January 20, 2014

The French First lady said "she wanted to weather the storm with him in the fashion of Hillary Clinton during the Monica Lewinsky scandal."

... when Valerie Trierweiler first heard about President François Hollande’s secret affair the young actress Julie Gayet.

But then she changed her mind. The First Lady is now "in negotiations, including legal ones" to end her relationship with Hollande, but she will not be getting a divorce. Do you know why?

They're not married!

She wants something "dignified and elegant" and, especially, that Gayet not move instantly into the palace.

Things are different in France. The building housing the President is called a "palace." We have to call the President's house — even including all the office space — a "house." And you can be called "First Lady" without being married to the President. I can't even imagine someone getting elected President in the United States and bringing along an unmarried sexual partner, let alone acceptance of calling this person "First Lady" (or "First Gentleman").

And, of course, we did (and do) — most of us/many of us — seem to admire Hillary Clinton for standing by her husband, even at the cost of muddling all those feminist principles — e.g., getting it about sexual harassment in the workplace — that she might have wanted to look as though she embodied. 

What's more admirable, staying or leaving? I'd say it depends on the context, but if you're not even married in the first place....

ADDED:  My phrase "we did (and do) — most of us/many of us" does not mean that I'm in the many. When Bob Dylan sang "There are many here among us, who feel that life is but a joke," did that mean that the character speaking that line was saying that he felt life was only a joke? Clearly not.

Also, I called Gayet young, but I see she's 41. Trierweiler is 48. And Holland is 59. A triad of oldish French people. Leaving someone who's 48 for someone who's 41 doesn't really raise much of a left her for a younger woman plaint. Not in my book.

69 comments:

pm317 said...

And, of course, we did (and do) — most of us/many of us — seem to admire Hillary Clinton for standing by her husband,

we!.. you?

traditionalguy said...

They need to return the engagement ring...that,s about it.

Michael K said...

If Michelle packs it in will we see a "first gentleman ?"

MayBee said...

We've had oodles of First Ladies who weren't married to the president.

Ann Althouse said...

"we!.. you?"

If you've been reading this blog over the years, you should know the answer to that one for sure.

Hagar said...

Julie Gayet is M. Hollande's third known mistress. It gets complicated.

James said...

And you can be called "First Lady" without being married to the President. I can't even imagine someone getting elected President in the United States and bringing along an unmarried sexual partner, let alone acceptance of calling this person "First Lady" (or "First Gentleman").

Really? Does Andrew Cuomo know this? He isn't married to Sandra Lee and some consider her the First Lady of New York.

MayBee said...

And of course, the presidents have had oodles of unmarried sexual partners in the White House, although not necessarily living there.

I for one wish we could just ignore the First Ladies. Living in the UK, I hear very little about Samantha Cameron.

Robt C said...

Wow. I've been reading this blog over the years -- at least 6 or 7 -- and I wouldn't say that "most of us / many of us seem to admire Hillary for standing by her husband." My take is that "most of us" seem to think that the only reason she hung on was political opportunism.

Anonymous said...

Julie Gayet topless. Enjoy!

Peter

Amexpat said...

My guess is that Valerie Trierweiler could have lived with the affair if it didn't go public.

pm317 said...

Come on, Althouse, you know I have been reading your blog even through the kerfuffle of comment moderation but you have never come across as one of those people who seem to admire Hillary Clinton for anything, god forbid for standing by her husband, ..Am I reading the sentence you wrote wrong? is it that that 'we' does not include you?

sean said...

If they're not married, how can he be having an "affair"? That's such a girl thing, the idea that because you sleep with someone, you can't sleep with other people.

Ann Althouse said...

"Wow. I've been reading this blog over the years -- at least 6 or 7 -- and I wouldn't say that "most of us / many of us seem to admire Hillary for standing by her husband." My take is that "most of us" seem to think that the only reason she hung on was political opportunism."

"Us" = Americans, not readers of this blog. And I said "most" OR "many." Obviously, many Americans admire Hillary. There's nothing to say "wow" about. Utterly mundane.

Lem said...

I can't even imagine someone getting elected President in the United States and ...

That phraseology is ungenerous... when you consider we have a twice elected black president with a Muslim name and next to zero executive experience before arriving at the white house... with socialized medicine, pot and gay marriage on the march.

Really, professor.

Ann Althouse said...

"Am I reading the sentence you wrote wrong? is it that that 'we' does not include you?"

I guess you are reading it wrong. I said many or most of us. I'm in the "us." I'm not in the "many/most."

wwww said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ann Althouse said...

See post update for analysis of the locution using a Dylan quote.

Hagar said...

