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False Choices: The Faux Feminism of Hillary Rodham Clinton

“Intensely engrossing ... A damning portrait of both Clinton and American politics.” – Publisher's Weekly
Hillary Rodham Clinton is one of the most powerful women in world politics, and the irrational right-wing hatred of Clinton has fed her progressive appeal, helping turn her into a feminist icon. To get a woman in the White House, it’s thought, would be an achievement for all women everywhere, a kind of trickle-down feminism.

In the run-up to the 2016 presidential election, the mantle of feminist elect has descended on Hillary Clinton, as a thousand viral memes applaud her, and most mainstream feminist leaders, thinkers, and organizations endorse her. In this atmosphere, dissent seems tantamount to political betrayal.

In False Choices, an all-star lineup of feminists contests this simplistic reading of the candidate. A detailed look at Hillary Clinton’s track record on welfare, Wall Street, criminal justice, education, and war reveals that she has advanced laws and policies that have done real harm to the lives of women and children across the country and the globe. This well-researched collection of essays restores to feminism its revolutionary meaning, and outlines how it could transform the United States and its relation to the world.

Includes essays from prominent feminist writers Liza Featherstone, Laura Flanders, Moe Tkacik, Medea Benjamin, Frances Fox Piven and Fred Block, Donna Murch, Kathleen Geier, Yasmin Nair, Megan Erickson, Tressie McMillan Cottom, Catherine Liu, Amber A’Lee Frost, Margaret Corvid, Belén Fernández, Zillah Eisenstein, and others.



FAQ
This is a book critical of Hillary Clinton.

Is this book sexist?
No. The contributors are radical and feminist, and almost all are women. But sometimes even men write things about Hillary that are not sexist.

Aren’t you helping the Republicans?
Only if you think that even one person will read a book by a coven of leftwing feminists, find it convincing, and conclude that she should vote for one of those misogynistic reactionaries.

Isn’t this the wrong time?
No. It’s never too late or too soon to criticize someone who is about to become the most powerful individual on earth. If you think there’s ever a time to withhold comment on such a person, you might be an authoritarian.

Don’t you care about feminism?
Yes. That’s why we did this.

Reviews

  • “This collection of essays deconstructs Hillary’s problematic history as a candidate who professes to be a feminist but whose policies have been pretty straight garbage for the nation’s vulnerable since the start.”
  • “A feminist critique of a feminist candidate…devastating.”
  • “This book isn't just a feminist indictment of Hillary Clinton...It's an indictment of a left that has failed to reckon with capitalism's dark side.”
  • “Intensely engrossing for Hillary Clinton’s left-wing opponents —and for left-leaning readers still on the fence…The powerfully critical essays reject the 'ruling class feminism' of Clinton in favor of a 'left feminism rooted in an understanding of women’s material conditions'…A damning portrait of both Clinton and American politics.”
  • “A refreshing read with a defiant tone [that] pulls no punches when it comes to the Clinton record, from the time she entered the corporate and political world up until her work as Obama's secretary of state…This book will give you the confidence to say: not in our name…The authors who contributed to False Choices provide us plenty of good company in the battles ahead.”
  • False Choices: The Faux Feminism of Hillary Rodham Clinton is a good reminder of all of the ways, through a long political career, Clinton has valued power over justice…As False Choices makes clear, this election is not a progressive advancement, it is simply more of the same.”

Blog

  • Emmanuel Macron, spasm of the system

    First published in Le Monde Diplomatique. Translated by David Broder.



    "I'm going to be very clear..." Probably ignorant of the basic logics of the symptom, Emmanuel Macron seems unable to see how this repetitive way of starting each of his answers betrays the deep desire to cover things up — or rather, to recover them — that animates his whole campaign. "Keep on bathing between vagueness and nothingness" — that is what we should take from each of his promises of clarity. In his defence, we will admit that deferring to the obligation to speak when one's intention is to say nothing at all is one of the curses of this "democracy" that we have still found no satisfactory antidote for. Some will object that most of the candidates end up accommodating to this long and difficult moment — a moment one simply has to go through — and that the campaign-season fib is a well-established genre which should no longer be able to surprise anyone. For Macron, however, the problem takes on unprecedented proportions: not just a matter of slipping across a couple of whoppers, even of the calibre of "my enemy is finance" [as François Hollande claimed before his election in 2012]: rather, his entire campaign, and even his very persona as a candidate, constitute an essentially fraudulent enterprise.

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  • The Windows of History

    First published in Le Monde Diplomatique. Translated by David Broder. 


    Mélenchon rally, Lyon, February 2017. 

    1. In the so-called "democratic" era, a system of domination is a paradoxical creature. It categorically refuses to recognise its own systemic character, precisely because this era purports to be "democratic." However, even to begin to challenge its vital interests immediately reduces this playacting to nothing, making its systemic character manifest again. Indeed, so much is this system a system, that it comes out of the register of denial only in order to fall into a register of hysteria. As soon as Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s presidential bid became a serious possibility, leaving behind his outlandish fringe-candidate status, all the pretenses of upholding democracy, all the restraints of reasonable objectivity, instantly collapsed, ultimately allowing the system’s true face to come to light: furious, and of one mind.

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  • Mélenchon: A Radical Reformist Against Mounting Oligarchy

    The Belgian philosopher Chantal Mouffe — a thinker who inspires French presidential candidate Jean-Luc Mélenchon — defended her project in a column appearing in the 15 April edition of Le Monde. Translated by David Broder.



    Jean-Luc Mélenchon’s breakthrough into third place in the presidential polls has unleashed a campaign by defenders of the status quo trying to pass him off as a "communist revolutionary." After long having dismissed Mélenchon, part of the press is now working to destroy the credibility of his programme, presented as the "cloud-cuckoo-land plans of the French Chávez."

    Painted as a dangerous extremist, Jean-Luc Mélenchon is attacked by all those who think that there is no alternative to neoliberal globalisation. For them, democracy requires acceptance of the "post-political consensus" established among the centre-left and centre-right parties. Any questioning of this consensus must be the work of populist demagogues.

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