March 10, 2016

"I am not a natural politician"... but I play one on TV.

So there was Hillary at last night's debate:
9:51 — A mother who brought her 5 children to the debate asks a question, in Spanish (translated by a moderator), about the fact that her husband has been deported and can't see his family. Of course, Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton both say they're committed to stopping that kind of thing from happening. But Sanders's answer is relatively vague. Clinton gives a stronger answer, not just because she gives more policy specifics, but also because she starts by connecting with the woman on a more emotional level, praising her for her bravery: "This is an incredible act of courage that I'm not sure many people really understand." Clinton seems to have sharply observed her husband in a famous moment in one of the general-election debates in 1992, when incumbent President Bush gave a weak answer to a woman who asked about the national debt, and then Bill Clinton connected with the questioner in a way Bush hadn't.

Ironically, a few minutes later, [Hillary] Clinton candidly admits: "I am not a natural politician, in case you haven't noticed, like my husband or President Obama. . . ."
Here's that fateful 1992 vignette, which begins with H.W. Bush looking at his watch:



The debate live-blogging came from my son John, who posted that particular bit on Facebook, where I responded:
Watching that clip again, I'm pained by that woman's disrespect for President Bush. She's interrupting him, prodding him to answer the question her way. Bill Clinton then swanned into his hokey role. It made great political theater, with the help of a press that didn't have the internet to show how things look from different perspectives. Hillary knows the lesson from 1992 and she's always looking for a way to show empathy. But to me, she's more like HW Bush, who's famous for saying "Message: I care."
Like H.W. Bush, Hillary doesn't have the kind of human feeling — real or fake — that oozes out naturally and gets all over some lady's dress. She knows it and strives — ever the overachiever — to make up for it. She has her memo to take a pause and, before launching into a wonky answer, just voice shared emotion with someone who has revealed her pain. H.W. Bush seemed to actually quote the memo when he said: "Message: I care." Hillary's a lot more verbally adept. She said something specific to the questioner — "This is an incredible act of courage that I'm not sure many people really understand" — and she added some disarming self-effacement — "I am not a natural politician, in case you haven't noticed, like my husband or President Obama."

I just want to show a little empathy for the politicians who offer their services to us even though they know they don't light our fire. There's no reason to think that those who heat us up are going to do a better job when confined to the White House endlessly force-fed information and pressured into continual decisionmaking. It's okay, it's perfectly fine not to be a natural politician, and I liked her left-handed compliment to Bill and Barack.

We don't need an entertainer in the Oval Office and maybe we shouldn't even want one.

63 comments:

Bill R said...

Well I'm glad to hear SOMEBODY has been deported.

Todd said...

I assume that at no time did either politician make the comment: You do understand that you both are here illegally, against the laws if this country and if I were to do the same thing [as you are doing now] in Mexico (or where ever, not relevant), I would face a long jail sentence and then deportation?

AprilApple said...

None of it matters. Secret Private Server.

Terry said...

Since it is vitally important that families be kept together, she should be deported too!
A politician feels no more emotional connection to a stranger than anyone else. Does anyone believe that Bill Clinton actually felt something for the people he was praised for sympathizing with?
At some point it might occur to the illegals that the more of them that are here, the more it will look like the hell hole they left.

Birkel said...

when those services are backing the Brinks Truck up to the loading dock behind the Fed...

I am less than convinced.

rhhardin said...

The lady can go to Mexico.

Bushman of the Kohlrabi said...

But she is naturally corrupt and incompetent.

David Begley said...

Yeah. Why doesn't the mom and her kids rejoin her husband in Mexico. What's the matter with Mexico?

pm317 said...

I think she implicitly included Bernie in that "I am not a politician" line but maybe not as good as Bill Clinton or Obama. Everything he says he turns it into corporate welfare and Wall Street this or that. That requires a certain headfake, real people won't get. Wow, just looked at his wiki.. he has been sucking at the government since 1991. Now that is a politician. He knows nothing else and what does he have to show as accomplishments?

Curious George said...

"I just want to show a little empathy for the politicians who offer their services to us even though they know they don't light our fire. There's no reason to think that those who heat us up are going to do a better job when confined to the White House endlessly force-fed information and pressured into continual decisionmaking. It's okay, it's perfectly fine not to be a natural politician, and I liked her left-handed compliment to Bill and Barack."

God bless Hillary Clinton for all she does for us despite her limitations, and God bless you Ann Althouse, for your wisdom and carrying the message.

AprilApple said...

