This Just Stinks

I just don’t know how even the most diehard of Clinton supporters can read this stuff and not wince:

Hillary Rodham Clinton and her husband made at least $30 million over the last 16 months, mainly from giving paid speeches to corporations, banks and other organizations, according to financial disclosure forms filed with federal elections officials on Friday.

The sum, which makes Mrs. Clinton among the wealthiest of the 2016 presidential candidates, could create challenges for the former secretary of state as she tries to cast herself as a champion of everyday Americans in an era of income inequality.

The $25 million in speaking fees since the beginning of last year continue a lucrative trend for the Clintons: They have now earned more than $125 million on the circuit since leaving the White House in 2001.

In addition, the report shows, Mrs. Clinton reported income exceeding $5 million from her memoir of her time as secretary of state, “Hard Choices.”

You knew you were running for President. You knew this would put a bullseye around you. Why, for the love of FSM, why?

Let’s earn 25 mill real quick then pivot to speaking for the common man. No one will notice, amirite?






329 replies
  1. 1
    Trentrunner says:

    Because she knows she could lose (2008 showed her that), and goddamn if she wasn’t gonna be rich if she isn’t gonna be president.

    I truly think it’s that simple.

  2. 2

    Why what? Why would she and Bill make money in a perfectly legitimate way? He is a former president who is widely regarded as a terrific public speaker — why wouldn’t he command a large speaking fee?

  3. 3
    James E Powell says:

    I wouldn’t have a problem with any Democratic candidate making a ton of money if she were making it by actually doing something. But when one is cashing checks simply for showing up, we voters, simple-minded as we are, infer corruption. We may not know the details, but we get the picture.

  4. 4
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    It stinks a hell of a lot less than any of the vile shitstains running for the GOP nomination, John.

  5. 5

    Also, too, I know the MSM loves to build a narrative that rich people are incapable of thinking about others, but it’s not actually true, and it’s just excuse-making for sociopathic assholes like the Kochs. Plenty of rich people are capable of being decent human beings and being genuinely concerned about people who are less wealthy than they are.

  6. 6
    Aurona says:

    Maybe she could give free Ted Talks instead.

  7. 7
    Corner Stone says:

    I’m not sure what your issue is here, Cole?
    Is it that Al Gore is fat and lives in a big house, or is it more along the lines of John Kerry wasn’t really wounded in the war, and if he was it was most likely self-inflicted.

  8. 8

    I have no problem with rich people, just assholes. Plus, when you come from a modest upbringing, you’re probably a lot less likely to act like a Romney.

  9. 9

    @James E Powell:

    They made the money by giving speeches. Is that now classified as “just showing up”?

    $5 million of the money is proceeds from the book Hillary wrote. Does that count as “real” work or is that also “just showing up”?

  10. 10
    PaulW says:

    It *is* difficult speaking for the needs of the common American when living and indulging at a level of income most common Americans can’t even comprehend.

  11. 11
  12. 12
    catclub says:

    So does it divide that total between them, or is Cole already blaming Hillary for them, even if all the speeches were made by Bill?

    Untwist your knickers.

    That is $30M they cannot give to GOP candidates.

  13. 13
    Baud says:

    This is not a winceable event in my book.

  14. 14
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Mnemosyne (tablet): “Just showing up” is Charles and David Koch, Donald Trump, George H.W. Bush and all his spawn, Mitt Romney, and Bill O’Reilly all falling out of the right womb and imagining they hit a triple.

  15. 15
    Fair Economist says:

    So people planning to run for office can’t give paid speeches? Is there some reason speeches are different from business deals, lawyering, managing a company, etc.? Or are potential candidates now required to not work and live off – well, I guess charity would be a problem, so they’re required to have been born rich?

    Edit: I’m actually going to bet on “born rich”, that the faux outrage is to exclude everyone not born to the 0.1% from top office.

  16. 16
    Baud says:

    I thought liberals wanted a president who was more like FDR.

    ETA: Adam got there first.

  17. 17
    jl says:

    I too am in the ‘so what?’ camp.

    Is there something unethical about the way they made the speaking fees or not. If there is, what is it?
    Did they earn it by running sketchy financial scams and tax dodges to shut down profitable US corporations and make bank off it like a recent beloved GOP candidate who has gone into heavyweight boxing?

    The appropriate response to BS narratives pushed by our hideously incompetent and corrupt corporate media is not to roll over. Especially with the Clintons.

    Oh, you don’t support HRC? Maybe you are like me and your new hobby is throwing Bernie a few twenties over the intertubes every couple of days when you get bored. Or, maybe you like O’Malley. Well, just wait and they will be up soon, as soon as they start saying things that make VSPs upset and cranky.

