May 26, 2008

"Oh, this is so terrible: The people they want her. Oh, this is so terrible: She is winning the general election, and he is not."

The fervid brain of Bill Clinton knows what those other people are thinking: "It is just frantic the way they are trying to push and pressure and bully all these superdelegates to come out."

Just frantic. Indeed. Is Bill Clinton crazy? She is winning the general election, and he is not. Oh my goodness, we have to cover this up.

There's also this: "I've never seen a candidate treated so disrespectfully just for running."

Who are these people he's so concerned about? Apparently, the media. But what is the media's motivation to drive Hillary Clinton out and elevate Barack Obama if the secret truth is — as Bill tells it — that only Hillary can win against John McCain? The media's self-interest is on the side of more news, and Hillary versus Barack is the news. It can't be that the media want the Democrat to lose in the fall. Is there any way to collect the scattered Clintonian thoughts? Maybe: The media fell in love with Barack Obama and now they'll do anything for him.

***

By the way, what got me to post on this story was his odd use of the present tense in the quote "She is winning the general election, and he is not." That's especially odd, you know, coming from a man who got into so much trouble over the fine point of the meaning of the word "is."



"It depends upon what the meaning of the word 'is' is. If 'is' means 'is and never has been' that's one thing - if it means 'there is none', that was a completely true statement."

Why did he speak in that too-cute way? It would have been so easy to say: "I was asked a question in the present tense. 'Is' means 'is.' In the present. The answer was no. Is means is and no means no. That was true. Period."

Ah! It doesn't help Hillary to have Bill out there, making us think about Bill all the time.

50 comments:

Maguro said...

But what is the media's motivation to drive Hillary Clinton out and elevate Barack Obama if the secret truth is — as Bill tells it — that only Hillary can win against John McCain?

Well, not being a mind-reader like Bill, I can only speculate. But my guess is that a lot of people in the media - Olbermann and Matthews come to mind - feel damn good about themselves for supporting Obama and would like to continue supporting him through the fall whether he wins the general election or not.

"Look at me, I'm so enlightened that I'm supporting a black man for President, unlike all those racist Hillary supporters".

It's not necessarily about the outcome but about continuing to identify as an enlightened Obama supporter. These folks would vote for Hillary if she got the nomination but it would make them feel yucky.

AllenS said...

It's this simple: a lot of people just don't like Hillary. I don't think Bill's popularity is as high as we've been led to believe. A lot of people have had these two pegged for a long time ago. Others are just beginning to notice that the two of them have no morals or sense of decency.

PatCA said...

I think Bill is right in one thing: the media and the party are terrified of a nuclear convention, when all the Dems' racial and genderized politics come home to roost. A big fight will ruin the party (again) for decades, and the liberals don't want that. I don't know how they can stop it though. They can see the train coming, but they can't stop it in time.

rhhardin said...

``Is winning'' is present progressive. There's no meaning you can attach to ``is,'' which only marks tense and aspect.

She's winning in present models of the general. If Obama takes over the lead position, then she was winning in the general and now no longer is.

English uses the progressive for an event has duration but has (or had) not ended.

(And for other things too.

If you add ``always'' to contradict the temporariness of the progressive, it becomes a habitual and adds a note of disapproval.

``Hillary is always winning the general.''

English is very mysterious.)

vbspurs said...

Clinton spent more than six minutes calmly discussing what he called a "frantic effort to push her out" of this race, saying that no one asked Ted Kennedy, Jesse Jackson or Gary Hart to end their presidential campaigns early.

Why is it that both Bill and Hillary keep citing ill-fated candidates for the nomination? My God, can't they see this only makes them look whiney and losers by insinuation?

"And I have never seen anything like it. I have never seen a candidate treated so disrespectfully just for running.

True. He was too young in 1948. But I'm fairly sure he was Stateside in 1972. Selective memory has always been his problem.

Clinton also strongly criticized the media, saying that ever since Iowa they have been against his wife, making him feel as though he was living in a "fun house."

She has been treated roughly, but he is wrong to presume and therefore to exaggerate that it's solely because of her gender. In fact, she's been given the third degree by progressive media because she's a Clinton.

It would be a curious intellectual exercise to imagine how the first serious female contender for the Presidency would've been treated by media, if she weren't called Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Would media have been less antagonistic, or in the case of lukewarm Hillary supporters like the NYT, more enthusiastic about her if she'd been a blank slate, as Obama is?

One can't know with certainty, but I think so.

