Where in the world is Hillary Clinton?
Hillary Clinton's latest re-introduction to the public last night at the Democratic supplied an evening of cognitive dissonance.
Sure, Democrats wanted to touch up Hillary's cold, cynical image. But the Democrats attempted to unveil a completely different woman last night. It was jarring.
Still, the editors of National Review were able to discern the old Hillary behind the facade:
Dressed symbolically all in white (as though she were a bride or a monarch enjoying her privilège du blanc), she delivered a speech that was one part It Takes a Village and eleven parts old State of the Union speeches from Barack Obama and her husband.
Her presentation was her usual hectoring — she is not capable of speaking in another mode — and one of her themes was the superiority of collective action to atomistic individualism, as though she were running against Ayn Rand rather than Donald Trump. She decried “mean rhetoric” and then said that people who operate their businesses in ways that displease her are unpatriotic. She suggested that pillaging high-earning individuals and companies with confiscatory taxes could fund an endless goody bag of patronage for her constituents.
I.e., the usual Hillary.
And then there's the content of her talk:
“My primary mission as president will be to create more opportunity and more good jobs with rising wages right here in the U.S.,” she said.
That is of course unobjectionable, as indeed was much of what she said — that’s how platitudes work. But five minutes’ worth of serious thinking is enough to bring into question whether Mrs. Clinton is even serious about her most vanilla banalities. There is no serious person — Republican or Democrat — who believes that the Obama administration and its policies have produced the level of “good jobs with rising wages right here in the U.S.” that Mrs. Clinton promises.
. . .
She was, of course, mostly maddeningly vague. To the extent that she ventured down from the lofty heights of moral preening and celebrating herself as a semi-divine agent of History, she mostly cleaved to her familiar list of free stuff and a proposal for punitive tax hikes on unpopular individuals, companies, and industries. Maybe there are some rubes out there who think that this will result in tuition-free college for “the middle class,” as though shifting around costs made things less expensive. (How’s that working out for your health care?) Her strategy on the Islamic State? Same thing we’ve been doing, but with an added “We will prevail!”
Based on last night's emphasis, I have a special warning for the children of America in whom shrill granny is especially interested.
Beware, kids. Hillary professes her love for kids, and the only way she knows to express this is through new federal programs. And they you'll grow up and have to pay for them.
Inspiring almost as much hilarity as Chelsea and Hillary's remarks were the New York Times fawning takeaways from the evening. One takeaway: "She's been around. And maybe that's okay." Meanwhile, the paper of record was pursuing a hot scoop: former model Melania Trump exaggerated her academic credentials and because of this, her website has been taken down.
One thing I noticed in last night's speech that also struck me when Michelle Obama talked about her family at the 2008 Democratic convention: both women, Ivy League products, describe how their families worked hard and made their way up in an America that provided opportunity.
And yet both seem to think others cannot succeed without federal intervention. Mrs. Obama doesn't even think we know what to eat without help from the government.
I didn't get to see more than snatches of the Shonda Rhimes (Grey's Anatomy, Scandal, How to Get Away with Murder) video on Hillary Clinton. So I made do with this description from TV Line:
God himselfMorgan Freeman, the 12-minute video found Clinton in a kitchen setting, discussing her upbringing, along with a variety of people — President Barack Obama, a 9/11 survivor and first responder, her husband Bill — offering humanizing details about the candidate, including her first experience being bullied. “There is no room for cowards in this house,” recounted Hillary, echoing her mother’s words about how she needed to go back outside and handle the situation.
As the narrative spanned her work on the Children’s Defense Fund, an undercover sting exposing unlawful segregation in Alabama schools and international initiatives on behalf of women’s rights, the film eventually worked its way to Clinton’s gig as Secretary of State under President Obama.
“Look at her. Look at her face,” implored Freeman’s voiceover, alongside an image of Clinton in the situation room, in the moments before U.S. forces killed Osama Bin Laden. “She’s carrying the hope and the rage of an entire nation.”
Holden Caulfield had a word for people like these.