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Breaking: Journalist observes Hillary, finds she is not so bad after all


How we see Hillary, as General Leia, vs…

This profile of Hillary Clinton by Rebecca Traister in NYMag is as close as I’ve seen in 25 years to an honest report on Hillary Clinton. Some of it is more complimentary than I would have expected but for completely unexpected reasons.

It’s not that Traister gushes too much about the first female nominee, although both she and Hillary discuss what I call the “More Deserving Man” Syndrome.

It’s not because Traister doesn’t go on and on and on about Hillary’s email problem, which turns out, not to be much of a problem, provided you don’t cherry pick only a few phrases from the IG report.

No, it’s because of this:

When Clinton rolled out a progressive set of policies for families at her May events in Lexington and Louisville, her explanation went something like this: We need a national system of paid family leave because too many women don’t even get a paid day off to give birth; workers don’t have a federal requirement for paid sick days; meanwhile, many dads and parents of adopted children don’t get any time off at all, and sons and daughters don’t get time to take care of aging parents. We also need to establish voluntary home-visiting programs, where new parents, especially those facing economic adversity, can get assistance in learning how to care for their children and prepare them to succeed in school, thus taking aim at unequal outcomes in the earliest years. Relatedly, we need to raise wages, because two-thirds of minimum-wage workers are women, which has an impact on single-parent and dual-earning homes and, when combined with high child-care costs, inhibits women’s ability to earn equal benefits, save for college, and put away for retirement. Minimum-wage workers currently spend between 20 and 40 percent of their income on child care; Clinton has a plan whereby no family would pay more than 10 percent on child care, but she also believes we need to increase pay for child-care providers and early educators, who in some places are paid less than dog trainers and who have their own families to take care of. All of this is tied to the need to strengthen unions and make health care more affordable through revisions to the Affordable Care Act as well.

Clinton’s holistic view of intersecting challenges and multi-tentacled solutions — tax incentives, subsidies, wage hikes, pay protections — is weirdly thrilling in its expansive perspicacity. But it does not fit on a T-shirt. It does not sound good at a rally. You cannot even really show it on the local news, because it is not as simple as, say, “Free college!”


I tried to explain this in 2008 but it’s hard to put into words. She sees the model. She understands what happens when you change parameters. And Traister is right, it doesn’t translate to bumperstickers or T-Shirts. You need to go hear Hillary in person and ask her about infrastructure right after a bridge in Minneapolis collapsed to see how that is connected to better broadband nationwide. YOU think you’re talking about rusting bridges and mass transit but she is way ahead of you.

Anyway, just go read the whole thing.


… how the media see Hillary, as Cersei Lannister

Let this be a lesson to the press that is having a miserable time following her around. If you stop asking her about stupid email servers that almost no one cares about so you can make her do a Cersei Lannister Walk of Shame that no other candidate will be forced to do, you might get to hear something worth writing about. No one wants to give an interview to people who are listening for “sins” for which they can force you to atone.

In other news, Jerry Brown endorses Clinton in California.



43 Responses

  1. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-politics/wp/2016/05/31/major-environmental-group-makes-first-ever-endorsement-of-hillary-clinton/

    this a big deal and if you are worried about climate change Hillary is the right person

  2. I read that article last night and I must say I was pleasantly surprised.That is the Hillary I saw 8 years ago and still see today.How can anyone in good conscience vote Trump over Hillary? He is just what she says he is. A loose cannon!

  3. Best profile I’ve read in ages. Also like how pulled the most salient point in the post.

  4. Prez HRC should make restoring the Fairness Doctrine her first order of business.

  5. https://www.1843magazine.com/features/its-a-boy-thing

    this article explains why hillary will have a tough time being elected. Men will have a tough time voting for her no matter what

  6. I loved that Traister article! Thank you for sharing it. I really hope voters who have not been her supporters or who are haters will try to read it with an open mind.

