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The triumph of the empty suits

Recently, a commenter, blaine, asked why "some people hate hillary clinton so much." That got me thinking.

I don't hate Hillary Clinton. But I do find her emblematic of a rather odd phenomenon going on in politics these days, especially among the Democrats.

I've been looking at a couple of the leading contenders for the Democratic presidential nomination for 2008, and for the life of me I can't figure out just why the hell they are so prominent. What have they achieved thus far that makes them qualified for consideration for the presidency?

Let's look at Hillary Clinton. What has she achieved in her life thus far? Well, she seems to have done a good job raising her daughter -- Chelsea seems pretty level-headed and not nearly as screwed up as she is entitled to be. But a lot of people are good parents -- there's nothing truly outstanding about that.

She dabbled briefly in cattle future speculations, and made a killing -- she turned $1,000 into $100,000. But this apparently was far more than "beginner's luck" -- the trading firm that handled her business was fined for violating trading rules in building her fortune.

She dabbled in real estate, but if you go by her own accounting, she ended up losing money in Whitewater. So that hardly counts as a "plus" on her resume'.

She was a member of a powerful law firm, but her biggest client was a bank that went bankrupt.

She was elected to the U.S. Senate, but from a state she moved to only shortly before the election and in the year her wildly-popular husband was leaving the presidency after being the first Democrat since Harry Truman to serve two full terms.

In fact, it can be argued that up through 2000, every single one of her achievements can be directly tied to Bill Clinton's political successes. This is hardly the resume' of a supposed "strong, intelligent, accomplished woman," as her backers like to describe her.

Similarly, look at the Democrats' nominee this last time around. Repeatedly during the campaign I challenged Kerry supporters to cite three major accomplishments of his during his 20 years in the Senate, and they repeatedly failed miserably. In fact, the only major achievement I can find in Kerry's record is his leading the fight to investigate the Bank of Commerce and Credit International, which eventually collapsed after revelations concerning their involvement in arms trafficking, drug trafficking, and money laundering. Kerry was the leader on that, and doesn't get damned near enough praise.

Other than that, Kerry was essentially a zero in the Senate. (In fact, last year he was practically a zero -- he missed about 7 out of every 8 roll call votes.) But for some reason, he was repeatedly hailed as a "leader" and "visionary" and "an accomplished Senator," despite piles of evidence to the contrary.

So, where are the Democratic leaders who have actually DONE anything? Who have a record of achievements and successes that demonstrate that they can actually get things done? Or is it what I've always suspected -- they are so blinded by style, they can't see the utter lack of substance?

J.

(Addendum: I'm looking for disproof of the above, not counterexamples. Yes, George W. Bush had a similarly indifferent record of accomplishments prior to 2000, apart from being a moderately successful governor of a large state. Consider that point acknowledged, and move on.)

Update: Pat Curley points out that Harry Truman didn't serve two full terms. The last Democrat to serve two full terms was Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who actually served a smidgen over 3 terms before dying in office. Damn. Thanks for the correction, Pat.


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Comments (44)

I think Senators have a dif... (Below threshold)
Jeff:

I think Senators have a difficult time running for President becuase they have to run on their record. I know I would have a great deal of respect for a Presidential candidate if they could show where they have been continually identifying problems and proposing solutions. As opposed to those candidates that seem to only have solutions during election years.

Everytime I heard John Kerry say "I have a plan", I kept thinking then why have'nt you been trying to act on those plans. If you say that America's alliances are weakend, then why did'nt you offer to go meet with other countries and try to use your position as a US Senator to patch relations.

The Democrats need ideas they are for and not simply ones they are against.

I think the Dems fascinatio... (Below threshold)
Steve L.:

I think the Dems fascination with Hillary is more a reverence for celebrity than anything else. The blues ooh and ahh over Michael Moore and Babs and the like. People called Bill a "rock-star" president. Some of that glamor has rubbed off on his wife.

I think a second fascination with Hillary comes from the desperation of the Democrats to win an election. Think about it. They looooooooooooooooooooooved Howard Dean until they realized he couldn't get elected even if he was the only person running. They then switched over to JFK. They didn't really like him, but they would vote for Attila the Hun if they thought he could pull 270 electoral votes.

