The giant circus that the 2016 election cycle became, and the second Dark Ages that has followed it, is a time that’s seen a great many attempts to effect the altering of the meaning of time- honored positives. Words like “Facts”, “Truth, and Justice” have all had their turn in the mud bath. However, when it comes to sheer brazen abuse of a term, “Progressive” may have taken the deepest dive of all- especially in the matter of the Hawaiian Representative, Tulsi Gabbard.
Hence, the old Sanders wing of the party is suddenly quite vocal about selecting as their champion Tulsi Gabbard, a politician who has come to embodify misguided attacks by so-called progressives on the so-called liberal elite. In point of fact, however, the evidence indicates quite otherwise. Tulsi Gabbard does not act like a progressive darling.
Her voting record, world view, and connections resemble much more closely a resume, tailor- made to be both barely acceptable to the leaders of the Democratic Party, and a perfect Libertarian plant. The organization Progressive Punch is a searchable database of Congressional voting records, from the perspective of the far left. They gave Bernie Sanders an A, for his lifetime support of progressive causes. Tulsi Gabbard got an F.
The tangled tale of Tulsi Gabbard makes most sense, if you consider the possibility she might really be a carefully cultivated mole, used to leak data to our enemies. It would be clear that she makes for a powerful pivotal point strategically. The far right has often been able to use her voice and power to manipulate the far left. Stirred up radicals often end up signing off on very bad ideas. Anytime they need their opposites to go along with some plot they’re cooking up, they give the job to Tulsi. Her views are often much more in line with the conservative end of our spectrum, as exemplified by her trip to Syria recently and her unending support of Assad.
Take the DNC mole. President Obama admitted that he had no intelligence on how Wikileaks got ahold of the Podesta emails whose release caused the supporters of Bernie Sanders to riot in the streets of Philadelphia. But a man named Chris Murray, a former British ambassador, had claimed that days earlier, a high ranking DNC member, said to be “disgusted” by the supposed favoring of Hillary Clinton by the DNC, had actually been the one to leak those emails, to him. At this time, Tulsi Gabbard held the position of Deputy DNC Chairman. She resigned in a huff.
Then, all of a sudden, the hacking started, and sensitive data ended up in the hands of the Russian-controlled WikiLeaks. She knew the access codes and she knew the setup. She had a clear motive for wanting material on Clinton leaked. She has had a long-standing love affair with Syrian president Assad and with Putin, and reviled Clinton’s Syria policy with all her might, but to oppose her flat out, as a Republican, would have been suicidal due to the political climate of her home state Hawaii. This must have made the endorsement of Bernie Sanders a cheap and lightweight solution.
Neither her policies nor her personnel suggest any affiliation with the ideology of Bernie Sanders- but by endorsing someone with whom she largely disagreed on policy (and didn’t have to worry about winning), she won the unyielding adulation of his followers. And by meeting with Donald Trump on her own initiative, mere weeks after his upset of Hillary Clinton, she assured herself the undying love of the #NeverHillary branch of the Sanders wing.
One angry supporter of Bernie Sanders wrote the following nonsense on 7/23/17, on a thread discovered on Facebook.
“No REAL progressive is gonna vote for more of the Clinton style, corporate special interest, Big Bank donor loving, false progressive garbage. Yet…here are the Democrats showing us early on that they haven’t changed. Ready for a repeat of 2016? Personally…I will work to expose and destroy the hopes of any candidate that the DNC tries to ram down our throats again by using Super Delegates and closed Primaries…and any candidate who remained silent against the DNC’s attack on our Democracy by rigging the election against Bernie Sanders. #Sanders/Gabbard2020 #Gabbard/Turner2020
This same man later went on to beg and plead for unity among the former supporters of Sanders- so that they will have greater success in attacking not Republicans, but Democrats. Mentioned at the spearhead of this assault on their fellows in the left, is always one name- Tulsi Gabbard.
Ironically, Gabbard is a member of the Democratic Party. She has been the United States Representative for Hawaii’s 2nd congressional district since 2013. She was also a vice-chair of the Democratic National Committee until February 28, 2016, when she resigned to endorse Bernie Sanders in the 2016 Democratic primary.