And M. Hollande owns three chateaus on the Riviera one for each mistress - not bad for a socialist leader of the downtrodden masses!

Ignorance is Bliss said...

I think there is difference in connotation between of us and among us.

Count me in the group who read the phrase as you saying that you admired her, even though I did not believe that was how you felt based on reading your blog.

sean said...

Ignorance is Bliss makes a good, subtle point about English idiom. "Many among us" would express Prof. Althouse's views more precisely and clearly than "many of us."

JRoberts said...

Reminds me of the old joke from the time of the Monica scandal in the late 1990's

"Do you think Hillary will divorce Bill after 2000?"

"I'm sorry, but Monica was number 2500"

Bob Ellison said...

Maybe she said she wanted to "wether the storm with him".

J said...

I bet Althouse will vote for Hillary.

She will have no problem voting for President Doormat just like she voted for Empty Suit Obama.

Hillary couldn't even stand up to her own husband (and helped provide cover for his abuses of other women). Do you think countries like Iran will be intimidated by her? Ha!

In a Doormat presidency, countries will be challenging the US constantly.

Paul said...

I do NOT admire Hillary for standing by a rat of a husband.

She did it for money and power and not for some noble thing.

But I have no doubt 99.99 percent of politicians wives do it just for that.

John said...

Ann said "Many Americans admire Hillary."

Yeah but isn't that in spite of her behavior in the face of Bill's fooling around rather than because of it?

And, like Obie's rep for being a great speaker, I think Hillary's rep for greatness is mainly an artificial creation.

Everything she has accomplished has been because she was married to Bill. The things she tried to do on her own all turned to shit.

John Henry

Ann Althouse said...

"Many of us" does not reveal whether or not the speaker is included. In my sentence, "us" was just a stand-in for Americans. Fussing over this strikes me as a way of saying you had trouble dealing with the uncertainty of what was true specifically about me, but this post isn't about me.

Ann Althouse said...

Test your logic skills:


Many Americans admire Hillary.

I am an American.

Therefore…

a. I admire Hillary.
b. I might admire Hillary.

St. George said...

Drudge picked up the UK story about the Obama's marriage. Instapundit linked to it, too.

One wonders.

Would be a good thing if the guy was focused on work not family problems. Last thing we need is a president getting separated and divorced.

Left Bank of the Charles said...

If he can have his pick of First Ladies, why not pick the mother of his 4 children? She's not one of these two, so that settles that.

Fritz said...

The cool thing about not being married is that when you become President, you can get an upgrade.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Test your logic skills:

Your logic is absolutely correct. Logic has little to do with the way a language is used. I've heard the phrase Many of us... many times. I can't remember a usage where the speaker/writer was not including themselves in the many.

Titus said...

France and Europe are sooooooo cool.

euro tits.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Okay. I'll admit I was wrong. Searching for quotes with that phrase I find many that would not include the speaker in the many.

However, they seem to have a different feel than your usage, although I can't place my finger on exactly what that difference is.

I still maintain that most people reading your usage will think you are intending to include yourself in the many.

Jim Howard said...

Some say that Althouse will vote for Hillary.

pm317 said...

Fussing over this strikes me as a way of saying you had trouble dealing with the uncertainty of what was true specifically about me,

"had trouble dealing with.. blah blah.." no just came as a bit of a surprise and don't be so narcissistic -- of course, we care about what you think but if there is uncertainty,we are adult enough that it won't keep us awake in the night (And I was not the first one to read your line and think the way I did)

and I thought ;) you might be getting ready to write a 'why I am voting for Hillary' post ..LOL

Martin said...

"My phrase "we did (and do) — most of us/many of us" doesn't not mean that I'm in the many."

"Doesn't not mean" -- is that a typo or very clever litotes?

pm317 said...

Good catch, Martin, my friend.

alan markus said...

Speaking of First Ladies, this just showed up on the inner tubes:

Barbara Bush Confesses - "I Love Bill Clinton"

Damn, I miss that era when politicians could say nice things.

damikesc said...

And, of course, we did (and do) — most of us/many of us — seem to admire Hillary Clinton for standing by her husband, even at the cost of muddling all those feminist principles — e.g., getting it about sexual harassment in the workplace — that she might have wanted to look as though she embodied.

I do --- only because she showed how much utter bullshit the beliefs of most feminists are.

I love that feminists give liberal men a "free grope" here and there.

The Godfather said...

I know I'm hopelessly naive, and tres Americain, but I really didn't know that the First Lady of France was the President's mistress. This fact makes France seem much more foreign to me (and if other Americans share my reaction, it may make America seem more foreign to the French).