Into that breech steps Hillary. They don't care what she believes in. They don't care about her resume. They hope that people will vote for her since they voted for her husband. They seem to forget that the Republicans ran two of the biggest stiffs around against him in both races. They believe that the Clinton last name guarantees victory.

So, where are the Democr... (Below threshold)
mantis:

So, where are the Democratic leaders who have actually DONE anything?

I know I'll have to duck after this one, but, umm, Dean.

If we as a country are to t... (Below threshold)
justsayin:

If we as a country are to take our "equal rights" rhetoric seriously, we will need to have a woman president before long. Hillary is a convienient person because everybody already knows her name. Short of Oprah or Martha Stuart there is no female public figures or politicians that carry the pathos of hillary. How many women (50% of the vote) can identify with a carreer woman that has managed to keep her family and carreer in spite of her filandering spouse and constant attacks on her integrity. We have just elected "cowboy swager" to office, why not "strong carreer/family woman"?

Wouldn't those same women b... (Below threshold)
bullwinkle:

Wouldn't those same women be wiser to vote for a woman that has had an extremely successful career on her own rather than one who rode to fame on the coattails of a man? You know, one like Condaleeza Rice? Condi has accomplishments all her own, Hillary has exactly what? Shown that she stayed with a man with a long history of cheating on her rather than having enough backbone and self-worth to dump the bastard and try to make it by herself? Hardly an accomplishment, hardly a good role model, and hardly someone worthy of my respect.

I did *NOT* vote for Bill. ... (Below threshold)
Rod Stanton:

I did *NOT* vote for Bill. - The same things you are saying about Hill could (and were) be said about W 14 years ago. His successes were few and far between, his failures were numerous.
Aside from his claims to have killed over 250 Indians Abe has little success before 1860.
Many "failures' or non successes turn out to be successful politicians and on occasion good Presidents.
Hil has come out strong against more taxes and for the War on Terror. This very much sets her apart from the Progessive wing of the Dem party and right in the heart of middle America. She will be a strong competitor in 08 and we all know it. Even if we try to pretend otherwise. Which is like pretending the MSM has not been anti-America for 60 years.

Jeff, I think hit the nail ... (Below threshold)
epman:

Jeff, I think hit the nail on the head. It's hard for senators to run without their records coming into play. In that light, Clinton runs into the same problems that plagued Kerry. Or should I say one of problems that plagued Kerry. She hasn't done anything!

Don't you think that in the smokey backrooms of Washington that the "Greatest Race" of all time is being hatched? Is America ready for a woman as President? As bullwinkle said, why can't women vote for Miss Rice who has accomplished much inside and outside of politics. Her current position will only add to those accomplishments. Just look at the confidence she displays in the "black outfit" photo that is turning everyone's heads.

Amen. Every time I hear of ... (Below threshold)
Bud Tugley:

Amen. Every time I hear of Hillsy being a front-runner for Pres '08 I almost pee myself laughing. We elect Governors to President. Not Senators. Especially not carpet-bagging first term senators. Double-secret especially not first term senators with a truckload of baggage, years of assinine sound-bites, and an attempted takeover of 1/7th of our economy with a socialized healthcare scheme.

If the Democrats really think that the Cult of Personality surrounding this woman is enough to get her elected president, then they are simply delusional. Sadly, I belive this is the case.

What about that Governor fr... (Below threshold)
firstbrokenangel:

What about that Governor from Penn? The one when they had that awful mining disaster? He was great but I don't know if he's a democrat. Rudy Gulliani but he's a republican, I think.

Someone mentioned Dean - what did he ever do to deserve the title of possibly being our next president?

I don't see Hilary running for President; she just doesn't have "it." I think it would have to be a governor who has spent a lot of time governing his state.

Cindy

In that light, Clinton r... (Below threshold)
Steve L.:

In that light, Clinton runs into the same problems that plagued Kerry. Or should I say one of problems that plagued Kerry. She hasn't done anything!


