Jonah Goldberg is high-laire in his latest cinematic-quality newsletter. Hillary the subject, naturally.
I got to thinking that part of the so-called Clinton Derangement Syndrome of the '90s was triggered simply by the fact that bad people were succeeding (which doesn't necessarily explain Obama Derangement Syndrome or Bush Derangement.) I mean bad, as in likely rapist-bad. You just don't want to see that behavior get rewarded with the presidency, and the Clintons had scandals in their past that reached infinitely close to imprisonment without ever getting there. And that led to a lot of derangement. The Clintons teased us by never, ever leaving a smoking gun (other than the blue dress) despite leaving behind more fires than a Detroit Devil's Night.
Ultimately you can't say their strategy of lying and stonewalling hasn't worked. Very successful careers. We're told to trust them. I trust that they'll hide the smoking gun, yes.
The funny thing about the Hillary episode is it took her eight days to come up with the "convenience" defense. I mean I'd hoped for something a little bit more. I hereby propose to her that a private life might, in the end, be more convenient for her than public life, given the onerous demands of two email accounts.
More politics: I'm not disappointed that Republicans didn't commit political suicide with a DHS shutdown since it looks like that wouldn't accomplish anything.
The Dems were smart enough to fall on their swords over something substantive (Obamacare). I don't think it's smart to go to war when you're obviously outgunned and won't accomplish even the immediate goal. Dems mostly only kill themselves when it's an important and reachable goal -- Obamacare was a longterm victory at the cost of losing the House and Senate. Dems will not/have not gone to war over gun control, despite their passion on the subject, because they know it's an important but not reachable goal. Repubs would shut down goverment and get no longterm victory, no goal reached, with the cost of losing the House (and likely Senate).
The key: we only get one shot at really changing things. The Dems took that shot with Obamacare. The Republicans could take it by doing something equally dramatic, like abolishing Obamacare, abortion, or the IRS (although arguably some of those may not be reachable goals). But if you're going to lose Congress for six or eight years, make it worth your while. Shutting down the government seems a poor substitute for doing things the right way: i.e. enacting laws. And why won't Repubs repeal Obamacare? Because they have no plan in place as backup. Repub's big problem is they are a party with absolutely no ideas.
So back to Hillary. Here's Goldberg's beauty:
"As Bill Clinton said when the harem girls on Jeffrey Epstein’s plane finally announced they were over international waters: 'Where to begin?'
...The ChappaDataQuitIt or E-PotDome story (okay, we’re still looking for a better nickname) reminds me of those kinds of movies [where] the silent whistle has been blown. The sleepers activated. The old timers have been notified. I like to imagine Lanny Davis right in the middle of a meeting with an African dictator when, suddenly, his assistant hands him a note. All it reads is “Cankles Is Down.” Lanny abruptly terminates the meeting, pushes back a briefcase full of krugerrands, and races to some hellish Third World airport, telling his aide, “Let the Redskins know they’re on their own. The Clintons need me.”
Flash to a canoe on the banks of the bayou. James Carville has just caught a catfish with his bare hands and proceeds to tear apart the wriggling fish, Gollum-like. He eats the entrails first. Then, suddenly, a flare goes off above the tree line. That’s the signal. He throws the bulk of the carcass into the river, where gators churn the water to grab it now that the apex predator has departed. He makes his way to the shoulder of a dirt road where a limousine is waiting to get him to an MSNBC studio as fast as possible. His suit and tie, neatly pressed, are waiting for him along with as many hot towels as he may need to remove the fish viscera.
David Brock slinks out of his leather onesie and races to his command center, bustling with Dorito-dust frosted 20-somethings at computer terminals. “This is a level-one-alpha scenario. Cancel all leave. Turn off all X-boxes . . .”
Sidney Blumenthal, consciously dressed like that French guy in The Matrix, leaves his table-for-one, and heads home to sacrifice some creatures to Baal in preparation.
They’re all coming home.
Save for one. Poor Geraldo Rivera, locked in a reinforced steel cage deep in the bowels of News Corp, is pacing his cell like a vampire’s familiar ordered to return to his master but unable to. The sounds of his howling, can be heard, ever so faintly, in the background during the O’Reilly Factor. Poor Greg Gutfeld has been tasked with keeping him locked up and is using his cattle prod a bit more than necessary . . .
The fact that Team Clinton is relying on the old rat squad once again is vastly more significant than most commentators have suggested. Yes, yes, it’s bad politics. A candidate looking to offer a fresh face forward, figuratively speaking, has no choice but to keep his or her own face (John Kerry notwithstanding). But she surely has plenty of options for who she picks to represent her in public. Mrs. Clinton has millions and millions of dollars at her disposal. She has people placed at the highest reaches of the government and the media. There are over 200 people working, formally or informally, for her as policy advisors already. And yet she chooses to get the old band back together instead.
Why? There are many possible answers, but the only plausible one is that a Clinton only trusts Clinton loyalists. This fits everything we know about the Clintons. And it speaks volumes about the thickness of her bubble.
But it also speaks even louder about what kind of president she would be. If you want to know what Hillary Clinton would be like as president, you’re seeing it right now. There is no other Hillary. This is her.
This was the point of my LA Times column on Tuesday. The pathetic parsing and dishonest dissembling (excuse the redundancy, I was going for alliteration), on display in her U.N. press conference is exactly what you’d see from Madame President. For 30 years, Hillary Clinton has been defensive bordering on paranoia (with occasional forays far over the border). For 30 years, Hillary Clinton has responded to every challenge -- not just every scandal, but every challenge (like HillaryCare) -- by convening huge task forces of loyalists. For 30 years, she’s hidden from making tough decisions until events forced her to make them."