  18. 18
    patrick II says:

    Not exactly on topic, but Rick Santorum speaker’s fees went up from a few thousand a speech to $40,000 to $50,000 after his presidential primary run in 2012.
    Running for president is a nice way to make a living in the republican party. Here is a Mitt Romney vs. Hillary comparison here Mitt Romney will charge Mississippi State University $50,000 to deliver a lecture on campus next week, most of which will go to charity — a dramatically lower fee than the $250,000 to $300,000 Hillary Rodham Clinton requires for her university lectures.”>here.
    Anyhow, it seems the “speaking” fees are bets on the future political power of the speaker, unless someone other than politicians are earning that kind of money.

  19. 19
    Amir Khalid says:

    What is it, really, that stinks here? So Bill and Hillary made speeches and got paid big bucks for them. Is this in itself illegal or unethical? Apparently not. Did they say something problematic in any of their speeches? Nothing that’s been reported. What is the substance of this new mini-scandal? “Gee, look at all the zeros at the end of the numbers!”

  20. 20
    ruemara says:

    If you think the problem is that she earns money, I got news for you. She works for a living; Romney didn’t. End of story.

  21. 21
    Aimai says:

    @Mnemosyne (tablet): right. Its not like they werent pilloried for being poor arrivistes who had to borrow friends houses for vacations when they were in office. I fail to see what role refusing speaker money is supposed to play in the election. Clinton rules are that they will be attacked whatever they do or font fo. At least they have dome money to push back with.

  22. 22
    cokane says:

    earning a bunch of money speaking might seem unjustified, but it’s not even close to the most unseemly things the clintons have done.

  23. 23
    blueskies says:

    Out of all the true crap that various pols of both parties do unto others, this isn’t even a dry ring inside of a teacup that formerly held a tempest.

    One of the biggest shitheads I know is rich. Absolute horror of a human being. One of the biggest-hearted, kindest people I know is rich. Spends most of his time figuring out the best way to use his money to help strangers. Both worked hard and legally for their money. It’s all in how they spend it that matters to me.

    What will Hillary do with her money? I don’t know. But just earning legally (and IMO, ethically) does not make or break her as a candidate for my vote. No, the reason I won’t vote for her is …

    Benghazi!!!!!

  24. 24
    Peale says:

    @Mnemosyne (tablet): yep. I think the theme here is balloon juice likes to pretend it’s joe lunch pail, and likes to think it it’s closer to the earth than it is

  25. 25

    OT: every time the cat’s on my lap and he yawns I’m like “aw, cute little ball of fluff is oh god perfectly designed apex predator killing machine on my lap get it off

  26. 26
    catclub says:

    Clinton rules. Things that never mattered before suddenly matter. Funny how it works.

  27. 27
    Phoebe says:

    Yes, the optics are terrible. But to be fair:

    1. You know that if it were another candidate who the media didn’t hate, it would be less of an optics issue, because the media would mention it once in passing and then leave it alone. I’m far from being a diehard HRC supporter, but you don’t have to be to see that she gets a raw deal — raw enough that it would be reasonable for her to say to herself at some point, They’re going to chew on me no matter what, so it might as well be for making money as for failing to make money.

    2. As others have said, you can be rich and still remember what it was like not to be rich, or simply be able to learn what it’s like and use your empathy. Being rich can be freeing that way: if you’re not worried about how your own future, it’s that much easier to advocate for positions against your personal short-term financial interest.

    3. The more depressing point: She might not have a clue how it looks, because the rich have become that disconnected from the rest of our society. I knew a guy once who was set to inherit about $10 million, and was obsessed with the emotional need to make a few hundred million more before he could feel secure. The difference between the 1% and the .0001% is mountainous, and it stares people at the Clintons’ level of wealth in the face all the time. She could have an internalized and absolutely honest sense that this is just solid upper middle class money, and what’s the fuss about?

    Yeah, I hate it too. And as I said, I’m not exactly her #1 fan. But I’m not sure how fair it is to hold the money against her.

  28. 28

    @Aimai:

    Yep. If I knew I would be going up against the Koch brothers and Unlimited Corporate Cash in my presidential run, I sure as shit would be amassing as much cash as possible so I’d have something to loan my campaign when the right-wing money bombs start falling.

  29. 29
    jl says:

    Riffing off of FDR, I guess it was hypocritical of George Washington to free all of the slaves that he owned himself (edit: as opposed to his wife and relatives) in his will, since he is still probably the wealthiest president ever (adjusting for size of economy).

    I remember some earnest professor who did a study on poverty in the US that had some compelling angle that made it big in the news. Soon this guy was ‘granite countertopped’ and he was declared a hypocrite because he made a salary of 90 THOUSAND DOLLARS!!?? So that BS was discussed in the media instead of his research. This is the same BS.

    Unless of course, someone has some facty thing about the way they earned the speaking fees was unethical. What is it?

  30. 30

    @Major Major Major Major:

    That may be a sign it’s time for a nail trim since he’s probably digging his claws “affectionately” into your lap at the same time. :-)

  31. 31
    scav says:

    Practically speaking, have we really seen a concrete example of the lower 51 or whatever precent of the voting public going out of their way to cast their ballot for the poorer, more authentically laboring class of the two candidates the system throws up for no other reason than the mere fact of the wholesomeness of the authentic poverty and laboring?

