December 31, 2006

"Several Democratic strategists last week urged Clinton to unleash a 'charisma offensive'..."

Is that even something she can do?

38 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think so, yes. BWDIK? I'm apparently one of the very few around here who would consider voting for her, despite the fact that I disagree with her on a host of issues.

As far as the article is concerned, I believe that Obama will fade, as people realize there is no there there, or not the one they projected.

Gerry said...

No she can't. Which is why I hope Democrats immediately turn and support, once again, John F. Kerry.

Pogo said...

Hillary: Message: I have charisma"

Dave said...

Obama is an empty suit.

Plus if he runs doubtless somebody will start referring to him as "Osama," and the half-wits that make up the American electorate will really think his name is Osama, and not vote for him any way.

As for Slick Willie the 2nd: she has no charisma with which to launch an offensive.

Goatwhacker said...

From the article: Few presidents have been as adept as Clinton at charming ordinary voters, but opinion polls have repeatedly indicated that much of America regards Hillary as cold, calculating, strident and ideological.

Hillary generally comes across as someone who is working hard to say the correct thing, rather than just saying it. The call for a "charisma offensive" brings to mind Al Gore's continued efforts to re-define himself. All that did was allow his opponents to brand him as a fake, rather than just boring and wooden.

Anonymous said...

There are powerful women with charisma and charm. Thatcher and Kirpatrick come to front of my mind. But, Hillary? No, she only comes to the front of my mind when thinking of shrill and humorless.

And it isn't just that I disagree with her politics. At least, I don't think it is. I've considered whether I retain a psychic residue of the Clinton years where she spent so much time defending her husband. Those types of things do tend to make one the adjectives I associate her with.

But everything I've had read about the woman from non adoring sources, including many mainstream voices, describe her as one chilly filly.

I wonder, those of you who adore her, do you really think of her as charming and engaging or do you just love her politics? I really would like to know how you perceive her personality.

Pogo: I think you have accidentally truncated her message. I should read:

"I have charisma. . .And if you don't think so you are a chauvinist misogynistic member of the right wing conspiracy."

Or at least that will be the none too subtle message of the media. Similar to how if you don't vote for a black Democrat you are a racist.

Ron said...

She may not have charisma, but she was able to use the Jedi Mind Trick on people over her husband's sexual adventures, at least within the context of discussing their own marriage! "These aren't the interns you're looking for!"

Perhaps something similar could be used!

Ron said...

She may not have charisma, but she was able to use the Jedi Mind Trick on people over her husband's sexual adventures, at least within the context of discussing their own marriage! "These aren't the interns you're looking for!"

Perhaps something similar could be used!

Anonymous said...

There are powerful women with charisma and charm. Thatcher and Kirpatrick come to front of my mind. But, Hillary? No, she only comes to the front of my mind when thinking of shrill and humorless.

And it isn't just that I disagree with her politics. At least, I don't think it is. I've considered whether I retain a psychic residue of the Clinton years where she spent so much time defending her husband. Those types of things do tend to make one the adjectives I associate her with.

But everything I've had read about the woman from non adoring sources, including many mainstream voices, describe her as one chilly filly.

I wonder, those of you who adore her, do you really think of her as charming and engaging or do you just love her politics? I really would like to know how you perceive her personality.

Pogo: I think you have accidentally truncated her message. I should read:

"I have charisma. . .And if you don't think so you are a chauvinist misogynistic member of the right wing conspiracy."

Or at least that will be the none too subtle message of the media. Similar to how if you don't vote for a black Democrat you are a racist.

hdhouse said...

so interesting that neo-con bloggers immediately fill this with what amounts to "pray she doesn't run" 'cause she will kick any GOP ass. But then again so will a host of others.

we read NYTs articles like this with glee because of not Hillary then 3-4 other very good people.

I only wonder what the counterpart GOP article would be??

are 3 wives to many for mr. rudy "family values"

which mccain got out of bed today?

brownback endorses flat earth.

frist "hey i don't have to examine a patient to diagnosis her"

let's draft cheney...a draft he won't dare evade!

Newt - hey don't say that! sooo misunderstood.

hey take a page from President Bush's playbook and run my pet goat.

You guys are so transparent.

dearieme said...

Too much gin and not enough tonic.

dearieme said...

Too much gin and not enough tonic.

Anonymous said...

Yes we all know Hillary has a ways to go to match the natural charm of the sexy McCain. But we never ask these questions of Republican candidates, do we. Hmmm. Wonder why that is?

dick said...

