I have no desire to magnify or dwell on Hillary Clinton’s failures and character flaws. She has reason to be miserable, just as Al Gore did; I really can’t imagine what it must be like to be either of them.
However, as Hyman Roth memorably said, “This is the life we have chosen!” Politics involves regular defeat and victory, compromises and disappointments, all under public scrutiny, with plaudits and jeers a routine part of the experience. If you can’t handle it, you’re in the wrong business. While I can be sympathetic to the stresses of the life, I also expect those who try to persuade us to bestow extraordinary honors, power and trust upon them to display extraordinary character or at least adequate character.
This Hillary Clinton has shown, repeatedly, she cannot do. The character is not there to display.
Here is what she said in part in a guest appearance on Kara Swisher’s New York Times Opinion podcast, “Sway,” after Swisher asked Clinton if she thought a woman president would handle the coronavirus pandemic more ably. [What an idiotic question, but that’s Kara Swisher for you…]
“I have no doubt, especially if it were me. I was born for that. I mean, that’s why I knew I’d be a good president. I was ready for crises and emergencies, and I would have done what you see these women leaders doing. You listen to the science. You bring in people in an open, inclusive way. You communicate constantly, you make the case by explaining why what you’re doing is in the long-term interests, not only of health, but also, of the economy. Yeah, I have no doubt in my mind at all that I would have stepped up to that crisis.”
Regarding the possibility of the President’s re-election, Clinton said,
“I can’t entertain the idea of him winning. It would cause cognitive dissonance of a grave degree…It makes me literally sick to my stomach to think that we’d have four more years of this abuse and destruction of our institutions, and damaging of our norms and our values, and lessening of our leadership, and the list goes on. But there’s no doubt that he would do everything he could to attack and punish anyone who was, in his view, an adversary … I don’t think he has any boundaries at all, Kara. I don’t think he has any conscience. He’s obviously not a moral, truthful man. So he will do whatever he can to lift himself up. And remember, as I said, he lives with this specter of illegitimacy. He knows more about how he got really elected than we still do. Hopefully, we’ll learn more in the years ahead.”
But Hillary says that it’s Trump who is obsessed with her:
“Well, I think I live rent-free in his head. He does not live rent-free in my head, because I have very little regard for him.”
Nah, she just has complained about losing the election to him more than any losing Presidential candidate in history. Far more—in fact, Clinton has acted as if her intention was to illustrate all of the worse sexist stereotypes about women being unable to compete without becoming emotionally involves and taking opposition as a personal affront. The rest of her lament has so many howlers that I don’t have space to do justice to them all. Clinton was so prepared to handle crises and emergencies that she couldn’t deal with the revelation of her illegal private server and the incompetent handling of classified emails, when all it required was telling the truth. A better interviewer than Swisher would have poked so many holes in her clichéd recipe for addressing the pandemic that listeners would have immediately remembered why Hillary lost. Listen to which science? What women leaders–Governor Whitmer? What does a virus care about “inclusivity”?
Won’t someone tell her? Clinton’s petty refusal to do what she insisted (when she thought she was going to win) was the solemn obligation of those who are defeated in American elections—accept defeat and pledge to do whatever is required to help a new administration succeed has been a prime factor in dividing the nation. I would say the prime factor. Incredibly, she still clings to the lie that the President was “really” elected by nefarious means. The assertion of anyone who loses a job that they, of course, would have solved all of the problems the real job-holder has struggled to solve is the essence of sour grapes and cheap boasting.
Hillary is doing her best to ensure that it will be generations before we see a woman elected President, because she is teaching aspiring young women the wrong way to handle competition, defeat and rejection.
But then so are her allies and supporters. Here was the chryon yesterday on Hillary’s fan-network, MSNBC:
“Republicans Celebrate Conservative Judges as Thousands Die“