But Hillary has the advantage of her cult of personality. She is Hillary. She doesn't have to "do" anything. She thinks she can garner enough votes by being Bill's wife.

How many women (50% of the vote) can identify with a carreer woman that has managed to keep her family and carreer in spite of her filandering spouse and constant attacks on her integrity?

That only works if you assume people see her that way. Many, many, many people see her as a political opportunist who latched onto a rising star and used that to launch her own political career. had Bill only waved his willy around one time, there might be more sympathy, but we are talking about a serial philanderer. You have to seriously question the judgment of anyone that would put up with that.

I personally believe that there are three types of people that will vote for Hillary:

1. Those people that are Hillary fans. Most of them believe that the Clinton presidency was a co-presidency. Therefore, when Hillary comes back, Bill comes back. Mistakenly, they credit Clinton for the relatively good economy during the '90s. They think with Hillary back, that illusion will come back, too.

2. Die-hard Democrats. They will vote for whomever is on the Dems' ticket. If she gets the nomination, they will vote for her. I mean, they voted for Kerry. They vote out of a desire to win regardless of the cost.

3. People easily swayed by Oprah. These are the people that will watch Oprah (and the like) and form their political opinions off what she says. It doesn't matter if the opinion is well-reasoned or not; they will believe it.

I just don't see where that gets Hillary enough votes. Remember, there are a TON of people that dislike her in much the same way the Dems dislike President Bush. The anti-Hillary vote will be a big factor.

Hillary has a slightly posi... (Below threshold)
Justin B:

Hillary has a slightly positive image among many Independants, but there is no way for her to change anyone's opinion of her that doesn't already like and or respect her. Either you love her or hate her and it is about a 50-50 split. But all of this love or hate is completely associated with her 8 years as first lady. She has done nothing in the last 4 years of real substance to convince anyone that doesn't already love her that she is a good leader.

You take someone that has all this baggage (and she has lots of it don't kid yourself) and run that person against the Dems in the primary and then against the Repubs if she wins and surely there is nothing she can say "see I did xyz" that will convince people to look past the negatives and the track record. If I suddenly "commit suicide" in the next couple weeks ala Vince Foster, you will know who to blame.

Hmmm, Truman did not quite ... (Below threshold)

Hmmm, Truman did not quite serve two full terms; he served one full term and about 45 months of FDR's fourth term.

This echoes an observation ... (Below threshold)
kgowen:

This echoes an observation I heard Rush Limbaugh make years ago, namely, the only reason Hillary Rodham is where she is today is because she
married an ambition young politician named Bill Clinton, and so much for feminism. She was hired by the Rose law firm not because she was talented, or a tough litigator, or anything like that, but because she was a "rainmaker", that is, her presence in the firm brought in business. Why? Because her husband was governor of Arkanas. Once again, her career is built on the achievements of others.

As such, Hillary makes a lousy feminist role model. A far better one, in my view, would be somebody like California Senator Diane Feinstein. Anyone know what her husband's name is? I think his name is "Steve" and he is some kind of real estate broker, but I don't know for sure. And that's the point. Unlike Hillary, DiFi's accomplishments are her own.

If you're interested, I hav... (Below threshold)
Adam:

If you're interested, I have my response to your questions:
http://sophistpundit.blogspot.com/2005/02/unaccomplished-and-hailed-as-leader.html

Yes, George W. Bush had ... (Below threshold)
KBiel:

Yes, George W. Bush had a similarly indifferent record of accomplishments prior to 2000, apart from being a moderately successful governor of a large state. Consider that point acknowledged, and move on.

What? First of all, running the State of Texas is very equivilent to running the United States. Secondly, he was the first Republican governor to win reelection in Texas. And he did it by gaining Hispanic votes against a Hispanic opponent. I call that a serious political accomplishment.

Before that, he was the managing partner of the Texas Rangers. And while the Rangers did not exactly make it the world series in that time, they certainly gained a lot of respect and reestablished their lagging fan base during his tenure.

Oh, I forgot: Bush is just a moron (with a Harvard business degree) whose Daddy got him everything he has. Never mind.

