July 30, 2013

"We’re... baffled by Huma’s choice because women no longer need to be professionally affixed to a man to make inroads in business or politics..."

"... especially when they’ve got a résumé like hers. Two decades ago, Hillary needed Bill, that much we could understand."

What bullshit! Written by Ann Friedman in New York Magazine under the heading ("Stand by Your Man? How Huma Can Do What Hillary Couldn’t"). I don't give a damn about Huma or what happens to her, but this is unmitigated trash about Hillary. Hillary did not need Bill. Not 2 decades ago, when he was running for President, and not 4 decades ago, when she graduated from Yale Law School.

In fact, there was strong pressure on women back in 1992 and 1973, even more than now, to go it alone and not stand behind some man. Hillary knew it was a career risk to go to Arkansas with Bill, and she chose it with eyes open. Friedman is purveying some made-up social history, asserting that we "understand" it, like it's in our cultural memory. But it's completely untrue.

I was around back then, and I remember the messages to women in 1973, the year Hillary graduated from Yale Law School, which was the year I graduated from college (and I read all the feminist books of that era). By 1981, the year I graduated from law school, the message that woman had independent careers and were not destined to be helpmeets to their men was itself so old-fashioned that it wasn't even said anymore. And by 1992, the year of Hillary's sit-by-your-man interview on "60 Minutes," radical feminism — with its active distancing from patriarchy — had been tearing through the culture for years.

Such pathetic nonsense about Hillary and her place in history. And as for Huma, the notion that she could now be some pathbreaker is so stupid I don't know where it came from. Some people — who are they? — got fixated on her — why? Because she's somewhat attractive? Because she's somewhat attractive and Muslim? Because she's somewhat attractive, Muslim, and close to Hillary? I'd like those people to confess what they're so enamored about. I bet they won't, because it's nothing but stupidity.

ADDED: I suspect that Hillary and Bill are responsible for screwing up the cultural memory. So many people subordinated their feminism to Democratic Party interests during the Lewinsky scandal. It erased memory of earlier feminist progress.


David-2 said...

a. Exactly corrent on all counts.

b. (Meta comment: I think your posts on political issues, especially as they concern your ideas on feminism, have gotten sharper since you disallowed comments. Sharper, meaning in this case, that I believe you now more precisely state your argument, rather than leaving it as a guessing game for the readers to read clearly, as I think you sometimes used to do.)

c. (Meta comment: I like your new experiment in opening comments for some posts only. It not only makes these blog posts more interesting to have comments, it also leads to another guessing game for readers - why comments for this post and not that post? - but it is one I'm going to enjoy playing.)

The Peak said...

Hey, I'll say it: I don't find Huma that attractive. And, more importantly, the more I read about her, the more I wonder what the heck it is that she does? What does she do? What does she know? What is her expertise? Is it of any value at all?

Ann Althouse said...

(Note: I published David's comment, but please don't talk about the comments policy in the comments thread, unless it's a post about the comments policy. Suffice it to say, I am experimenting and trying to cultivate something better than what things had devolved when I cut off comments back on July 7th. Hence the moderation, with unfortunate attendant delays, and the selected posts for comments. Email me if you have comments on comments, and it's something I might write about separately.)

Mousebert said...

I believe it was Michael Medved who said years ago that he knew the Clinton from Yale and that Hillary was very much in love with Bill.

While they may have shared ambitions, it likely she stuck with Bill because she wanted to.

Ann Althouse said...

When I see Huma and Weiner side by side, they both have this artificially sinewy, lean-and-hungry look that makes me wonder if it's arrived at naturally.

CJinPA said...

Huma gained attention due to her proximity to Hillary. (Why do the Boston Red Sox get so much coverage? Proximity to Yankees.)

What’s interesting is that, Hillary or Huma, everyone is agreeing that these marriages serve mainly as political arrangements, and the debate is simply over whether or not the political benefits favor Huma enough to stay.

I recall increasing feminist irritation with Hillary’s devotion to Bill as the rumors mounted, and after Lewinsky. The irritation subsided at the exact same rate her power increased.

78a0268c-f947-11e2-a7cd-000bcdcb2996 said...

Not trying to be sarcastic, but do you think Hillary would be mentioned as a Presidential contender if she never married Bill? I don't. I do think she would have been very successful without him, though.

Ann Althouse said...

Here's something else about Friedman's bafflement. There are thousands of highly accomplished women in this country with resume credentials that should impress us, many of whom are working to establish themselves independently. That some of these women, like Huma, have chosen to be a sidekick to another person isn't surprising. It's selection bias: you're already looking at her. Look somewhere other than next to a powerful man if you want to see more of these other women.

cold pizza said...

