Monday, June 11, 2007

Throwing the book(s) at Hillary

David Seaton's News Links
Full disclosure: personally I think Hillary Clinton could be an even worse president than George W. Bush, but let not this be considered an anti-feminist position on my part. In my opinion her being a woman is one of her few redeeming features. I think she is simply a crummy example of our species. Her ego and ineptitude have caused millions of Americans to live without health care since the 1980s and thus she has caused or hastened the death of many of them and caused untold suffering to millions of her fellow citizens. I don't think even Bush has caused as much actual harm to Americans as she has... and she was only the president's wife! It would be insane to elect someone with her record. DS

Hillary Clinton: The Lady Vanishes - New Yorker
Abstract: The repeated failure to get at the “real” Hillary can itself be variously interpreted. It can be taken as a reason to abandon the project or, alternatively, to rethink the question. On the face of it, one would be hard pressed to maintain that the public doesn’t yet know enough of the relevant facts. By now, even those who have been only half paying attention possess more information—much of it intimate—about Hillary Clinton than they do about their neighbors, their co-workers, and, quite possibly, their parents. If many Americans, including many of Clinton’s biographers, still feel that they don’t know the real Hillary, then surely that must say something about who Hillary really is.(...) Bernstein makes several things clear about the health-care debacle, one of which is that it didn’t have to happen. As he reports the story, the first critical misstep was Bill’s. Many of the new President’s advisers, including Lloyd Bentsen, the Treasury Secretary, and Donna Shalala, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, opposed the choice of Hillary to lead what was formally known as the President’s Task Force on National Health Care Reform. They doubted her qualifications and advised the President to keep his distance. Shalala tells Bernstein that she warned the President, “You can’t run a major policy like this out of the White House. You’ve got to have some insulation from it, in case it falls on its face.” But he wouldn’t—or couldn’t—listen. As an anonymous deputy explains to Bernstein, it was a matter of politics in the most domestic sense. Hillary had “stood by him in the Gennifer Flowers mess. And he had to pay her back. This is what she wanted.”(...) Clinton’s biggest blunder, as Bernstein tells it, was to offend the very legislators whose support she needed most. At a retreat for Democratic senators in the spring of 1993, Clinton was asked whether it was realistic to pursue such an ambitious health-care program, given her husband’s many other legislative initiatives. She responded that the Administration was prepared to “demonize” those who opposed the task force’s recommendations. “That was it for me in terms of Hillary Clinton,” Senator Bill Bradley, of New Jersey, told Bernstein. “You don’t tell members of the Senate you are going to demonize them. It was obviously so basic to who she is. The arrogance. The assumption that people with questions are enemies. The disdain. The hypocrisy.”(...) “I find her to be among the most self-righteous people I’ve ever known in my life,” Bob Boorstin, the task force’s deputy for media relations, told Bernstein. “And it’s her great flaw, it’s what killed health care.” READ IT ALL

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