Clinton And The Haters

Kevin Drum helpfully knocks down the weirdest anti-Hillary argument coming from the kneejerk Hillary haters, the idea that her support comes just as much from hatred and revenge fantasies as does the opposition. If that were true then the political netroots, famously home to the angriest liberal fringe, ought to be teeming with Clintonistas. Yet that just isn’t true. In our own poll Hillary failed to break two digits, and that was better than she ever did on Kos’s tracking poll.

It’s not that online liberals aren’t angry. Believe me, we are. Imagine that you care about the country like you care about your family. Now imagine that somebody raped your sister and then argued with a self-satisfied smirk that it was your fault. That more or less describes it. And believe me, the physical pain that another Clinton presidency would cause the strong executive torture-and-surveillance conservatives (ha ha, sigh) is not lost on me. But she’s still my last choice. I think that the other two frontrunners would govern better, and I think that Chris Dodd would govern much better, and that matters more to me than making Bill Kristol cry.






55 replies
  1. 1
    SpotWeld says:

    The general trend I’ve seen (and this just limited personal experience)is that the more “left” a person is, the more likley they are to support Edwards or maybe Obama. (Or at the very least the more diverse the opinions are.) It’s in the very muddy middle that seems to flow towards Hillary Clinton, because of name reconition (fostered by heavy campaigning I’m sure)?

  2. 2
    bernarda says:

    By far the best candidate is Kucinich.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gtVb_uEklzQ

    What does anyone disagree with here?

  3. 3
    demimondian says:

    Why is it so weird? The activist right looks at how effective its propaganda has been at trashing Clinton among its constituency, and asks, reasonably, how it could have failed so badly on the left.

    As Drum points out, the truth is, it didn’t, and polls like yours show that clearly. Among activists, Clinton is widely hated as a right-wing-lite (despite the most liberal voting record among the Dem candidates by quite a margin), triangulating (despite being divisive), and “mainstream” (whatever the Hell that means). The dirt stuck.

    Of course, this activist wonders if maybe, just maybe, we should rethink our antipathy towards her. If we’re just repeating right-wing talking points with no basis in fact, then maybe we should stop help the enemy.

  4. 4
    cleek says:

    In our own poll Hillary failed to break seven digits eight percent

    fixed

  5. 5
    The Other Steve says:

    The general trend I’ve seen (and this just limited personal experience)is that the more “left” a person is, the more likley they are to support Edwards or maybe Obama.

    I don’t know about that. I lean Obama, but I’m more of a moderate.

  6. 6
    The Other Steve says:

    However, while I think someone like Obama would be a better leader of the nation. There is a part of me that wants to jab a hot sharp stick in the eye of the fucked up Republicans who arrogantly claimed Bush was bringing Dignity and Honor back to the Whitehouse(HA!).

    Not only were they insufferable pricks, they were so unbelievably wrong.

  7. 7
    demimondian says:

    I think that what Tim F. should have said is

    is that the more -“left”- politically involved a -person- Democrat is, the more [likely] they are to support Edwards or maybe Obama.

    There’s a high correlation between being a politically involved Dem and being left; the core party is much more polarized than the population at large.

  8. 8

    Imagine that you care about the country like you care about your family.

    Flag waving and cheerleading a misbegotten war from behind keyboard are the only “real” patriotic acts in wingnuttia. It is for that very lack of imagination and personal courage that the most extreme rightists now find themselves bound up in a bizarre world of contradiction and farce.

    … I think that Chris Dodd would govern much better, and that matters more to me than making Bill Kristol cry.

    Dodd is great. And as much as would like to see Kristol’s head explode I too prefer Senator Dodd. He would make a damn fine President.