I notice when Hillary is asked about her private server, she changes the subject to "private e-mail". A sin committed by everyone.

Never a follow up question. I am curious-- Any other politician at the highest levels of government ever set up a secret PRIVATE SERVER?

Curtiss said...

Hillary has a lot of empathy for people who want to avoid the accountability of being on the path that they chose.

And this: "I am not a natural politician, in case you haven't noticed, like my husband or President Obama. . . ."

Hasn't Trump already claimed that shtick.

tim in vermont said...

Her utter lack of talent as a natural politician has nothing to do with why I would never consider voting for her in a million years. After all, I will be voting for Cruz in a few days.

Curtiss said...

Blogger AprilApple said...
I notice when Hillary is asked about her private server, she changes the subject to "private e-mail". A sin committed by everyone.

Never a follow up question. I am curious-- Any other politician at the highest levels of government ever set up a secret PRIVATE SERVER?


I think Hillary is assuming most people can't draw a distinction between a private email account (which many, many people have) and a private server. She's right, of course.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

... she starts by connecting with the woman on a more emotional level...

I would have started by asking the woman how many other crimes did her husband have to commit to actually get himself deported.

But then, I'm not a natural politician.

kristinintexas said...

"We don't need an entertainer in the Oval Office and maybe we shouldn't even want one."

This x 1,000,000. Not that I'd vote for Hillary, but I'm hoping for a nice boring president.

Birkel said...

Ted Cruz is the boring candidate of choice.

AprilApple said...

Curtiss - You are right.. Yet the media know what she is doing with her rhetorical gymnastics, and they let her slide.

AprilApple said...

We need a Felon in the oval office.

virgil xenophon said...

David Begley@7:46AM/

Yeah, and why can't the kids learn Spanish in Mexico (if they grew up speaking English in the US) in the same way most immigrants to the US learn Spanish? And the line that it would be "terrible to tear them away from their American friends" and the culture they grew up with and were accustomed to (the kids) cuts no ice with me. What about the sons and daughters of US servicemen who are uprooted every three years (on avg) and relocated to a new duty station often thousands of miles away and sometimes half-way around the world to be immersed in a totally foreign culture? Do not these children have to make adjustments, make new friends, etc., also? And why should US tax-payers be on the hook for the education, housing and health-care costs of illegals? Please....my heart pumps piss for the "trials and tribulations" of these illegal law-breakers..

CStanley said...

I don't know, I'm sympathetic to your position on GHWB's answer but really it was pretty terrible. The woman's question was dumb but he could have artfully pointed that out and instead he seemed peeved. The part where he said that people without cancer can still understand it was a good point but should have been made in a much kinder, gentler way.

You have to play the hand you are dealt, like it or not, and this comes with the territory of electoral politics.

Birkel said...

virgil xenophon:

That is a nice summary of why Marco Rubio stood no chance this year.

Bob said...

I'm still waiting for a "journalist" brave enough to ask her about the phony southern accent she puts on in southern states and around blacks.

Fred said...

I just want to show a little empathy for the politicians who offer their services to us even though they know they don't light our fire.

A politician's most needed skill is the ability to persuade a majority to join together for a plan that everyone finds suboptimal. Politics is the art of compromise. If a politician can't light our fire, maybe they do more damage by forcing her own particular view over the objections of the majority of citizens. As I remember, Clinton the XY managed to accomplish a fair amount by leading to where most people wanted to go. Another way to put this is he noticed where the crowd was going and got out in front so it would look like he was leading. How well has it worked out for the current President to do whatever he wanted without bothering to bring the majority along?

I feel no empathy for candidates who want to be politicians but don't or can't inspire followers. If you don't have the skills, go home.

Henry said...

Yet she is running for a political office.

Next debate she reveals that she is not a natural executive.

tim in vermont said...

The difference between a private email account and a private server is it is almost impossible to put an email beyond the reach of the law unless you control the server. There is no other reason to have one, none. It would have been cheaper, more secure, and easier to comply with laws and regulations to use a public server.

This is like her defense of her husband, claiming that a long string of complaints from Democratic women from everything from sexual harassment, assault, and even rape, were about about a "blow job."

PuertoRicoSpaceport.com said...

Were the kids born in the US? If yes, they can stay and we'll take care of them in foster homes until they reach majority.

Or she can take them back to Mexico with her and they, being US citizens, can come back to the US whenever they want, either permanently or temporarily.

As for her, she is an illegal alien (as I understand it) she needs to go back to her home country NOW.

