"They were careless people, Tom and Daisy - they smashed up things and creatures and then retreated back into their money or their vast carelessness or whatever it was that kept them together, and let other people clean up the mess they had made." -- F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby.
If there's one positive thing you can say about the ruling class, it's that they usually err on the side of taking care of their own. As much as some of their peers smash things up, there's always a ready supply of Elite Miracle Glue to put them together again.
Political appointee James Comey of the FBI performed his own mess-cleaning role on Tuesday by issuing an ass-covering non-indictment indictment of Hillary Clinton. He accused her of "carelessness" in the handling of her correspondence as she acted out her own politically-appointed part as Secretary of State. But because she is a duly recognized member of the Class, there will be no charges, trial or jail time. That kind of justice is reserved for the little people and for government whistle-blowers like Chelsea Manning. Comey admitted that the scope of the FBI probe was kept as artificially narrow and piecemeal as her corporate-sponsored presidential platform itself.
He as much as admitted that the FBI "investigation" was political window dressing:
The lawyers doing the sorting for Secretary Clinton in 2014 did not individually read the content of all of her e-mails, as we did for those available to us; instead, they relied on header information and used search terms to try to find all work-related e-mails among the reportedly more than 60,000 total e-mails remaining on Secretary Clinton’s personal system in 2014. It is highly likely their search terms missed some work-related e-mails, and that we later found them, for example, in the mailboxes of other officials or in the slack space of a server.So despite obstruction of justice on the part of Clinton and her minions, no charges of obstruction of justice will be forthcoming. As commenter Scott W observed in a New York Times comment, Richard Nixon must be writhing with jealousy in his grave.
It is also likely that there are other work-related e-mails that they did not produce to State and that we did not find elsewhere, and that are now gone because they deleted all e-mails they did not return to State, and the lawyers cleaned their devices in such a way as to preclude complete forensic recovery.
We have conducted interviews and done technical examination to attempt to understand how that sorting was done by her attorneys. Although we do not have complete visibility because we are not able to fully reconstruct the electronic record of that sorting, we believe our investigation has been sufficient to give us reasonable confidence there was no intentional misconduct in connection with that sorting effort.All-righty then. As long as you don't actually intend to kill somebody during your drunk-driving adventure, no charges will be leveled if you're rich enough and powerful enough. Paris Hilton must also be writhing with jealousy, after having had to spend a couple of days in jail for her DUI in which absolutely nobody was ever harmed.
Hillary's only "crime," if we read between Comey's lines, is that she may have endangered the security of other members of the Establishment. Bad actors like Vlad Putin could have gotten hold of some embarrassing stuff, due to Hillary's irresponsible penchant for privacy and paranoia throughout her global travels. Important people may still end up looking bad. But that is certainly no felony if you are a rich and powerful person yourself.
And like the feckless Daisy Buchanan before her, Hillary was immediately whisked away from her own hit-and-run to both political glory and legal safety. High above the clouds and then high before the crowds, she had Barack Obama to give her some much-needed cover. (Bill Clinton, the ever-unreliable antihero of this saga, has been temporarily banished from the stage in the wake of his purely social private airplane tryst with Comey's boss, the politically-appointed Justice Doyenne Loretta Lynch.)
Despite (or because of) what should have been the embarrassment of a nationally televised FBI tongue-lashing, Clinton and Obama put up a brave orchestrated front, staying together for the sake of the never-ending Party. To deflect any potential audience disgust at the Clintonian antics, Obama strove mightily to aim the popular wrath toward the most loathsome strawman-in-the flesh rich guy ever to be dreamed up by the Ruling Class: Donald Trump.
Dredging up that booming, stammering, down-home, G-droppin' style we haven't heard since he last played the populist against private equity vulture Mitt Romney, Obama (who is now reportedly plotting his own career in venture capitalism) was in full lesser-evil mode. As New York Times columnist Frank Bruni put it, he didn't just ask that we vote for Hillary. He commanded us to vote for Hillary in "a testimonial that was both gushing and epic."
You see, the media wants you to know that it's Obama's ruling class legacy - not the survival of the working class and the underclass - that's actually on the line here:
As I responded to an unsigned Times editorial politely requesting more "clarity" from Clinton regarding her carelessness:Then you look up toward the end of your second term to behold a Republican presidential nominee who is cynically exploiting racism and xenophobia to put the White House within his own reach. He’s not merely your adversary; he’s your antithesis. And his victory would do more than endanger your policies. It would question the very moral of your journey, the very bend of the arc you frequently invoke.That’s what Barack Obama confronts right now, and that’s why he hit the campaign trail on Tuesday, appearing onstage with Hillary Clinton in North Carolina and proclaiming without reservation that “there has never been any man or woman more qualified for this office” than she. That’s why he’ll say words like those again and again, with the same fire, in the months ahead.For the nation’s first black president, Clinton isn’t just the better candidate. She’s the better America. She wins and he holds on to his rosiest convictions about what he and his presidency symbolize.
The televised spectacle of the Clinton campaign rally in the immediate aftermath of James Comey's scathing assessment of her competency was downright surreal.
The North Carolina crowds chanting "I'm with her! I'm with her!" and President Obama proclaiming Hillary to be the most qualified and "tested" presidential candidate who ever lived was like something out of a Fellini film.
It's only the continuing atrocity of the Trump candidacy and his Nuremberg rallies that's making Hillary look even remotely morally acceptable to many voters. Because who would ever have thought that a major candidate being lambasted by the head of the FBI for serial venality and recklessness could be tempered and even subsumed in the news cycle by that other major candidate - who, it is obvious, has yet to reach his own outer limits of sociopathy?
It's a sad time in the USA, when the two nominees are competing mainly to see who can win or deflect the most negative media attention. Comey rips Hillary to shreds on character and judgment, while the Speaker of the House rips Trump another new one for yet another sick outburst of racism.
The Clinton-Trump death match could well be the kiss of death to the corrupt, money-driven duopoly. Now might be the optimal time for those third and fourth parties to fill the vacuum.
The only spoilers in the mix are Trump and Clinton themselves.
Forget about whether America is great, greater or greatest. We want our democracy back.