Hillary’s Bad Politics and Worse Ideas

by Bruce S. Thornton // FrontPage Magazine

Photo via FrontPage Magazine
Photo via FrontPage Magazine

Once again Hillary Clinton has given the Republicans some suicidal soundbites they should stash away for 2016 in the likely event she is the Democratic candidate for president. A review of some of her recent statements reveals that Clinton is not just entitled, money-grubbing, unlikeable, unpleasant, and unaccomplished. Nor do they just show that she is a political dunce who has obviously learned nothing from her politically brilliant husband. More seriously, they expose her commitment to failed ideas and dangerous delusions.

First there was the “What difference at this point does it make!” she practically shrieked to Senator Ron Johnson during a January 2013 hearing on the Benghazi debacle that unfolded on September 11, 2012. Clinton had told the grieving parents of the victims during the transfer of remains ceremony at Andrews Air Force base that they died because of “an awful Internet video that we had nothing to do with.” Four Americans, including an ambassador, had been murdered on her watch, but she refused to explain to the Senate why she blamed the hapless maker of a YouTube video, who spent a year in jail.

This evasion is significant, for within hours of the attack it was clear that it had been a carefully coordinated, well-planned assault, not the spontaneous reaction to a video. Soon it also became known that ambassador Stevens had repeatedly requested increased security, but had been denied by officials in the State and Defense Departments. As Secretary of State, Clinton was ultimately responsible for those decisions made by State, as well as for the astonishing failure to notice the escalating violence in the months before the attacks, or the significance of the anniversary of 9/11, or the immediate evidence that the attack was not a spontaneous reaction to a video that had been on YouTube for weeks.

But in her response to all this evidence of negligence and post facto political spin, all she could do was indignantly declare that all these failures were irrelevant. In 2016, this footage of the arm-waving, shrill Clinton transparently trying to misdirect the Senators and the citizens from her patent incompetence should be played and replayed in political ads.

Next came the more recent revelation of her embarrassing economic ignorance, shameless pandering to her left-wing base. At a campaign event in October, attended also by lefty heartthrob Elizabeth Warren, Clinton lectured, “Don’t let anybody, don’t let anybody tell you that, ah, you know, it’s corporations and businesses that create jobs. You know that old theory, trickle-down economics. That has been tried, that has failed. It has failed rather spectacularly.”

Somehow Clinton missed the 1980s, when economic and tax policies that encouraged business investment led to spectacular growth. As the Laffer Center explains,

“According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, 1982-1999 was one continuous mega-economic expansion.  In fact, as it stretched into 2007, this 25 Year Boom saw a tripling in the net wealth of U.S. households and businesses from $20 trillion in 1981 to $60 trillion by 2007.  When adjusted for inflation, more wealth was created in this 25-year boom than in the previous 200 years. This sustained economic growth is not only impressive on its own, but even more astonishing as it compares to the period immediately preceding it.  In the 10 years from 1972-1982, recessions were deep and recoveries were short.  In fact, throughout American history, the nation’s economy has been in recession or depression roughly one-third of the time.  But from 1981-2005, the annual growth rate of real gross domestic product (GDP) in the U.S. was 3.4 percent per year, and 3.8 percent per year during the 1983-1989 Reagan expansion alone.”

Compare that to the performance of Obama’s economic policies over the last 6 years, when intrusive regulatory regimes like Dodd-Frank and a runaway EPA, Obamacare’s highjacking of the health-care industry, the trillion-dollar stimulus squandered on crony socialist projects like “green energy,” and the anti-business rhetoric of Obama’s “you didn’t build that,” have all led to sluggish economic growth, metastasizing debt, declining income for the middle class, an explosion in entitlement spending, and nearly 20 million unemployed and under-employed.

Contrary to Clinton’s Keynesian superstitions and dirigiste magical thinking, what has “failed spectacularly” has been progressive economic policies that think parasitic politicians and unaccountable government bureaucrats can manage a complex, dynamic economic system better than a free market that incentivizes people to actually build businesses that create jobs and increase wealth. And just as spectacularly incompetent is Hillary’s political tin ear that lets her make such a statement just to curry favor with a narrow base of anti-capitalist fundamentalists, when she surely must know that come the 2016 presidential election, those words will be pinned to the Obama albatross sure to be hanging around her neck.

Finally, there is the bizarre statement at Georgetown last week about improving our foreign policy with what she called “smart power”:  “Using every possible tool and partner to advance peace and security. Leaving no one on the sidelines. Showing respect even for one’s enemies. Trying to understand, in so far as psychologically possible, empathize with their perspective and point of view. Helping to define the problems, determine the solutions.” She then added a banal cliché of modern feminism, suggesting that the lack of women negotiators and signatories was responsible for the failure of many peace treaties. After all, women are naturally more empathetic and sensitive to others’ “point of view,” one of those Victorian stereotypes that feminists used to tell us were sexist insults.