It's not the fact that a high public official has a mistress that's so shocking; it's the fact that it's open and public and accepted. And in our country, I think that feminists as well as social conservatives would object to this kind of exploitation of a woman by a national leader. You know, the way women rose up in anger at President Clinton's exploitation of Monica Lewinsky.

I am hopelessly naive, aren't I?

Elise Ronan said...

Admire Hillary? Absolutely NOT. She is the antithesis of a feminist.She did not stand on her own two feet ever. Staying in an abusive marriage (when a hubby is a serial philanderer its abusive) in order to get her political power on is not someone who you want your daughters to respect? There are many women who actually accomplished law firm partnerships, Senatorial campaigns, cabinet positions and financial success on their own accord, not on their husband's coattails. And by the way, when she was in those positions what law abiding positive things did she ever accomplish?

Bob Ellison said...

When will Michelle Obama announce her candidacy?

Drago said...

AA: "And, of course, we did (and do) — most of us/many of us — seem to admire Hillary Clinton for standing by her husband, even at the cost of muddling all those feminist principles..."

LOL

Ann thinks feminists have "principles".

A Fen's Law reference even now is creeping along and waiting to spring forth....

Old joke:

What do you get when you cross a leftist and an environmentalist?

A leftist.

What do you get when you cross a leftist and a feminist?

A leftist.

etc etc etc

It's an easily discernable pattern if, if, you are looking at it objectively.

David said...

Hillary's reasons for sticking with Bill were mostly career decisions. It worked out pretty well, career-wise, for both of them.

She made that decision well before Monica. She knew what she had, and what she didn't. Now maybe she loves him too, for all I know. But mostly it was about the power. In that sense, she was quite true to feminist principles, when she didn't change her approach even for blow jobs in the Oval Office.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Dylan had the preposition "among" in there, though.

"Us" is a first person plural pronoun so without any other modifier it's not surprising *many* misunderstood what was meant. Excluding oneself from "us" without a preposition is often done using the form "some of us believe x, while some of us believe y."

pm317 said...

@David, the woman is ambitious. Show me another woman there who wants to be the president of this country -- seriously run a campaign to win? There are not any. It takes a special man or a woman to run and win that office and she has the ambition. I definitely believe she was the force behind BC's run and win for the office. If she could have run and win in his place, she would have. But this country was not ready for a woman then and was still not ready for a woman in 2008. She was pushed aside for a guy based solely on his skin - a woman with his resume and experience would have been laughed out of the race. He should have been laughed out of the race and they didn't. Now we are reaping the fruits of that. With her, we would at least have a hard worker and thinker and BC and competence in the administration. Maybe he would have screwed around another Monica but at least he didn't and would not have screwed you all around like the current occupant.

Kevin said...

An official State of Oregon webpage:

http://www.oregon.gov/firstlady/pages/index.aspx

Starring "First Lady Cylvia Hayes"

Hint: The "First Lady" is not married to the Governor.

David said...


My point precisely, PM317.




pm317 said...

Yep, what happens to her in her lifetime does not reflect well on this country. It is quite difficult to run and win in this country's political system, for men and orders of magnitude more for women. It is easier to win in parliamentary systems for example, like the UK or even India. The story from India is a story unto itself. The elders of the congress party propped up Indira Gandhi thinking because of her lineage (Nehru) and name (accidental and not related to (the) Gandhi), thinking they can make a puppet out of her. But you know what! She grabbed the opportunity and made it all her own again and again making eunuchs of the men who brought her to power. Compare that to Obama -- his handlers saw his skin color as an asset; they pushed him and pushed Clinton aside and then what do we have? A guy who does not know how to use his power and privilege for the greater good. It is like putting a gem in a monkey's hand.

EMD said...

STRONG PROGRESSIVE WOMEN!

EMD said...

Hint: The "First Lady" is not married to the Governor.

The FIrst Whore doesn't quite have the same ring to it.

HoodlumDoodlum said...

Don't worry about Hillary's stamina in a Presidential campaign, pm317, she ain't no ways tired after all.

pm317 said...

HoodlumDoodlum said...
------------------
I am not rooting for her this time. Her time came and went and this country is the loser for it.

Wilbur said...

The notion that Hillary "stood by" The Slickster is a head scratcher. They had not lived as husband and wife for many years before nor since. Separate bedrooms and all that, you know.

Hell, who could blame him for getting some? Except ... you can't do that while you're President, i.e., exposing yourself to blackmail.

Bruce Hayden said...