This primary was one of the most acrimonious and bitter races in history, and no one did more to make it so than did this Hawaiian representative. The real question, however, is why? What would make it so appealing to someone, to consistently act against the interests of their own party? Wouldn’t that mean they were acting against their own interests, too?
Merriam- Webster defines the term “political operative” as a person who does secret work for a government or political organization. And no one can deny that the resume of Ms. Gabbard would be ideal for one. Although her personality and policies are very much against the grain of the usual progressive agenda, there can be no doubt that on the surface, she is a diverse and fascinating candidate. She is the first American Samoan elected to Congress. She was the first elected Hindu (she took her oath of office on the Bhagavad- Gita) and one of two female combat veterans to join Congress in 2013. At that time, at age 31, she was also the youngest female member of the Congress.
So far, so good. And yet, for all these fantastic leftist qualifications, she gives the Democratic Party more trouble than does many a Republican. There are several reasons for this. Gabbard often sounds more like a hawkish Republican than a potential future Democratic leader. She repeatedly blasted Obama for failing to talk about “Islamic extremism”– a phrase very similar to the pet phrase of Donald Trump.
Perhaps we can find a clue into the peculiar politics of this enigmatic woman, by examining her father. Even upon taking the most cursory glance at him, Hawaii state Senator, former Republican and anti-gay activist Mike Gabbard is a man who has had to do a lot of reforming. The elder Gabbard has made a career out of evasion. With reporters, with constituents, and with pretty much everyone except his daughter and his old cronies from the days of Chris Butler’s (Jagad Guru Siddhaswarupananda Paramahamsa, also known as #SwamiSalami) Hare Krishna cult.
Of course, it’s predictable that he would be wary of the media. Even Googling “Mike Gabbard” will lead you to a seemingly endless series of negative stories. It seems clear there are many questions that he doesn’t want to answer. Specifically, he has been reticent on those queries concerning his ties to the aforementioned swami. The Butler cult has built a shadowy and global organization that according to some numbers in the tens of thousands, and the Gabbards are its most public and conspicuous members.
This splinter group has given rise to a number of political candidates over the past 30 years. And two of Tulsi’s most important campaign staffers came from her father’s organization’ . Those questions must be especially touchy during election seasons, when much of his political support and money comes from Christian conservatives.
No one should have to be held accountable for the political views of their parents. But Tulsi Gabbard’s political connections to her father go far beyond the family relationship. Despite her recent claims to socially-progressive views, the pattern established by examining her staffers and donors makes much more sense when viewed as a conservative family network than the product of more regular Democratic fundraising efforts.
In fact, according to one list of major contributors to the Tulsi Gabbard campaign, published by DailyKos in 2012, Democratic donors were actually exceptions on this list. Many of these people have not donated to campaigns other than Mike Gabbard’s Congressional campaign, or Richard Reed’s Senate campaign, both as Republicans. Reed’s Senate campaign was allegedly connected to both the Gabbards’ and to Butler’s religious group.
The plot continues to thicken and grow stranger. A website called the Cult Education Institute has a thread on Tulsi Gabbard and her activities and connections with Chris Butler that is literally hundreds of pages long, and provides links to a stultifying wealth of articles and other information. It should be, and is, pointed out that much of it is unverifiable. However, a great deal of it is very verifiable. And the sheer amount of it alone is suggestive. One would be hard-pressed to find another politician anywhere on the nation’s entire political coastline with such a bewildering array of data arraigned against them. The process of vetting candidates means that if you’ve got 100 pages of cult websites detailing your activities, you’re not going to make it through.
So what does it all mean? Where are they going, with all of this? A look at the politics of Hawaii might be of use in this context. The Democratic Party has had a long reign in Hawaii. Some of it comes from the popularity of the labor movement there in the 20th century, and the efforts of the Hawaii Democratic Party to push for greater inclusivity of the electoral base have traditionally been venerated. These factors have combined to earn Democrats near-complete control of the state legislature. But such an extended period of dominance has been resulting in increased voter apathy and increased factionalism within the Democratic Party of Hawaii.
