Sunday, March 09, 2008

I Take Hillary at Her Word That She’s Not a Monster

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Was it stupid for an Obama advisor to call Hillary Clinton a “monster?” Almost everyone seems to agree that it was, but I’m not convinced. From everything I’ve read, Samantha Power is a brilliant and accomplished woman who will be greatly missed as a part of the Obama team, but it’s hard to believe that a Pulitzer prize winning journalist, no matter how frustrated, would unintentionally make such a gaffe in an interview with a reporter.

Could it be that this comment was intended to give Senator Clinton a bit of her own medicine, just to show that, by her standards, Obama is as prepared to take on the Republicans as she is?

With Hillary’s current campaign strategy that amounts to poisoning the well for the entire Democratic Party, I’m not so sure that it’s a bad thing to have every media outlet in the country using the words “Hillary” and “monster” in the same sentence!

The “mistake” has been retracted and an apology made, but somehow the phrase “Hillary is a monster” sticks in the imagination. It’s the proverbial toothpaste that can’t be put back in the tube. Whether or not Hillary is, in any sense, a “monster” is no more relevant than whether or not Barack Obama is a Muslim, but now aides have left the campaigns on both sides for creating for creating or spreading this imagery.

Of course, there is nothing wrong with being a Muslim, and Obama’s campaign isn’t gravitating toward invoking religious differences. Hillary’s campaign, on the other hand, has seized on the use of fear, in a manner similar to what Republicans have done in recent elections; and the wild deviations in the tone of her rhetoric often suggest a bit of mental derangement that is sometimes consistent with the use of the term “monster.”

If Hillary’s campaign continues as it has in recent weeks, the monster image will keep coming up for many voters, even when they consciously reject the characterization. The next time Hillary runs a fear-mongering TV ad, they might hear it more like this:
It’s 3 AM.

Your kids are safe and asleep.

There’s a phone in the White House and its ringing.

There’s something going on in the world!

Who do you think your kids want to answer that phone?

Your vote will decide.

Your kids are safe and asleep.

Do they want you to risk having that phone answered . . .

. . . By a Monster!
Meanwhile, although “monster” is surely a poor choice of words to describe Hillary’s unpredictable mood swings, Larry David at Huffington Post tells a similar story framed in a slightly more acceptable way!

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