  9. 9
    D. Mason says:

    The reason I don’t care much for Hillary is that she seems dishonest to me. In the same way as Mitt Romney just not as … oozing. Back before she actually started campaigning I was kind of excited about a Hillary presidency, since I did like Bill alot. It’s a strange thing too. Bill seemed dishonest but somehow in a benign way. Maybe it’s the difference in the times. When Bill was Pres the country wasn’t crumbling and a little fib didn’t seem like such a big deal. Now, the singular fact of not being sure exactly where she stands is enough to put me off. Obviously I would vote for her over any Repub except one(you know which) since I know exactly where they stand – against me. Still I don’t feel too good about Hillary as a Dem candidate. In fact, I really feel like every single candidate, on both sides, is a loser in one way or another. That’s a shitty feeling.

  10. 10
    rachel says:

    Can you say “projection”?

    I knew you could.

    Hillary is my last choice amongst the Dems; Dodd, Kucinich, and Edwards are waaaaay out ahead of her, AFAIC. However, I think she’s still better than any of the freaks, loons and bible-thumpers the Reps have lined up, so if she’s the candidate, I’ll vote for her. In that case, I can at least console myself with William the Bloody Awful Pundit’s tears.

  11. 11
    Tim F. says:

    Demi, you make a mistake in thinking that netrooters dislike Hillary for irrational reasons or due to rightiwng marketing. In my view despite her liberal voting record, her foreign policy instincts appear at the bottom of the pack, she keeps advisors who are one step removed from neocons and I think that she lacks her husband’s knack for marshaling policy into practical results. I don’t specifically dislike her, but I like the alternatives better.

  12. 12
    Tim F. says:

    I think that what Tim F. should have said is

    Did you mean SpotWeld?

  13. 13
    Horselover Fat says:

    Maybe some of us mostly want to win, and find Obama worrisome.

    Using Republican talking points, Republican “Frames” and advocating High Broderist “bipartisanship” doesn’t strike me as an effective strategery, no matter how comfortable you guys mostly are with it.

    I am good with Edwards, Dodd, Biden – but I voted Clinton because I see her as the most viable NotObama.

  14. 14
    demimondian says:

    Did you mean SpotWeld?

    Yes. Sorry for the misattribution.

  15. 15
    Elvis Elvisberg says:

    I emailed Andrew Sullivan yesterday, pointing out that she’s the most conservative of the Democratic candidates, and that “The fact that she makes her crazy opponents flip out doesn’t mean that her supporters are driven by similar rage.”

    The “projection” point that rachel makes about covers it.

    Sullivan is so infuriating– he’s just written a book about how bluster and self-righteousness aren’t great ways to think things through, and all he can do about Clinton is bluster self righteously. In fairness, the Dissent of the Day that he published was pretty good. The conclusion: “Michael Moore is not Michelle Malkin, but people like you can’t see the difference.”

  16. 16

    Demi, you make a mistake in thinking that netrooters dislike Hillary for irrational reasons or due to rightiwng marketing. In my view despite her liberal voting record, her foreign policy instincts appear at the bottom of the pack, she keeps advisors who are one step removed from neocons and I think that she lacks her husband’s knack for marshaling policy into practical results. I don’t specifically dislike her, but I like the alternatives better.

    Well said. I happen to think that she’d be effective at turning policy into results–that might be her strongest selling point to me. It’s because her policies are more tempered than those of, say, John Edwards that I’m less enamored with her.

  17. 17
    demimondian says:

    The “most conservative” of the candidates has the most liberal voting record of any of the major candidates, Elvis. Now, why do you think I call those claims “right wing talking points”?

  18. 18
    demimondian says:

    you make a mistake in thinking that netrooters dislike Hillary for irrational reasons or due to rightiwng marketing

    I don’t make a mistake — you make a mistake in your evaluation.

    “Right wing foreign policy”, for instance. How did she differ from Edwards on Iraq? They both voted for the AUMF, right? He apologized for it; she hasn’t. Did she vote correctly at the time? The debate I had with srv about utilitarian foreign policy and its pitfalls, Tim…this is the point. In the light of later evidence, did she vote incorrectly? Yes. Should she apologize for it? Did she do her homework to the best of her ability? If so, then she erred in what?

    And, gosh, she voted to hold the Revolutionary Guards a terrorist force. Um, folks? Does it matter that they are a terrorist force? Obama lacked the guts to call a thug a thug, and we’re supposed to *praise* him for it?

