An NBC News online article about Hillary Clinton highlights “15 moments that define her public life,” and remarkably, there isn’t a single moment on the list that could fairly be characterized as an accomplishment. Indeed, three of the moments are nothing more than humiliations suffered at the hands of her womanizing husband and her acceptance of such treatment, because, after all, she “loved him.” Yeah, it’s more likely she loved the idea of riding Bill Clinton’s coattails right into the Senate and from there to the presidency.
One of Hillary’s defining moments is her election to the Senate, but if anything, her initial run for the Senate must stand as one of the great moments of liberal arrogance in the entire history of U.S. politics. The big question for Clinton wasn’t whether she would be elected, but rather which state, among several, would have the honor of electing her. As we know, New York got the nod, and although one might think that voters facing such arrogance would send a candidate packing, the good people of New York instead proceeded to elect her.
SIDE BAR: A few years after electing Clinton to the Senate, the people of NYC at least had the opportunity to redeem themselves. At that time NYC’s mayor, Michael Bloomberg, got his buddies to change the term limit law, which had been established by a vote of the people, to allow him to run again. Instead of showing Bloomberg the door, the voters returned him to power, and in so doing, proved their total lack of self-respect.
Clinton supposedly made one of her marks in September 1995 when she gave a “forceful critique of the abuse of women in China” during a U.N. conference. Perhaps women in China faced abuse in 1995, but one might have expected her to focus on the more pronounced oppression and enslavement of women in the Middle East. We’ve all seen the photograph of her covered head on a visit to Pakistan, but was it a show of solidarity with the women of the Middle East or was she siding with the men who force the women to cover up?
Liberals struggle to identify any accomplishments during Clinton’s four years as secretary of state. Some at least admit that Clinton’s record was mixed (to say the least), but still tend to ignore the negatives and focus on the almost 1 million miles that Clinton traveled during her tenure. In the past, accomplishment used to mean, well, accomplishing things, but these days, accomplishment = travel. Never mind the state of relations with Russia or Iran, or American indifference toward those fighting for democracy during the Arab Spring uprisings.
Promoting democracy hasn’t been high on Clinton’s list of priorities. In 2009, the president of Honduras, Manuel Zalaya, attempted to change the law to allow him to continue in power (perhaps following Bloomberg’s lead in NYC). In response, the Hondurans booted him from the country, named an interim president, and followed up by electing a new president. During this time, the U.S. sided with the authoritarian Zelaya over democracy. Even after a new president had been elected, and Honduras had moved past the crisis, the U.S. ambassador still demanded that Honduras reinstate Zelaya as president.
But the most disgraceful episode in Clinton’s diplomatic career would be her lies about the events at Benghazi that caused the deaths of four Americans, including the ambassador to Libya. Clinton famously showed her disdain for the concept of the “truth” during her congressional testimony by asking “what difference does it make.” In addition to the lies, she also claimed to “take responsibility” for the incompetence of her department in Benghazi, but in so far as she didn’t resign her position, she took no responsibility at all.
The NBC News article most likely meant to praise Clinton, although it’s hard to know for sure. Many of Hillary’s defining moments – the humiliations, policy failures, ineffective diplomacy, disdain for the truth, and her lip service to the idea of democracy – are not worthy of praise. Rather, they establish the grounds for disqualifying her from the presidency. But that won’t deter her from running, and amazingly enough, it will not deter half the voters in this country from supporting her.