    ETA: I mean recently and preferably, non-metaphroically. They love the optics, but honestly, it usually just a choice between the elite anymore.

  32. 32
    Baud says:

    Remember how we used to hate the fact that the media doesn’t focus on issues. Good times.

  33. 33
    Gator90 says:

    I’m wincing only at the logic of Mr. Cole’s post. There’s no hint of wrongdoing here, just making money in lawful ways. So what?

    I suppose it’s possible an undecided voter or two might think to themselves, “The Clintons have too much money, so I’m voting Republican,” but I have a hard time seeing this as a widespread phenomenon.

  34. 34

    @Amir Khalid:

    What is the substance of this new mini-scandal? “Gee, look at all the zeros at the end of the numbers!”

    Lol, yeah LOOK BIG NUMBERS! This is the substance of most complaints about the deficit too.

  35. 35
    jl says:

    @efgoldman: Good point. How many of you lie-beral BJ commenters are living naked under bridges eating sunbaked roadkill as a life style? And you say you care about the poor? Ha ha, hypocrites.

    This is total BS.

  36. 36
    Iowa Old Lady says:

    @Phoebe: At least HRC had a less-well-off time in her life to remember.

  37. 37
    Fair Economist says:

    @patrick II:

    Mitt Romney will charge Mississippi State University $50,000 to deliver a lecture on campus next week, most of which will go to charity — a dramatically lower fee than the $250,000 to $300,000 Hillary Rodham Clinton requires for her university lectures.

    Who would you rather hear speak? You’d have to pay me to listen to Romney speak. A quick estimate shows the Clintons are giving at least 2 speeches a week – there is tremendous demand to listen to them even at these prices. What exactly are they supposed to do?

  38. 38
    Corner Stone says:

    @cokane:

    but it’s not even close to the most unseemly things the clintons have done.

    Agreed. They probably should not have been running drugs out of the AR backwoods airport, or killing Hillary’s non-lesbian lovers.

  39. 39
    Rommie says:

    People willingly paid them to speak. Big whoop, they are getting a ride on the gravy train.

    Now, if you are worried there’s more than gravy on the train, well, that’s choo-choo’d over the horizon a LONG time ago, and it’ll be an issue even if they lived in a cardboard box the past five years. So, again, big whoop.

  40. 40

    @Major Major Major Major:
    House cats aren’t even close to being apex predators, except perhaps on a few tiny islands that never had significant predators before. Yes, they’re vicious, amazingly capable predators, but they’re not even close to the apex. They have to worry about dogs, bigger cats, some large raptors, and even things like raccoons. That’s a big reason they’re so twitchy and prone to hiding at the first hint of anything surprising; they’re as worried about being caught and eaten as they are about catching and eating other animals.

  41. 41
    Corner Stone says:

    @Gator90:

    I’m wincing only at the logic of Mr. Cole’s post. There’s no hint of wrongdoing here, just making money in lawful ways. So what?

    Cole still suffers from 20+ years of Clinton hate. Everything he sees about them comes in through that filter. You kind of just have to cluck it off and forgive him, as he really has no choice in the matter.

  42. 42
    West of the Cascades says:

    Also, the Clintons are paying tax at 39% on most of this income — not 15% “carried interest” — and their income and tax returns for the last 30 years are completely transparent, unlike many (most?) of the GOP candidates.. This is relatively honest income compared to how most of the Republicans made their fortunes. Call me “meh” about this — Franklin Delano Roosevelt made a lot of money, too, and he did OK by ordinary income folks.

  43. 43

    @Roger Moore: I meant mostly that it reminds me they’re Felidae.

  44. 44
    Chris says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    What is it, really, that stinks here?

    The phenomenal amount of money that a rich and famous person can rack up for, essentially, showing up and being a rich and famous person.

    As a commentary on the Clintons, it falls kind of flat because that entire tier of society works that way. I’m sure the Obamas will be racking up similar bills when they get out of the White House. As a commentary on that entire tier of society and whether the ludicrous amounts of money they’re racking up for not-a-whole-lot… it’s far from the most egregious thing out there, but still.

  45. 45
    Fair Economist says:

    @Phoebe:

    The difference between the 1% and the .0001% is mountainous, and it stares people at the Clintons’ level of wealth in the face all the time.

    This is something to remember, and not just for this. Mitt Romney is enormously, filthy, rich. But even so, the Kochs and the Waltons are richer than him by the same amount he’s richer than a middle class family that paid off their home (a factor of about 500x). That gives you some sense of how phenomenally rich the true plutocrats are – they are enormously filthy rich compared to people who are enormously filthy rich themselves. They really are in a different world.