    You’re parroting false talking points.

  19. 19
    twitch says:

    As a seventeen year long resident of Connecticut I have come away with the impression that Senator Dodd really hasn’t done all that much in office.

    He seems like a nice guy, pretty liberal, on the banking committee, well-liked by colleagues, chosen to run part of Bush’s inaugeration ceremonies in 2000. Certainly, he says the right things about telecoms’ immunity from spying lawsuits, etc. But what has this guy delivered?

    I think much of the net support among liberals is for a man who hasn’t done very much and therefore doesn’t provide enough target space for anyone’s arrow to hit him.

    And one note: I know from anecdotal, local evidence that Dodd acted inappropriately in public with women. Not woman-hating, but the kind of sexual shenanigans that would provide fodder for the right. He’s a married with children family guy now, but that past could come back to haunt him, should he become a front-runner. I don’t like that and think it’s bullshit, but I think the Republicans would run a character-flaw campaign against him, maybe “Bill-lite”.

  20. 20
    TheFountainHead says:

    And, gosh, she voted to hold the Revolutionary Guards a terrorist force. Um, folks? Does it matter that they are a terrorist force? Obama lacked the guts to call a thug a thug, and we’re supposed to praise him for it?

    You’re parroting false talking points.

    No, you’re supposed to go back to school and learn how to play “Foreign Policy: 101”

    Lesson 1: When attempting to prevent a war, please avoid giving unilateral powers to a warmonger and it’s perhaps not the best idea to encourage the people of the foreign nation in question to hate your living guts any more than they may already.

  21. 21
    D. Mason says:

    I think the Republicans would run a character-flaw campaign against him

    You can say the exact same thing about every dem candidate except Hillary.

  22. 22
    demimondian says:

    When attempting to prevent a war, please avoid giving unilateral powers to a warmonger and it’s perhaps not the best idea to encourage the people of the foreign nation in question to hate your living guts any more than they may already.

    Do you accept that Bush advocates an unlimited executive power to use the armed forces? Now, tell me again what difference that vote made, please?

  23. 23
    Andrew says:

    The “most conservative” of the candidates has the most liberal voting record of any of the major candidates, Elvis. Now, why do you think I call those claims “right wing talking points”?

    The problem there is that you’re seeing some sort of equivalence between, say, “Housing” and “War and Peace.” Yeah, compassionate welfare is great and all, but it’s fairly trivial compared to nuking Iran.

  24. 24
    demimondian says:

    compassionate welfare is great and all, but it’s fairly trivial compared to nuking Iran.

    So you, too, advocate lying about the Revolutionary Guards because it’s convenient? How moral of you.

  25. 25
    Robert Johnston says:

    The “most conservative” of the candidates has the most liberal voting record of any of the major candidates, Elvis. Now, why do you think I call those claims “right wing talking points”?

    Because you don’t understand Clinton. She is a classical conservative, fearing political risk and therefore skeptical of change. Preservation of the status quo while Bush has been in office–i.e. opposing Bush’s changes–has been a very good position to take. It might come across as liberal in roll calls, but it’s not. It’s a classical conservative position in opposition to radical rightism, driven by risk aversion and opposition to Bush more than by progressive ideas.

    Now, after eight years of Bush pushing the status quo further to the radical right than it’s ever been and with a chance for the Democrats to control the legislative and executive branches, preservation of the status quo, or even incremental change to the left, isn’t enough to mark a candidate as good on the issues. We deserve better, and there are candidates who offer the chance of better. Clinton’s classical conservatism is no longer left enough to be supportable by progressives or liberals, especially in a President, whose views and actions as an individual drive the functioning of an entire branch of government, rather than a legislator.

    We may or may not get a house cleaning from the next President, whoever it is, but Clinton offers no chance of one. That’s enough not to vote for her in the Democratic primary.

  26. 26

    Do you accept that Bush advocates an unlimited executive power to use the armed forces? Now, tell me again what difference that vote made, please?