So long as her husband would not be controversial, and her pastor an egomaniac.

(Other way around works too)

Cheers,
Victoria

Maxine Weiss said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Maguro said...

In fact, she's been given the third degree by progressive media because she's a Clinton.

I'm curious how you came to this conclusion. She has always been a Clinton but was never given the third degree by progressive media until Obama came along.

The Clintons were the media's old darlings. The reason for the negative media attention is that she is now standing in the way of the media's new darling.

vbspurs said...

I just read some of the comments left on the ABC blog. I don't think I ever remember so many (724 so far), on any of their posts!

The first few are hilarious, starting with "Why doesn't Chelsea resemble Bill or Hillary?" (which I suspect is a Republican voter stirring the pot), but a lot of them are from very irate Democrats.

They hate her because she's a phony.

We Republicans do too, but it's curiously not for the exact same phoneyness reasons.

Left-wing Democrats hate her for being a "corpocrat" (in cahoots with corporate America) and for having been pro-war, of course.

But speaking of intellectual exercises, I wonder if and when Senator Obama loses the Presidency in November, if media will take a long hard look at themselves, as well as the progressive side of the Democratic Party.

Clearly, the Republicans chose a centrist this go-around, and didn't placate the Christian Conservatives as in 2000, or the national-defence-minded Libertarians as in 2004.

Yet by kowtowing to the progressive side, yet again, in their Party, they stand to lose it all.

I know print media will analyse this.

But I doubt MSNBC, CNN, and others will on television.

Cheers,
Victoria

former law student said...

Does Billy Jeff not realize he is using contradictory arguments? Only the popular vote counts (now) vs only the electoral congress counts (November).

Hillary in the primaries: "Winning" the "popular vote" (adding in a state where her main two opponents were not on the ballot, adding in a state where her main opponent did not campaign and who had almost zero name recognition, not counting all the states where voters turned out to caucus).
Hillary in the general election: Winning the Electoral Congress whether she wins the popular vote or not.

vbspurs said...

Maguro, I answer you in a roundabout way in my 11:31 post above.

I don't think she was always the media darling, however. I just think she was a caretaker Liberal until the legitimate progressive came along.

IOW, they went with their strongest bet until the ideal one came along.

Meade said...

Fox in neighbor's yard this morning, ready and willing in the present tense to protect us all from RHHardin's psychopathic chickens.

rhhardin said...

Fox in the neighbor's yard

Ohio chickens favor rule by foxes, proof pic.

They vote like Democrats.

montana urban legend said...

The funniest thing was going from that to this other suggested video, advertised at the end of the one in the post.

Bart Hall (Kansas, USA) said...

I voted for Bill, once, but would absolutely never vote for Hillary.

One reason why is exemplified in her comments about the 1968 election. Forget the assassination element; she conveniently omits that in June the primary campaign was barely two months old, the anti-war left having brow-beat Johnson into stepping aside on 31 March.

Hillary has been actively campaigning for almost a year and a half now, on top of at least fifteen years of positioning and planning.

If the people who invented the politics of personal destruction haven't been able to dig up any real dirt on Obama by this point ... there probably isn't any.

Hillary as also demonstrated (clearly) her utter inability to run even her own $200 million campaign, in spite of more that a decade lead time.

It's time for her to go. Forever.

garage mahal said...

Ann this post is a mess. Not sure what you're even attempting to get at here. If I were Bill Clinton I would advise Hillary to tell this party to get fucking bent. It's not even disputed she is the stronger general election candidate against McCain. She's getting pushed aside for a stuttering airhead gaffe machine who she completely destroyed in the debates, and who she has beaten handily going back 3 months.

bearbee said...

"Take us the foxes, the little foxes, that spoil the vines: for our vines have tender grapes." Song of Solomon 2:15

Spoiled vines = Democratic Party?

Little foxes = Hill and Bill?

Tender grapes = Obama?

bearbee said...

An interpretion of the verse:

"Foxes sometime in search of food would enter into the grape orchards and devour the grapes and spoil the crop. However, the little foxes were too small to reach the grape bunches so they would chew on the vines and it would kill the whole vine. Instead of the farmer just losing his crop, he would lose his vine which was more disastrous."

Mrs. Eleanor Stebbins said...

How much does it cost to maintain this blog ?

Christopher Althouse Cohen said...

How is it scattered thinking to say that the media have an anti-Hillary, pro-Obama bias? Seems pretty clear to me. And if your point is that the media are mostly liberal and therefore can't be against a Democrat, what's with all the liberals who hate her?