John Henry

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Lucía M. Quiej has been in the country for 23 years, and still requires a translator? If you don't care about this country enough to learn its language then please, go home.

tim in vermont said...

I have a lot of empathy for those who want to be rocket scientists but struggle with algebra. But I sure wouldn't ride in a rocket they designed.

traditionalguy said...

I admire Hillary for self awareness. She admits she has no real talent to be a leader at all. And she admits she cannot understand Government Secrecy Protocols at all. And she admits she takes 15 million at a whack in continuous Wall Street Bribes.

But as bad as she is, she always ends with the "Everybody does it" excuse...and The Vast Right Wing Males Conspiracy is out to get a woman in distress, game.

Trump will win all 50 states against that.

Michael McClain said...

The family is free to join the deported father at any time. He is also free to apply to be a legal resident, pay the appropriate fees at any time.

Why is his criminal behavior tolerated and encouraged? If he feels no obligation to follow our laws, then why do we believe that he will be a productive resident of the United States?

Birkel said...

traditionalguy:
You are boring. Stop it. It's fucking embarrassing.

Rick said...

If her husband was deported he almost certainly committed a crime. America hardly deports anyone, you have to do something to get on the priority deportation list.

Of course it's more likely the whole story was an invented plant.

MikeDC said...

For those of you saying the woman and kids should be deported too, I don't know that I disagree, but this is obviously a loser of an argument to make right then and there.

So... how do you want the politician you're supporting for President to respond, knowing that the honest answer you want him/her to give would be politically damaging?

EMD said...

Wow. That clip really draws a contrast between Bill and Hillary.

Fernandinande said...

Rick said...
If her husband was deported he almost certainly committed a crime.


Mothers of black criminals support Billary.

Bob Boyd said...

So for Hillary, successfully employing manipulative and devious ways to gain advancement does not come as easily to her as it does to some other members of her gang?
She has to work at it? Inspiring!

It's true, she's not as likable or as smooth and, as a result, she's more reliant on a complicit media to promote and cover for her. I'll give her that.

Curious George said...

"MikeDC said...
For those of you saying the woman and kids should be deported too, I don't know that I disagree, but this is obviously a loser of an argument to make right then and there.

So... how do you want the politician you're supporting for President to respond, knowing that the honest answer you want him/her to give would be politically damaging?"

So you insert your opinion as fact and then use it to ask a question.

It don't believe it is a losing argument. As soon as the GOP figures that out the better.

AllenS said...

traditionalguy, don't let the bastards get you down.

Birkel said...

MikeDC:
Political damage for telling the truth? If that is so, the country is well and truly screwed.

My answer:
"As hard as it may be for somebody in your situation to appreciate, I believe the laws in this country must be enforced against all, equally, without fear or prejudice. Therefore, while the results might be difficult for you, I would no more allow you to continue to break the laws as I would a corrupt Secretary of State who sells political favors, or the Wall Street bankers who pay politicians for services rendered. The Broken Windows policies of Rudy Giuliani that cleaned up New York City should be applied across this great nation. There should be fewer federal laws - and I will work with Congress to reduce the number and scope of federal laws - but we must first be a nation that respects the rule of law, which was a fundamental reason for the successes of the United States that now make her such an attractive destination for people all over the world."

Or thereabouts.

traditionalguy said...

Hey Big Boss Birklel... Maybe you should skip over reading my comments, like I do yours. We are just not at the same level on anything.

I try to add something original, but always fail you in your eyes. Maybe after another six years of doing this, I will finally meet your approval, which you seem to expect everyone to so desperately need.

The Cracker Emcee said...

It's incredible to me that anyone would think this anything other than pre-scripted theater. Yeah, the illegal alien lady with her 5 kids just happened to make her way to the debate! How crushingly stupid are Democrats? How crushingly stupid do Democrats think Hispanics are? Clearly, the answer to both questions is, extremely.

AprilApple said...

@ Tim

"The difference between a private email account and a private server is it is almost impossible to put an email beyond the reach of the law unless you control the server. There is no other reason to have one, none."

Exactly. Yet the media refuse to say it out loud - ever.

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

The Cracker Emcee:

That seems exactly right.

Birkel said...

traditionalguy:

Just be less predictable. You are just like The Crack Emcee, rhhardin, Cedarford and Shouting Thomas. It may be a great note but playing only one note is boring. Just branch's out to any second note of your choice.

Bob Ellison said...