    It gave him bi-partisan cover, and what’s worse, it gave him cover from one of the frontrunners for the Democratic nomination. You’re not stupid, demi, but you’re sure blind when it comes to this kind of crap.

  27. 27
    Andrew says:

    So you, too, advocate lying about the Revolutionary Guards because it’s convenient? How moral of you

    Um, what?

    Are you saying Hillary isn’t a hawk? (well, relative to the other dems…)

  28. 28
    JoyceH says:

    To be honest, the thing that bothers me most about Hillary’s front runner status is what is says about the state of our democracy that a party will go with the wife (or son) or a former head of state for their leadership. That is not the choice of a stable, self-confident democracy with a centuries-old history of choosing leaders based on merit and agreement with their policies. It’s what you expect to see in a corrupt oligarchy with only a veneer of democracy.

    Think Evita, think Lurleen, look at Pakistan where a party decides to be headed up by their murdered leader’s TEENAGE SON – and then consider that he’s probably as qualified to lead a country as George Bush was when the Republican money interests chose him over men infinitely more qualified.

    Two in a row would be a trend – and not a good one.

  29. 29
    VidaLoca says:

    Do you accept that Bush advocates an unlimited executive power to use the armed forces? Now, tell me again what difference that vote made, please?

    Well, the extension of this is that since Bush is running the Do Whatever the Fuck I Want presidency, no vote makes any difference so the whole Congress can start flipping coins to decide how to vote.

    In other words if she thinks attacking Iran is a bad idea should should damn well better vote against giving Bush anything approaching an excuse to do that, whether or not it ultimately is effective in preventing him from doing so.

  30. 30
    VidaLoca says:

    So you, too, advocate lying about the Revolutionary Guards because it’s convenient? How moral of you.

    [/spit take]

    Well played, sir — I haven’t seen a troll-bait like that since the Darrell days. Ah, good times….

    Uh, unless you’re serious. In which case, what Brian said.

  31. 31
    demimondian says:

    Well played, sir—I haven’t seen a troll-bait like that since the Darrell days. Ah, good times….

    Uh, unless you’re serious. In which case, what Brian said.

    [/me bows politely] Thank you. I was pleased by it, myself, although I felt that the direct invocation of “how moral of you” was probably too over the top.

    That said, I don’t see a huge gap between the dog-whistle vote in favor that Obama cast and the explicit vote in favor that Clinton cast. As a result, I see hers as the more courageous; it would have been far more “conservative” in the sense of “risk-averse” to have played her cards closer to her chest.

  32. 32
    VidaLoca says:

    Thank you. I was pleased by it, myself, although I felt that the direct invocation of “how moral of you” was probably too over the top.

    Well, depends on the effect you were going for. I thought it as sort of a bright and shining star hung at the very top of a beautiful tree of perfect inanity — yet the whole thing was rendered in two spare sentences. A sort of a jackalope haiku if you will. On the other hand if you were wanting to fly below the radar for a while — uh, not so effective.

    That said, I don’t see a huge gap between the dog-whistle vote in favor that Obama cast and the explicit vote in favor that Clinton cast.

    Agreed.

    As a result, I see hers as the more courageous; it would have been far more “conservative” in the sense of “risk-averse” to have played her cards closer to her chest.

    In any sane or reasonable world, the Democratic Party would be understood as a center-right coalition in which the left barely has a seat at the table. Hillary and Obama both showed that they understand this. Her method of demonstrating that understanding was more upfront than his however — they were both being conservative; Obama was being a chickenshit in addition.

  33. 33
    myiq2xu says:

    I don’t dislike the Clagina, I just like the other Democratic candidates better.

    The main reason I would like to see her win is to watch the wingnut heads explode.

  34. 34
    The Other Steve says:

    ZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

    What’s the point of having this argument? It’s just a repeat of the old tired right-wing talking points, whether it comes from Kristol or the neuvo-left Hillary Haters.

  35. 35
    demimondian says:

    The main reason I would like to see her win is to watch the wingnut heads explode.

