From Pine View Farm

Election PM 2

Shaun Mullen, in a lengthy post, cites ways in which he believes Hillary Clinton contributed to her own loss. I’m excerpting perhaps the most perjorative portion of his post, which in its entirely is rather balanced, because I want to disagree with it.

History will show that Clinton’s propensity for self-inflicted wounds, as well as some very bad luck, was gasoline that helped fuel the fire that The Times story so compellingly recounts. These wounds included a penchant for secrecy that was driven, most certainly in part, by her right-wing tormenters that nevertheless resulted in her questionable use of a private email server and squirrely email practices, shadowy family foundation activities and enormous paydays making private speeches to Wall Street fat cats while publicly decrying their profligacy.

And while I’m piling on, what did Clinton stand for? Why was she running for president? Beyond “because it’s my turn,” I still have not been able to suss out a plausible answer, and neither could the staffers calling the shots in a presidential campaign so atrociously run that it resembled a Kafka-esque comedy minus the laughs unless you consider the consequence — a Trump presidency — to be funny.

I found it quite clear what Hillary Clinton stood for: moderation, sanity, and continued progress on the economy and human rights. So she is not an ideologue; generally, ideologues do not fare well in American national elections, whether the ideologue is, just to pick two, George Wallace or Bernie Sanders. (As for Donald Trump, though he sounds like an ideologue to please his base, his actions indicate that, if he idealizes anything, it’s TV ratings; he is a hollow man, a blowhard who says whatever he thinks his audience of the moment wants to hear.)

Furthermore, “because it’s my turn” is not an uncommon reason for candidates to declare. It takes a big ego to run for office–any office–and anyone who mounts a serious campaign does indeed think it’s his or her turn; that’s part of the package.

Was Clinton an ideal candidate? Probably not, but how many are?

Would she have been a capable chief executive and not a medicine show barker? Certainly.

Frankly, I suspect that, whoever the Democrats had nominated, by the time Republican gerrymandering and voter suppression (the importance of which is sorely underplayed and which I think was the largest single contributor to Trump’s elector college victory), the wingnut wurlitzer, the weaponizing of racism, fake news, foreign subterfuge, and FBI frolics had finished, Shaun could have written the same article and drawn the same conclusions, even had that candidate been God himself.


I have commented elsewhere on the fatuous nature of the claims about her use of a private email server. They were smoke and mirrors to fool those who don’t know how computers work and who, somewhere deep inside, fear those mystickal magickal boxes, even as they run nekkid through the Zuckerborg. For example.



  1. Shaun Mullen

    April 26, 2017 at 5:29 am

    A thoughtful and much appreciated response from a thoughtful voice that I have come to deeply value.

  2. Frank

    April 26, 2017 at 8:49 pm

    Thank you for the very kind words.