  46. 46
    Holden Pattern says:

    I should probably start this by saying that I don’t really care about the money with respect to the Clintons specifically. Both of them have pretty much shown themselves to be venal careerists, but they’re mostly sane venal careerists who are a lot less harmful people than the entirely insane venal careerists in the Republican party.

    However, let’s not kid ourselves about what it means in terms of the endemic corruption of our ruling classes that former national politicians (or in HRC’s case, an active politician between campaigns) can and do make millions of dollars flying around, all expenses paid, giving speeches to corporate interests.

    That’s not productive labor, not hard work, not an inheritance that you’d have to renounce. That’s payola, no matter who does it. The level of compensation is out of all compass with the value provided. And that payola cannot help but be on the mind of politicians while they’re in office, and when they’re running again after having done so.

  47. 47

    @Major Major Major Major:

    Just wait until you’re play-wrestling with him and you suddenly realize that his instinct is to go for the joints to bring you down. That’s the one that gave G a little pause.

    But, hey, dogs are predators, too — even those tiny teacup Yorkies — but people manage to get over that.

  48. 48
    Xenos says:

    This shit is pissing me off. I have never been an avid Clintonite, whether for Hill or Bill, but this shit puts me squarely in their camp.

    The whole fucking political system, the whole fucking economy is corrupt. I will be damned if we have to fight this with one arm and two legs tied behind our backs. If the kleptocrats want to give the cash in the hope to corrupt Hillary, then they will just have to try, then, and we will just have to hope it does not work too much.

    I am so over purity. Obama gave it his best shot, and it was more than the country was worth. I am ready for a mercenary Hillary.

    And the more shit like this I hear, the more committed I am.

  49. 49
    jl says:

    @Corner Stone: I thought all they guys HRC had murdered were her lesbian lovers. Man, I always get the various Clinton crimes mixed up. Dangit.

  50. 50
    Tree With Water says:

    I give Hillary a pass on this one. She has no choice but to immerse herself, if she is to compete in the cesspool of today’s American political system.

  51. 51
    jharp says:

    I find absolutely nothing wrong with earning an honest $30 million.

  52. 52
    Chris says:

    @Holden Pattern:

    However, let’s not kid ourselves about what it means in terms of the endemic corruption of our ruling classes that former national politicians (or in HRC’s case, an active politician between campaigns) can and do make millions of dollars flying around, all expenses paid, giving speeches to corporate interests.

    That’s not productive labor, not hard work, not an inheritance that you’d have to renounce. That’s payola, no matter who does it. The level of compensation is out of all compass with the value provided. And that payola cannot help but be on the mind of politicians while they’re in office, and when they’re running again after having done so.

    This, exactly.

  53. 53

    @Mnemosyne (tablet): dogs are way more domesticated, though. Biologically speaking if not chronologically, I don’t know if we know the latter.

  54. 54
    C.V. Danes says:

    Lest we forget, FDR was quite wealthy…

  55. 55
    Corner Stone says:

    @Holden Pattern:

    That’s not productive labor, not hard work, not an inheritance that you’d have to renounce. That’s payola, no matter who does it. The level of compensation is out of all compass with the value provided. And that payola cannot help but be on the mind of politicians while they’re in office, and when they’re running again after having done so.

    Bullshit. This isn’t “this”, it’s bullshit. Who are you to say what value has been provided? It’s just carping.

  56. 56

    @Chris: it’s a victory lap, whatever. Lifetime of hard work like that, you deserve or can at least explain away one, especially in politics, which as we all know ain’t beanbag.

  57. 57
    Ruckus says:

    @blueskies:
    I have a friend who is well off. I don’t know how well off but it is not insignificant. He is a very nice guy and I’ve also seen him down over the 40+ yrs I’ve known him. He likes to let others know how well he lives but it’s not to hold it over them, I think it’s because he is still a little amazed that he has, if not a huge excess, a least more than a little extra. He’s earned all of it by the sweat off his brain, not his brow, from companies he owns, not from inheritance. It annoys some others that we know that he is so open about having money, others that have enough but not excess. But I have always wished him well, because he has earned it all, even if it doesn’t look like it to some.
    That’s how I look at the Clinton’s. I may not like all their policies or how they worked while in office but they were in elected office and they didn’t disgrace themselves there. Does anyone anywhere think that one can achieve national public office in this country without having money or something marginally reasonable to say? Does anyone think they could run for president, lose and then get right back on that horse and try again? She has been first lady, not a great or bad one, she has been publicly humiliated by the circus known as congress and held her head up, she has been a senator, not necessarily a great or good one but not a horrible one either, and Secretary of State for the person who kicked her ass in her run for president. In none of these, excepting her vote for Iraq has she done a bad job and she has said she was wrong about that. She hasn’t tried to hide how much she’s made and both of them are at least reasonably respected members of our political class. You can’t say that about anyone running against her.