Huma is a "good" Muslim. She's the poster child for those who point and cry Islamaphobia at the ignorant mass of Americans. She is the poster child for transnationalism.

For those who don't delve into her history or affiliations, of course. Blind eye and all that. -CP

Ralph Hyatt said...

She also has the right enemies, especially Michelle Bachmann.

Alice Enland said...

I have to take issue with you. Do you really think we'd be looking at a 2nd Hillary run for the White House, following stints as a Senator and a Secy of State had she remained Hillary Rodham?

Matthew Sablan said...

Sarah Palin got to where she is without her husband having to cheat on her.

[This is called Bomb Throwing.]

SteveR said...

Huma was more "attractive" when she was more hidden, in plain sight, her association with Weiner makes her very ordinary. Whatever she's about is tainted by her long relationship with Hillary and we really don't know much about that. In any case the Muslim Brotherhood angle is an ender. Arab Spring-great...

cold pizza said...

Speaking of powerful women not needing a trophy husband (which booby prize in Hell did I win?), did anyone else notice the same level of admiration given to Condi Rice during her tenure as SoS? -CP

Edward said...

Hillary befriended Huma to gain
access to Huma's Mid-East connections ?

Carol said...

Female law students were different back then anyway, I hear. I knew a lawyer who occasionally worked as an adjunct, and I remember how dismayed he was that the women at LS were these homely Andrea Dworkin types with wild ratty hair and wearing big long Mother Hubbard skirts.

I guess he expected something more stylish, like a sharp young legal secretary dresses.

Toby said...

"Not trying to be sarcastic, but do you think Hillary would be mentioned as a Presidential contender if she never married Bill? I don't. I do think she would have been very successful without him, though."

I agree. I'm going only on memory here, but the 2000 Democratic National Convention had a portion dedicated to honoring the achievements of female Democratic politicians. After introducing woman senators, representatives, governors, etc., the final woman to come on stage, clearly presented as the pinnacle of female political achievement to date, was Hillary, who at the time hadn't actually achieved anything in the political arena outside of being first lady.

Dale Mader said...

Thank you for that "somewhat" preceding attractive. Everything I've read so far makes her out to be some kind of beauty queen. She isn't even close.

R. Chatt said...

The author Ann Friedman looks to be in her 30's at most so her "recollections" of how things used to be are simply her fantasies about history.

But if Friedman actually knew what was happening with women around the time of the 60 Minutes interview she would understand that Hillary actually put her own career back for the sake of her husband's ambitions. He was running for President and the Clintons were appealing to middle America politically. Huma appears to be doing the same thing but middle America has changed. Friedman got that part right.

I liked Hillary Clinton and felt bad when she was shoved out by Barack Obama. I even respected her party loyalty and work ethic to serve as Secretary of State. But I like her a lot less since her dramatic obfuscation in her Benghazi testimony -- the infamous "what difference does it make?" That was calculated and cold.

MadisonMan said...

Huma looks very sad to me. Beaten. Not lean and hungry at all.

But yes yes yes to the comment that people are fixated on her (and others) because they are first looking at her husband. It's the Power Couple syndrome, IMO. Everyone aspires to that on the East Coast, apparently.

David said...

Everyone knows Hillary hung with her cheating husband, like some hillbilly gold digger, to ride his coattails into places she never could have on her own scheming merits. Because she has further ambitions, she's milking Huma's desperate celebrity for all it's worth. Has America come merely to this? O tempora. O mores.

Stephanie Carnes said...

Merely as women, neither Hillary nor Huma *needed* a man to make inroads into politics. Why, then, did they attach themselves to such scoundrels? Remember all the Hillary/Huma Sapphic rumors? While a woman can be successful in national politics without a man, can an out-and-proud lesbian? If Bill and Anthony are beards, maybe that's why their wives put up with their philandering.

Ann Althouse said...

"Huma looks very sad to me. Beaten. Not lean and hungry at all."

Would you accept: ravaged and hollowed out?

The 2 of them, to me, look like they are aggressively into weight loss, in an unhealthy way that messes up the face.

Ann Althouse said...

"Everyone knows Hillary hung with her cheating husband, like some hillbilly gold digger, to ride his coattails into places she never could have on her own scheming merits."

He seems like more of the hillbilly. He was smart to know he needed what she had to offer.

I suspect she really was very attached to him emotionally and sexually, that he inspired that, and she paid the price.

Carl said...

It is interesting how both the past and the future are interpreted according to the mythology and struggles of the present, no?

Women will have been oppressed by the patriarchy "not that long ago" (i.e. just outside the adult memory of those of median voting and public debating age, say 35) until the nature of the current debate changes. If it doesn't change until 2020, June Cleaver will have lived and thrived until 2000, and if it doesn't change until 2030, she'll have lingered until 2010, et sequens.

