October 16, 2012

Hillary in '08: "The Buck Stops In The Oval Office."

Noted by BuzzFeed's Andrew Kaczynski (who might not be a liberal shill, as theorized the other day, and who is linked at Drudge, which must demonstrate the value of not being too much of a liberal shill).

"The buck stops here" is a powerful dictum. We see it in the McCain/Graham/Ayotte statement reprinted in the previous post: "The security of Americans serving our nation everywhere in the world is ultimately the job of the Commander-in-Chief. The buck stops there."

Watch Hillary say it in 2008:



The lady is tough. And now she steps up to "take responsibility." We could have given her responsibility in 2008, but we chose the guy who's standing back and allowing her to "take responsibility."

The BuzzFeed item notes that in the 2008 primaries, Hillary had presented herself as a hands-on leader:
"Being President means being both CEO and COO of one of the largest and most complex organizations in the world," Clinton said.

"I know that we can get on top of this, but it's going to require strong presidential leadership — it's going to require a President who knows from day one you have to run a government and manage the economy," Hillary Clinton added, using the flailing economy to hit Obama. "The buck stops in the Oval Office."
The Obama people — not Obama himself — pushed her back:
"The truth is that we're not running for chief of staff. We're running for President of the United States," David Axelrod said, adding the President's role was to "provide direction and leadership."
Interesting use of "we."
"I think sometimes there's a relentless pursuit of the little picture over there at the Clinton campaign," Axelrod continued. "There are bigger issues at stake here."
Obama was above it all. Up in the stratosphere of visions and dreams. He didn't even drop by to tell Hillary she was wrong about the presidency. Axelrod had to take responsibility for that.

ADDED: Provide direction and leadership? He's leading from behind. Behind Hillary.

56 comments:

Jay said...

Hillary is the head of the State Department. Of course it's your fucking responsibility. You don't "take" that - It comes with the job. Thanks for telling me what your duties are, Hillary

Pogo said...

Many of her swipes at Obama are coming true.

What if she'd won?

MadisonMan said...

Hillary in '08: Bush, Clinton, Bush, Clinton.

I still say Thanks, but no thanks.

Shouting Thomas said...

Yeah, but that was before we had a black president!

Vetting and criticizing a black president cannot be allowed because the greater goal of finally conquering racism must prevail.

(Although, you'll discover after Obama's second term, if he has one, that the left will still be calling everybody they disagree with a "racist." That scam is too profitable to ever surrender.)

My girlfriend is a Republican, but she has steadfastly contended that Hillary would have been a better president, and I reluctantly agree. More experienced. More pragmatic.

AprilApple said...

Re-set buttons and dancing.

Pogo said...

It would be better for her if she'd just tell the truth about this guy.

I'd have a hell of a lot more respect for her. As it stands, her statement leaves many unanswered questions.

tim maguire said...

Prominent among the many things for which i will not soon forgive the Democratic Party: they nominated the clearly inferior candidate for the most important job in the world during a time of crisis.

Most for no better reason than that they thought it would be cool to vote for the black guy.

garage mahal said...

Since it didn't criticize Romney, we can now link to Buzzfeed. Yay!

Quayle said...

Obama is a mere willing fa├žade to a nasty group of power-hungry thugs.

He is going to get his butt kicked in this next debate because he is only a repeater of lines others write for him.

Obama himself doesn't have an original or logical thought in his head.

traditionalguy said...

Nice catch on Bill and Hillary's first nuanced statement that she IS the Presidential Democrat.

America's Politico needs to start in too...Hillary 2016.

S0 how will Bill and Hillary's Clinton News Network have its Candy girl approach the nuanced knife into the neck to Obama tonight? Stay tuned for a skilled matador using Bill Clinton's best shots.

Jay said...

garage mahal said...
Since it didn't criticize Romney, we can now link to Buzzfeed.


You are incapable of criticizing Obama in any manner under any circumstance.

Clown.

FleetUSA said...

Choom's true personality and (lack of) ability are clear from all of these actions, e.g. Arab Spring, Syria, ObamaCare, Simpson-Bowles.

He was never cut out to be a leader just a community organizer.

sdharms said...

Now, Ann, NOW will you still vote for Obama?

Tim said...

tim maguire said...