    The Cersei Lannister analogy is so apt! How many questions during those early debates mirrored the demands to “Confess!” and no matter what answer is given, the Shame bell is rung.

  7. Courtesy of Cannonfire:

    Roger Rock Meets the Bernie Bros

    You may need to open the images in new tabs.

  8. I also especially liked the passage you brought out, about the complexity of Hillary’s understanding. But the main theme the author keeps coming back to, “Hillary against Herself,” only underscores the a certain degree of frustration that I, and evidently others, feel about her being under-appreciated. Perhaps we believe it’s within her power to overcome the shortcoming the author keeps circling around:

    “Her pathological desire for privacy is at the root of the never-ending email saga, to name just one example. But how do you convince a woman whose entire career taught her to be defensive and secretive that the key to her political success might just be to lay all her cards on the table and trust that she’ll be treated fairly? Especially when she might not be.”

    I’m sure I’m not alone among women who, facing an audience or colleagues we just know oppose us, nevertheless rise to the occasion, choose to believe, lay our cards on the table and trust,we’ll connect. Lo and behold,it very often works! So why isn’t this far more capable woman doing it?

    “ It’s also a pervasive defensiveness that gets in the way of her projecting authenticity, an intense desire for privacy that keeps voters from feeling as if they know her — …. Clinton’s wariness about letting the world in is in part her personality and in part born of experience.

    “These young reporters are so starved for what they call “fresh sound” that they thrill to the addition of a new line — … to Clinton’s stump speech. They want to know Clinton better.”

    “Clinton and her team think that everyone is after her, and their behavior creates further incentive for everyone to come after her. … Defensiveness, secrecy, and a bunkered combativeness …are her very real shortcomings. The question is whether they can be overcome by her very real strengths..”

    I think most people believe they can be (overcome) and thus it’s her fault, in a sense, for holding back. I’m confident she’ll win, but it’s so disconcerting to have her constantly shortchanged, when she could fix things with the kind of sagacious advice she is shown giving others at the end of the article.

    • Mayo, if Hillary were able to talk directly to the people at all times, maybe she could be open. But everything she says is filtered through an avaricious media waiting excitedly to point out another flaw or problem she has. It is ingrained now, after 30+ years of “Hillary is flawed” rhetoric. No other public figure is treated like her. Traister was apparently asking substantive questions and not the fall-back “emails/are your a liar/are you sorry for every mistake you ever made” questions.
      I don’t know the answer. I don’t even know if she will win the primary, let alone the election. Who knows what is waiting to trip her up once again. The world is crazy is all I know.

      • Doesn’t she have to win 34% of remaining delates to Sanders’s 68% of the remaining delegates to nail the nomination?

      • Well she gave a great speech today–if she can keep this up, and overcome just a bit of the reticence discussed earlier, she’ll win easily.

  9. What’s amazing about the Traister piece to me is that she wrote one of the most obnoxious profiles of the PUMA movement back in 2008. Back then, she was a Clinton-hater. She actually wrote that the PUMAs were motivated by lingering resentment of Bill Clinton. To which I replied: “Whaaaaaaaa…?”

    • IKR? She was such a snob in 2008. Now, she gets it.
      But if I hear one more time how charismatic Barack Obama and George Bush are, I’m going to scream.

      • Lord, gag me with a shovel. The so-cool guy and the beer-swiller. I don’t want to be around either one. Now, the Clintons, Al Franken et. al., yeah that would be great.

  10. Hillary’s brilliant speech yesterday was a two-fer: it not only dealt the first major blow to Trump, but the last major blow to Bernie. With her success in tackling The Donald, she has fired up her voters, and I expect her now to win CA easily.

    • I sure hope so. But Politico is quoting ‘unnamed’ sources that are telling Bernie he needs to get out of the race and if I were a Bernie supporter that would motivate me to get out and vote. For Bernie. To stick it to The Man. Er Woman.

