Friday, October 23, 2015

The Benign Inquisition of Hillary Clinton

You've seen the already iconic images of Hillary Clinton at her Congressional hearing on Benghazi yesterday. The bored resting of the hand on the regal chin, the dismissive flicking of imaginary dirt off the regal shoulder, the barely contained smirk on the regal face as the good cop Dems squandered the opportunity to ask her substantive questions and instead used our time to pay her court.

It was eleven hours of kangaroo court testimony taking place at the eleventh hour of our moribund democracy. One set of plutocrats did battle with another set of plutocrats. And the Queen-in-waiting was, in the words of Democratic operative Donna Brazile, steely, stoic, and serene.

It was an eleven-hour-long campaign commercial and fund-raising opportunity. Emails urging us to have Hillary's back arrived at regular intervals. We were urged to show our proletarian solidarity by sending a few bucks her way to supplement the hundreds of millions already supplied to her by Wall Street.

 Hillary Clinton could never have offered such a bravura performance without such a strong supporting ensemble cast of comical Torquemadas, Macbethian shrews, fawning fan-waving Uriah Heeps, soldiers of fortune,  and a whole Greek chorus full of wailing pundits. It helped her case enormously that Trey Gowdy, the guy touting himself as Best Actor in a Sadistic Series, seemed to be going for the Ed Grimley look.

Hillary Clinton ventured forth from her mobile Petit Trianon and donned shining designer armor for a one-day-only performance as Joan of Arc under siege. But instead of being tied to the stake, she was plopped up on an embroidered cushion atop expensive leather upholstery. The rest of us were glued to our seats as Hillary endured the third degree by a right-wing cabal of third rate actors. She came out of the whole Grand Guignol ordeal smiling, refreshed and smug.

And why shouldn't she be happy and relieved?  She was never questioned on her real crimes and those of the Obama administration. To wit: 

The extent to which the non-Congressionally approved Libya adventure destabilized the country and led to the attack was left largely unexamined. Investigative reporter Seymour Hersh has previously revealed that Benghazi was the hub for an illegal gun-running operation to Syria. And then-CIA director David Petraeus's girlfriend, Paula Broadwell, has let slip that Benghazi was also the site of a secret, illegal black-ops prison. 

Nor was Clinton confronted about the administration's role in the ongoing migrant and refugee crisis engendered by the Libya bombings and other wars of aggression, and her individual role in the overthrow of the democratically elected president of Honduras, and the ensuing refugee crisis and imprisonment of Central American mothers and children in Homeland Security immigration prisons.

Hillary Clinton has every reason to feel happy, relieved and triumphant. Her twin  personality traits and political techniques  -- victimization and survivalism -- remain intact.


Pearl said...

11 signs that someone is lying to you via @BI_Careers /

The Black Swan said...

It's as if Clinton had pulled up in front of a house and parked in front of a fire hydrant, then proceeded to rob the house and murder everyone living within. When it comes time to press charges and go to trial, it's all about parking in front of the fire hydrant.

What about her private email server? Deleting emails? Illegally bombing and destroying multiple countries in the Middle East? Funding al-Qaeda to start a Civil War in Syria? Selling weapons to the Saudis? The entire Clinton Foundation money laundering/arms dealing scheme? Nope, just that darn pesky fire hydrant and those mean old Republicans once again attacking the Clintons.

Listening to NPR (I know) and them talking about how inevitable it is that she will be the Democrat candidate for President. This lady should be indicted for war crimes, not running for president. And now the one good chance to go after her for all her crimes and misdeeds in the Middle East has been misused and squandered, and she comes out looking like the victim instead of the perpetrator.

This country.

Anonymous said...

Well done Karen. The most significant things about the American deaths in Libya may have to do with intelligence operations that neither Mrs. Clinton nor the Republican Right will share with mere citizens, who are disqualified from foreign policy matters because we are not "experts."

It had occurred to me that one wouldn't want to call attention via heavy security or fortress like buildings to this little outpost if its primary mission, whatever the Ambassador was doing, was an intelligence operation of unknown parameters.

All I can do is take several steps back and wait for future disclosures from those types of folks whom all the Democratic candidates refused to stand up for, including Bernie Sanders. And add that democracy and empire never have been compatible, not in the 5th century BC, in Greece, not in the 2nd in Rome, nor in our young century...