It's like the fact that fusion power has been "ten years away" for something like half a century. So are possible cures for cancer and the elimination of poverty and prejudice. The latter two will be "ten years away" in politician's speeches until the Sun burns out, I warrant.

This is one of the reasons old people are crotchety, I think. You listen to some whippersnapper opining sententiously about "how far we have come" and you realize his ideas about the past are complete made-up bullshit to suit his present argument, or the prism through which he must view the past to please him about his present.

bpm4532 said...

Everything about this is odd. Huma's ability to work remotely as deputy chief of staff for Hilary and her ability to get income from other Clinton aligned foundations. It would be interesting to see what marvelous accomplishments Huma achieved.

Maybe Hilary just needed a terrorist-linked, female Muslim, Saudi-raised, married to a NYC Jewish male to fill out the rainbow standing behind her.

Matthew Sablan said...

Condi Rice: Secretary of State, didn't even need a husband, let alone a cheating one, to get there.

[This is Advanced Bomb Throwing]

Kirk Parker said...

Althouse and The Peak cut right to the chase: where is this ridiculous Huma-mania coming from???

And I don't really buy the Middle East access aspect: there are plenty of people who could provide that without her baggage or her lack of actual credentials + experience. What she does have merely makes her suspect, in a security-clearance sense.

Alex said...

Womyn power, hail it.

raf said...

Stephanie Carnes: If Bill and Anthony are beards ...

"Beards" seems wrong, under the circumstances; we need a distinctive female characteristic to be anatomically analogous. How about, "If Bill and Anthony are boobs ..." That seems right, somehow.

gregq said...

I remember "A Woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle." That was a not very avant garde T-Shirt in the mid 1980s.

~ Nona said...

Adding to Mousebert's comment that Michael Medved, who knew the Clintons while they were at Yale, said they were very much in love.

I recall Dick Morris saying that Bill once told him that he could not imagine his old age without Hillary. They shared so much, went through so much, and held the same world view.

traditionalguy said...

Seems to me that Huma is a submissive role player that American women need not do anymore. That is because although she is a Muslim from a ruling level Arab family to whom her allegiance belongs, she must remain a woman in a Muslim eyes.

That makes Huma a super fifth columnist about to insert herself inside our White House down in our Monuments Capitol, and as a twofer, about to insert herself inside the actual Capitol of the United States, which remains New York City.

Gahrie said...

I suspect she really was very attached to him emotionally and sexually, that he inspired that, and she paid the price.

We men really are bastards aren't we?

damikesc said...

I think Hillary needed Bill to have any modicum of political power. She seems unlikable which is a killer politically. Huma seems to be a non-entity. She's "profound" with zero evidence of it.

For me, I have little respect for women who will allow anybody to just walk all over them. It doesn't make one respect their decisiveness or loyalty. It makes them look like fools.

And it is odd that many women who literally didn't use a man to help them at all, such as Palin and Rice, are loathed by people who profess to respect that.

It seems that if you want women who say that women don't need men to succeed to support you, you really need to be a rider of a man's coattails.

El Pollo Raylan said...

Ann Althouse said...

Would you accept: ravaged and hollowed out?

That resonates with her concavity and Weiner's convexity.

Hagar said...

It is Bill and Hillary (or the other way around) that makes up Clinton, Inc.

Separately, Bill could have wound up like his half-brother Roger, or-- given his proclivity for violence to women - rather worse, and Hillary could have wound up playing 2nd fiddle to Phyllis Schlafly.

It is the combination of talents that made them deadly.

Anthony said...

Hillary Rodham could have been her generation's Dianne Feinstein. Imagine if she'd married some rich guy who isn't that into politics, moved somewhere like Milwaukee or St. Paul, run for council, then Mayor, then U.S. Senate. She'd end up being considered as a Veep contender for Al Gore's 1992 Presidential run, and, if selected, would be well placed as a candidate in her own right in 2000. Unless Gore choose that charismatic but not terribly ambitious governor of Arkansas instead.

Hagar said...

What price?

The Clintons have an estimated direct worth of somewhere around 200-250 million + command of the half-billion dollar double-wide in Little Rock + "some" "non-profit" charities.

Bill wants to be the center of attention and show everyone how quick and clever he is; for Hillary, it is money and power, and boy, has she got it!

BlueDun said...

Proximity to a more powerful spouse, whether governor or president, is highly beneficial, regardless of sex. That Hillary is a woman just confused the issue. Ann is right about the times and history. Once Bill was governor and then president, however, Hillary could only benefit her upward trajectory by remaining with him. Regardless of one's talents, coattails are powerful things. Huma may have made a the same mistaken assumption as Friedman about power, learning the wrong lesson from Hillary. Huma has proven to be strategically inept.