"Prominent among the many things for which i will not soon forgive the Democratic Party: they nominated the clearly inferior candidate for the most important job in the world during a time of crisis."

Right, but in the end, it was the voters who failed.

Those willing to think knew he was the least experienced candidate ever nominated (by far) by either major political party for president.

Some excuse voter ignorance by blaming the piss-poor media vetting; that's a dodge though, as his biography was all too available.

Nothing in his life equipped him for this job.

The only remaining question is, are the voters who made this mistake honest enough to admit it, and courageous even to fix it?

Polling data suggests "yes," but we don't really know yet, do we?

Superdad said...

Clinton's statement was a perfect political statement. By that I mean it said nothing, blamed others(the "security professionals" who made the actual decisions), implied she'd be the better president (i'll take responsibility, unlike Obama) and answered none of the important questions about the security failure (who told Rice to go on TV and spread the spontaneous protest narrative).

SomeoneHasToSayIt said...

Don't forget that if Hillary were not a powerful (mostly in a dowager sort of way) White woman, she would be in jail for Whitewater, Cattle futures, or both.

Curious George said...

Seriously, we are now going to sing praise for the virtues of Hillary?

She is part of this entire clusterfuck. She is taking no responsibility. She is just trying to save her ass.

Just another turd in the litterbox. Nothing more.

Scott M said...

"If the phone rings at 3am...how many people will be on the plane to Vegas?"

ricpic said...

The lady is tough.

The "lady" is as much of a zero as Zero.

Lynn Meadows said...

A stitch in time saves nine.

Alls well that ends well.

Once bitten twice shy.

Oh I could go on and on and on and on about cliches that are not applicable to the situation at hand. But I won't.

I'll just let Ann reprint them.

ndspinelli said...

Our prez is running out of butt boys and girls.

jdniner said...

It's still Obama's chicken. To me it looks like he is hiding behind skirts.

bearing said...

You don't have to sing Hillary's praises to see the possibility that she is trying to plant in Democrat voters' minds the regret that she wasn't the 2008 nominee.

DADvocate said...

Obama has a vision. A grand and glorious vision. A vision, I tell you. Why can't you dorks see this?

Mostly his vision is breaking par on the South Course at Andrews Air Force Base, but it is a vision.

creeley23 said...

Jennifer Rubin is writing in sync with Althouse today:

If Clinton wants to throw herself under the bus, far be it from me to object. But it is silly to think she is solely or even principally responsible for the debacle. Sorry, but the buck stops at the White House.

Chris said...

"Obama was above it all."

Benghazi is below Obama's pay grade.

Paddy O said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
cubanbob said...

Anyone who thinks Hillary would have been a better president than Choom is a fool. She would pushed the same agenda as Choom but more effectively. However bad things are now they would have been worse if she was elected in 2008.

creeley23 said...

I'm still not sure exactly how to read the tea leaves on Benghazi, but it's clear that the scandal can't be flushed down the memory hole as appeared to be the case a month ago.

Then I didn't like seeing Obama rising in the polls, but what really bothered me was that he was doing so in spite of having an American ambassador dragged out of a safe house by terrorists on the anniversary of 9-11, while Obama attended fundraisers and made TV show appearances, and the mainstream media ignored everything except Romney's "gaffe" and declared Romeny to have lost the election and crowned Obama the winner.

It was very surreal. It was the first time I've ever wondered what country I lived in.

Hagar said...

Hillary's statement is inline with what most "I take full responsibility for ..." statements meaning "I don't any such thing!"

And in this case she is correct within the meaning of the headlines; the State Department commands no military forces, the White House does.

As for the charges of additional security forces being requested from Tripoli and being denied in Washington; well, I do not see that she has been tied to that. Wasn't she in Pago Pago or some such place at the time? But that, or a large part of it, happened in her Department.

the wolf said...

Responsibility without consequence is not responsibility. It's nothing but empty words.

DADvocate said...

declared Romeny to have lost the election and crowned Obama the king.

FIFY

MadisonMan said...

Prominent among the many things for which i will not soon forgive the Democratic Party: they nominated the clearly inferior candidate for the most important job in the world during a time of crisis.

(eyeroll)

In contrast, the Republicans nominated someone truly stellar.

edutcher said...

Sad to say, though, the buck never stopped in the White House when he was chasing all the little does when Hillary lived there.