But Hillary has the adva... (Below threshold)
epman:

But Hillary has the advantage of her cult of personality. She is Hillary. She doesn't have to "do" anything. She thinks she can garner enough votes by being Bill's wife.

Steve, I agree on your point of personality to a degree. I like to think that by the time that '08 arrives the electorate will be more savvy and Hil's personality "get out of jail free" card will be worthless. I think the main question still remains, is America ready for a female president? Will the voters be smarter in '08. If the anwser to those questions is yes, then I think Condi demolishes Hily, a race that I think is possible. The run-up to '08 will interesting to say the least.

Oh, BTW....Jay I think your... (Below threshold)
epman:

Oh, BTW....Jay I think your question is a "loaded" one. The answer is there is no answer.

epman,I think the US... (Below threshold)
Steve L.:

epman,
I think the US is ready for a woman president, but it would need to be someone on the order of Margaret Thatcher. She needs to be tough and not afraid to mix it up with the big boys (like, I don't know, Condi Rice?) The big question is whether Hillary has that or not.

Personally, I don't think she does. While she is likely tougher than her husband, that ain't sayin' much. The very last thing we need is a another touchy-feely, I-feel-your-pain president. That's what got us into the mess we are in with the terrorists now. They only respond to fear and we didn't scare them in the 90's. Thank goodness we do now.

First of all, running th... (Below threshold)
Brian:

First of all, running the State of Texas is very equivilent to running the United States.

Well, that statement is so ludicrous on just so many levels, it's not even worth debating.

Secondly, he was...

While I won't dispute the importance of courting the Hispanic vote and managing a mediocre baseball team as good presidential background, you are conveniently forgetting Bush's other pre-2000 accomplishments. These include a failed congressional bid, running his oil companies into bankruptcy, and turning Texas into the most polluted state in the country (which, by the way, doesn't bode well for us if running Texas is truly the equivalent of running the United States).

Oh, I forgot: Bush is just a moron (with a Harvard business degree) whose Daddy got him everything he has.

Finally you said something I agree with.

Into that breech steps H... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Into that breech steps Hillary. They don't care what she believes in. They don't care about her resume. They hope that people will vote for her since they voted for her husband. They seem to forget that the Republicans ran two of the biggest stiffs around against him in both races. They believe that the Clinton last name guarantees victory.

"Into that breech steps George W. Bush. They don't care what he believes in. They don't care about his resume. They hope that people will vote for him since they voted for his father. They believe that the Bush last name guarantees victory."

Gee, that worked pretty well in 2000, didn't it?

"And in touting his win, they seem to forget that the Democrats ran two of the biggest stiffs around against him in both races. And he still only won by a smidge."

I don't hate Hilary, but I ... (Below threshold)

I don't hate Hilary, but I wouldn't vote for her, and comments like this one: "If we as a country are to take our "equal rights" rhetoric seriously, we will need to have a woman president before long."

are the sort that strengthen my resolve not to have Hillary for president. I think it's incredibly patronizing and rude to vote for a person because 'we need a woman in office.' Her gender should not be a voting point- that's what equality means.

Hillary doesn't represent my views which is fair enough. But when there is any implication that she is dressing herself up as something she really isn't (notice all the left keep talking admirably about the way she is 'positioning herself' instead of about her convictions?), that irks me. It's bait and switch.

touchy feely ^.^Le... (Below threshold)

touchy feely ^.^

Let me see, talkin about...Carter?

Brian, like the rest of you... (Below threshold)
epman:

Brian, like the rest of you left-wing wackos you failed miserably on the test. Slowly now just for you............Name someone in the democratic party that is ready to carry the torch. It really is that simple or is it? If your party does not take up something other than the Bush bashing the party is over (pun intended). Brian, take a moment and think about Jay's question, who can rescue the party and pull it from the ruins?

epman, good job insulting a... (Below threshold)
Brian:

epman, good job insulting and labeling me, and then throwing in an unrelated rant. Gee, where have we seen that tactic before?