  58. 58
    Corner Stone says:

    @efgoldman:

    Hell, just murdering poor Vince Foster

    Actually, the whole Benghazi thingie is just a means to continue hiding Vince Foster. He’s alive and well, in the Benghazi basement. Waiting. Just waiting.

  59. 59
    geg6 says:

    @West of the Cascades:

    Exactly right.

    Personally, I have no qualms about someone who is rich. I’ve known plenty of really wonderful people who are wealthy, who give back in substantial ways and who really do care about the poor and about social and economic justice. It’s the entitled inherited money, the oil and coal fortunes and the banksters and traders who I can’t abide and who are my enemy. They don’t give a shit about anyone else but themselves, as they’ve proven over and over throughout American history. The Clintons are none of those things, so rock on to them.

  60. 60

    @C.V. Danes: many historians suggest it was his disability that afforded him such ability for empathy usually not found in such inherited wealth.

  61. 61
    FlipYrWhig says:

    If not for this story, I’d have thought that a couple that’s been famous for 25 years had an income much like mine! Mere words can’t quantify my disillusionment.

  62. 62
    rikyrah says:

    I just don’t know how even the most diehard of Clinton supporters can read this stuff and not wince:

    they’ll find a way, Cole.

    they’ll find a way.

  63. 63
    Corner Stone says:

    @Holden Pattern:

    That’s not productive labor, not hard work,

    Fucking hilarious. She should grab a sledgehammer and a hardhat and go to Philly to help repair the fucked up train tracks?
    Work in a soup kitchen 4 days a week, doing KP duty?
    Ridiculous.

  64. 64
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Holden Pattern:

    That’s not productive labor, not hard work,

    Oh, right, I forgot how most ex-presidents spend a few years after their administrations busing tables.

  65. 65
    Corner Stone says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Ya know, it’s weird. One was a two term president and one was a serious contender for president of the most powerful nation on earth. I would never have guessed that people wanted to meet them, shake their hand and hear what they might have to say.

  66. 66
    scav says:

    @Corner Stone: I’d say the issue is more about the generally inflated amounts of cash the upper tier of management pass around among themselves as SOP. It’s not necessarily payola, it’s more likely just a by-product of the standards that raised all the elite renumeration so out of sync with what is judged adequate to the rest of us. Sure they called it “earned” but that squares it with their theory of justification. Is everyone paid proportionally the same to just wander through and talk? Or, What deep secrets of successful techniques otherwise unknown to mankind have they got?

    ETA: Thing is, it just doesn’t change my impression of who she or they are or what they did for the rest of their public career. It’s not new information.

  67. 67
    divF says:

    @Holden Pattern:

    That’s not productive labor, not hard work

    This is a level of compensation that is typical in the entertainment industry. Mick Jagger and the boys do not have to work any harder to be essentially their own tribute band, and the compensation per appearance is comparable, if not greater.

    The Clintons and the Rolling Stones do get paid just for showing up and being themselves, i.e. celebrities (in Bill’s and the Stones’ case, rock stars).

  68. 68
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Holden Pattern:
    I suppose it is deplorable that Bill and Hillary are making a pile off their public-speaking ability, since, as you say, writing, rehearsing, and delivering speeches are not real work.

  69. 69
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Corner Stone: I know! And, cmon, LeBron, it’s just a kids’ game, why do you have to become a millionaire for it?

  70. 70
    chopper says:

    I guess this whole thing really depends on how much she tries to portray herself as a “working stuff just like you” in the campaign. Until then I’m a solid “meh”.

  71. 71
    Valdivia says:

    I do tend to think that Clinton’s instincts are awful but find this to be not really wince-inducing.

    What really gets me is how the media is focusing on her money (both Foundation and speeches) and totally ignoring the PACS and millionaires giving dark money on the other side. The Foundation at least is a charity, and does immense good around the world. The other guys are getting money to run from god-knows where and yet not a peep from the Village. Hate the double standard.

    I also think we have been spoiled by the discipline of Obama regarding these things, so much so that most of the stuff the media tried to make hay out of was just plain stupid or totally invented. But I am sure thinking that makes me an obot…

  72. 72
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @scav: so basically what you take issue with is celebrity, then. Kind of an uphill battle fixing that.

  73. 73

    Hillary gets fucked over on this kind of hot garbage regularly. It’s pathetic, actually. And hysterically stupid.

    As for things that have never mattered before being the WORSE. THING. EVAR. Welcome to the last seven years of my life as an Obama supporters.

    You’d better cowboy up, Cole. Prelims haven’t even started yet.

  74. 74
    Ruckus says:

    @FlipYrWhig:
    True, most of the rich do productive well paying work. You know welders, nail salon workers, maids, butlers, electricians, plumbers, machine operators, truck drivers, secretaries, bio chemists, nurses………

  75. 75
    scav says:

    @FlipYrWhig: Huh? I was just trying to move the bar from the fees being payola to it being more of the obscene nonsense what a good number of the high elites are paid, celeb or no.