Forbes said...

Neither Abedin nor Weiner have anything impressive on display as far as credentials or experience. Abedin has a BA from George Washington. Weiner a BS from SUNY Plattsburgh. Both started as interns for politicians, either while as a student or upon graduation. Abedin--continuously for Hillary, and Weiner moved on to city council, then Congress for 7 terms--with no significant legislative accomplishment. Yet, the media deal with these two as if they were a power couple--yet, they have no actual power and have accomplished nothing in the real world. The epitome of empty suits and a voyeur media...

Marty Keller said...

Appreciate Althouse's surgical dissection of this silly article, but, really, do we have to revisit this yet again? Liberals' love of social engineering inevitably renders them vulnerable to hypocrisy because they refuse to lavish all that hopey-changey energy upon themselves first. If they actually engaged in a fearless moral inventory they would dial back all those sad projections overnight.

Kaja said...

she is a Muslim from a ruling level Arab family

Abedin is a Muslim, but not an Arab; she has an Indian father and a Pakistani mother. They lived in Saudi Arabia during her youth, so she's fluent in Arabic.

hawkeyedjb said...

I read quite a bit about Huma being an accomplished woman, without ever reading of her actual accomplishments. Does anybody know what they are?

Carl said...

I think there's another dimension to the Hill 'n' Bill show.

I've met many career women like Hillary: intrinsically smart (if not brilliant), organized, careful, attentive to detail, good at connections and deadlines and going the extra mile -- but just not very inspired, or creative.

They can Get The Job Done very well, in fact so well that merely being a lieutenant or adjunct executing someone else's vision is boring by mid-career. They long vaguely for something more, for a bigger challenge and bigger success.

Often, and particularly in the feminist dogma, that route has been seen to be taking the leadership Big Dog High Priest Vision-Thing Seer role herself. But the problem is, when they try it, they just don't have that weird spark of inspiration that sets off the genuine leader. When given a chance at leadership, they labor mightily and bring forth mice. We can...streamline our operations! Increase efficiency by 0.2%! Er...green jobs? Nothing really catches fire, inspires, moves. It's all sensible shoes stuff. They can manage decline well enough, or keep the boat steady, but growth and revolution just aren't in their DNA.

So...what? Well, the one place you can readily find that weird spark is often enough in some flawed man. He has that weird magnetic field of breathtaking new ideas, inspirations -- along with, alas, some savage personal flaws. (He drinks, he can't handle his money, he loves to impress the ladies with his bullshit or his tool.)

I can see that as a real attraction. Either (1) I can use this floor show as the fountain of inspiration, he can be the fount of ideas behind the throne, or (2) I can learn how to do it and do it myself in time. (2) is probably more plausible, because he's bound to have too much ego for (1).

I wouldn't be surprised if Bill struck Hill that way when they were young. We know he loves to bullshit. I bet when he was young and his mind agile, he was full of big inspiring ideas, and she may have known herself well enough to know she was not, never would be, and perhaps with his brilliant imagination and her competence they could conquer the world.

They almost did. But she was perhaps overimpressed with his ideas, which weren't as good as she thought (I don't get the impression Bill himself was taken in by his own bullshit.) She never did learn to do it herself, never did learn the human skills of politics, and hence I think Hillary Clinton missed her life's calling. She would probably have made a very good and well-respected central banker, or corporate lawyer and senior VP, and done far more to open high-salary high-respect positions for younger women. But politics was probably a profound mistake.

The Godfather said...

I don't understand Huma-Anthony and don't want to delve into that pit of human peculiarness, but Hillary-Bill appears pretty straight-forward.

At the beginning, they seem to have shared both passion for each other and political ambition. They felt they could be partners in seeking to realize that ambition -- and they probably realized that the track more likely to lead to success for their ambitions was for Bill to be the pol. This wasn't only because a man had an easier road toward high office in 1973 than a woman, but because of their personalities. Bill is a natural politician; even people who hate his politics and despise his character have told me they can't help liking him. Hillary, on the other hand, is easy to dislike. This was proved in 2008 and may be proved again in 2016.

In 1992, if Hillary had not "stood by her man", and Bill had lost the presidential nomination and with it his hopes for national office, a newly-divorced Hillary Rodham would have had no obvious path toward high political office. I am not saying that this is why she stood by him; I can't read her soul. But it's hard to imagine that it didn't enter her mind.

dbp said...

Bill Clinton, for all his flaws is very believable as a man who could inspire loyalty and love in a normal woman. Weiner, on the other hand, comes across as cold and weird. This makes me wonder about Huma:

1. At the time they got married, she was just as famous as her new husband, so it doesn't look like latching on to a rising star.

