03/10/2008 (10:52 am)
Huffinton Post yesterday carried an opinion piece by Seth Grahame-Smith subtitled “A Loyal Clinton Soldier Turns in His Badge,” that explains neatly why we can’t really talk sense to Democrats. Here’s the wrapper:
She has no idea how many times I defended her. How many right-leaning friends and relatives I battled with. How many times I played down her shady business deals and penchant for scandals — whether it was Whitewater, Travelgate, Vince Foster, Cattle Futures, Web Hubbell, or Norman Hsu. She has no idea how frequently I dismissed her husband’s serial adultery as an unfortunate trait of an otherwise brilliant man. For sixteen years, I was a proud soldier in the legion of “Clinton apologists” — who believed that peace and prosperity were more important than regrettable personality traits.
And then she ran for president.
After seven years of George W. Bush, America is hungry for change. Big change. And let’s face it — Hillary Clinton, the party standard-bearer and former White House denizen — isn’t it. But even after voters coalesced around Barack Obama, handing him eleven straight primaries (twelve, if you count Vermont), she refused to accept the possibility -though math, money and momentum were clearly against her — that the Bush/Clinton Family Band might not be #1 on America’s Billboard chart anymore…
Are the conservatives right about the Clintons? Will they do and say anything to get elected?
I don’t know.
All I know is…I’m through apologizing.
To be sure, I’m not sorry that another human being has woken up to the malignancy that the Clintons brought on American politics, and I’m not going to try to convince Mr. Grahame-Smith to pin his badge on again. But I’m wondering: does he intend actually to think through the implications of his current line of reasoning? or, is this just a Demo-Snit in which he cries, picks up his ball, says “You’re MEAN,” and tromps on home to mom? Because, you see, in the world of adults, ideas have actual consequences.
Why, for example, did he defend her in the first place? Did he really not realize how dishonest these people were? even though they’d been caught literally dozens of times, by reporters from their own party, telling outright falsehoods even at times when the truth would have been just as good or better? No, this is not like the pretend “Bush lied us into war” that the CIA and the Democrat handlers have been try to sell us, despite the fact that the Iraq war was the logically consistent next step in a 15-year progression against Hussein’s Iraq, with the full support of three Presidents and both houses of Congress the whole time. This is Mike Isikoff of Newsweek actually calling President Bill “pathological,” Chris Matthews of Hardball calling him a “slimeball,” and Jesse Jackson of the Rainbow Coalition calling him “nothing but an apetite.” Big lies, small lies, needless lies. Lies.
And then, if she really is self-centered to the core, and untrustworthy, what then? Is it possible that the innocent protestations about the FBI files — “Oh, gee, I wonder how they got there? Who hired Craig Livingstone anyway?” — were disingenuous cover? And if that’s so, then was the Clinton administration actually using federal law enforcement to persecute political opponents? This would be a deeply serious Constitutional crisis if true; if Mrs. Clinton is not to be trusted, does this not follow logically?
Or if Hillary Clinton will literally say anything, can we believe her surprise at the announcement of Vince Foster’s death, when her office was clearly engaged in a felonious obstruction of justice? Should we not have been satisfied with Bernie Nussbaum’s sacrificial resignation, and instead investigated what was so important in that office that the administration had to break the law to prevent it from being seen?
Do we really believe she knew nothing about the felonious land scam that took down a $60 million Savings and Loan, and cost thousands of investors their life’s savings? When she said “I don’t recall” 51 times in 40 minutes, was she lying? (By the way, this is no different from what sent Scooter Libby to prison.) When a clearly fraudulent affidavit written by attorney Clinton was discovered, and she plead “incompetence” (the only legal alternative to fraud, in this case), was she lying? Is it the case, then, that Mrs. Clinton is not just a bad candidate, but a bad human being, and belongs in jail?