  76. 76
    NorthLeft12 says:

    Good grief Mr. Cole, what did you expect them to do? Unpaid charity work? Is that what you have to do to be a candidate from the left?

    Being rich does not disqualify someone to speak for the middle or working class. Saying the truth about why the current economic system is stacked against ordinary people working for somebody else is all you need to do.

  77. 77
    Rex Tremendae says:

    The sentence which explains US politics:

    The sum, which makes Mrs. Clinton among the wealthiest of the 2016 presidential candidates

  78. 78
    Howard Beale IV says:

    I want to live just long enough to see every member of the GOP clown car’s head on a pike, as a warning to the next ten generations that some favors come at too high of a price. And the sooner the male Catholic wing of SCOTUS suffer from vapor lock, the better.

  79. 79
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Ruckus: Being aggrieved that two of the nation’s most famous people are (now) rich seems like a waste of populist outrage, IMHO.

  80. 80

    @Major Major Major Major:

    I don’t know if we know the latter.

    We don’t have perfect evidence for when either one was domesticated, but all the evidence points to dogs having been domesticated well before any other animal; they seem to be the only animal we domesticated before developing agriculture. Cats go back a long way- the earliest evidence for feline domestication is from about 7500 BC- but nothing is close to dogs.

  81. 81
    Karmus says:

    One more member of the “what’s the big deal” camp here.

    If this is some kind of purity test, it’s a lousy one and not helpful.

  82. 82
    taylormattd says:

    This is the least of things that bother me about Hillary Clinton. Frankly, I think this kind of article (par for the course for the Times) is just stupid. And it lets her campaign play the victim.

  83. 83
    Linnaeus says:

    The problem isn’t the players, i.e., the Clintons. The problem is the game.

  84. 84
    Corner Stone says:

    Cole, I’m going to do you a solid here. The next time you see Hillary or Bill mentioned in any article, turn the channel, put the paper down or visit a kittens playing website. Then count to elebenty brazillion and decide if you really think it’s actually all that fucking awful.

  85. 85
    Ruckus says:

    @scav:
    This is a big point. There will always be income inequality in the human race, the issue is how big is the difference and how is that difference gotten. Is it by working smarter or by screwing the bottom 3/4 of the equation? Right now it’s by screwing that bottom 3/4. Any one who is willing to make a dent in that is a viable candidate in my book. How big a dent and how believable is question #2. Yes there are other issues, but many of them become more manageable and smaller if that is fixed or even slowed down.

  86. 86
    El Caganer says:

    @Corner Stone: It’s what a real plain-spoken, hard-working, callused-hand Merkin like Willard Romney would do. Man lifted himself by his own jockstrap, he did.

  87. 87
    Corner Stone says:

    @El Caganer: Yee-ouch!
    I think from what we know of his frat days he probably lifted more than a few of his brothers up by exactly that way.

  88. 88
    bcinaz says:

    This is pure free market stuff. They are getting paid what the market determines they should get paid. What is wrong with that? I think this will put Republicans on the defensive when it’s raised as an issue.

    What? Free Markets for everyone unless your a Democrat or your name is Clinton?

  89. 89
    Ruckus says:

    @El Caganer:
    I see in his case all he really had to do was reach for that jockstrap on third base. And of course as he started there the lift wasn’t that difficult. (Almost wrote wasn’t that hard, but the visual was too much, even for me and I don’t gross out easily)

  90. 90
    catclub says:

    @Rommie:

    People willingly paid them to speak. Big whoop, they are getting a ride on the gravy train.

    And if they were getting paid only a pittance, that would be news, too, to be formed into something unfavorable.
    “Clintons flogging their wares, Customers not interested.”

  91. 91
    terraformer says:

    It costs a lot to run for office, especially President. It’s crazy, it’s obscene, it’s shameful that these shingdigs cost a billion. I’m willing to give her the benefit of any doubt, and see where this issue rolls.

    But they do cost that much, and wouldn’t it be nice to have a candidate do what’s done here, then turn around and say “you know, (my husband and) I just spent 17 months collecting an exorbitant amount of speaking and other fees for speeches, and now I’m in office. Now I’m President, my priority is to dial back the fountain of cash going to the 1%-ers and support enactment of policies specifically designed to lift up the lower and middle classes.”

    Or similar. I also want a unicorn.

  92. 92
    Full metal Wingnut says:

    @Mnemosyne (tablet): I guess I wouldn’t mind if neither of them were running for office. I do think it’s a little crass-I’m all for earning enough for a nice home and to leave something for my daughter and grandkids, but $125 million? Gotta feed the pig I guess.

  93. 93
    Vtr says:

    @ruemara: It is untrue that Mitt didn’t work for a living. He put in long hours selling out companies and stealing workers pensions. That requires a lit of work and absolutely no soul.

