ILPS-ICC (International League of People’s Struggles-International Coordinating Committee) founding chairman and international political affairs expert Prof. Jose Maria Sison shared his thoughts on the forthcoming United States of America presidential elections in this write-up. Many people view the election as a circus of ‘choosing between the lesser evil’ since the top two US presidential candidates do not have a campaign program that would reverse the course for the United States.

Prof. Sison pointed out that the two top presidential candidates, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, represent the deep crisis and rot of the US political system. He also stressed that both of them obscure the fundamental problems besetting the US and are obsessed with spouting rhetoric which they subjectively or fictionally consider attractive to most voters.

He elaborated that both Clinton and Trump practically ignore the $19 trillion debt burden of the US and the persistent economic stagnation since the financial meltdown of 2008.

He said that outgoing US President Barack Obama had not revived production and employment in the US since the financial meltdown of 2008.

“Whichever candidate wins will continue to be shackled and hampered by the neoliberal economic policy of imperialist globalization and by the demands of the military industrial complex to produce and use weapons under a neoconservative policy or some aggressive variant thereof,” said Prof. Sison.

According to Prof. Sison, “[Obama] has aggravated the debt burden of the US, the corporations and households by failing to revive manufacturing and regular employment in the US, relying on imported goods for consumption and engaging in wars of aggression that have been too costly to the US.”

Obama’s successor would not fall far away from his established policies.

“Like Bill Clinton, Hillary is a polished hustler of Wall Street and the military industrial complex. She is well connected with the Zionist and Taiwanese lobby groups and is a proven power player who is trigger happy with US high tech military power,” he surmised on Clinton’s links to the two major US power brokers.

According to him, “She is a promoter of the US aggressive wars in the Middle East and the strategic pivot to East Asia.”

Meanwhile, Prof. Sison described the Republican Party’s presidential candidate Donald Trump as a maverick billionaire who liked to call attention to himself and play up to the middle class precariat and the impoverished among the whites by hurling invectives against Muslims and migrants.

“His most serious thoughts are about reviving manufacturing, recovering outsourced jobs and selling weapons instead of using them without sure returns,” he said.

He observed that other candidates like Green Party’s Jill Stein and Libertarian Party’s Gary Johnson were shut out to the margins due to small funding, feeble campaign machinery and little share of media coverage.

“They may shine on certain pressing political and socio-economic issues like police brutality, racial profiling, immigration, climate change, and social security. But the monopoly capitalists would not give them enough means and press,” he stressed out on the electoral chances of the following ‘alternative’ presidential candidates.

Prof. Sison pointed out that most US opinion makers and poll surveys say that the fight between Clinton and Trump is close but still give the winning edge to Clinton.

According to him, “At this moment of the interview, Clinton has still most of the votes in the Electoral College that will finally elect the President.  That’s why Trump calls the electoral system rigged.”

“I think that the email issue has been brought out too late in the contest. And the Clinton side is to a significant extent effective in countering it as an unfair surprise attack,” he surmised on the barrage of revelations regarding Clinton’s personal e-mails.

“It would have been better if Bernie Sanders ran even if he would lose. He would have gotten a far bigger vote than the current marginal candidates. He would have upset the presidential ambitions of Clinton, but he would have served notice that there is already a significant and growing force challenging the system,” he added.

According to him, “As soon as Hilary got [Sander’s] endorsement, she kept to her own long-held imperialist position.”

He explained that it was still possible for an anti-imperialist and progressive political force to arise in the future because the US and world capitalist system continue to be afflicted by a worsening crisis.

Sison pointed out that the Philippines will always be within the range of US policy vis-a-vis East Asia.

“If Clinton wins, she is likely to push the strategic pivot to East Asia.  If Trump wins, he will consider the Philippines as a substantial market of more than one million people for US manufactures and a rich source of agricultural products and mineral ores,” he weighed on the presidential candidates.

He also said that the Duterte government would face major problems and dangers whoever is the US president.

“As this government is threatened by the US and its Filipino agents, the CPP, NPA and NDFP will cooperate with it in upholding, defending and promoting the rights and interests of the Filipino people,” he said.

According to him, “It is best to proceed with the peace negotiations between GRP and NDFP to uphold national sovereignty and independence, develop the Philippine economy, build a government of national unity, peace and development and establish the Federal Republic of the Philippines with a new democratic constitution.”

“By studying the US presidential elections and what the dominant parties and candidates stand for, we learn that we are not going to have freebies and special privileges from the US,” Prof. Sison said

Prof. Sison also stressed that the Filipino people are only going to be exploited and oppressed by the US. Thus, as he has always pointed out in his statement under different capacities in the mass movement, the Filipino people need to pursue their struggle for national liberation and democracy.