2. One might say, Weiner is magnetic just like Bill Clinton. After all, he got reasonably attractive women to sext with him--yes, but not reasonably attractive non-prole women. These partners come across as star-struck worshipers of men with power.

3. I find Huma very attractive, though perhaps a bit tattered from stress. As for Anthony, he clearly puts some work into staying fit but given his hawk-like features, he might look better a little pudgy.

4 Huma is supposedly a faithful Muslim, so it has got to be a little weird marrying a Jew.

Martha said...

I agree wholeheartedly with Althouse's assessment of feminism in the 1970's. I was one year behind Hillary at Wellesley. The college president (Ruth Adams) and many of the faculty were single professional women and proud of it. The students-- all female-- were encouraged to aspire to professional achievement. The pursuit of a Mrs. Degree was denigrated. We were told to go forth and make a substantive contribution to society--not to latch on to a man
to achieve a goal.

David said...

It's impossible to say whether Hillary would have had a successful political career if she had not been married to Bill. The two are so intertwined that it's hard to imagine each without the other.

I have never thought that Hillary is super smart, but she is shrewd. She is tough, ruthless and can be single minded. She has the requisite self centered view. She might well have been very successful politically. Because of Bill, she never had to be tested on her own, but that does not mean she would not have met the test. (I consider 2008 to have been a special case, clouded by guilt induced Obama madness.)

We know for certain that Bill would have been dead politically without Hillary. She had the power to destroy him in 1992 and again in 1998. She chose not to do so, for complicated reasons. But these reasons probably were predominately emotional rather than her political self interest. Hillary could have used the Lewinsky matter as a springboard for her own political ambitions.

I hope Hillary Clinton will not become President because, like her husband, she is an accomplished and remorseless liar. But that does not mean that she would have failed on her own. Far from it.

Ralph Hyatt said...

Huma is supposedly a faithful Muslim, so it has got to be a little weird marrying a Jew.

I thought that also.

I have also seen her described as a "practicing Muslim."

What does that mean? Does she pray towards Mecca five times a day? Fast during Ramadan? Gives alms to the poor? Has gone on or plans on going on the Hajj?

Since most reporters don't seem to have a basic understanding of Christianity, I don't find it surprising that they lack knowledge of Islam. However, being an observant or practicing Muslim means performing certain acts in order to please God and earn salvation, what acts is she performing?

Because, vaguely worded sentences about being "observant" would seem to be lacking in the "actually communicate information to the readers" department.

Edward Lunny said...

If either Hillary or huma didn't need the men they married, neither would have married. Some have suggested that access and contacts led to both arrangements. I suspect that there was, and still is, a certain lack of confidence to go it alone. In the end, neither is any different than any common street walker for selling themselves to "johns" for financial benefit.
In light of that and the price that they have set for themselves. What and who wouldn't they sell themselves for ,for further financial and personal gain. Certainly raises some interesting moral and ethical questions, the first of which is about the total lack of both of those values.

Truckee Man said...

Name one thing HRC has succeeded at. She would be doing wills and divorces without Bill. She got fired from her Watergate job for ethics violations. As for Bill, he's an immoral scumbag. They both are. Huma is the poor man's HRC.

Tom said...

Hillary was very protective of her career. When she was at RLF in Little Rock, she was a very poorly paid partner because she didn't take controversial cases for her clients. She avoided unions and labor disputes like the plague. Bill and Hillary always had their eye on a bigger prize and she put up with Bill's woman chasing because they hitched their stars to each other's wagons.

[thanks for the moderate moderation]

Glen Filthie said...

Oh I dunno, A-house.

Divorce, whether you want to acknowledge it or not - is a failure. That woman for one reason or another couldn't keep her man happy. It reflects poorly on her because she obviously misjudged her man...what will her lack of judgement cost if she were to assume public office?

Shouting Thomas said...

Puzzling responses.

Husbands and wives usually share the same kinks. That's part of what attracts them to one another.

Strange absolution of the woman here, by simply assuming she's not acting sexually of her own volition.

My bet is that Huma enjoys Tony's kink and shares it with him, albeit she appears better able to manage her kink discreetly.

These comments reek with the usual (and wrong) assumption that women are not interested in kinks and perversion and are dragged into the mud by the devious husband. Many women like the mud and flop in it like happy pigs.

As the only resident and out whoremonger among this high toned crowd, let me say that many beautiful, professional, sexy women among you are happily kinky and perverted, and often manage their kinks and perversion with great discretion.

That would be my educated guess about what motivates Huma to "stay." The kinks are what attracted her in the first place.

Sharkcutie said...

