Jill Abramson, the first female executive editor ever to be hired and fired by the Paper of Record, has a new gig writing a bi-weekly column on politics for the centrist Guardian. That is neoliberal code for writing a bi-weekly press release for Hillary Clinton.
In Monday's offering, Abramson touts Hillary's "shocking honesty". Clinton's problem is not corruption, Abramson claims. Her problem is a lack of transparency about her own innate decency. Plus, Hillary is a victim of sexism. Jill should know.
Meanwhile, the smarmy Hillaphilia practically jumps off the page at you:
The yardsticks I use for measuring a politician’s honesty are pretty simple. Ever since I was an investigative reporter covering the nexus of money and politics, I’ve looked for connections between money (including campaign donations, loans, Super Pac funds, speaking fees, foundation ties) and official actions. I’m on the lookout for lies, scrutinizing statements candidates make in the heat of an election.
The connection between money and action is often fuzzy. Many investigative articles about Clinton end up “raising serious questions” about “potential” conflicts of interest or lapses in her judgment. Of course, she should be held accountable. It was bad judgment, as she has said, to use a private email server. It was colossally stupid to take those hefty speaking fees, but not corrupt. There are no instances I know of where Clinton was doing the bidding of a donor or benefactor.See my previous post about a quid pro quo not being a necessity for influence peddling and corruption to occur. Jill Abramson has obviously never delved into Zephyr Teachout's masterful Corruption in America.
But just for the sake of honesty, let's take Abramson at her word. Although she doesn't use it as an example, Hillary's painful honesty about endemic American corruption and brutality shines through loud and clear in the following State Department cable, released by Wikileaks in December 2009:
"Saudia Arabia remains a critical financial support base for al-Qaeda, the Taliban, LeT (Lashkar-e-Taiba in Pakistan and other support groups." -- Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who then went on to complain that the Saudis only act against terrorists when their own country is threatened.
Whereupon she wasted no time in completing the sale of billions of dollars' worth of lethal weapons to Saudi Arabia, which has since openly and honestly used them them to slaughter innocent civilians in the United States' proxy war against Yemen. Whether any arms were also spirited by the Saudis to such fundamentalist terror groups as ISIS is still unknown.
Hillary's deal with the Saudis was not a secret backroom accomplishment by any stretch of the imagination. It was totally, boastfully transparent. Although both Hillary and her boss, Obama, were safely out of town enjoying the winter holidays while the actual papers were being signed, her Neocon minion Victoria Nuland held a totally open and honest press briefing about the sale. During one foggy Christmas Week, Santa and a whole retinue of his right jolly old elves came to Foggy Bottom to have their say.
The bureaucrats doing the honors, and the reporters basking in the honors, sounded absolutely merry and giddy. Whether they were drunk on booze or whether they were simply drunk on power/access to power is anyone's guess. From the transcript:
NULAND: Good afternoon, everybody. Before we do our regular daily briefing, we have a special briefing today on U.S. arms sales to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. With us today, we have Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs Andrew Shapiro, and we have Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy James Miller.
So without further ado, Assistant Secretary Shapiro.
QUESTION: Can we attribute the on-time nature of this briefing to the fact that someone from the Pentagon is here? (Laughter.)
MS. NULAND: Absolutely. We have military discipline – (laughter).
ASSISTANT SECRETARY SHAPIRO: Well, thank you everyone for coming this afternoon. And as Toria mentioned, I’m joined by Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense Dr. Jim Miller.
As you may recall, in October 2010, I officially announced the Administration’s plan to sell to Saudi Arabia a significant defense package that would include advanced F-15 fighter aircraft and helicopters. We are pleased to announce that over this past weekend, the United States and Saudi Arabia signed a letter of offer and acceptance for the sale of up to 84 advanced F-15SA fighter aircraft. It also includes upgrades to its current fleet of 70 F-15 aircraft, as well as munitions, spare parts, training, maintenance, and logistics.
This sale is worth $29.4 billion. These F-15SA aircraft, manufactured by the Boeing company, will be among the most sophisticated and capable aircraft in the world. This agreement serves to reinforce the strong and enduring relationship between the United States and Saudi Arabia. It demonstrates the U.S. commitment to a strong Saudi defense capability as a key component to regional security.Miller went on to claim that the sale would "advance U.S. interests" (read: bloat the obscene profits of Boeing, chief beneficiary of the Export-Import Bank boosted by Clinton and decried by her rival Bernie Sanders.)
It would, Miller continued, "send a strong message to countries in the region that the United States is committed to stability in the Gulf and the broader Middle East." (read: better watch out, Yemeni wedding parties and Doctors Without Borders hospitals and mothers and children who have the nerve to exist in the buffer zone between the Saudis and countries like Syria and Iraq and Iran and Libya.)
Although he glossed over Hillary's brutally honest, yet secret, assessment that Saudi Arabia is the major financier of terror in that region, Miller himself was brutally honest in admitting that the arms sale was all about the brutal greed of everybody concerned:
It will enhance Saudi Arabia’s ability to deter and defend against external threats to its sovereignty. It will advance interoperability between the air forces of our two countries through joint training and exercises. And lastly, this agreement will positively impact the U.S. economy and further advance the President’s commitment to create jobs by increasing exports. According to industry experts, this agreement will support more than 50,000 American jobs. It will engage 600 suppliers in 44 states and provide $3.5 billion in annual economic impact to the U.S. economy. This will support jobs not only in the aerospace sector but also in our manufacturing base and support chain, which are all crucial for sustaining our national defense.War is only hell for the grunts who get killed and maimed fighting it. It is pure heaven for the tax-exempt "job creators" and investors who make tons of money from megatons of death and destruction every single minute of every single day.
And in Hillaryland, every day is Christmas.
In the spirit of sincere honesty preceding her run for the presidency, husband Bill forthrightly admitted that Saudi bigwigs had returned the favoritism and gifted the Clinton Foundation with millions of dollars in "charitable" donations. The Clintons have transparently decided to keep the money from an aider and abettor of terrorism just because they are so above-board and deserving of our trust.
Ethics? They don't need any stinking ethics when they are absolutely shameless in their honesty.