Well, that statement is ... (Below threshold)
KBiel:

Well, that statement is so ludicrous on just so many levels, it's not even worth debating.

Ergo, I am wrong? It's so patently ridiculous that you can't even think of any supporting facts or produce a cogent argument? Granted that I didn't provide a fact for that statement, which I believed to be self-evident, but your response is ridiculous. If you wish to win the argument you have to say more than "no it isn't." But, that is the problem with "intellectual left" at this time. All they can say is "not it isn't" without giving a supporting argument.

So, let me model good debating behavior for you. I'll assume that you made valid, cogent points about Texas not really having it's own standing army and that as a State it does not have the right to make treaties with foreign countries, so running it is not equivilent to running the US.

Great points, Brian the anonymous of mailinator, but I think that the two jobs of POTUS and GoT (Governor of Texas) still make great resume points for each other. While it is true that Texas does not have a standing army of its own and the GoT will not be sending the national guard off to invade another country of his own volition, the GoT is still in charge of the national guard in Texas and learns valuable military management skills from his post.

And while only Congress has the ability to make treaties, being GoT still requires diplomacy. Texas has one of the largest economies in the world. Not only is it a large economy, but it is a worldwide economy. Having sea ports in the Gulf of Mexico, bordering a member nation of NAFTA means that the GoT must be able to meet with and make a agreements with foreign entities. That takes diplomacy. Then Gov. Bush had several meetings with President Vicente Fox where they made agreements about trucking, immigration, and joint law enforcement. Fox met with Bush many more times before 2000 than he ever met with President Clinton.

Speaking of the economy, if the economy in Texas were to sink, it would be a boat anchor on the U.S. economy. (The same would be true of New York or California.) So managing the Texas economy is great experience and success at doing so gives great credibility to any GoT seeking to be POTUS.

See was that so hard? If you and your Bush hating buddies would learn a thing or two about reasoned debate, then you might actually start winning elections.

Brian, if the shoe fits. ... (Below threshold)
epman:

Brian, if the shoe fits. You still have not gotten to the core of this discussion. You seem to be avoiding the question at the end of Jay's piece. Sticks and Stones, can you name a contender for the Dems in '08. Since all you can do is "nanny-nanny pooh-pooh" I'll assume you don't have an answer, give you an "F" for the day and dismiss you.

One of the interesting char... (Below threshold)
Mike:

One of the interesting characteristics that I have noticed in past presidential races is the confusion of intellect and leadership.

Adlai Stevenson was a powerful intellectual; Eisenhower was a leader.

Barry Goldwater was an intellectual conservative/libertarian with far-right ideas that frightened most Americans. Lyndon Johnson was, by contrast, a leader who picked up the pieces of the Kennedy administration and forged a bold vision for America with his Great Society.

The Democrats had a strong leader in Bobby Kennedy, but lost him to an assassin's bullet. Humphrey proved to be a weak replacement, and in comparison, Nixon looked like a stronger leader. And let's not forget his "secret plans."

McGovern was a far-left intellectual. Nixon had 4 years of presidential leadership under his belt.

Ford had a weak vision and reeked with the stench of Watergate. Carter sold himself as a leader who would move America beyond the embarassments of Viet Nam and Watergate.

Carter turned out to be a wimpy socialist intellectual. Reagan had a plan and a vision. He was a leader.

Ditto for Mondale vs. Reagan.

Michael Dukakis was yet another wimpy socialist intellectual. George H. W. Bush carried the sweet smell of Reaganism with him and promised to lead in the tradition established by Reagan.

George H. W. Bush was a great commander-in-chief, but failed to articulate "the vision thing" for domestic policy. Bill Clinton won (only a plurality of votes, though) by pledging to chart a new course for post-Cold War America.

Al Gore had no clear plan or vision. Ironically, neither did George W. Bush. Bush was clearly a man who grew as a leader during his first term. Which brings us to 2004.

John Kerry was a respected intellectual who majored in Nuance at Yale. George W. Bush was a seasoned president with 3 years of post 9/11 leadership under his belt.