The thought of Hillary! brought to mind Wendy Davis, the new great white hope for Texas, who seemed to have risen from being a teen mother to Harvard Law, and then the TX legislature, and a shot at the governorship. Until it came out that her second husband paid for the last two years of her undergraduate degree, along with Harvard Law, and took care of her kid from her previous marriage, and the one from their marriage while she was in Boston in law school, and then started the divorce the day after paying off the Harvard loans (for adultery on her part). And, he got both kids (including the one that wasn't his) in the divorce.

The reason that this mention of Hillary! triggered this is that both women got to where they are now through marrying more successful men. Hillary! was ethically challenged enough when they moved to Arkansas, that she likely would have had a hard time getting a good law job. But, with her husband as AG, then governor, she got into a top firm, and made money for them, and her, peddling influence with her husband and his administration. This stopped for a bit while they were in the White House, but at the end, they traded Presidential pardons for campaign contributions for her Senate run - which she never could have won w/o her husband and his contacts.

The similarity is that that these two women are both feminist heroes, but got to where they are today through marrying men who dragged them along. Not really what feminists preach - that women should be able to do without men and succeed on their own. The difference is that there is no evidence yet that Davis is as corrupt as Hillary!, or that Hillary! ever slept with a man outside of her marriage.

Anonymous said...

Don't care what French people do. I didn't elect them. I cared a lot about Clinton/Lewinsky back in the day. 1. Clinton was working his thang on our dollar with power we gave him and 2. I was close in age to Lewinsky, and so could identify at the time with the intern situation

Charlie Eklund said...

It's clearly discriminatory to reserve the right of divorce to married people only. Single people (French mistresses included) are, for the most part, people too.

Fritz said...

Maryland's Governor Schaefer had a similar arrangement with Hilda Mae Snoops.

http://articles.baltimoresun.com/2011-04-18/iphone/bs-md-ob-iphone-schaefer-20110418_1_national-aquarium-mayor-william-donald-schaefer/2

Robt C said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Robt C said...

Re: your comment at 1:51. Your original post used the antecedentless pronoun "us," referring to those who *you supposed* admired Hillary for standing by her husband. In a comment (1:36) you added "if you've been reading this blog over the years." My "wow" was not "mundane." (Let alone "utterly")It was based on what you had written, which made the "us" seem to refer to your commenters.
I really like your blog, but I suggest you write more clearly, and if/when you don't, don't be so prickly when commenters, well, comment.

Fen said...

Absolutely NOT. She is the antithesis of a feminist.She did not stand on her own two feet ever. Staying in an abusive marriage -

Its even worse than that.

Lewinsky was about sexual discrimination in the workplace -all the interns who didn't land job interviews with Revlon or the UN, because they refused to have sex with their boss.

Jones was about sexual harassment in the workplace - refusing to blow the boss to get a promotion

Wiley was about sexual assault in the workplace - having to endure breast groping during a job interview.

Hillary Clinton enabled all of this, even spearheaded efforts to discredit these "bimbos" (all Democrats, btw)

tds said...

Lewinsky was about sexual discrimination in the workplace -all the interns who didn't land job interviews with Revlon or the UN, because they refused to have sex with their boss.

It's not a sexual discrimination, at least not for this reason. This is favouritism.

Sexual discrimination is getting blow jobs from female interns only, discriminating against men.

Annie said...

Exactly, Fen.

Which makes your comment, pm317, '..what happens to her in her lifetime does not reflect well on this country' and seeming general admiration of her, all the more curious.

Bill was a dog, but Hillary was his bouncer/enabler/protector, so-called feminist 'principles' be damned. Like Obama, she cares only for herself, no matter how many women or ambassadors get hurt in the process..either by her own hand or a jihadi's. Then all the lies and cover-ups.
I doubt Indira Gandhi and Thatcher had that kind of blood and corruption on their hands.

Ann Althouse said...

""Doesn't not mean" -- is that a typo or very clever litotes?"

Funny. Thanks for the typo heads-up. Corrected now.

Anglelyne said...

The '68ers fulfilling their tawdry destiny. It's not like anybody ever cared about a French president having a mistress, but it's just tacky to install your current squeeze in the Elysée palace and then have her ponce about like its supposed to mean something. All the people involved here have children with former spouses/lovers. How embarrassing to have such childish, indiscreet, and self-indulgent parents. Now one of 'em is looking for some sort of legal redress? '68ers, jeez. I don't want to follow the rules but I want the protection that went along with the old rules. Childish. These people are not adults. But they're the ruling caste.

n.n said...

Anglelyne: That's an apt description. The ruling elite, or at least their public representatives, are immature, spoiled brats.

GW said...

In your books it would seem that someone saying that life is (nothing) but a joke doesn't mean that the someone thinks that life is only a joke and that someone who is 41 is not younger than someone who is 48. Get some new books.

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