      I think the general Leia thing could work for her. Suits her to a T

  11. Regarding CA, I wonder why 538 went from 98% for Hillary on May 25 to 92% today and BS went up to 8% now. Of course, he most always shows an overlap (for winning) in the graphic so it is his version of odds I guess. I hope crossed fingers and toes will make a difference in the CA results!! I see on cnn crawler that Dems are trying to talk to BS about getting out gracefully. Not sure it is having an impact though.

    • Oh man, I wish the DNC would stop trying to help. They need to show they’re behind Clinton without discouraging the Bernie peeps. Why is this so difficult?? {{facepalm}}

      • I think that it is all Sanders. He has no chance to win the nomination, but he continues on, blasting Hillary, attacking the Democratic Party. Whatever he was when the campaign started (and I have my doubts that he was ever a very nice person, even politically speaking), he has turned into a vengeful and spiteful man who would apparently rather see the Democratic Party and Hillary lose, than ever concede that he lost. Nothing will assuage him. He won’t leave if people ask him to; he won’t leave if they don’t. They gave him five seats on the platform committee, which was ridiculous, and that made him hungry for more concessions. He actually thinks that in some way, he will emerge as the victor, at least by ruining Hillary’s chances, so that he can become a major spokesman, instead of being shut out if she wins. The only person who can get Trump elected is not Trump, it is Sanders.

    • I can’t believe he has these stipulations like doing away with superdelegates and letting everyone vote in a primary other than democratic voters apparantly… How about doing away with the caucus system? And by the way didn’t you just join the democratic party Bernie? Who does he think he is? He thinks he’s owed something. Tyrant.

    • That is because recent polls have it a very tight race, which of course lowers the probablities. The older polls which had a wider margin, lessen in mathematical power. I would expect that by tomorrow, this will be down to 80% or so.

      The Field Poll is the best California poll, and has been so for decades. They had it Hillary leading by two points. The wild card here is the crossover votes. A large crossover vote of Republicans for Sanders would perhaps give him the win. No one in the media ever mentions that, because it dilutes their anti-Hillary narrative. Perhaps the great speech yesterday will help Hillary win. She and BIll are all over Southern California today, tryng to get out the vote. Sanders is in the Bay Area, where he has a lot of strength; that is a very liberal area, with a number of universities. It is a great shame that the media sees fit to pump up this primary, because it is not going to do anything more than give Sanders a forum to rail and rant and attack for another month, and through the convention, if he wins. If he loses, even the media will give up on him.

  12. All those polls were before that speech. Since the speech the conversation is all Hillary Kneecaps Trump.

    Bernie who?

  13. I have not heard anyone say that Bernie could do better at “beating Trump” since the big HRC speech!!!! I wonder who still thinks that?

  14. Where’s the cocktail hour?

    • Sorry, I’m exhausted. It’s been a busy week. I have a house guest, my AC died, my backup phone died, which means I had to go out of my way to the Apple Store to get my regular phone replaced. But wait! There’s more.
      My Apple ID account was erased by an apple genius who turned out to be merely bright. That meant spending two hours on the phone with Cupertino last night fixing my Apple ID. I can’t use the same Apple ID I’ve had for 12 years. No, now I have to use a much longer Apple ID tied to an email address I never use. The gmail account email I use everyday? Can’t use that as my Apple ID. Why? It’s too complicated to go into. Suffice it to say I did everything I was supposed to do and it still screwed up v

      • Oh, man, I’m so sorry. I completely feel your pain with the AC. Within the last 15 months I’ve had a wall oven go out, dishwasher, dryer and refrigerator (garage). I have found used appliance stores are wonderful for that kind of thing and plan to use them more in the future. However with all that we’ve been limping the AC along for about three or four years now but this year finally did in the AC and we had to bit the bullet and get a new system. I swear for the longest time now it seems like it’s one thing after another and we just can’t get ahead. Good luck with your AC!