I just want to show a little empathy for the politicians who offer their services to us even though they know they don't light our fire..We don't need an entertainer in the Oval Office and maybe we shouldn't even want one.

Offer their services?

Light our fire?

Entertainer?

Are you just waking up now, after several decades on the planet?

Politicians are assholes, they always were assholes, and they always will be assholes. Who remembers high school?

They don't have services. Your local pizza delivery guy offers services. They don't light our fire; that's for the Internet. Entertainment is for Donald Trump.

Grow up, for goodness sake.

Roger Sweeny said...

To be humane, the US government should pay for plane ticket for the woman and children to go with the man.

damikesc said...

So, Democrats are running on LITERALLY no border at all. No deportations at all.

That will show the working poor that they give a shit about them.

Why not use Gitmo to house illegals making asylum claims?

Todd said...

MikeDC said... [hush]​[hide comment]
For those of you saying the woman and kids should be deported too, I don't know that I disagree, but this is obviously a loser of an argument to make right then and there.

So... how do you want the politician you're supporting for President to respond, knowing that the honest answer you want him/her to give would be politically damaging?

3/10/16, 8:40 AM


I was going to say a few things but Birkel @ 3/10/16, 8:49 AM nailed it pretty well.

The MSM tells us that enforcing immigration is a no win for politicians and they go along. The MSM tells us that enforcing immigration does not poll well. Mostly because people that work and care about law and order don't "do" polls. They let the answering machine get the phone. I have walked away from pollsters when they start feeding me loaded questions. I am not the only one. Who takes polls? People that are lonely, home all day, thrilled with their own opinions, narcissists, you know, liberals. It is no wonder most polls lean left with their outcomes, they lean left with their questions and their sampling. Garbage in, garbage out...

Amadeus 48 said...

"We don't need an entertainer in the Oval Office and maybe we shouldn't even want one."-AA
So no Trump. Got it.

Jane the Actuary said...

So we're supposed to feel sorry for a woman here illegally, who's never learned English, but bequeathed to us 5 children? Could they not find a more sympathetic questioner? Aren't there plenty of "mixed status" Hard Cases? Or was this intended to, in fact, get the candidates to make as extreme an open-borders statement as possible by asserting that even she deserves to stay in the U.S. and to bring her husband back?

Martha said...

Lucia Quiej—the woman who asked her question in Spanish at last night's Democrat debate—is from from Guatemala, not Mexico. Her husband had sought political asylum. He was deported after being picked up with an expired driver's license. Perhaps it is too dangerous for the family to return to Guatemala.

Curious George said...

"The Cracker Emcee said...
It's incredible to me that anyone would think this anything other than pre-scripted theater. Yeah, the illegal alien lady with her 5 kids just happened to make her way to the debate! How crushingly stupid are Democrats? How crushingly stupid do Democrats think Hispanics are? Clearly, the answer to both questions is, extremely. "

Answers:

1) Very
2) As much as blacks, or more. They hope.

cubanbob said...

MikeDC said...
For those of you saying the woman and kids should be deported too, I don't know that I disagree, but this is obviously a loser of an argument to make right then and there.

So... how do you want the politician you're supporting for President to respond, knowing that the honest answer you want him/her to give would be politically damaging?

3/10/16, 8:40 AM

And you wonder why Trump is where he is? And why he just might be the next president? Which other candidate of either party can you realistically imagine asking that woman why was your husband deported and don't you join him?

Original Mike said...

"As hard as it may be for somebody in your situation to appreciate, I believe the laws in this country must be enforced against all, equally, without fear or prejudice. Therefore, while the results might be difficult for you, I would no more allow you to continue to break the laws as I would a corrupt Secretary of State who sells political favors, or the Wall Street bankers who pay politicians for services rendered. The Broken Windows policies of Rudy Giuliani that cleaned up New York City should be applied across this great nation. There should be fewer federal laws - and I will work with Congress to reduce the number and scope of federal laws - but we must first be a nation that respects the rule of law, which was a fundamental reason for the successes of the United States that now make her such an attractive destination for people all over the world."

Do I have your permission to write your name in for President?

MikeDC said...

@ Curious George and others
So you insert your opinion as fact and then use it to ask a question.

It don't believe it is a losing argument. As soon as the GOP figures that out the better.


Fair enough. I think it is, but you're right, that's my opinion. But as evidence of my opinion being correct, I'd point out that the only guy I can fathom saying that, Trump, is not even going to win over the GOP by doing that.

So it's pretty hard to figure out anyone wins over the other half of the voting public if he can't even win over the folks sympathetic to the harsh message.