    Shh! The only reason I want to see her win is to see wingnut heads explode…and to hear the gagging sounds of Edwards and Obama supporters eating their own words. As far as I’m concerned, any of the Dems (well, except for Corrupt UFO Boy and Mike “Gravel is Stone Broke” Gravel) would be better than any of the Republicans. The other two would only be a problem because they’d be so ineffectual.

  36. 36

    and to hear the gagging sounds of Edwards and Obama supporters eating their own words.

    Oh kiss my ass. The majority of Obama and Edwards supporters around here have been saying that they have no porblem voting for Clinton in the general election, but that they prefer someone else in the primary. There are no words to eat here, outside of those you’re imagining.

  37. 37
    demimondian says:

    Oh? I see I stopped trolling too soon, Brian — you didn’t learn the lesson, did you?

    Here’s a harsh fact: the big three are much of a muchness. Most of us here would vote for Kucinich if we voted our principles on foreign policy. (I’m lucky: as an avowed foreign policy relativist, I’m can vote consistently for Clinton or Obama for the nom. As a supporter of NAFTA and liberal trade policies, I couldn’t vote for Edwards in the primaries, at least if I believed that he’s actually opposed to NAFTA.) There’s NO BIG difference between them.

    Seriously.

    The only reason to repeat the “Obama is a homophobe” or “Clinton is a right-wing Bushbot on foreign policy” or “Edwards is a pretty-boy snake oil salesman” memes is to pump up your own ego. I’m interested only in one thing: who can get the Presidency, and, given that bully pulpit, who can beat the broderists into submission and silence long enough to fix things.

  38. 38

    […] Tim F. over at Balloon Juice follows up on Kevin Drum’s post about conservatives’ fallacious assessment of Hillary Clinton’s appeal: It’s not that online liberals aren’t angry. Believe me, we are. Imagine that you care about the country like you care about your family. Now imagine that somebody raped your sister and then argued with a self-satisfied smirk that it was your fault. That more or less describes it. And believe me, the physical pain that another Clinton presidency would cause the strong executive torture-and-surveillance conservatives (ha ha, sigh) is not lost on me. But she’s still my last choice. I think that the other two frontrunners would govern better, and I think that Chris Dodd would govern much better, and that matters more to me than making Bill Kristol cry. […]

  39. 39

    Oh? I see I stopped trolling too soon, Brian—you didn’t learn the lesson, did you?

    What, that you’re an often disingenuous asshole? No, I learned that one pretty quickly–I got it yesterday when you kept equating any criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism. And it’s being reinforced today with a similar attitude toward any criticism of Clinton’s policies.

  40. 40
    demimondian says:

    you kept equating any criticism of Israel with anti-Semitism

    I didn’t. I called a certain person (Wilfred) an anti-semite.

    There’s a difference between believing that Israel’s policies towards the Palestinians are illegal and believing that spooky groups (always, coincidentally, either “run” by Jews or “under the influence” of Jewish members) are “controlling US policy” when ignoring other groups (not fitting that label) which advocate identical policies.

    For God’s sake, don’t you hear the dog-whistles? Or do you ignore them?

  41. 41

    Go back and read your comments honestly. You went way the fuck beyond simply calling Wilfred an anti-Semite. You might not have meant to, but you did, and it’s indicative of your argumentative style.

  42. 42
    demimondian says:

    No, I did NOT call anyone else besides Wilfred an anti-semite. I argued that our countries current policies don’t support Israel’s interests, and that if you believed them to be dictated by PNAC or other code word groups, then you were either lying or not thinking — but I am very careful with the accusation of baby-murderer.

  43. 43
    ThymeZone says:

    There’s a difference between believing that Israel’s policies towards the Palestinians are illegal and believing that spooky groups (always, coincidentally, either “run” by Jews or “under the influence” of Jewish members) are “controlling US policy” when ignoring other groups (not fitting that label) which advocate identical policies.

    Without stepping into the anti-semitism doo doo, what do you think explains the 60 years of unexamined, knee-jerk support of Israel vis-a-vis any rational breakdown of the relationship between our Israel police versus the true interests of the United States?