I am never sure if this joke is insulting to Hillary or not but I find it quite amusing:

Bill and Hillary are being driven to a function through the midwest countryside. The stop at a gas station so both can visit the restroom. When Bill walked back to the limousine, he saw Hillary hugging a gas station attendant who was wearing overalls and covered inn grease. Bill got in the car and Hillary did too soon after. As they were driving away, Bill asked Hillary who she was hugging. She said it was a guy she dated from high school. Bill looked at her and said: "Aren't you glad you married me, I am president of the United States." Hillary looked at Bill and said: "If I had married him, he would have been president of the United States."

Jeff said...

I do not understand why so many people think Hillary Clinton is smart. What evidence is there of this? Have you ever read anything she's written and been impressed? Do her interviews show any ability to think on her feet?

The 2008 primary debates showed both Obama and Clinton to be run-of-the-mill conventional pols serving up standard liberal pablum. But Obama, at least, could think on his feet. Hillary wasn't in the same league. And while Obama had few accomplishments to his name before he ran for President, Hillary had even fewer. She was elected to a Senate seat because she was married to Bill. Once there, and ever since, she has accomplished nothing of any note.

So just where is this evidence of genius?

Matthew Sablan said...

"If either Hillary or huma didn't need the men they married, neither would have married."

-- Rich and powerful people can fall in love with people they oughtn't fall in love with just as easily as poor and stupid people.

Carol said...

look like they are aggressively into weight loss

Yeah her facial features seem oversized, the way Karen Carpenter's were, right before...anyway people like that seem so tense, like they're scared to death they'll fall of the aggressive weight loss wagon and pork out.

Hey how about a post about Aggressive Weight Loss?

Kchiker said...

"Sarah Palin got to where she is without her husband having to cheat on her."

Which is where, exactly?

One thing Hillary and Sarah have in common is that Republicans don't really like either one of them.

Mousebert said...

Anthony said..."Hillary Rodham could have been her generation's Dianne Feinstein..."

Dianne Feinstein only came to prominence because Dan White kill George Moscone and Harvey Milk. She would unlikely be a national figure now if that had not happened.

On the other hand, I would not want to be the person between Hillary and what she wants. Reason enough not to choose her as VP.

Big Mike said...

My wife was working on a doctoral dissertation in nuclear science when we were dating in the early 1970's, so I beg to differ with you regarding the alleged pressure on women to "go it alone, and not stand behind some man." Yes to the zeitgeist circa 1981, but in 1973 a full professor in the hard sciences could still get away with throwing male graduate students ahead of my wife in the queue for running cyclotron experiments "because he will get married and have a wife and kids to feed." A tenured professor in the hard sciences could get away with telling my wife to be that she "would just be taking a job away from a man." Yes, they were two different professors. And that was then, by 1981 male professors in STEM could still laugh about making it difficult for female grad students, but by then at least they had to be careful about what they said and in front of whom.

Beyond that, I certainly concur with your assertion that by 1992 radical feminism "had been tearing through the culture for years." But! Radical feminism has always subverted itself to the interests of the Democrat party, starting in 1982 with pushing Frank Lautenberg into the Senate over Millicent Fenwick, a strong feminist who had the temerity to be a Republican.

So what I'm saying is that "subordinating their feminism to Democratic party interests" was also a well-established pattern long before Hillary sat by her man on 60 minutes. I assert that the problem for Huma isn't that it is contrary to feminist doctrine to subvert her pride to her Democrat politician husband's phony apologies. In my opinion that schtick has gotten old to the people at large. I think the wives of Democrat horn dogs could learn a lot from Jenny Sanford.

JackOfClubs said...

This is a good example of the distinction between activism and radicalism. Activism seeks justice and, when it achieves it, rejoices and gets on with life. Radicalism often talks the language of justice but what it really wants is change. But, change being inherently not a status, radicalism can never recognize when it has won so it perpetually keeps fighting the same battles over and over. It can never even acknowledge progress because that would detract from the urgency of the struggle.

m11_9 said...

Forbes 3:33 said much more kindly, what I would crassly say:

Huma and Anthony are the latest NYC assholes only famous for being famous.

As a resident of flyover country, I am offended at what the center of the media universe has to offer to the unwashed like me.

What is this distracting us from?

Victor Erimita said...

We can debate Hillary's woulda, coulda, shouldas all day long. But we know or sure what she did, and did not, do. She followed Bill to Arkansas, where she committed multiple crimes at the Rose Law Firm to advance her and Bill's careers. Of course, she never paid for those crimes.

We know she has never actually accomplished anything of note. Her election to the Senate and appointment to State obviously occurred because of her association with Bill. And even if you give her part credit for his success and therefore her own political advancement, what concrete accomplishments as Senator or Secretary of State can anyone point to?

