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January 29, 2009

Hillary Clinton Just As Odious As You Thought

By: John Caruso

Here's Hillary Clinton giving us a crystal clear statement of the Obama administration's official position on the propriety of Israel's killing of 1285 Palestinians in Gaza, overwhelmingly civilians:

[W]e support Israel’s right to self-defense. The rocket barrages, which are getting closer and closer to populated areas, cannot go unanswered. And it’s, you know, regrettable that the Hamas leadership apparently believes that it is in their interest to provoke the right of self-defense instead of building a better future for the people of Gaza.

Unfortunately none of the reporters at this press conference felt it was necessary to ask Clinton 1) if Palestinians have a similar right to self-defense, 2) what it would take to "provoke" this right, or 3) how many Israeli deaths would be justified—and rationalized by the United States, rather than condemned—once it was provoked.

— John Caruso

Posted at January 29, 2009 12:15 AM

And so the bombing continues.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at January 29, 2009 12:43 AM

Is that Hillary Clinton or just something that looks like her and bears her name?
Maybe she's been terrified into the role she's playing. Or beaten into it, by something that left no marks.
Because no one of above average intelligence in her position could say that without a heart so compromised it's completely disconnected from her mind as she speaks.
It doesn't change anything directly or immediately, but knowing there's more to it than just some kind of nasty opportunism magnified to the edge of the throneroom might help, looking deeper than even odiousness as apt as it is as a descriptor, those crazy shots from the campaign with her eyes gone all 360sanpaku, too much tension even for the importance of the race, she was desperate inside, for something, not just power. Possessed. The sold soul.
Bush was like that only folksier. These people are puppets, not even actors. Jerked by strings we can almost see now.

Posted by: roy belmont at January 29, 2009 01:14 AM

Nah. Humans respond to incentives. Most of them are indoctrinated to reject the most efficient means (stealing, killing, cheating, etc.), and these don't win the Big Prize, especially in business and politics, but also in other lucrative endeavors. Sociopaths do.

Posted by: abb1 at January 29, 2009 11:16 AM

Hillary is very popular right now, not only in her own light, but in the reflecting light of the Obama Love. By and large people are enthralled with image. This is why it's so easy for sociopaths to flourish. It's not what the actually say and do that matters; it's their image that carries the day.

Posted by: Paul Avery at January 29, 2009 01:10 PM

When I read this post, an image came unbidden to my mind's eye, an image of Hillary's face transposed onto a Komodo dragon, its fangs a-drip with pestilential slaver. And then I had the thought that, be that as it may, she is merely a servant, the creature of a yet more fearsome master. And that master is a multi-headed hydra whose schemes and actions are made still more stupid and vicious through the reduction of each individual head's greedy and hateful agenda into a satanic lowest common denominator. How could we think otherwise about the nature of that master when such effluvia issues from the mouth of its creature?

It is hard to not be downhearted sometimes.

Posted by: JerseyJeffersonian at January 29, 2009 02:53 PM

Well nah yah or maybe I remember Bush dangling from the cable-thick strings of whatever it is that held him up to the world as the Napoleonic conqueror of whatever, and how those sharp little teeth of the left just ravaged his smelly sockness all to shreds. Judiciously, as they will.
And then when Obama got the prize how triumphant the same fangy little minds got, ha.
Ha ha. As if Bush could have taken over the government, as if he could have even taken over a baseball franchise on his own. As if.
As if whatever took the government and put Bush in front would just step away from that much power because they lost an election.
Hillary Clinton is the Sec of State. Hah.
Abb1 - it seems a little beneath your usual perspicuity to think only in terms of reward at those levels. The idea that the same hands that offer what rewards would work to subjugate the US Congress wouldn't also have enough backhanded punishment available seems pollyanna-ish.
My own perception of her is she once had principles, compassion, heart of at least a modicum of depth - then suddenly it all just went away.
Reward maybe in the sense of the relaxation of terrifying coercive intimidation, to the degree you can sleep at night without a triple dose of Ambien, maybe. Maybe that kind of reward.

Posted by: roy belmont at January 29, 2009 05:10 PM

I'm with John. (Good post, by the way.)

Hillary Clinton didn't lose principles, compassion, or heart suddenly. Those qualities were eroded and molded to the required size and shape over a long, long political career -- as they are over many politicians' careers. Very few start out with enough principles and heart to still have a meaningful supply when they gain access to a modicum of power. No one gets to Secretary of State or President with compassion intact.

The robotic "pro-Israel" talking points Secretary Clinton recites in the main post could be and have been uttered repeatedly in the last month by all but a handful of elected Democrats. I loathe her no more or less than any of those. The statement articulates the official U.S. position on Israel and Palestine. It makes me want to throw up.