      • One of the 812 reasons why I loathe Apple is their password system’s constant resetting.

    • So, I need a drink in the worst way, but I’m too beat to make one.
      If someone wants to get Rico, tell him I want a double Moscow mule.

  15. Very sorry for your rough week, RD. Hoping your ac gets fixed and apple comes thru and that next week will be perfect for you. Or at least that we can celebrate your’s and our fav girl getting a surplus of delegates.

  16. Warren for VP. I tell it would be amazing.

  17. Hillary won the Virgin Islands and gained 6 of 7 delegates (and at least 4 of the 5 V.I. supers)…61 to go. Puerto Rico has 60 available tomorrow… she’ll be so close on Tuesday morning. We are going to have to celebrate big on Tuesday night!!

  18. I have heard via some MSNBC reporting that Hillary is up about 17% over Bernie in the early mail in voting and that about 60% of the usual Primary voters vote early. Also you can only switch to vote Dem if you are an independent not registered to the Independent Party AND request a Dem ballot.. a high hurdle for some and maybe confusing for first timers.
    All that to say,maybe the two point differential will be enough for Hillary to take CA. Of course no matter what happens,Bernie will insist the system was rigged and he should’ve won. He’s not only a sore loser but a sore winner,too.

    • All true. For me, I resisted it from the very beginning. I knew at the age of three that there was something profoundly messed up with the JWs. Also, my grandparents were Catholic and I stayed with them frequently when I was a kid. And that taught me that you aren’t supposed to be terrified of God. Soooo, THAT JW indoctrination didn’t work. The final nail in the coffin was that I’ve been interested in science since fourth grade. The more science I learned, the more stupid JW dogma sounded. I especially thought the talks were targeted to people of childlike intellect and as I got older, I wasn’t having it. It’s a waste of a childhood as well. I had to do everything a witness child did in school including turn down party invitations, not salute the flag and go to the library for holiday activities. It was miserable. No parent with a heart should ever subject their kids to that.
      But there are ex JWs on the web that are fighting back with well aimed criticism and humor. One of the best of the Vast Apostate Army is an Australian(?) cartoonist KingdomHallofJWs who does these brilliant cartoons that capture what it’s like to be a child of the cult. My experiences were very similar to his so I am assuming that the Kingdom Hall experience is uniform globally.
      Here’s an example of all of the things that jehovah hates and what will happen at Armageddon to anyone who steps out of line. The books we were given as children depict scenes of catastrophe and horror. It’s meant to scare the shit out you from the beginning and parents tell their kids “you understand what jehovah thinks is good and bad. And because you’re old enough to understand, you’re on your own at Armageddon. Don’t come looking for your parents to save you.” Nice.