Because Republican voters are not so easy to con with charm and no substance.

Goatwhacker said...

Hmmm, I'm not sure if I'm a neo-con but personally I hope Hillary runs. She has shown a willingness to discuss more moderate views that I think would elevate the level of discussion.

Pogo said...

I dunno. Making light of Hillary's lack of charisma isn't "tranparent"; what an odd complaint. No one argues that Obama lacks charisma, just experience and heft. And Hill is merely Al Gore in drag; another shrill liberal scold who thinks it takes a village and dammit she's the village, and knows what's good for us.

During Steven Covey's apogee, the 'Seven Principles' stuff became a business fad. My own workplace had us take his odd cultish course in 1999, a curious mix of Dayplanner instruction and evangelical corporate self-helpistry.

Our speaker was acolyte Blaine Lee, who told an unusual story about Bill and Hillary. He said that Covey and he had met with the Clintons, presenting the course to them just prior to their 2nd administration. One of the 'Successful Habits' was being discussed, and the issue of integrity came up. Lee gave an example of loyalty, in which a CEO refused to speak ill of someone who'd just left the room.

Apparently this genuinely puzzled the powerful couple, and the point had to be rediscussed several times, but Lee said Hillary was astonished that talking behind someone's back would be considered bad behavior.

I was still a democrat then, barely hanging onto that title. Stories like that didn't help matters.

AJ Lynch said...

Hdhouse asked:
"I only wonder what the counterpart GOP article would be??" FYI - the NYT would never think to run such an article as the genesis is typically from Manhattan cocktail party babble.

Charisma offensive is an oxymoron like the term "party strategist" who simply read the polls and cut and paste the desired sound bite the poll results require.

Bithead said...

Of course she can do that. Once you can fake sincerity, you can fake anything.

JimNtexas said...

A lot of people think that money and insider connections determine the winners of political contests.

Hillary has tons of money, more than she can spend. She owns most Democrat insiders, certainly the ones that had FBI files in the 90s.

If Hillary loses then the 'money and connections are everything' theory is disproved.

AJ Lynch said...

Naked Lunch said:
"Yes we all know Hillary has a ways to go to match the natural charm of the sexy McCain."

How could we create a truly neutral group to judge whether McCain or Hillary is more charming and natural and relaxed? Cause I am amazed that even highly partisan smart folks can't see someone like McCain wins hands down. And I am not singling out McCain vs. Hillary - we could pick any two of the top pols. Any behaviorists (professional) out there with suggestions?

Zeb Quinn said...

Plus if he runs doubtless somebody will start referring to him as "Osama," and the half-wits that make up the American electorate will really think his name is

Or they might start calling him by his middle name.

Balfegor said...

Obama is an empty suit.

Well, yes, but he comes with excellent intellectual qualifications (e.g. editor of the Harvard Law Review, right?) and, perhaps more important in modern America, is a Black politician whose schtick isn't all about sticking it to Whitey, unlike Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson or, really, most of the most visible members of the Black Congressional Caucus. Just to take some of the more egregious examples of public racism from Black politicians in recent years, it's hard to imagine him going on about making a city a chocolate city, or (more obscurely), going on about wanting to slap Whites for his mental health.

He is, somewhat like Colin Powell, a Black politician whose political identity doesn't seem to be as a "Black" politician set in opposition or contrast against "White" politicians, but just a politician who happens to be Black. And that's tremendously appealing, I think -- to me, as much as anyone else, even if I think he's just a generic left Democrat besides -- because that's what many of us think politicians ought to be. Representatives for their constituencies, not spokesmen for their races. There's a hope, in my breast at least, that he could be the leading edge of a new generation of Black politicians who won't seek power by turning the Blacks against the Whites.

But I do agree his star is likely to fade -- he's just a junior senator, and hasn't really been tried, politically. His opponent was Alan Keyes, after all.

A Menken Moment said...

That woman, charisma? We all should live so long...unless we personify charisma as the scolding nanny who thinks she knows what's best for us and is eager to take our money to see her projects through.

YAMB said...

Am I the only one who can't get to comments from the main page? There, all the comment links have archive text in them. I had to go to the actual archive in the right side bar; then, I could open comments on individual posts. Happens in Firefox and Explorer.

dklittl said...

Because Republican voters are not so easy to con with charm and no substance.

He is the kind of guy that you wouldn't mind having a beer with, unlike the "other guy". He just seems like a good man. He prays and says that his favorite philosopher is Jesus. The "other guy" could never wear a flight suit and look cool like him.