Ann Althouse said...

The lady is tough.

No, the lady's a wuss. She couldn't make a decision when she was "running" her campaign.

Pogo said...

Many of her swipes at Obama are coming true.

What if she'd won?


We'd probably have the same mess we have now.

What has she ever done in her life on her own?

Ideologically, there's almost no difference between her and Barry.

Remember, "It Takes A Village", "I pledge allegiance to the America that is yet to be"?

Craig said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jenn said...

"Responsibility without consequence is not responsibility. It's nothing but empty words."

Bingo. If she was truly responsible for this debacle - if her inaction or incompetence led directly to the assassination of our ambassador and 3 other men who were doing the job that she sent them to do - she needs to resign or be fired. Period.

This is still just spin. It makes Obama look weak, which he deserves, but it's all just spin. No one in this cowardly, incompetent administration even knows what the word accountability means. None of them have ever once had to face it. (With the exception of the awfully quiet David Petreus).

Cheryl said...

Well, Obama did say, "The buck stops with you." Apparently he was talking to Hillary at the time.

Scott M said...

No one in this cowardly, incompetent administration even knows what the word accountability means.

Accountability requires personal responsibility, and we all know that's a racist code word. Further, Accountability requires the ability to feel shame if one fails. These folks left shame behind a few decades ago.

Sam L. said...

She fell onto her sword, and backed into The Won, running him through.

Big Mike said...

Sorry, Professor, but the standard for taking responsibility was set by JFK following the Bay of Pigs. No waiting 33 days. No attempt to share blame with unnamed security professionals (who may or may not have been overruled by higher-ups at State). You accept all of the responsibility and you accept it immediately.

Second, if Hillary Clinton had been the nominee in 2008 she probably would have lost. You might be wildly in love with the notion of a female -- any female! -- president, but until Obama dropped his mask of alleged bipartisanship Hillary was unquestionably one of the most polarizing political figues of recent times. (Obama has since raised the political polarization bar to heights that I think are unreachable in the forseeable future.) I think McCain would have beaten her, not by a landslide but by enough to win.

Darrell said...

I predict that one day, the FBI will secure the crinme scene in Benghazi.

Nathan Alexander said...

If you've ever read the reports of an accident that resulted in fratricide, or a really huge blunder (like accidentally putting nukes on a B-52 instead of conventional missiles) you'll see that there are many, many safeguards already in place, but that some of the safeguards were skipped due to complacency or bad judgement.

Meaning, there are always multiple points where, if just one person spoke up, the disaster could have been avoided.

That is the case here.

If the POTUS had been taking his daily brief in person, and been giving leadership (asking questions, adjusting postures based on threat reporting, requesting follow-up, raising the bs flag when appropriate, etc), the murder of the Ambassador might* have been avoided.

If the requests for increased security had been approved, the murders might have been prevented.
Someone denied those requests. The person that denied those requests would not have been acting without direction from higher up, because it takes authority to approve or deny that sort of request.

In addition, those asking for increased (or asking to not have decreased) security were told, "no, and stop asking".

?!?

The very requests themselves were causing problems for someone in the chain.

Why?

Was someone trying to stop a paper trail if something went wrong?

Was someone feeling frustrated by having to follow orders to deny security that they didn't agree with?

The point is, the order to not increase security came from the very top in some manner.

Some possibilities come immediately to mind:
1) The POTUS directly ordered a lower security posture for political or ideological reasons.

2) The POTUS abandoned his normal duties by not attending the daily brief, sending the message that it didn't matter what decision was made.

3) The POTUS made a clear declaration that he had delegated authority for this type of situation to SecState. In this case, he is only responsible for a bad decision of trust. But that alone is good enough to disqualify him from continuing as President. This exact same argument applies to SecState Clinton, and to her top Deputy in charge of Middle East diplomatic posts, and/or Top Deputy in charge of security issues.

4) The POTUS delegated routine decisions, but retained final authority on any special circumstances, but his subordinates failed to recognize 9/11 as a special circumstance.
This is the only way that President Obama and/or Clinton could conceivably not be responsible for the murders, and not be disqualified from office due to poor judgement in selecting subordinates. Sometimes screw-ups do happen.