Grahame-Smith dismisses the obligation to follow his thoughts to their logical conclusion on these and dozens of other scandals with a non-committal “I don’t know.” Not very impressive. To be candid, I would have preferred that he keep his badge on, but start actually using systematic logic, allowing major premise A and minor premise B to synthesize into an incontrovertible C, which has to be regarded as fact whether it feels appealing or not. A person engaged in genuine, intellectually honest pursuit of the truth, even on the other side, is a valuable person to converse with; a snit fit against your enemy will invariably become a snit fit against you sooner or later.
But then, he drops the D-bomb:
Will she subvert the will of the voters? Will she turn Denver into a series of shady back-room deals and arm twisting? Will she dispatch her husband to pressure superdelegates into switching allegiances at the last minute? Are we in for, as one pundit put it, a good ol’ fashioned “knife fight?”
And if she does manage to secure the nomination, what about the scores of disenfranchised Obama supporters (many of them young people with little loyalty to the Democratic Party)? How will she bring them back into the tent?
Disenfranchisement. What absolute, whining, infantile pap. This is the sniffling of a toddler needing a diaper change, not a rational analysis by an adult.
In the first place, let’s draw some parameters around the word: if candidate A runs against candidate B and all the rules of the contest are obeyed, and A receives 110 votes while B receives 90 votes, have the voters who voted for B been “disenfranchised?”
Of course not. All 200 voters participated in the process according to the rules. B lost. That’s just the way it works. So, simply losing in a process doesn’t constitute disenfranchisement. Disenfranchisement only occurs when somebody is deliberately locked out of the process.
The Democratic party primary process has been specifically engineered to make it possible to “subvert the will of the voters.” For that matter, the election process in the US Constitution has also been engineered to make that possible; hence, the Electoral College, and the number of electors based on Senators as well as Congressmen. Democrats chose to do this after the grassroots in the Democratic party selected one of the most inept candidates imaginable but a darling of the rank-and-file, George McGovern, to run against Richard Nixon. The Democratic party pols re-engineered the primary process so they’d be able to prevent that from happening again — like it just might this year, as swooning sycophants enshrine a Completely Cynical Bonus Baby in Messianic garb. This feature of the Democratic party primary process should have been noted by the participants long ago; the fact that they’re crying “foul” in mid-election to something that’s been part of the rules for almost 30 years just indicates the level of maturity we’re dealing with: “That’s not fair!” whines the spoiled 8-year-old as his magnificent catch gets called out of bounds. Sorry, children, you picked the rules, and you need to abide by them. Just ’cause you didn’t have the foresight to read the rules doesn’t make them any less the rules; and no, you don’t get a do-over just ’cause you were lazy.
The thing Mr Grahame-Smith needs to come to understand is that “the will of the people” was nothing but demagogic rhetoric for the need of the moment in 2000, when the Gore campaign was attempting to overturn the outcome of an election they knew they had lost. “The will of the people” is always, always determined by the process carried out according to the rules agreed upon by both sides before the process begins. That’s the only way the phrase has any meaning other than being a handy, demagogic club. This is why one must never, ever permit rules changes in mid-flight. You made a mistake in designing the process? Fix it next time; otherwise, every election will disintegrate into a shooting match.
You might not think “shooting match” is to be taken literally, but we just watched Kenya explode into violence because one side accused the other of rigging the election — or perhaps they intended all along to make that charge if they lost (Dick Morris headed that campaign, after all. I’m serious.) Two hundred and fifty people died, and hundreds of thousands fled their homes. The orderly changing of government is one of the glories of the American system, which is why this infantile rhetoric about “the will of the people” and “disenfranchisement” is so dangerous, why the “Recreate ’68″ nuts in the Democratic party are so ominous, why Bush Derangement, as silly as it is, is not a laughing matter. Democrats seriously threaten to turn the US into a third world-style election system, complete with picketing and violence.
Infants who can’t take a single loss don’t deserve a place a the grown-ups’ table. And frankly, Mr. Grahame-Smith, if you’d been honest all along, you wouldn’t have been defending this Lady MacBeth and her sex-addicted narcissist of a husband, they’d both be in prison where they belong, and you wouldn’t be in this mess. Go ahead and remove your Hillary Soldier badge, that’s long overdue. But, no, sir, it’s not Hillary’s fault. It’s yours.