Never has a constituency been conned by charisma and personality as Republicans were by one George W. Bush.

Joe said...

I don't think Republicans were conned by the charisma and personality of W as much as we were horrified by the choices forced upon us by the Democrat nominees.

hdhouse said...

dearieme....so much gin, so little time

dick said...
Because Republican voters are not so easy to con with charm and no substance."

dklittle of course jumped on this tee'd up softball...glad you got there first...i would have not been as nice.

Charlie Eklund said...

In the matter of a Hillary "charisma offensive", it occurs to me that while Senator Clinton may be deficient in the charisma part of the equation, when it comes to being offensive she is second to none.

Susan said...

I think it's amazing that we attach such importance to poll number this far from the election. When have poll numbers this far out been any kind of reflection of the actual numbers come primary and election times?

Gahrie said...

Joe:

Exactly. I've never been a great fan of either President Bush, but compared to the options the Democrats provided, there really was no choice.

Unfortunately, so far it looks like 2008 will be more of the same, settling for the lesser of two evils.

Kev said...

"But everything I've had read about the woman from non adoring sources, including many mainstream voices, describe her as one chilly filly."

Hilly, the chilly filly? LOL! That sounds like the name of a really bad children's book (yes, either a really bad book for kids, or a book for really bad kids--you pick).

Let's write the opening page:

This is Hilly, a chilly, chilly filly.
She married a man they called Slick Willie.


...and so on.

Kev said...

"I think it's amazing that we attach such importance to poll number this far from the election"

Well, some of us don't attach importance to poll numbers at all. I'll say it again: I place the same value on polls as I do on horoscopes; they're entertainment, nothing more.

tjl said...

"I think it's amazing that we attach such importance to poll number this far from the election."

Susan is absolutely right about this. The next two years will require the presidential aspirants to take positions on how to change course in Iraq and how to respond to a nuclear test by Iran. There will also be unpleasant surprises elsewhere in the Middle East, economic ups and downs, natural disasters, domestic scandals, and possibly another terror attack. Any of these events could change the political landscape in ways we can't predict.

Hillary & the other contenders will have much more to be concerned about than whether or when to unleash a charisma offensive.

Anonymous said...

I wrote: "I wonder, those of you who adore her, do you really think of her as charming and engaging or do you just love her politics? I really would like to know how you perceive her personality."

While there was lots of criticism of Republicans, no one came to Hillary's defense to say that she was indeed charming, charismatic, exuded compassion, etc. Certainly telling, and I think indicative of why these primary type polls are having the results they are having.

Consider, the Dems have put forth two fairly unlikable people in a row up for President. Is it likely they will make the same mistake again?

Daryl Herbert said...

Hibbs: Unlikeable and incompetent. Hillary is a solid political operator, and she can be likeable enough. She has a real chance. She managed to take the NY Senate seat by a wide margin, and she won't have the "carpetbagger" meme to contend with. She's also perceived as non-wimpy, which is important in the next leader we choose.

Obama is still an empty suit. He's got plenty of time to fill it, of course, but it's too early for him to run for the presidency (vice president, sure).

bearbee said...

Integrity?

Justin said...

"Exactly. I've never been a great fan of either President Bush, but compared to the options the Democrats provided, there really was no choice."

Sure. John Kerry would have invaded, errr, Russia. During Winter!!! And he would have lost New Orleans AND Houston.

This is such a tired and stupid argument. It basically says that because the people in power go negative against the opposition (which they will always do when their performance is bad), the people in power are probably not as bad as the people not in power.

It's not only a total cop out, but it is mind-boggling stupid. Exactly what would Kerry have done that was so terrible to excuse the actions of perhaps the worst President in the history of this nation?

Justin said...

Oh, I just cannot WAIT for the 2008 elections.

So, it appears John McCain will pursue the same foreign policy as George Bush, and pledges not to do anything about the deficit except talk it down. But Hillary Clinton is so unlikable! And Barak Obama's name sounds like Osama! Plus, he doesn't have McCain's experience (hey, look at George Bush, he did TERRIBLE and had no experience...). We don't need an empty suit again, so we really have no choice but to elect a guy who will follow in George Bush's shoes, and policies. The other guy, ya know, would have been worse......

::sigh:: I think Democracy, as a concept, is failing before our very eyes to the cult of personality and the moral equivalence that is the blogosphere and the modern media.