    I don’t think there’s anything spooky about the fact that America has been the dog wagged by the Israeli tail, I think it’s overtly pathological. Why it is, what the mechamism is, I really don’t care. What I care about is that the interests of this country have not been served by our Middle East policies and I see those policies being skewed by two imperatives which I think are dangerous: One, oil, and two, an irrational slavish support for Israel.

    Whether you agree with my opinion on that or not …. what explains my second item? What’s driving it? Because it isn’t any rational congruence between true American interests and the state of the Middle East.

    Unless of course you want to argue that the last 60 years of this shit have, in fact, been best for America, and we should all be grateful for it. If that is your position, I yeild all the time you need to explain it.

  44. 44
    D. Mason says:

    Demi it seems any disagreement with your stance is a code word or dog whistle. No matter the foundation of someones disagreement with one of your “points” you smear them as a racist/idiot/[insert smear of choice]. That begs the question.. are you incapable of a reasoned discussion or do you just admire rove that damn much?

  45. 45
    Zifnab says:

    Here’s a harsh fact: the big three are much of a muchness. Most of us here would vote for Kucinich if we voted our principles on foreign policy. (I’m lucky: as an avowed foreign policy relativist, I’m can vote consistently for Clinton or Obama for the nom. As a supporter of NAFTA and liberal trade policies, I couldn’t vote for Edwards in the primaries, at least if I believed that he’s actually opposed to NAFTA.) There’s NO BIG difference between them.

    Seriously.

    I strongly disagree. Edwards has made fighting poverty a keystone of his political platform. His support for unions is also central to his run. You can see it in his speeches, in his voting record, and in his Senate career.

    Obama focuses on foreign policy to attempt to dispel his “too young to be President” stigma, but has otherwise been dog whistling in favor of a return to civil rights reforms with his Audacity of Hope message.

    Clinton has been wielding her eight years in the White House as an effective cudgel in the debates. She’s been pressing hard to sell herself as Bill Clinton Redux in much the same way that Bush Jr tried to sell himself as Bush Sr redux, eight years ago.

    But the priorities of each of these candidates is very tangible. I seriously doubt whether Clinton would give unions her ear were she to take office in ’09. I don’t see minorities getting civil rights reforms under Edwards that Obama would champion. And I think DLC-befriending Big Business would be far more horrified of an Edwards Presidency than another Clinton.

    Follow the campaign dollars and you’ll see a stark difference between Clinton, Obama, and Edwards.

  46. 46
    mkultra says:

    Hillary voted for the war. And unlike Edwards, she has yet to apologize for it.

    Do you really need any other reason to oppose her?

  47. 47
    The Other Steve says:

    Without stepping into the anti-semitism doo doo, what do you think explains the 60 years of unexamined, knee-jerk support of Israel vis-a-vis any rational breakdown of the relationship between our Israel police versus the true interests of the United States?

    The US only started being a strong supporter of Israel like in the late 1970s, with the Camp David accords and so forth. This coincides with signifigant events such as the collapse of the Shah in Iran, the rise of Arab nationalism, the 1979 siege at Mecca, and other destabilizing events in the region.

  48. 48
    The Other Steve says:

    Hillary voted for the war. And unlike Edwards, she has yet to apologize for it.

    Do you really need any other reason to oppose her?

    Edwards did a bit more than just vote for it. He co-sponsored the resolution. He didn’t even start to admit he was wrong until late in 2005.

    If this is reason to oppose Clinton, then it’s doubly true for Edwards.

    The only person whose hands are clean on Iraq, is Obama.

  49. 49
    The Other Steve says:

    Follow the campaign dollars and you’ll see a stark difference between Clinton, Obama, and Edwards.

    Clinton and Obama can bring in the cash.

    Edwards has to tap all his lawyer buddies.

    Stark differences all right.

  50. 50
    CDB says:

    I won’t vote for Clinton. Don’t make me stay home.

  51. 51

    No one will make you stay home, CDB–don’t try to pawn that decision off on the rest of us. I can certainly understand why you might make that choice, but it’s your choice, not anyone else’s.