But if this were the case, it would not include the lies about the video, fingerpointing by Biden in a debate, the President going to sleep while the attack was underway and then jetting off to a fund-raiser the same day the news of the murder hit, and more than month going by without the POTUS taking any significant action at all in response to the embassy attack.

*(I say "might", because there are some indications that leaving the Ambassador nearly defenseless may have been a deliberate decision, in which case the murders would not have been due to mistakes...that's a whole 'nother level of accountability)

Nathan Alexander said...

Someone pointed out:
The bigger govt gets, the more it takes responsibility for, the worse it gets at doing extremely basic things.

This is the world that Democrats, liberals, and progressives want:

The UN regulating the internet, guns, "free" speech, tolerance...treating terrorist attacks as criminal actions...every event seen through the lens of how to not waste a crisis by using the crisis as a pretext to increase govt control over citizens' every day lives...

...and doing it all very badly, due to lack of accountability arising from a bloated bureaucratic structure where the "leaders" set priorities without taking responsibility for the details.

Everything is someone else's fault, always. All you need to do is:
1) make sure you are never held responsible for anything you do or choose
2) find someone with deep pockets to pay for any bad thing that ever happens to you
3) Make sure you have the right political stances to make sure you are a receiver of wealth distribution rather than a supplier

Strelnikov said...

If she is really responsible she should resign, not merely stand piously taking credit for it. I'm reminded of David Frye's imitation of Nixon: "I accept all of the responsibility...but none of the blame." Is she's responsible for this unprecedented fuck up, she should take it like a man and go.

PatCA said...

Is she tough? She is making a statement now that is a political calculation. I would have been more impressed if she had done it a month ago. It is the appearance of toughness.

The Dept she leads is obviously in chaos. And she is tough?

Cedarford said...

Sam L. said...
She fell onto her sword, and backed into The Won, running him through.

===============
Very well said.
This will be seen as many women that backed Hillary but came on board for Obama as him being feckless, irresponsible and wanting to hide behind her skirts by making Hillary the scapegoat.

It will further hurt Obama with women voters that hold him responsible but so weak he put Hillary out to take blame for failing to do enough in a terrorist attack.

Calypso Facto said...

Prominent among the many things for which i will not soon forgive the Democratic Party: they nominated the clearly inferior candidate for the most important job in the world during a time of crisis.

She apparently can't handle the Secretary job she's got in a time of crisis, but you want to promote her to the top spot anyways? Because even though she's a failure, she at least admits she's a failure??? Is that how low the bar's been set?

Dante said...

The lady is tough. And now she steps up to "take responsibility." We could have given her responsibility in 2008, but we chose the guy who's standing back and allowing her to "take responsibility."

She sure can take a beating, if that's what you meant. First from her philandering husband, then from the electorate, and now from Obama.

BarrySanders20 said...

Not skirt, Cedarford, pantsuit.

Obama is hiding behind Hillary's pantsuit.

traditionalguy said...

Hillary is tough as nails. And she would have done a better job as a liberal getting new liberal policies enacted than Obama has.

But Hillary is still pro-American, and therefore she would never have sought to destroy the USA as her only goal.

She would have made a good opponent to the excesses of the GOP thieves, like Democrats used to do. That ups the GOP's game.

exhelodrvr1 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
exhelodrvr1 said...

This does not demonstrate toughness on Hillary's part - "tough" would have been making that statement within a few days of the attack - not a month later. This is just political calculus on her part. Of course, Obama does look increasingly weaker the more we learn about this.

Mark said...

In contrast, the Republicans nominated someone truly stellar.

MadisonMan has a point. 2008 was definitely not a great year for collective decision making for either party.

ken in sc said...

She would have been a better president. For example, when it comes to crony-capitalism, Hillary would have picked winners instead of losers. She would have funneled government loans and contracts to Walmart and Tyson chicken.

The Godfather said...

This idea that Hillary was a serious and qualified candidate for president and Obama was not, is half right.

Obama wasn't.

But neither was Hillary. All her vaunted "experience", all those foreign leaders she'd met, was as FIRST LADY, for crying out loud! She was Nancy Reagan in a pants suit.

Oh, but now, she's had four years as Secretary of State, so now she's experienced? She's been a lousy, incompetent Secretary of State. She's Madeleine Albright in a pants suit.

Bob Boyd said...

Obama to Hillary:
"I didn't say it was your fault, I said I was going to blame you."