less true, especially with this:

Admittedly I have not spent a lot of time researching elusive ethical investments. I prefer using my time fighting for social, economic and ecological transformation, and recycling capitalist money into the fight to do so.

Gee, you'd run for president in 2012, and I guess were lucky enough not to fall under Dear Leader's re-election spotlight. You therefore were able to waste four more years not researching "elusive" ethical investments, which were advertised in The Nation at the time of Nader's run already.

Anyway, Ali addresses that, too.

While it’s true that Stein would not have control over the investments of the funds she invested in, she did have a choice of whether to invest in these funds to begin with. In the past, political candidates, in an effort to avoid a conflict of interest or have their judgment called into question, have invested their entire portfolios in U.S. Treasuries, cash/cash equivalents, in socially responsible index funds, or clean-energy funds.

Again, hard to argue.

Disclosure: All my money is in either one "National" bank which is, I'll admit, one of lesser ethics, especially post-Great Recession, or a "state" bank which doesn't have problems that I'm aware of.

Until I see an official statement from Stein, pre-empting FEC information, with an independently audited review of her personal investments, I'll assume she has not divested. And, I use the word "divested" deliberately, as I know Stein also supports Boycott, Divest, Sanctions.

And, until I see that, it's a guarantor she's not getting my vote. And, it's an indication that the question in my header is rhetorical and the answer is obvious.

And contra this:

Yes, I think it's an issue. And for details on why? See above. The bits of 401k I have from previous jobs, I have no idea either. BUT? Again, I don't have any control over that, either, other than cashing it out. An individual with an individual mutual fund has the choice of how to invest in the first place.

Also, again? If you don't see the issue, are you a lefist (Ken said a while back he was a Nader Raider of long ago) who doesn't support BDS? Because, those defense contractors are also arming Israel, let us not forget.

Finally, if these all are protest votes, I can also protest against the protest votes being offered me. No problem doing that.

And, as you see, I've listed as least three different hypocrisy problems, not just one. Well, two of them are tied together. But, if you want a fourth? Per that second link? Why does a medical doctor own tobacco stocks?

Oh, again, and as I told Brains back then, so-called "ethical" mutual funds exist. They did back when St. Ralph of Nader ran in 2000. Yes, they may have a slightly to modestly lower rate of return, but when you're running a third-party presidential campaign, this is not at all an unreasonable purity test. Actually, they may NOT have a lower rate of return; per Nerd Wallet, they may do just fine. And, calling more bullshit on Stein's claim, that piece also notes that things like "robo-advisors" offer at least some degree of simplification on the task, if you're not seeing a financial advisor who touts and advertises responsible investing advice. As for the history? The modern history, per this piece, goes back somewhat to Vietnam, and even more to the first push for divestment, vis-a-vis South Africa.

Besides, both Stein and Nader are multimillionaires. It's not like they can't or couldn't afford to meet this purity test, if it even is an affordability issue.

And, specific to Stein is her owning Big Pharma stocks even while not only criticizing the pharmaceutical industry in general, but being an antivaxxer.

This post first appeared on SocraticGadfly, please read the originial post: here

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Does Green Party two-time retread Jill Stein still have a hypocrisy problem?


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