  52. 52

    I won’t vote for Clinton. Don’t make me stay home.

    I won’t vote for John Edwards. Don’t make me stay home.

  53. 53
    ThymeZone says:

    The US only started being a strong supporter of Israel like in the late 1970s

    Not so.

    Eisenhower and Dulles agreed fully on U.S. policy toward Israel and that the secretary of state consulted the president at every stage of policy implementation. He indicates that although Eisenhower at times questioned the wisdom of Truman’s decision to recognize the Jewish state, Eisenhower never tampered with that decision or with the U.S. commitment to Israel’s survival. Alteras also details the manner in which organized American Jewry successfully lobbied Congress to thwart the administration’s attempts to impose economic sanctions on Israel in the aftermath of the Sinai campaign.

    And, don’t read this from on an empty stomach:
    And, don’t read this on an empty stomach – Middle East Policy Council:

    On the basis of recently declassified documents in the Dwight D. Eisenhower Library at Abilene, the Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library at Princeton, and the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library in Boston, the author shows that the thaw in American-Israeli diplomatic relations actually began during Eisenhower’s second term, when the political foundations were laid for the American-Israeli strategic alliance that evolved more fully in the Kennedy years. Ben-Zvi further concludes that the policies that both Eisenhower and Kennedy pursued vis-à-vis Israel were not derived from domestic political calculations, but rather from each president’s understanding of evolving strategic changes in the Middle East and their impact on American national interests in the region.

    At the outset, the author draws several conceptual distinctions that are subsequently applied to the case-study at hand. He distinguishes between the “American national interest paradigm,” according to which U.S. policy toward the Middle East is primarily determined by vital security interests and strategic preferences that American policy makers have sought to maintain and implement throughout the region (such as trying to resolve or stabilize the Arab-Israeli conflict, maintaining access to Arab oil, containing the Soviet Union), and the “special relationship” paradigm, according to which American policy toward Israel is mainly derived from “a broad cluster of predispositions, sentiments and attitudes toward Israel in American public opinion, which are permeated with sympathy, support and affection.”

    If that doesn’t make you throw up a little in your mouth, then ….

    American policy, in the most volatile region on earth, shaped by “sympathy, support, and affection.”

    The phrase “Road to Perdition” comes to mind.

  54. 54
  55. 55
    Blue Jean says:

    Think Evita, think Lurleen, look at Pakistan where a party decides to be headed up by their murdered leader’s TEENAGE SON – and then consider that he’s probably as qualified to lead a country as George Bush was when the Republican money interests chose him over men infinitely more qualified.

    Two in a row would be a trend – and not a good one.

    Yeah, that would worry me too–but the people who are saying “Oh, don’t vote for Hillary! Her only qualification is the wife of an ex-President!” are usually the same people who said eight years ago “Hey, let’s vote for George W. because he seems like an easygoing guy and I liked his Daddy (or Mama).”

    Granted, the last seven years of hell should have shown all Americans the folly of nepotism, but where W. spent most of his life failing at one enterprise after another (yet getting rescued by Daddy and his daddy’s friends time and time again), Hillary has been a successful student, lawyer, activist, and Senator. Yeah, it sucks that being related to someone famous gives candidates a leg up, but if Shrub’s years of failure predicted that he would be a failure as a President, then Hillary’s success should indicate she’d be a successful president.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] Tim F. over at Balloon Juice follows up on Kevin Drum’s post about conservatives’ fallacious assessment of Hillary Clinton’s appeal: It’s not that online liberals aren’t angry. Believe me, we are. Imagine that you care about the country like you care about your family. Now imagine that somebody raped your sister and then argued with a self-satisfied smirk that it was your fault. That more or less describes it. And believe me, the physical pain that another Clinton presidency would cause the strong executive torture-and-surveillance conservatives (ha ha, sigh) is not lost on me. But she’s still my last choice. I think that the other two frontrunners would govern better, and I think that Chris Dodd would govern much better, and that matters more to me than making Bill Kristol cry. […]

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