It also makes me wonder what the al-Arabiya interviewer asked about Gaza and Palestine and the U.S. role in Israel's recent assault -- or was he so dazzled at getting the first Obama interview that he soft-pedaled it?

Posted by: Nell at January 29, 2009 08:51 PM

Yes John, it's easy to condemn her as a venal hyper-ambitious opportunist, much easier. Going with the program is always easier.
Just like it was so easy to pretend Bush was out there on his own fucking up the US and the world - the most powerful single human being on the planet - and he got there through the mighty majesty of his own terrifyingly awesome greed for power. Right.
Much easier to pretend that than to ask yourself how he got there when he couldn't even run some podunk baseball team. Why he seemed so hypnotized half the time, and so inarticulately confused the rest.
And along with pretending Bush was an independent operator who just got lucky you get to pretend you can vote what put him there out of office along with him and Evil Dick. Just like in 2006. Remember that?
US out of Iraq. And off to Congress went all the little people's demands. By golly, that's enough of that.
And it sure worked too.
Whew! Thank heaven that's all over with now.
"Judiciously, as you will." Remember that?
And what, it's stopped? Why? How?
Because they lost? When?
Beat those guys back into the dank holes they crawled out of, did we?
That nominally perceptive minds can conceive of politicians like Clinton being bought off and politically redirected - the traditional, acceptable form of corruption in elected office - but see only conspiracy theory in the suggestion that politicians can just as easily be bullied, severely as it takes, and blackmailed into sacrificing their principles for safety is one of the most disheartening things about all this.
The cheap snark just confirms it, once again the real show's too scary for the nice and relatively normal people. Too dark, too hard to see.
AIPAC's got more than cash and promises of power in their little kit bag. And no one's talking about it past some lightweight accusations they may, you know, wreck some careers here and there. As intimidating as that may be to power-hungry egotists like national politicians, there's more, and it's as ugly and as immorally bloody as Gaza.
And there's a lot more coming.

Posted by: roy belmont at January 29, 2009 09:43 PM

Most of the harsh in that last post is from the insult, though the bleakness is a pretty constant thing for me these days. What's missing from it, now that the anger's dissipated, is the fact that just as with Bush, it seems to me a lot of people are reluctant to let go of the sadistic satisfaction they get from hating these figures, and the attendant ridicule etc.
Seeing them as victims negates that, or at least it does if you have a functioning conscience.
Seeing figures like Hillary Clinton as willful participants in the awfulness of these times brings a tacit permission to objectify them, that in turn enables vilification. This is a pattern that's playing out all over the place.
That's really my objection. That and the way it elides what are pretty clearly powerful coercive forces at work behind their postures and actions.
But anyway I wanted to tone down the vituperative a little. It was a cheap shot on Caruso's part, and I responded to it in a low and thoughtless fashion.

Posted by: roy belmont at January 29, 2009 11:41 PM

Roy, you're right about the snark, and I apologize (sincerely) for that. I didn't intend to provoke you and I'm sorry if I did.

But you're basically talking about some vast Jewish conspiracy here, right? Intimidating Hillary Clinton (for example) into doing their bidding, against her will, with her the terrified victim? I'm reading in between the lines somewhat about the agents since you were generally vague about just who these shadowy forces are—with the exception of the direct mention of AIPAC—but that's certainly what it sounds like you're saying. And you've asserted before that "it is dangerously inaccurate to separate completely Bernie Madoff, Michael Bloomberg, Tzipi Livni, Rahm Emmanuel, and Roman Abramovitch," so it seems clear that it's not just AIPAC you're talking about. Frankly, it doesn't sound very far short of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

And I find that not just misguided and unconvincing, but offensive. Which left me nonplussed about how to respond...but also feeling I should respond, since I reject what I understood you to be saying and I wanted to make sure that was very clear.

If I've misread what you've written, please do correct my misunderstanding. If you were just intending to call out institutional forces generally—not limited to any specific ethnic/religious/national group, despite your reference to AIPAC and your previous mention of Madoff et al—and the way those forces affect politicians like Clinton or Bush, I could agree with you on that in broad terms. But if this is an overarching, coercive, malevolent conspiracy of Jews pulling the cable-thick strings of our puppet politicians and running the world from behind the scenes, I don't see how we're going to have much to discuss.