  94. 94
    Gian says:

    it really depends on the speeches. If she spoke to the guys at Wal-Mart and gave them a lecture on improving pay and working conditions, and they wrote her a big check, I’m OK with that. If she spoke to Wal-Mart about how to better game the social safety net to make sure their workers get food stamps, I’d be pissed.

    If it was to tell stories about dodging sniper fire I’d have a good laugh

  95. 95
    bemused says:

    Loving the comments. Hilarious and they just keep coming.

  96. 96
    catclub says:

    @Valdivia:

    What really gets me is how the media is focusing on her money (both Foundation and speeches) and totally ignoring the PACS and millionaires giving dark money on the other side. The Foundation at least is a charity, and does immense good around the world. The other guys are getting money to run from god-knows where and yet not a peep from the Village. Hate the double standard.

    This. Double this.

  97. 97
    kc says:

    I’m sure we can count on her to regulate and tax the entities that have been delivering truckloads of money to her, her husband, and her daughter.

  98. 98
    Patrick says:

    I’m not a Hillary fun, but this is a non-issue. Heck, nobody cared that Mitt Romney refused to release his tax returns. And thus, nobody will care about this either.

  99. 99
    Tree With Water says:

    @Corner Stone: My father used to tell of being at a Giants game on a day when future Hall of Famer and then rookie Orlando Cepeda wasn’t in the starting line-up. Someone in his section wondered if there was a problem, the reply being that no, Cepeda was just being “rested”. The other guy then scoffed and ruminated aloud about his being Cepeda’s age and working 12 hours a day in a coal mine. Play ball…

  100. 100
    Patrick says:

    @Valdivia:

    What really gets me is how the media is focusing on her money (both Foundation and speeches) and totally ignoring the PACS and millionaires giving dark money on the other side.

    Amen. This is nothing compared to the Koch brothers trying to buy the 2016 election with their $889 billion budget.

  101. 101
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @kc: “If you can’t eat their food, drink their booze, screw their women, take their money and then vote against them you’ve got no business being up here.”

  102. 102
    ralphb says:

    @kc: As Willie Brown said “If you can’t drink their whisky, take their money, and then vote against them you don’t belong in politics”.

  103. 103
    ralphb says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: HaHa, great minds.

  104. 104
    Baud says:

    @Patrick:

    $889 billion

    FWIW, it’s “million.”

  105. 105
    Cervantes says:

    @Peale:

    I think the theme here is balloon juice likes to pretend it’s joe lunch pail, and likes to think it it’s closer to the earth than it is

    Perhaps Republicans [*] don’t quite understand a core Democratic value: that it’s not wrong to be wealthy, even born wealthy; whereas it is wrong to keep the system rigged so that no one else can share in the wealth. Thus, if you’re FDR or EMK, say — a wealthy Democratic politician who works hard to spread the wealth, or at least to oppose attempts to grasp it ever more tightly — then you’re OK: a man of the people, practically.

    [*] Former Republicans. too, perhaps.

  106. 106
    Seth Owen says:

    I don’t see the problem here.

    First off, I think it’s unreasonable to look down on this as ‘not work.’ Plenty of people from Mark a Twain to Oprah have made a nice living doing essentially the same thing.

    Secondly, while it might give us warm fuzzier if Hillary had spent the last couple of years building habitats for humanity like Jimmy Carter, I think there are far more unseemly ways of making big bucks off the system’s tit like being on a few dozen corporate boards or parlaying her connections into being a lobbyist. Sorry, giving speeches isn’t going to make me wince. There’s plenty enough to wince about with the Clintons but this isn’t one of them.

  107. 107
    Corner Stone says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: I’ve always hated that quote.

  108. 108
    satby says:

    Put me in the no big deal camp. Plus what West of the Cascades says: you know about it because it’s been disclosed and the Clintons have been transparent about releasing tax returns. The guys on the other side of the aisle, not so much.

  109. 109
    Cervantes says:

    @Patrick:

    Not saying your concluding notion is false, but there’s a flaw in your argument.

  110. 110
    Ruckus says:

    @Patrick:
    Oh they’ll care. Not because it is important, but because it’s one more thing that they think they can hold over the Clintons. But as @Valdivia: stated there is always the other side. They sell what little morals, or whatever you want to call it, they have for millions.

    How many of you here wouldn’t accept millions to stand up and speak to groups? Let’s be honest, you are of SS/retirement age and you are going to give up easy money? Your ass you will. And if you give a good portion of it to charity, even if it is your own charity? Or maybe you do it because it is your charity.

  111. 111
    Patrick says:

    @Baud:

    FWIW, it’s “million.”

    Ooops!!!

  112. 112
    lumpkin says:

    Maybe all those banksters and CEOs see something they like in Bill and Hill.

    And “Vote for Hillary because republicans are even more beholden to the rich” isn’t very inspiring.

  113. 113
    Patrick says:

    @Ruckus:

    Oh they’ll care. Not because it is important, but because it’s one more thing that they think they can hold over the Clintons.