PatCA said...

"But speaking of intellectual exercises, I wonder if and when Senator Obama loses the Presidency in November, if media will take a long hard look at themselves, as well as the progressive side of the Democratic Party."

No, Victoria, they will just say we're all racists and be done with it.

vbspurs said...

PatCa, a big duh to me. That'll be the lead analysis on NPR and Charlie Rose, on November 5.

Maxine Weiss said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
J Lee said...

When given the choice, the big media outlets always gravitate towards the most viable candidate on the left. In 1992 they were willing to settle for Bill Clinton because, being out of the White House for a dozen years, they were willing to consider him their most viable option, and (ironically), the presence of Hillary and her liberal credentials made them believe that if elected, he wouldn't govern as a DLC type, but as one of them -- which he tried to do, until the 1994 midterm debacle.

What's interesting here is whether or not Bill Clinton is just desperately spinning, or is in a true state of denial, either that the conservatives have been right all along about there being a media bias towards the left, or that, in the eyes of many of their former allies on the left, the Clintons are now no better than, if not George W. Bush or Dick Cheney, than at the very least Joe Lieberman.

Finn Kristiansen said...

Hillary (and her various mouth pieces, including Rendell, Bill, Ferraro, Garage at 12:17, Chris at 1:51) are running thematic permutations, most of them meaningless to reality.

They have tried race and class, and the current theme is sexism and media bias.

Whatever theme seems to suit the moment they will use, when the basic fact is that Hillary is responsible for being unlikeable, running a bad campaign, and making numerous tactical errors.

Focusing enough on the actual issues (whether its Obama's lead in fundraising, solvency, states won, voted delegates, popular vote, superdelegates, or Hillary's insolvency, unlikeability, tactical errors in blowing off states) causes a thinking person to be pretty clear about where things are headed.

It's telling that she is quoted back in December saying the campaign will be wrapped up by February 5th. At the same time, her support among blacks was above 50% and she had the biggest fund raisers backing her. However, she never really expected to have to compete beyond a certain period and when it is discovered by a liberal media that there is someone with largely the same positions, but less annoying, THAT person will start to be more appealing.

It's also interesting that people like Vbspurs make the assumption that McCain, loved by few, with a campaign that can barely gain traction, is assumed to be the winner come November.

In other words, people like to prognosticate not based on reality, but on personal bias or preference. When the Clinton's do it, they are just being the same old wiley manipulative scoundrels they always were, but when we do it (here in the comments) we are just being stupid.

exhelodrvr1 said...

vbspurs,
"It would be a curious intellectual exercise to imagine how the first serious female contender for the Presidency would've been treated by media, if she weren't called Hillary Rodham Clinton."

I think you mean the "first serious Democratic female contender".

vbspurs said...

Maxine, we do count/non-count nouns differently in the UK than you guys do here, and some habits are hard to break.

E.g.: "The Miami Heat are losing" (UK), not "The Miami Heat is losing" (USA).

Tricky though, as e.g., government is singular, but when you refer to what you Americans might call an administration, a collective body, you would say, "Government are there for another 2 years" (UK).

This is cool.

Patrick said...

One thing I guarantee will come out of this election cycle: legislation requiring equal coverage of all candidates.

Hillary's probably not going to win. Like Ted Kennedy, she'll be in the Senate for decades. Plenty of time to improve on McCain-Feingold.

bearbee said...

How much does it cost to maintain this blog ?

Oh please Mistress.....don't scold.......

blake said...

How much does it cost to maintain this blog ?

It's mostly opportunity cost.

Michael_H said...

"I've never seen a candidate treated so disrespectfully just for running."

Yo, Willy! Ever hear of George Bush, either one?

The Clintons are willing to blame everyone but themselves for their failures, most recently Hillary's failure to garner sufficient delegates to assure nomination. They may be the two most self-centered beings on planet earth.

John Stodder said...

I'm not always a fan of the precious Peggy Noonan, but this column nailed what's wrong with Hillary Clinton, and perhaps why she's losing despite all the achievements her husband is claiming for her.

So, to address the charge that sexism did her in:

It is insulting, because it asserts that those who supported someone else this year were driven by low prejudice and mindless bias.

It is manipulative, because it asserts that if you want to be understood, both within the community and in the larger brotherhood of man, to be wholly without bias and prejudice, you must support Mrs. Clinton.