Posted by: John Caruso at January 30, 2009 12:57 AM

John, thanks for the apology.
I feel constrained to point out that the tacit legitimacy of ridicule and insult directed at anyone who talks "about some vast Jewish conspiracy" is another facet of what I'm talking about with Clinton.
People like to feel free and able to insult and humiliate other people and they're very reluctant to let that go once they've taken it on. It's cathartic. Bush's entire public performance was cathartic, going and coming. Catharticly satisfying for the right going in, and for the left going out. But look at what's there. That man was not capable of doing what he did, as an independent actor. So then who, what, when?
I don't see how you're going to answer that question without alluding to conspiracy, and the fact that I think it was largely a Jewish conspiracy that built and ran the Bush White House should not be more objectionable than if I thought it was a conspiracy of patrician WASPS. Shouldn't be, but it is.
However you want to describe whatever your impression is of the views I hold about this subject and these subjects, I want to tell you, and anyone else interested, and I want you to hear me very clearly when I tell you, that I have never written anything insulting or ridiculing about Jews anywhere on the internet or anywhere else, ever. Because I have never felt the feelings that would generate insults and ridicule, because I don't have them.
Grief and rage, yes. Horror even. And a bitterness that I can't stand to confront directly. But the smugness and confident superiority that allows insult and ridicule, never.
Which is not to say that I haven't been satirical once or twice.
As to my subscribing to the PoTEoZ, I read it once, or part of it, a few years ago. It's interesting. I wouldn't recommend it to anyone, especially not to someone with no background in skeptical and critical reading.
But I don't see how anyone with much brains can look at the last 8 years of American political history and not see a Jewish conspiracy of some scale operating, centrally if not monolithically, and in at least some of the countries of Europe as well.
Gaza itself is a Jewish conspiracy of massive proportion, in its scale as well as its moral weight. Pretending that we can talk about Gaza as something "Israeli", as separate entirely from something "Jewish" is a little disingenuous, isn't it?
Which is the thought behind the contextless quote beginning "it is dangerously inaccurate to separate completely Bernie Madoff".
It's just as inaccurate, and just as dangerous to those who don't deserve it, to lump the people I named all together in one maleficent group, as it is to insist there's no connection at all between Tzipi Livni and Sheldon Adelsen, two different citizens of different countries, with different occupations in entirely different professions.
When you say "if this is an overarching, coercive, malevolent conspiracy of Jews" I don't know what overarching means there, unless you just didn't want to use "vast" again.
But coercive? You can't see coercion, by Jews, for Jewish interests to the exclusion or secondary relegation of the interests of the American public? You can't see conspiracy to do that? Anywhere?
I don't believe it.
In the sense that any concerted action at those levels of political manipulation has to be discussed and planned of course there's conspiracy. Conspiracy is just planning to do bad stuff.
There's something riding along on what you're saying fairly eloquently, the unspoken and indefensible idea that because Jews have been so unfairly persecuted historically they're not to be spoken of as capable of conspiracy. As if the refusal to allow that confirms you as a decent person. Is this because there's some innate moral goodness in Jews that prevents them from acting in their own interests to the detriment of others? Are they not men?
Men are capable of heinous shit.
Somewhere in here we're at cross purposes on whether Jews are capable of evil, I think. My personal belief is we all are.
Jews are as capable of malevolence as Italians or Lithuanians are. And conspiracy. And coercion.
And as for "malevolent" ipso facto any conspiring to the degree of harm we've witnessed in Iraq is malevolent. I certainly don't see the conspiracy to destroy Iraq as a benign one.
It's been my contention since early 2003 that the Iraq invasion was a Jewish enterprise in the main. I still contend that. I'm less likely to get flamed and disemvowelled and followbacked through my ISP for saying it these days though.
It's not an anti-Semitic statement, and it's not born from anti-Semitic sentiment. I have credentials, big ones, from and in the Jewish community. I am not, nor have I ever been, anti-Semitic. So please stick that knee-jerk racist b.s. somewhere else.
And if you don't see, or aren't willing to see, that Clinton's got strings, thick strings, running from her public face right through the offices of AIPAC to whoever you want to say is back there, you're right, we're not going to have much to discuss.
I was under the impression you did see those strings, but were convinced they were voluntary, the attributes of greed and unprincipled ambition. She kissed AIPAC ass because that's where the money is.
I think some of that's true, but I see something in her images and hear in her voice at times something that I recognize as fear, not just power and the hunger for power.
None of it's black and white, none of it is anything but fluid and changeable. But most of what's really happening, and has been been happening for some time now, is invisible. We see the symptoms as they erupt - and they're big, overwhelming, but we don't see the pathology. We're not going to, unless we talk to each other, and hear each other when we do.

Posted by: roy belmont at January 30, 2009 03:41 AM

Oh, well, that's ok then.

Posted by: AlanSmithee at January 30, 2009 06:28 AM

In a sense and to an extent it is OK; it is what it is, such is life. Do you have any suggestions on how to change it?

Posted by: abb1 at January 30, 2009 08:06 AM