As much as pundits and politicos like deep thinkers, intellectualism as a whole has not been the deciding factor in whether or not a candidate wins. Being able to think up a brilliant solution to a problem is not the same thing as being able to lead a group of people who are trying solve a problem. Democrats should remember that when they are choosing a candidate. Republicans should, too.

And one more thing: choose a governor.

Governors elected president since 1932:
Franklin Roosevelt
Jimmy Carter
Ronald Reagan
Bill Clinton
George W. Bush

Former Vice Presidents elected president since 1932:
Harry Truman
Lyndon Johnson
Richard Nixon
George H. W. Bush

Senators elected president since 1932:
John F. Kennedy

Military Heroes elected president since 1932:
Dwight Eisenhower

KBiel, your rantings aside,... (Below threshold)
Brian:

KBiel, your rantings aside, you proved my point. In response to my saying that your statement was nonsense, you immediately provided several points that disprove your original statement and support what I said. I didn't mention that Texas has no army and can't make foreign treaties because they're so stupidly obvious that I didn't feel I needed to. Obviously you needed things spelled out.

You act like I said that being a governor doesn't provide valuable experience that is transferable to being a president. I said no such thing. But the fact that Texas is a large state and exists within a country does not make it "equivalent" (your word) to a country. If you want further proof, just reread your own post.

All my love,
Brian the anonymous of mailinator

epman, what's your deal? Al... (Below threshold)
Brian:

epman, what's your deal? All you want to do is call me names and insist that I comment on a post other than the ones related to my statements. How about I insist that you respond to Mike's post, eh? That ought to keep you busy.

Other than that, direct your demands towards someone who cares.

Actually you could probably... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

Actually you could probably argue that running Texas is pretty close to running the US-Texas in population size and economy is larger than a lot of independant nations, and because Texas sits on the
Mexican border, Bush had to do a lot of talking with Fox. About the only aspect Bush didn't have to deal with in Texas that he does as president is the defense issue. But I would say somebody who is a governor of a large state has a pretty good work experience claim to make. More than say Dean did, as governor of a teeny tiny state in New England.

Also-somebody said:

"Secondly, he was the first Republican governor to win reelection in Texas. And he did it by gaining Hispanic votes against a Hispanic opponent. I call that a serious political accomplishment."

I thought Bush Beat Ann Richards-I don't think she was hispanic, but his defeat of an incumbant democrat governor says a lot about his ability to campaign, and the fact that he won reelection handily indicates that Texans overall were pleased with him.

Oh, and I think if the dems... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

Oh, and I think if the dems really want to run a candidate who can win, I would suggest they get Bill Richardson from New Mexico to run. He has a good fiscal record, he is a true centrist (of course that means the democratic base will eat him alive in the primary, and he probably would get beaten-unless he can pull a true Bill Clinton and run to the left to appeal to the base), and he is hispanic, and hispanics are a growing population of true swing voters-unlike African Americans they don't hold some unwavering loyalty to the DNC, and will swing if they hear the right message.

Bush beat Gary Mauro, a his... (Below threshold)
bullwinkle:

Bush beat Gary Mauro, a hispanic in his 1998 relection in Texas. Just wanted to clear that up for whoever it was that asked. It was 69-31%, so he beat him like a red-headed step-child, as we Texans like to say. It was downright fun to watch a republican get 49% of the hispanic vote.

Again, the issue is the "eq... (Below threshold)
Brian:

Again, the issue is the "equivalency" of running Texas with running the US. The arguments seem to center around economy, population, and dealings with foreign leaders.

California and France deal with more foreign leaders than Texas does. California and France have larger economies than Texas. California and France have larger populations than Texas.

So are you really saying that governor of Texas, governor of California, and president of France are "very equivalent" jobs to being president of the US? That Schwarzenegger and Chirac are competent to take over for Bush?

I may not agree with Bush's policies, but at least I have more respect for the job than that.