Hillary has always had the stench of supreme entitlement about her, an elite disdain for all lesser beings. She is better, smarter, more enlightened than the rest of us, and she has always thought it was her destiny to lead, which for her means rule, us. In that way, and in her lack of accomplishments, she is not much different from our current president. Except now she looks joyless and furious that her destiny was not granted to her. If she is elected, we will see the "hell hath no fury" trope lived out in spades. She will be a perfect horror of dirty tricks, revenge, abuse of power, contempt for all opposition, real and imagined. Obama is a naive child compared with Hillary. She, not he, will be the tyrant we all fear.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

With Gennifer Flowers, the difference between having a 12 year affair and having casual sex some number of times over a 12 year period, and calling the first a lie without quite acknowledging or denying the second, together had the effect of creating a secure space for his wife Hillary and their marriage.

"Wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute. You're looking at two people who love each other. This is not an arrangement or understanding, this is a marriage, that's a very different thing."

Maybe that was a lie, but if so it was lovely lie and very convincingly told.

The comparison to Anthony Weiner is that he isn't doing enough to create that secure space for his wife and their marriage.

Gabriel Hanna said...

Some people — who are they? — got fixated on her — why?

exotic background
looks good in expensive clothes
highly accomplished
close to the Clintons

The Obamas haven't got anyone nearly as interesting to the media as they themselves are--the only woman around them who gets that kind of attention is the First Lady herself, which is much more understandable.

I was never a Clinton-hater but I tired of them long ago, and the adoration of the media class for the political class has been revolting to me for nearly as long.

Michael Deloatch said...

Maybe she just loves the poor sod. Not every one calculares affairs of the heart on machiavellian or utilitarian terms. Even fob / foh's

AprilApple said...

Power, greed and money. That's what propels democrats.

Sarah Palin didn't rise to the top in Alaska with any of the power greed & money that launches democrats and their wives into power.
The only reason Palin is hated by the left is simply because she, a women, dared to criticize the left's sacred golden idol. The MSM were so angered, and they had to topple Palin. This is the shape corruption, greed and power have taken in modern America.

colleen cafferty said...

I would disagree.

I'm a 1992 person, rather than a 1973 person, but do you really think that Hillary would be Secretary of State if she had not hitched herself to Bill?

I remember an article when I was in college where they called her "the good Yoko". Yeah, she would maybe have a nice law practice, but no way she'd be privy to the levels of power she is. And that still can hold true even today - though the percentages are far far better.

It mattered. It mattered It mattered. It still does, but it especially mattered then when the wall had not begun to give and there weren't so many inroads. You need contacts in life, and 90 percent of the contacts back then were male. And would a male who was not linked to you have your best interests at heart?

Nowadays it is much better because most guys in a position of power have raised a daughter in a hands on fashion that they have big dreams for. This makes them treat all women better and less like a fresh meat intern.

Geez, it's gotten significantly better since 92 much less 73.

I know you like to be above all this shit, but come on. As Chris Rock used to say, yeah yeah for your A+ students. Tell me about your C students. Does a white C student do better than a black C student?

Zach said...

Hillary did not need Bill. Not 2 decades ago, when he was running for President, and not 4 decades ago, when she graduated from Yale Law School.

Oh, give me a break. Name one other member of the Yale 1973 law school class. All very successful people in their own way, I'm sure, but Bill Clinton was the winning lottery ticket in that particular crowd.

Hillary has her own virtues and her own failures, but everything she has accomplished on the national stage stem directly from being married to the most talented politician of his generation.

Woody Pfister said...

I don't have an opinion as to why Hillary went to Arkansas with Bill, other than she married him, probably for a lot of reasons.

I agree she's smarter and more anlytical than Bill, but not a better politician than him. I don't believe she has the political skills to have risen to the point of electability in New York or the country without him.

Inga said...

I'm not perplexed by why both women stayed in thier marriages. Hillary was every bit as politically driven as was Bill. Perhaps they had an understanding, a deal that she would help him succeed and then he would reciprocate. His sexual pecidillos were merely a momentary hurdle to them. I don't think she could've gotten where she is now without his success. He was a dog, but she didn't care. The political timing was not in her favor to run for President first.

In Huma's case, I believe she may have been swayed to stay with Anthony with visions of the Governor's mansion in her head. I don't think she is driven politically as is Hillary and will soon be filing for divorce after he loses the Governor's race. She looks downtrodden and embarrassed to me.

Alice Enland said...

The Clintons scare me to death. I think Hillary got into politics for the money and I think Bill got into politics to attract women. Aside from that, neither care about much else.