  19. What do Jehovah’s Witnesses do for fun?
    Besides bother their neighbors?

    • They have fun with each other, sort of. I mean, they have to be very careful to be thinking of The Truth while they are having fun. And they need to watch out for each other to make sure no one else is being too enthusiastic in their fun.
      They drink alcohol, so there’s that. I guess that’s more fun than Mormon’s get.
      There’s nothing for kids to do, or there wasn’t when I was a kid. On a couple of occasions, we had a square dance or skating party. But that requires a lot of supervision of the sexes so it didn’t happen very often.
      Being a JW is a LOT like being a member of the Duggar family except you get to go to school until you graduate or are legally old enough to drop out. College is not forbidden but is strongly discouraged. I got no encouragement at all there and was pretty much on my own enrolling, registering and finding financial aid.
      JWs do not date, or they’re not supposed to. Dating leads to petting and sex and stuff. I knew engaged couples who got carried away and then felt so guilty they ratted themselves out to the elders and got disfellowshipped. That was stupid.
      The ideal JW girl when I was growing up was one who dressed very modestly, ala Jill Duggar, got baptised by 15, quit school at 16 and either immediately got married and pregnant or pioneered. Pioneering is like being a Mormon missionary except girls are only allowed to have studies with other women. I was assigned one of these young women pioneers. Her name was Susan. She was very nice but had almost all the personality sucked out of her. And her dad was a violent fanatic who beat his teenaged children regularly. Susan didn’t do anything for fun. She wasn’t even allowed to attend her best friend’s wedding because there was something that her dad didn’t like about the family or something. I dunno. I think he was just a righteous prick.
      My situation was a bit different. Only one of my parents was a JW. So, in the eyes of the other JWs, we were already “bad associations”. That’s right, we weren’t supposed to mingle with the worldly kids and we weren’t good enough for the regular JWs either.
      Anyway, my dad was a little less strict about extracurricular activities so my sister and I joined the girl scouts (horrors!) for about a year. And I sang in a select choir group and participated in school musicals for a few years in High School.
      We went to Disneyworld, another thing that JWs are discouraged from doing. Amusement parks are bad but I can’t remember why.
      Other than that? We had Thanksgiving at our house but no other holidays. Ever. Not even one. Until the world didn’t end in 1975 or 1977 and I think my dad just said the heck with it and started buying Christmas trees. I had left for college by then.
      Here’s another cartoon about what it’s really like for a kid growing up JW. This guy is uncannily accurate.
      The JW Sunday service consists of two parts, each an hour long. The first part is the public talk. The second is the Watchtower study.


      I should probably do a separate post on this topic because the JW district conventions have been going on and there is a lot of controversy about them. There has been some really good videos on their shunning and tribulation themes this year. Not to be missed. The JW governing body has started to create their own video content that is so over the top it’s hillarious.
      Will try to followup later.

      • It sounds awful; especially for kids.

        • A lot of adults who grew up JW are very bitter about the sacrifices they were expected to make, like giving up dreams of becoming musicians or playing basketball on the high school varsity team or even going to college. They also feel like the no holidays/no birthdays thing deprived them of ever feeling special. And for those who were pressured to get baptized when they were teenagers, leaving the JWs can mean disfellowshipment and permanent estrangement from your family. It is a very harsh, demanding and unforgiving religion.
          There are many heartbreaking stories like that on YouTube.
          Last December, there was a tragic and unexpected death in the family. The whole congregation turned out for it. My sister and I went to the funeral. Not one of those JWs greeted us or introduced themselves. They looked right thru us and acted like we didn’t exist. And in a way, we are already dead to them because we are not JWs. Btw, they didn’t know us and since we were never baptized, there was no prohibition against speaking to us. They just choose not to associate with people of the world. I thought they were extremely arrogant.
          Anyway, they belonged to the congregation of the relative whose family member had died. This relative seemed like he was slowly “fading”. That means beginning to detach himself from the JWs in a informal way. That’s used to be the safe way of leaving the religion without losing friends and family. When his family member died, he leaned on the congregation for support and they’ve stuck by him. But if he had disassociated himself before the death, I’m pretty sure those JWs would have avoided him no matter how much support he needed. Their care and love is conditional on whether or not you agree with the Watchtower doctrine and adhere to it loyally.
          They’re cold hearted people.

  20. Madoka preserve us.

    I spent about nine years as an agnostic. I suspect that if I’d been raised in the JW sect, I’d probably have remained an agnostic, if not become a fire-breathing atheist.

    In his 1992 book, The American Religion, Harold Bloom explores many of the sects which began in the USA. Among them are the JWs, in Chapter 9. After describing the Apocalyptic scenario of the JWs, he ends the chapter with a withering put-down:

    Though there are a number of rather savage apocalyptic scenarios current among American Fundamentalists, I am aware of none quite so inhumane as the Jehovah’s Witnesses’ accounts of the End of our Time. There is something peculiarly childish in these Watchtower yearnings: they remind one of why very small children cannot be left alone with wounded and suffering household pets.

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