Thursday, March 6, 2008

It's Time To Take The Kid Gloves Off

Senator Obama, sir. It’s time to let it all hang out. We have sixteen years of well-documented psychodrama from the two “adult” Clinton’s to draw from. Let’s get on with it. You have been restrained and gentlemanly. But now is not the time. Didn’t that creep Wolfeson just compare you to Ken Starr for suggesting that it was time for her to release her tax returns? Well, let’s go real down-and-dirty-Ken Starr. She says she’s been vetted? Not for the past almost eight years. But I’ll bet the babes are going to be coming out of the woodwork with their trophy samples of Bill’s DNA once the press stops cowering at the prospect of taking on the Clinton Machine. Who made the gentlemen’s agreement not to look too carefully at the wanderings of Bill? And why?

I always kind of held it against her that she stood by her man. Oh, I could see it during the time in the White House, but once that was over, off with his head. My god, how much humiliation must we all endure? What kind of example is this to give a daughter? Is accepting his philandering the price you pay to get to use his political capital? That’s some kind of deal with the devil.

But if she’s going to use her experience as First Lady, say somehow that it’s relevant, then her one and only real and valid experience is her attempt to give us universal health care. It was a colossal failure. It set us back. And her penchant for secrecy and her stubbornness played a huge part in the failure. It earned her a reputation as a…….what’s the word I’m searching for????? She was not collegial. I would guess she didn’t play well with other’s as a child.

None of this past experience qualifies her in any way to be President and only exposes her greatest weakness. It is her judgement. Again and again, it is her judgement. She is so cynical that she is counting on chivalry from you, since you are so naive as to offer “hope” and “idealism” to a bunch of “kids." She is willing to get down in the mud. Her image of herself as the first female President is too real, and she has made too many nasty compromises to get there, to give it up, no matter the cost, even if it means John Mc Cain wins this one, even if it means the destruction of the Democratic Party, and then she runs again in four years. So get ready to play dirty.

Eating Your Young

I was a big supporter of the Clintons when Bill was making his bid for the Presidency. They were little known, they were my generation, and both were smart and funny. I loved their wonkishness. She was the first First Lady to occupy the White House who wasn’t just a smiling accessary. I admired Jackie Kennedy, but was there ever a more lovely accessary? Sure, she could speak French and ride well, hunter/jumper style. But she spoke baby- voiced just like Marilyn Monroe, breathy, soft. She did nothing to challenge our notions of what a First Lady should be—maybe she set the bar a little higher, but not much. She did the wifely things, she redecorated, she was a lovely hostess, she took us on a tour of the White House. But she was an old fashioned girl, not a modern woman. Her career was wife, First Lady.

But Hillary and Bill were not that kind of couple. She is the first really modern First Lady. She had a career throughout her adult life. She got the great education just so she could have that career, not so she could marry a politician. Bill claims to have fallen in love with Hillary because she was so damn smart and competent. He has all but admitted that she has the brains in the family. And I believe him. Bill has the charm, Hillary has the brains. And though I loved the Clinton years while I was living them, it is thanks to Charming Billy that we all now have Monica. She’s a little like the elephant in the room. (Forgive me Monica, I did not call you an elephant—it’s just a figure of speech) I can’t imagine a free and easy charming Billy in the White House again without the image of a plump girl in a nice conservative navy blue dress and Big Daddy’s DNA on it somewhere. It might not be Hillary’s fault that we’ll all be wondering what Bill’s doing, but it can’t be anything but red meat to the Republican slime machine. Bill, you kind of ruined it for all of us. No, really, I didn’t care what you did with your, um, you know what I mean, but did you have to do it in the White House and with an intern? And then you stood there and lied to us all. “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.” If I’d been married to you I have left you then. So you are Hillary’s albatross. But she chooses to wear you round her neck like a lovely silk scarf. Which reminds me of a pig’s ear.

I think Hillary should have been the President way back then. But now there is too damn much water under the bridge. You don’t make me feel safer with your war mongering ringing phone ad. You just piss me off. And though I think your smart, you just might not be competent enough. I can’t get over your vote in the Iraq War Resolution. I can’t get over your stubbornness in rationalizing and justifying it. You failed on health care the first time. Why should I believe you’ll do it right this time? You just seem to make either rookie mistakes or Rovian mistakes, like the ringing phone ad, like the interview in which you equivocated in your answer about Obama’s religious background just enough to leave it hanging. But here’s the real clincher in the deal for me. Your supporters will vote for Obama. I’m not so sure his could vote for you. It is cross-over men, guys who consider themselves conservative, who can vote for Obama but not for you, that we will lose. And if this comes down to Super Delegates at the Convention who toss it to you, a generation of young people will not be able to vote for you because they see you as the old way of doing things. You stand for Washington Insider just like John McCain. You stand for political machine that is top down. You’re too tough, too hawkish. Too close to lobbyists and corporations. Too secretive about your own finances, to intrust with the taxpayer’s money. So that’s why I’m putting my money where my mouth is and contributing to Barack’s campaign. It isn’t much, but it’s millions like me who can finally have our voices heard.