It doesn't matter if it's staged or not. The average person doesn't want to see a presidential candidate talk like that.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

God damn that's depressing. What more do you need to hear?
A mother who brought her 5 children to the debate asks a question, in Spanish (translated by a moderator), about the fact that her husband has been deported and can't see his family.
Mama don't speak no English, she got 5 lil' mouths to feed, and Daddy been sent back across the border, it's all so unfair. What do you think that family costs the US, yearly? Follow up question: how do you think those 5 adorable lil' tykes will vote when they're old enough to do so? For more government spending, more low-skill immigration, etc?

Totally unrelated question: why in the world would someone like Donald Trump--with his extreme, ugly, hateful positions against hardworking immigrants--be popular right now?

It's compassionate of politicians to take money from citizens and pay it to others (including people who broke laws to come here and stay here, plus all the kids they care to pop out). It's compassionate of our elites to bankrupt the nation by expanding the size and scope of government and the welfare state beyond what can be sustained. So, so compassionate. Oh, and it's racist to oppose any of these measures, of course, since many of them benefit minorities. And children! Think of the children (and make sure to have your wallet ready).

We are doomed, doomed, doomed.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

MikeDC said...It doesn't matter if it's staged or not. The average person doesn't want to see a presidential candidate talk like that.

So just admit we're fucked, then. As a nation. Ooh, even better, we're really on the path to not even being a nation (since nations have borders, nations get to define who's a member/citizen, etc).
If it's not possible to oppose some policy or action (because to do so would be called racist, heartless, evil, and xenophobic) and if it's not possible to convince "the average person" that there is any legitimate reason to oppose the policy, then that policy's gonna happen. The policy in this case seems like one of unlimited immigration coupled with a generous welfare state. Hell, even the Europeans are figuring out that's not a great idea (nor, you know, sustainable), but according to your assertion that's what Americans want for us.
The Media wants it, the Left wants it, and the average person doesn't want to hear a presidential candidate oppose it.

Hey, you know, it's ok; we had a good run as a nation.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

See, it's vital to the Left that opposition to Leftist ideas (well, "ideas") is deemed unacceptable. If it wasn't racist to think that immigration should be limited and we did a nationwide poll, why, it's just possible that a majority of the nation might agree that illegal immigration should be stopped, currently-present illegal immigrants should be deported, and even legal immigration should be reduced. We can't have that, so it's important to emphasize that any and all opposition is racist, and even seemingly-principled opposition (on, say, legal grounds) lacks compassion, is ugly, and is ultimately rooted in some racist, xenophobic, or imperialistic sentiment.

The "average person" must be made to find any opposition to Leftist desires somehow improper--rude, lacking compassion, lacking empathy, and so on. This helps to ensure that the ideas themselves aren't given logical consideration--why, it would be poor manners to even THINK too hard about the issue, the science is settled and all right thinking people already agree.

Pick your topic. Immigration, race, gender politics, whatever. The Left's calls for "conversation" about these is such obvious bullshit precisely because the only topic they'll allow is "why the Left's position is correct and all other possible positions are not just wrong but actually shameful and harmful to think about."

If the "average person" buys that--and at this point they just might--then it's really all over.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Oh by the way as a practical matter it probably doesn't make too much of a difference what the majority of the citizens of the US want immigration policy to be. Not at this point, anyway. The Courts will likely strike down any real attempts to legally enforce current immigration rules, and certainly will fight against any expansions. The bureaucracy that would have to enforce the rules is almost completely Leftist, so don't count on them, and finally the Media already portrays any enforcement actions as hateful violent actions by jackbooted thugs in uniform (cheered on by stupid racists) so just imagine the coverage we'd see if some real action took place.

The Left won. Our genius elites (Right & Left) agree that what we need is to import huge numbers of people, current citizens' wishes be damned. The argument now is that there are just too darn many of 'em to do anything about, so we'd better let 'em all stay and keep letting 'em in--to do otherwise would be ugly, you know.

Birkel said...

Original Mike:

Thank you for paying me such a high compliment.

(I typed my initial response with only editing for typos, without pausing, just like a candidate would have to do.)

MikeDC said...

@ HoodlumDoodlum
So just admit we're fucked, then. As a nation. Ooh, even better, we're really on the path to not even being a nation (since nations have borders, nations get to define who's a member/citizen, etc).

I'm asking the question because neither saying "bitch, go home" nor going apoplectic and saying our country is already lost seem like compelling vote-getting strategies.