Pearl said...

The Rosenthal article about Hillary in the NYTimes plus the comments from readers did not see her as we do. She has pulled the wool over too many eyes it seems which is discouraging.
She is praised for her strength when needed which will make a great president according to practically all the readers.
I hope the coming year will reveal the truth about this enigmatic woman whom you wrote about so well, Karen, but it sends a chill to the bones. Now Bernie is being thoroughly downgraded in comparison.
In Krugman's article praising the Canadian election did he offer any comments about Hillary?
What no one seems to mention in reporting that election, is that the NDP, the truly progressive party, was decimated as a result. The Liberals are not really liberal but that remains to be seen. There is always a victim in these 'victories'it seems.

Anonymous said...


What will Sanders do now? He's falling in the polls, Hillary has the momentum. He played the role of nice guy and statesman in the last debate, he didn't go after Clinton in the way she went after him on gun control. Here's how I saw that "bargain": Hillary was pointing out that Mr. Pure and Consistency isn't so on gun control, he's a hypocrite to get elected just like all the rest of us pols, feet of clay. Of course this is dangerous ground for Ms. Clinton, the Wal-Mart Board member, Rose law firm lady and who was the courageous defender of poor children while the working class was being de-industrialized and the ghettos were being taught that they weren't part of America, and would soon have an incarcerated nation to call their own. And of course Bill Clinton never missed an opportunity to belittle and bash the left.

If you don't like where we are now on the economy, the Clintons, jointly, separately, what have you, have never offered either a clear explanation of what was going on or an alternative, just face our version of There is No Alternative - except "Us." Poor Jim Webb, the only good thing this hapless candidate did was speak the truth about China...can Sanders follow that up on the how and what and where rolling the red carpet out for China has done for the working class?

So Sanders can continue to get wiped up with this type of dynamic, or show some teeth and go after her as she goes after others: a struggle of wills. He let black activists push him off the stage when they apparently never had approached his campaign in the first place; he's responded well since then...even if Sanders doesn't want to convince us he still wants to win, merely to educate, he's got to find a tougher, more original dynamic or he's toast.

Oh yes, and the Republican have stated clearly that their winning hand is foreign policy, no more pushing the US around, in the Middle East or anywhere else. Substitute toughness abroad so the domestic helplessness that is the Republican economy's assigned role (and Democratic Centrists' as well) for the middle and working class can displace the anger "out there" onto a new "other." Has Sanders given us a clear alternative? Not really.

Pearl said...

I was just reading the Toronto Star in the library and the main page had an article about the worries of the Ontario premier when meeting with Justin Trudeau in the near future about money from the Federal government for negotiating many Ontario problems including teacher salaries, doctor salaries, etc. She indicated that there have been many arguments in the past about what they were entitled to from the Federal government and that she is worried that the new Prime Minister will not be able to fulfill some of their needs. So already there are problems looming when the nitty gritty of finances will be coming up and whether promises made by Trudeau will be able to be fulfilled. Not surprising when he will have to deal with all the provinces shortly on these urgent matters and school teachers and doctors may have their salaries frozen.

Anonymous: your comment makes a great deal of sense and I am sure Bernie Sanders is in a dilemma about how to deal with many conflicting problems and keep his foot in the door. With the media doing their usual job supporting the status quo he has his work cut out for him but until and unless the citizens wake up to reality and push for real change the problems will accelerate. I watched a video of Bernie talking about some of these challenges not knowing whom it was aimed at and was impressed with what he was saying in this video (put out by his organization?) so he knows what he is up against and did make some statements about issues that I never heard from him before. He has choices to make and whether they will succeed or fail is difficult and is affected by timing, events occurring,etc. Perhaps we will have an event equal to the sudden Liberal surge in Canada when people became frightened by the conservative alternative but here in the U.S. such a surge will have to cross many lines to succeed.
Perhaps Hillary's smile that seems to be a result of devouring her prey will begin to menace her body, or the White House will be drowned in an environmental disaster of melting icebergs. So we will have to hold our breaths for a year and wait for an unknown calamity to point the way.