The president says we are engaged in a decisive existential struggle. The press says it’s all about his poll numbers. Hillary says it’s time to chat:

“Cato the Elder, the great Roman senator, stood for the proposition ‘Carthago delenda est’ — we should destroy Carthage. Thomas Jefferson ran for president to protect the yeoman farmers from Hamiltonian big government. James Polk promised to steal Texas from the Mexicans. Abe Lincoln stood to preserve the Union. FDR promised to defeat the Depression with bold experimentation. Ike would end the Korean War. Ronald Reagan promised to build up our military strength, defeat Soviet Communism, cut taxes and spending.

“And last weekend, Hillary Rodham Clinton presented herself for election to the presidency of the United States with the timeless, clarion call:

“‘So let’s talk. Let’s chat, let’s start a dialogue about your ideas and mine, because the conversation in Washington has been just a little one-sided lately, don’t you think?'”

The chat column, by Tony Blankley, adds:

“The junior senator from the Empire State may not be leading with her strength with the theme of ‘a time for chatting.’ Of all the politicians who have strode, minced, ambled or marched across the stage of American politics over the years, Hillary may be the one least likely to induce the desire to be chatted up by.”

In the face of an existential struggle, chatting is also — how you say — unserious. Blankley thinks that this “vacuous and phony imagery” of chatting does a disservice to a woman who is, essentially, interested in the issues. I don’t. I think Hillary, at this point in her life, is serious about one thing: ambition.