Bill Clinton was president for 8 years and had one accomplishment, being the welfare reform laws, which republicans shoved down his throat 3x before he signed off on it. Aside from that, most honest folks cannot name another thing he did.

Hillary's career as a senator was a laugher, and she was a terrible secretary of state. Probably the first (and hopefully the last) to take the phone off the hook and go to sleep when one of her ambassadors was being murdered half way around the world.

Does anyone doubt that Bill made millions while acting on behalf of foreign interests and whispering pillow talk into Hillary's ears while she was in charge of the state department?

They are each very base people, and this country is in dire danger whenever either of them has access to great power.

Gahrie said...

Hillary has her own virtues and her own failures, but everything she has accomplished on the national stage stem directly from being married to the most talented politician of his generation.

Personally I consider both President Clinton and President Obama to be more con man and huckster than actual politician. I will say this though...at least Clinton worked with the Republicans in Congress to run the country.

mtrobertsattorney said...

What exactly did Hillary accomplish during her tenure as Secretary of State? Anything?

Ernst Stavro Blofeld said...

In 1992 Hillary stood by her man because she wanted to be in the White House. That's pretty much the complete and total story. She probably stuck with Bill before that because being a Governor's wife isn't such a bad gig for a policy dabbler, either.

I don't know why Huma is doing the same. Weiner is obviously damaged goods now. Maybe she thinks it will preserve access to the Clintons, though that doesn't seem to be working out so well.

Ernst Stavro Blofeld said...

"I agree she's smarter and more anlytical than Bill"

Really? No way. I've never seen much in the way of smarts from Hillary, and she's not a very good politician. Enforcer, sure. She'll have Sid Blumenthal say mean things about you in home room. Can you name any policy initiative from Hillary that was both notable and not a failure?

Minus Bill, can anyone imagine her being more than maybe a state legislator from a safe Democratic district?

Kirk Parker said...


Karla Homolka, eh?

Gabriel Hanna said...

I have to say I don't care for explanations that deny Huma's agency, those that compare her to a battered wife or say that because she grew up Muslim she doesn't know how to stand up for herself.

I think these are the likely explanations, in no particular order:

a) She loves him, has a baby with him, and takes marriage very seriously despite his behavior. To her a divorce would be a calamity that does not compare with a failed campaign or three.

b) She doesn't much care about the texting and the pics, because to her it's not cheating; if she's mad it's because he's blowing up his career. They pretend it's been an issue for them because it's what they think the rubes want to hear.

c) They're addicted to power, each in their own way, and they stay together for that reason; their marriage is not what most people would think of as a marriage.

jr565 said...

"I'm not perplexed by why both women stayed in thier marriages. Hillary was every bit as politically driven as was Bill. Perhaps they had an understanding, a deal that she would help him succeed and then he would reciprocate"
The issue is not really why the women would stay with their husbands. Te issue is the double sandals of critics who say Huma is setting women back years for staying by her man, while coming up with the most ludicrous arguments as to why that standard shouldn't also be applied to Hillary and Bill.
In fact, Hillary and Bill set feminism back two decades. ANd not because of their actions, but because of how feminists by and large tried to minimize it because Bill was Bill.

The hypocrisy is the issue, not the actions of Huma. And you'll note, a lot of the attacks on her are coming from the left and from feminists. Which is why them then trying to come up with reasons as to why the two situations sent analogous is so farcical.

Jeff with one 'f' said...

"raf said...

Stephanie Carnes: If Bill and Anthony are beards ...

"Beards" seems wrong, under the circumstances; we need a distinctive female characteristic to be anatomically analogous. "

The apropos term would be merkins.

cmugirl said...


No, HRC did NOT get fired from the House Judiciary Committee during the Watergate hearings for ethicl violations. That is complete BS, and only fools who listen to Rush Limbaugh think that. in fact, Zeifman was quoted in a November 4, 1998, Scripps Howard News Service article, published in The Sacramento Bee, as saying, "If I had the power to fire her, I would have fired her."

He then kept conflating the story as he went on programs like Limbaugh's and other nut job talk show hosts.

Sounds like he was full of his own importance and doesn't know his a$$ from a hole in the ground, besides having some axes to grind.

But nice try trotting out some of the oldie but goodie (false) talking points!

Crunchy Frog said...

"A Woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle."

Spoken everywhere by women who couldn't get a man if their lives depended on it.

girlfriendtothestars said...

Most men I know couldn't exist without a woman. Did anyone ever think that the men have begged the women to stay? That the men need women more than women need men? Why should the woman be judged for staying? Maybe these people actually love each other and are trying to figure out a relationship that has nothing to do with the same old tired family values crap. Maybe they're dealing with actual human complexities. There is no such thing as the good wife or the good husband. That right there is a load of crap.