If Texas were still a natio... (Below threshold)
bullwinkle:

If Texas were still a nation, it would have the eighth-largest
economy in the world. Texas’ 2000 ranking is a step higher
than its ninth-place ranking in
1999. The rankings are based
on the most recent Gross
National Product (GNP)
statistics from the
World Bank Atlas.With a 2000 Gross
State Product (GSP)
of $725 billion,
the Texas economy
is more than three
times the size of the
Russian economy, and also
outpaces the GNP of countries
like Canada, Brazil, Korea and Argentina.

http://www.window.state.tx.us/comptrol/eyeontex/033103.pdf
Do any of those countries there count as countries?

California is huge, too.<br... (Below threshold)

California is huge, too.
Out of any states, California and Texas BOTH share the distinction of land mass, population figures, foreign policies, AND economies.

California's economy on the other hand, is a shithole. Gray Davis ruined California's economy for years to come. The Democrat state legislatures are keeping it ruined.

Pre THE FEMININE MYSTIQUE ... (Below threshold)
ptritsch:

Pre THE FEMININE MYSTIQUE a girl who wanted to land the boy of her dreams followed a long-established template. Laugh at his jokes, feed his ego, pretend that his passions are yours. Ask his advice, and even if it sucks, praise him to high heaven for being soooo smart. Never beat him at anything, especially sports. Play hard to get, so that he chases you until you catch him. (L'l ol' me, run for President? Oh no, I'm just a junior senator trying to do her job for my people.)

That's what I see Hilary doing, first with her male colleagues in the Senate, and now with the Red States voter. This "boy" is relgious; she's religious. "He" is worried about the borders and illegal immigation; so is she. "He" is a hawk; guess what, so is she.

Underlying this game is a deep contempt for the sucker who falls for this BS. The same contempt that says anyone gullible enough--and dumb enough--to fall for such a transparent ploy will also fall for the rationale she trots out to justify her hard turn to the left once she's in the Oval Office.

Yeah, this is an imperfect analogy, but the game is real. I played this game very well, and I could spot a fellow player a mile off. It's a girl thing, and trust me, Hilary is one of the best players I've ever seen.

Shame on us if we fall for it.

Someone posed curiosity abo... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Someone posed curiosity about Senator Dianne Feinstein's husband, what his profession was...he's a financial investor and manager.

Among interesting and recent news items about him (the husband to Senator Dianne Feinstein) was his management decision on behalf of the California Teachers Union 401K funds, which included more than a million dollars being given to P. Diddy because he 'represented someone of inspiration' to Democrat voters, something similar/close to that (they "invest" in public personalities from union funds because it represents, so they say, encouragement to 'minorities' to vote as Democrats and Senator Feinstein's husband is the guy who manages and invests the Teachers Union funds, among others).

I have respect for Senator Feinstein and always wondered why she never made a run for the Presidency -- as a Democrat, she seems far more able and capable than any of the other Democrats in the Senate, sure.

That is, if it's a case of Democrats wanting to nominate a female/racial type for the Presidency, why they'd bypass Feinstein and focus on Hillary Clinton seems entirely something based upon fundraising prowess and, yes, I agree, the cult of personality. As in, Hillary, as is Bill Clinton, are "celebrities" on a celebrity circuit and that seems to be the appealing factor to many who vote as Democrats, regardless of reality of who the people are or are not as individuals.

At this point, the DNC needs a massive change. It's not true (someone else expressed earlier, this thread) that the DNC is majority convinced that Hillary Clinton is the candidate because just the other day, massive funder David Geffen said she shouldn't run (had too much baggage or something similar). The DNC wants a gay male, is what I think, and is going to continue to try to get one in the Presidency, come hell or high water. Honestly, that seems to be their plan at this point, what with that being the most emergent and important issue to many among liberals, at least as to intensity of focus, downright need by many as individual liberals.

About that, Dean is right, that the Democrats really need to change their focus and the public discourse away from that issue (homosexuality in various aspects) and focus, instead, on other things. Yet he doesn't offer much about those other things, beyond insisting that the solution to health care is a nationwide Medicaid program for all adults, as he implemented statewide in Vermont.

I think running California ... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

I think running California as pretty equivalent as well.

I think any governor who has managed to run well a large state, with a large population, and a large economy, has gained a lot of experience to run for the presidency, far more than somebody who has spent 10 or 20 years in the senate.

