Friday, December 28, 2007

My Vast Left-Wing Experience

Hey! Hillary has apparently decided she's had it with voters' questions, at least out in Iowa.

What happened to the Conversation With America? You'll remember . . . "Let's chat!"

According to a story by Peter Nicholas in the LA Times today, it now seems to have not-so-subtly morphed into something like, "Okay, everyone zip it! I have some very important generic pap I'd like to share with you, so I can get out of here." Of course, she didn't really say that . . . but the point is she is not saying anything, including to potential caucus goers who she wants to turn out for her, as well as to the press!

From the story:

Before the brief Christmas break, the New York senator had been setting aside time after campaign speeches to hear from the audience. Now when she’s done speaking, her theme songs blare from loudspeakers, preventing any kind of public Q&A.

She was no more inviting when a television reporter approached her after a rally on Thursday and asked if she was "moved" by Benazir Bhutto’s assassination. Clinton turned away without answering.

Her daughter, Chelsea, had the same reaction when a reporter approached her with a question.

Hillary Clinton’s no-question policy didn’t sit well with some of the Iowans who came to see her speak.

"I was a little bit underwhelmed," said Doug Rohde, 46, as he left her a rally in a fire station in Denison. "The message was very generic -- and no questions."

One other thing is for certain . . . the story doesn't explicitly say so, but you can be damned sure hubby BIll wasn't there. No way she could have shut him up! Which may have everything to do with why he was NOT present for the purposes of recitation.

Maybe that huge storehouse of left-wing experience she so often alludes to has taught her that when push comes to shove, they're all a bunch of emoticons out there in the left fringe, and that asking their opinions is really a waste of time. She knows what she wants to do. What do you think the chances are she doesn't want to get into details?

On Christmas Day Patrick Healy published a piece that appeared in the New York Times and the International Herald Tribune, focusing on Hillary's endlessly repeated claim that she is the one with the strength and experience. The article could not have made the Clinton campaign very happy.

It begins:

As first lady, Hillary Rodham Clinton jawboned the president of Uzbekistan to leave his car and shake hands with people. She argued with the Czech prime minister about democracy. She cajoled Catholic and Protestant women to talk to one another in Northern Ireland. She traveled to 79 countries in total, little of it leisure; one meeting with mutilated Rwandan refugees so unsettled her that she threw up afterward.

But during those two terms in the White House, Clinton did not hold a security clearance. She did not attend National Security Council meetings. She was not given a copy of the president's daily intelligence briefing. She did not assert herself on the crises in Somalia, Haiti or Rwanda. And during one of President Bill Clinton's major tests on terrorism, whether to bomb Afghanistan and Sudan in 1998, Clinton was barely speaking to her husband, let alone advising him, as the Lewinsky scandal dragged on.

In seeking the Democratic presidential nomination, Clinton lays claim to two traits nearly every day: strength and experience. But as the junior senator from New York, she has few significant legislative accomplishments to her name. She has cast herself, instead, as a first lady like no other: a full partner to her husband in his administration, and, she says, all the stronger and more experienced for her "eight years with a front-row seat on history."

The entire article is well worth reading and demonstrates that there is a real gap between Hillary's claims of experience now, and her actual role at the time.

It seems to be a consistent Clinton pattern.

Take for example, the two of the matters she actually did have an active role in running during Bill's eight years in office. Both were complete failures. One was the still-born attempt to radically socialize our medical care system, or HillaryCare. Now, suddenly, former President Bill Clinton takes the blame for the failure of that effort.

The other was known as "Travelgate," the first major scandal of the Clinton Administration. After closely examining the case file, Byron York at NRO nicely summed up the incident back in 2003 when her autobiography, Living History, first appeared. He notes that she clearly attempted to cover up her active behind the scenes efforts in that matter, including lying under oath. But as he notes, in her book she blamed it all on a "partisan political climate," and actually asserted that Ray had exonerated her!

Well, yes, it was among other things a partisan political climate, but it was one created by Hillary when she tried to railroad and force out all the Travel Office employees in order to install Clinton cronies!

As York noted back in 2003:

The First Lady's statements, under oath, were patently false. And indeed, at the end of the investigation, independent counsel Robert Ray determined that "Clinton did play a role and have input in the decision to fire the Travel Office employees and that her testimony to the contrary was factually false."

Yet Ray declined to prosecute, saying that "insufficient proof exists to convince a jury beyond a reasonable doubt that Clinton ... knowingly gave false material testimony."

All that was ancient history — until the publication of her autobiography Living History back in 2003. Now, the former First Lady not only claims the independent counsel exonerated her, but also blames the enduring controversy on a "partisan political climate."

York's article also contained the link to Special Prosecutor Robert Ray's final report of the investigation. As to the Travelgate matter, Ray ultimately concluded that she had lied under oath when questioned about her active role in the matter, but he concluded that there was probably insufficient evidence to prosecute her for knowingly lying under oath.

Maybe the reason Hillary has so much difficulty convincing anyone she has any credible real world "experience" that qualifies her to be our head of state, and Commander in Chief, is that most people assume that what she means is that she has demonstrated her skills by actually running a few things. But she never ran any credible form of enterprise in her entire life!

What she has done is to consistently play the left-wing partisan political operative throughout her entire adult life, even when the time came to set aside politics and work within an Administration for the common good.

In other words, Hillary arguably has "vast left-wing experience" going for her, but little else.

UPDATE: 5:40 pm: Looks like AOL has posted a HotSeat poll question raised by John Hinderaker of Powerline . . . "Does Hillary Clinton have the experience needed to be president?"

Actually, it looks like Scott (at Powerline) was the one who raised the question, but John posted the description of the AOL HotSeat survey, here. He notes that at least earlier, the voting was going strongly against her.

UPDATE: 1:42 PM 12/31 Chelsea stiffs a nine year old reporter who has gotten interviews all across the specturm.

From the story:
Do you think your dad would be a good 'first man' in the White House?" Sydney asked, but Chelsea brushed her question aside.

"I'm sorry, I don't talk to the press and that applies to you, unfortunately. Even though I think you're cute," Chelsea told the pint-sized journalist.

Could be she really doesn't have anything to say.

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