These comments embody everything that is wrong with a modern foreign policy based on Kantian delusions about a global “harmony of interests,” the notion that all peoples are just like us and want all the same goods such as peace, prosperity, political freedom, and respect for human rights. If they behave differently, it’s because they just don’t know these goods are in their best interests, or they have been traumatized by history, particularly the depredations of Western colonialism, imperialism, and capitalist exploitation, which are the causes of their violent aggression and brutality. Thus if we “understand” and “empathize” with the roots of our enemies’ behavior, they will see the light and abandon aggression and tyranny.

This is the same delusion that Obama based his foreign policy on, as evidenced by his infamous “apology tour,” on which he donned the hair shirt of Western sin and groveled before foreign audiences. It’s the application to foreign affairs of the two-bit psychologizing that dominates the public schools, where boosting self-esteem and “empathizing” with punks and bullies are the favored mechanisms for teaching and civilizing young people. It utterly lacks any understanding of the tragic constants of human nature and the wisdom accumulated by the human race since the ancient Greeks and Hebrews––that, as Machiavelli said, “all men are bad and that they will use their malignity of mind every time they have the opportunity.”

For all her alleged foreign policy toughness, Clinton’s philosophy embodies the bad utopian ideals that have enabled much of the disorder afflicting the world since their spectacular failure in preventing World War I. We hear the same delusions in the words of Neville Chamberlain after Hitler’s Anschluss of Austria in March 1938, when he told the House of Commons, “We should take any and every opportunity to try to remove any genuine and legitimate grievance that may exist,” and then imagined telling Hitler, “The best thing you can do is to tell us exactly what you want for your Sudeten Deutsch.” Such blind “empathy” and “understanding” and “respect” for Germany’s “grievances,” of course, in 6 months culminated in the debacle of Munich and the devastating sequel of World War II.

Contrary to Clinton and Obama, enemies like Vladimir Putin, ISIS, Bashar al Assad, Hamas, Hezbollah, Boko Haram, the Ayatollah Khamenei, and Xi Jinping are not the global village’s wayward teenagers “acting out” because they don’t know their own best interests and suffer from insufficient self-esteem and “respect.” They are hard, brutal men, vicious and ruthless, who know exactly what they want, and who possess beliefs alien to Western ideals like liberal democracy, human rights, tolerance, and a preference for diplomatic words and “mutual understanding and respect.” In their “perspective” and “point of view,” violence is a tool of international relations, and a legitimate instrument for achieving their aims and interests. And they have nothing but contempt for our schoolmarmish empathy and respect, which they correctly interpret as civilizational weakness and a failure of morale. All they respect is force. That’s the most important truth we need to “understand.”

These 3 statements reveal political beliefs and character flaws that should automatically disqualify Hillary Clinton from being president. And even if we attribute them to rank ambition and venal opportunism rather than sincere belief, their sheer political stupidity and lack of prudence bespeak a mind and character unfit for leading the most powerful country on the planet.

 


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16 thoughts on “Hillary’s Bad Politics and Worse Ideas”

  1. HOW TRUE. Hilary , whose dismal record of an alinsky ideology lover, a liar, a thief, a political payoff hack of a secy of state, a shrill screamer who would intimidate any member of congress would she ever gain the presidency. she was fired early in her career for lying during the preparation for the Nixon impeachment, she stole items from the whitehouse and was forced to return some of these items. god help America if she would ever be able to pull off enough illegal votes to become potus.

  2. Hillary will be our next president. Who will be her VP, and why can’t the republicans come up with a believable opposition candidate? Instead we get a McCain who doesn’t know which side of the aisle he belongs on, or righteous fools who fall into the trap of telling the public their personal repulsion to abortion. This computes to political suicide as our young people read that to mean as President, they will throw out Roe VS Wade.
    Why are republicans so politically inept? We have given them the chance to shine now with the mid- term elections victory. I believe they will bungle up this opportunity. But country, get ready for Hillary and the fool she will run with until the opposition can cough up a likely candidate. Squeaky clean hedge fund managers did not fly. It has to be someone the left can relate to. And have the candidate keep their abortion ideas to themself. Why talk about it? It is their personal business what they think about it. It is a deal killer for modern women to hear anything that might take away their right to have their 8 month fetus terminated cuz they changed their mind about having another kid. That is the world we live in now. Wake up. Lie, cheat and steal your way into the White House and then make the changes we want. That is how to play politics in today’s world. The end justifies the means. Now get it right, republicans or the USA is finished- the one we all grew up in and loved. If I can figure this out, why can’t smart people in power (republicans) realize this?
    We live in an out of control time now when the USA is inept in every way. It is embarrassing to travel overseas and hear it from other travelers. We need a strong US now more than ever. Both economically and militarily.