This apathy is what led Mike Gabbard to try and challenge Democratic incumbent Ed Case in 2004. The elder Gabbard, known for his virulent anti-gay crusade in the 1990s, was attempting to overturn the status quo and win as a Repulican the race to represent Hawaii’s 2nd Congressional District. Unfortunately for him, that virtually no one could have won this way. At that time, a reporter for Honolulu Magazine requested an interview on the Chris Butler ties, which prompted the following rejoinder from Tulsi.
“I smell a skunk,” she emailed back. “It’s clear to me that you’re acting as a conduit for … homosexual extremist supporters of Ed Case!”
The Democrats held the day, in 2004, and the star of Mike Gabbard was soon to wane, but that of his daughter was on the rise. And by 2013, the situation was very different. A schism was forming in the larger Democratic Party of America that was similar to the one in Hawaii. In the absence of a super-villain like one of the Bushes, Democrats were starting to divide into the camps now roughly labeled “liberal” and “progressive”.
Around this same time, public awareness began growing toward an occuring trend that is still reshaping the entire scale of political spectrum. The far left began linking up with the far right, unbeknownst to nearly everyone, in a plot to manipulate the national dialectic into demanding a third party.
The left and the right have often historically converged when a common friend or foe suits both of their needs, usually for different reasons. This is known as the Horseshoe Theory, and as far as Congressional Democrats go, nobody seems to personify this more than Hawaii’s Tulsi Gabbard. We are in the middle of watching nothing less than a full-fledged attempt at a Libertarian revival.
On the Issues, a non-partisan informational website that rates and categorizes lawmakers and candidates, describes Tulsi Gabbard as a “Libertarian-Leaning Progressive” based on her voting record.
Progressives are not the only ones in love with Tulsi Gabbard, and the way she constantly does numbers on Democrats. The Hill reported that it was Steve Bannon who arranged the November meeting between the new president-elect and the Hawaiian congresswoman. “He loves Tulsi Gabbard. Loves her,” a source familiar with Bannon’s thinking told The Hill. “Wants to work with her on everything.”
Following their meeting, many speculated that Gabbard might receive an appointment in Trump’s cabinet, a move that appeared to excite many Trump supporters. It seems clear that this was rejected because of the toxic effect this would have had on Tulsi’s ability to get progressives to follow her blindly. That would have blown years of hard work.
Her political record viewed as a whole gives one the eerie impression that it was tailor-made to be borderline acceptable to the Democratic hierarchy, while actually placing her much more closely in line with the Koch brothers brand of libertarianism, an experiment that failed back in the 1980’s, but whose adherents have never really abandoned. Googling “tulsi gabbard libertarian” will lead you to an entire galaxy of Libertarian newspapers, each singing her praises more fervently then the last.
BeingLibertarian.com eagerly lists us off all the reasons why Gabbard 2020 is a shoo-in, with a headline saying “Democrat Tulsi Gabbard Will Likely Be Next President.
ALibertarianFuture.com also goes to great effort to laud Tulsi for her willingness to work against Democratic interests, in this article explaining that Libertarian hero Rand Paul introduced Tulsi Gabbard’s Stop Arming Terrorists Act in the Senate.
Libertarian Christians sing her praises even louder, with these next words being a direct quote from the article. “Thank you, Mrs. Gabbard, for having the courage to tell the truth. I don’t have to share your ideology to share your human conscience. You are seeing through the double-bind foreign policy trap of our bipartisan war policy: Satan casting out Satan.
In today’s world, people who consider the United States satanic tend to be receiving money from Russia. But even aside from that, it makes you wonder how such a high-powered chameleon ended up with a reputation for being an uncompromising progressive. An examination of her recent polling trends reveal she’s doing very nearly as well among people of both parties, and this is extremely troubling given the extreme and total decency gap existing between them. The Democrats gave us Obama. The Republicans gave us W. Bush and Trump.
Jacobin Magazine, long regarded as one of the most professional and serious left wing magazines out there, recently did an article on all this. They gave it the headline, “Why Tulsi Gabbard isn’t your Friend.” And there it all was. The whole tangled web. Tulsi Gabbard is the all-purpose fishing lure being trotted out by the people so carelessly trying to realign the national power structure in their interest. She’s got something for everyone, and all of it is dishonest.