Hillary Clinton's one claim... (Below threshold)
-S-:

Hillary Clinton's one claim to fame as a Democrat and will be relied upon again in the years ahead, coupled with the Dean influence, is on public health care. The Democrats...it seems that what they conclude is that a national healthcare system has to be the thing that wins them the Presidency, that and some vague promise of "peace" that will never arrive in our world today based upon indulging terrorists and defunding the American defense industry.

Unfortunately for Democrats, simply enlarging public service efforts within the federal and state governments only leads to a decrease in quality of services, in services themselves, and, in fact, poses a greater harm to individual fitness, thus defeating the entire premise that "public health care" is any health care, at all. I'm confounded enough by the current prescription drug plan that Bush has passed, which was explained to me in an email from (one of my local CA Senators) Dianne Feinstein as being acceptable because it brought aid and relief to the most vulnerable among us. But, my own opinion about that, is that it sounds wonderful but the country has to plan ahead to avoid increasing numbers of those poor and vulnerable and employment and independent profit opportunities still seem to be the way to go as to helping to prevent that, which are not plans encouraged by Democrats beyond greater unionization and enlarging publicly funded programs, which equals back to increasing numbers of the poor and vulnerable due to loss of opportunities and resources.

"Unfortunately for Democrat... (Below threshold)
Just Me:

"Unfortunately for Democrats, simply enlarging public service efforts within the federal and state governments only leads to a decrease in quality of services, in services themselves, and, in fact, poses a greater harm to individual fitness,"

I totally agree.

Want to make something totally inefficient-have the Federal government take it over. Other than defense/military it is hard to find one thing that the government does efficiently.

What has Hillary accomplish... (Below threshold)
Veeshir:

What has Hillary accomplished?
Here's an illustrative joke.
Bill and Hill pull into a gas station in Chicago and the attendant is an old boyfriend of Hillary's.
Bill says, "See, if you had married him you would be married to a gas station attendant."
Hillary responds, "No, if I had married him I would be married to the President of the United States."

What would happen if Hillar... (Below threshold)
BR:

What would happen if Hillary lost her next senate campaign for re-election in 06? Would that totally nix her as a presidential candidate or could she spin it as an opportune time for bowing out and (continue) working on her 2008 presidential campaign?

When does the NY governorship election come up again? I wonder if she'd try to fit that in as another stepping stone.

Perhaps I could be spared hearing about Hillary through 2008 if her presidential bid were cut off at the pass in 2006.

I think running Californ... (Below threshold)
Brian:

I think running California as pretty equivalent as well. I think any governor... has gained a lot of experience to run for the presidency

Ah, now I see the problem. Please consult the dictionary for the definition of "equivalent".

Brian,Ok, I feed t... (Below threshold)
KBiel:

Brian,

Ok, I feed the troll one more time, then no more treats for you.

So are you really saying that governor of Texas, governor of California, and president of France are "very equivalent" jobs to being president of the US? That Schwarzenegger and Chirac are competent to take over for Bush?

Yes, I would say that Governorship of California is equivalent to the Presidency of the US. The Presidency of France is not quite equivilent for reasons I will explain later. And yes, for your benefit I did look up a link to the word so that you may read the definition. That second definition is quite interesting isn't it? So, will you refute with facts or even wild-ass guesses the point that being the Governor of Texas is essentially equal to being the President of the United States? Or will I need to ignore you further semantical arguments that try to deflect attention from the fact that you have no argument?

Now, you brought up another word, competent. I don't not think that any job can make you competent for another. But if you perform competently in one job that is essentially equal to another then I think it is safe to say you are competent for the other job. As far as being Governor of California or Texas, this is especially true. Their state governments are similar to our national government. Being the President of France, though is not quite the same, since it is very different form of government; a soft-socialist parlimentary system. Parlaiments and legislatures are quite different in organization and function which makes the executive branches of these respective systems also very different, or unequivalent.

But, hey don't let facts get into the way of your semantic onanism unless, of course, you would rather have a real discussion of the issues.




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