    1. Change to responsible leadership is necessary, but I do not want anyone, anyone, to lie, cheat or steal to take control of America. We are a great country, it’s too bad the present leadership doesn’t see that.

  3. And yet these three same statements could be attributed to the cypher who has won two straight presidential elections and seems still to be rated by some — well, CNN, MSNBC…. — as the greatest president in US history.

  4. If I understand the logic of this post, the three statements are 1) the inept, ill-informed Benghazi response, 2) the vague economic statements regarding corporations and trickle-down, and 3) the disinformation regarding foreign policy. I really don’t see this collection of remarks as commitment to failed ideas or dangerous delusions. I don’t believe they lead to automatic disqualification.

    But I agree that I hope better candidates will run for the Presidency.

  5. I love the use of the term “crony socialism” instead of “crony capitalism” like most people use! Cronyism is not capitalism. Thank you for recognizing this!

  6. Superbe article Monsieur Thornton!

    Let´s hope the republicans will use these suicidal soundbites against her in the coming 2016 election.

  7. Like Obama, she is an Alinsky acolyte and possibly has a streak of misandrist egomania, that not helped much by her congenitally aroused wanderer of a husband..

  8. Best way to characterize a Hillary presidency: If you like your Obama policies, you can keep your Obama policies.

    If the Republicans can’t win the presidency with that for a rallying cry after these years of one Obama disaster after another that make Carter look competent by comparison, then they’re too incompetent to run the national executive branch.

  9. If it was Hillary’s daughter who was Ambassador at Benghazi,would Hillary proudly shout, “What difference at this point does it make!”

    If Iran gets the bomb, and through some robotic, missile -inside-a-shipping container, that bomb finds itself perfectly positioned above one of our fair cities… should the outside of the bomb be painted with “What difference at this point does it make!”

    Shouldn’t, in fact, Putin’s artillery shells in the Ukraine, his anti-commercial-airliner missiles, and entire fleet of bombers’ nose cone art…. also, in fact, be decorated with the timeless Hillaryism: “What difference at this point does it make!”

    And lastly, since this is the religious cry of Progressives (that there is no god, that key pillars of the Western Enlightened Way must be illogically removed, just for fun)… then shouldn’t suicide bombers forgo the old “Allah Akbar” and make the world a much kinder, empathized place and always now shout, with love in their hearts’ last beat, “What difference at this point does it make!”

  10. Whoever is elected, the ponzi foundation that has been laid is most likely beyond repair. The transfer of wealth and employment from the Western World to the East, has left the West with ever increasing debt, matched with lower growth and shocking unemployment numbers. Having seriously wounded it’s host, China has joined the ponzi—– “” China’s credit nightmare explained in one chart””, from zero hedge. Since 2009, chinese banks total assets have doubled from 11.5 trillion to 25 trillion dollars. Apparently, one-way manufacturing trade with a host that you killed runs into a brick wall. Within 5 to 10 years, or far less depending on what the Axis powers decide or are driven to, expect an interconnected world to abruptly disconnect. The mind stays rosy, but prepare for less…

  11. I consider Hillary’s presidency less likely with each passing day. I think she’s running out of steam. She has nothing to recommend her; even in the fawning media they have to strain to find something good to say about her supposed accomplishments. Her negatives she has helpfully plastered over the airwaves for a number of years and her parade of embarrassing TV moments are just doozies for commercials about what not to like. I think Elizabeth Warren is the dark horse that’s coming up fast on the outside. Her populist message and ability to use the media surpasses Hillary’s. I think Obama may be a candidate for actually helping the Clintons once he figures out that Warren will dance on his grave, given the chance. But, Obama’s blessing means less with each passing day, as well. This could be Jimmy Carter endorsing Walter Mondale, except that Mondale had some positives. I think Hillary is going to founder, just like her book and then all bets are off. If Republicans can put up a solid Governor and VP running mate, then the political landscape could be dramatically altered in the next year and a half. However, if the back room boys of the Republican Party put forth Jeb Bush I think it will make so many people angry that Mz. Warren could easily take the WH. God help us all.

  12. Those who believe that Hillary will co-opt Warren and satisfy her with the VP spot are mistaken. As soon as Warren smells blood she will gut Hillary like a deer and skin her for the fireplace. The smell of power will be the intoxicant that propels her to drive the bus right over the top of Obama and Hillary. This will be scary. Conservatives will have to have a real Conservative and they’ll have to learn to get along. A milquetoast “Conservative” candidate will be target practice for Warren and will be an embarrassment to all involved. Mark my words and we’ll check back here in a year. 🙂

  13. Hillary doesn’t need ideas or politics she needs a brand, an identity of entitled victimhood. She could make every campaign speech with puppet shows and the media would throw themselves on the ground weeping with joy that that patriarchy has finally been overthrown.

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