It is not true. Tough hill-country men voted for her, men so backward they'd give the lady a chair in the union hall. Tough Catholic men in the outer suburbs voted for her, men so backward they'd call a woman a lady. And all of them so naturally courteous that they'd realize, in offering the chair or addressing the lady, that they might have given offense, and awkwardly joke at themselves to take away the sting. These are great men. And Hillary got her share, more than her share, of their votes. She should be a guy and say thanks.

It is prissy. Mrs. Clinton's supporters are now complaining about the Hillary nutcrackers sold at every airport shop. Boo hoo. If Golda Meir, a woman of not only proclaimed but actual toughness, heard about Golda nutcrackers, she would have bought them by the case and given them away as party favors.

It is sissy. It is blame-gaming, whining, a way of not taking responsibility, of not seeing your flaws and addressing them. You want to say "Girl, butch up, you are playing in the leagues, they get bruised in the leagues, they break each other's bones, they like to hit you low and hear the crack, it's like that for the boys and for the girls."

And because the charge of sexism is all of the above, it is, ultimately, undermining of the position of women. Or rather it would be if its source were not someone broadly understood by friend and foe alike to be willing to say anything to gain advantage.

Ann Althouse said...

Mrs. Eleanor Stebbins said..."How much does it cost to maintain this blog?"

$100,000 a year, so maybe a $20 contribution is in order. Hit the PayPal button in the sidebar. If you are rich, and you want to be my patron, up to $100,00 or even more is perfectly appropriate.

damitajo1 said...

Of course the media fell in love with Obama, whether they want him to defeat McCain or not. Problem: they do not separate their emotions from the work as journalists. I am an academic, and there are students I think are just awesome, but I cannot grade them a certain way because they are "just awesome." I expect the media to separate their own personal endorsement from reporting. But clearly, they dont.

AJ Lynch said...

I fear the Clintons are destined to be the next Carters.

vbspurs said...

John, Noonan's piece was extraordinary (not because it was all that well-written, verging on the cutesy), because it captured the double-standard and sense of victimisation that the Clintons embody.

AJ -- nah. I know what you're saying though, but Hillary has what it takes to be the most important female politician of her era, in the Senate.

The Carters are just so clueless. They both seethe envy and martyrdom; combined with their hyper-Christianity, that's very offputting.

Cheers,
Victoria

AJ Lynch said...

Victoria:

But mainly the Carters seethe with irrelevance which is what the Clintons are facing IMO.

Ann Althouse said...

I posted on the Noonan piece.

Ann Althouse said...

Maguro (11:24) got quoted on Instapundit.

AJ Lynch said...

Ann said:

"I posted on the Noonan piece"

That is why we pay you big bucks- $100,000 :)

Betty Croc said...

I'd like to see an itemized list, or invoice, showing $100,000.00 worth of business expenditures, equipment costs etc.. relating to this blog.

And meals, lodging, and clothing costs don't count.

blake said...

So would Ann, I'm sure.

Ann Althouse said...

Who are you to tell me what counts? The cost of maintaining this list is the cost of maintaining ME!

Christy said...

Dear Ann, you undervalue yourself.

I think we're underestimating the Media's long term planning. Should Obama win, what will the legacy media write or say that brings in readers or ad revenue? With Democrats in the White House and running both chambers of Congress how can they criticise the next administration without being racist? What controversies can they stir up to bring eyeballs to the page? Their very jobs are at stake, people.

John Stodder said...

I posted on the Noonan piece.

5:47 PM


Indeed you did. Sorry. I must've skipped over it when I saw the words "Peggy Noonan."

I actually used to like her. But now my only blonde pundit is you.

Maguro said...

Thanks for the heads-up!

I actually found your blog through Instapundit back in 2004 so it is kind of cool.

Patm said...

he's never seen anyone treated so disrespectfully just for running? Did he miss both the 2000 and 2004 elections and the way the press treated Dubya?

it hurts when the press has protected you for 15 years and they suddenly stop.

former law student said...

It's not even disputed she is the stronger general election candidate against McCain.

Oh really? According to the latest polls, Obama's margin of victory against McCain is more than twice as big as Clinton's:

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2008/president/national.html

Michael_H said...

$100K? You're worth every penny, and more.

vbspurs said...

The cost of maintaining this list is the cost of maintaining ME!

I want to donate. But my wallet practises cruely neutrality. :(

Cheers,
Victoria

blake said...

Mine just practices cruel derision, so it could be worse, vbspurs....