    The voters won’t care. They just don’t. They vote with their pocket books, ie who can make it better for them financially. If Clinton made money on a speech is not something people care about. They just don’t. Just like they don’t care about Benghazi.

  114. 114
    rikyrah says:

    watched my finales.

    LOVED Grimm.

    LOVED it.

    Loved The Blacklist.

    Still upset about Scandal, though.

  115. 115
    Cervantes says:

    @FlipYrWhig:

    Mere words can’t quantify my disillusionment.

    If I had a nickel for every time I didn’t bother to say that …

  116. 116
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Valdivia:

    What really gets me is how the media is focusing on her money (both Foundation and speeches) and totally ignoring the PACS and millionaires giving dark money on the other side. The Foundation at least is a charity, and does immense good around the world. The other guys are getting money to run from god-knows where and yet not a peep from the Village. Hate the double standard.

    Which is why my nym is my nym.

    Wipe them out. All of them.

  117. 117
    Corner Stone says:

    @Patrick:

    Just like they don’t care about Benghazi.

    ***GASPS***

  118. 118
    Ruckus says:

    @Patrick:
    Have you been paying attention for the last 20 yrs? Conservatives will care, full stop. It should but probably won’t come back to bite them in the ass. And if conservatives care the media will care. And that will be one more thing they think they can hold against the either Hillary or Bill, like they have been trying to do since 1990. You may be right in that it may not be important to most smart voters…….

  119. 119
    EthylEster says:

    @Gator90:

    I suppose it’s possible an undecided voter or two might think to themselves, “The Clintons have too much money, so I’m voting Republican,” but I have a hard time seeing this as a widespread phenomenon.

    But did you go to republican camp as a child?
    Cole swings and misses.

  120. 120
    Tree With Water says:

    Yesterday I wondered if the conductor of the Amtrac train in Philly may have attempted suicide in imitation of the Lufthansa tragedy. This afternoon his union released a statement citing fatigue, a consequence of scheduling demands made upon all conductors. As someone who once-upon-a-time made a living (and for years) breaking his back to earn my bread, that sounds eminently reasonable to me. Oftentimes by midweek- sometimes as early as Tuesday- the entire crew I worked alongside would be beat; our mistakes were more common, and our overall efficiency dramatically reduced. You can nickel and dime a lot of things, but when it extends to people there are inevitable consequences, most of them bad, some of them tragic.

    “..We feel 100 percent confident that the issue of the new schedule, the reduced rest period and layover period for this young man, was an immediate and direct contribution to this incident,” Fritz Edler, chair of the local committee of adjustment for the BLET’s Division 482, said in an interview Friday. “Fatigue is a cumulative problem. So if you have a bad day yesterday, it’s going to be that much harder to do your job today. And that’s the kind of situation [Bostian] was up against.”

  121. 121
    Swiftfox says:

    Too many comments to read before I say that Mr. Cole is very naive about politics.

  122. 122
    Patrick says:

    @Ruckus:

    Yup. Conservatives and the media will care. But voters won’t. They didn’t care about Jeremy Wright, They cared about the economy and their jobs. Again, Benghazi and the Clinton’s speeches are total non-issues to those we should care about, ie the voters.

  123. 123
    Keith G says:

    Well, Cole…at least askew will be on your side.

    As for me…

    You know nothing, John Cole

    /GoTrs

  124. 124
    Valdivia says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    your nym really should be our motto. for ever and ever.

  125. 125
    Gindy51 says:

    @Patrick: You are so right. They did a job they were paid to do and got the money. I could care less and I am not alone. Most people who are going to vote for her are not going to give one shit let alone two that she and her family made money. If I could cash in like that. I would. I am not jealous of other people being able to do so.

  126. 126
    Ultraviolet Thunder says:

    @Rex Tremendae:

    The sentence which explains US politics:

    The sum, which makes Mrs. Clinton among the wealthiest of the 2016 presidential candidates

    Which presumably means they’re not the wealthiest. And the wealthiest ain’t Bernie Sanders, so it’s gotta be a GOP hopeful.
    Is that Republican’s wealth a problem in terms of optics or does that issue only apply to Dems?

  127. 127
    Bobby Thomson says:

    And don’t get me started on that Jay Rockefeller asshole, amirite?

  128. 128
    mai naem mobile says:

    Yeah it looks bad but whatevs. I’m surprised they’ve only.made $125 million since he left the White House. She had a little time between the WH and the Senate and the recent period. He’s had 13yrs taking time out for the heart bypass period. I would have thought they would have made closer to $200 mil.

  129. 129

    @Corner Stone: I’ll give you a solid. Get your own fucking blog and you can decide what to write about and when.

    And if you don’t understand the insanity and the blindness that comes with the Clintons and their supporters, go back through every Clinton post and note you ALWAYS have 20 nasty comments in each one.

  130. 130
    Corner Stone says:

    @John Cole +0: Ooooo, testy are we?
    Don’t point that fucking mangled finger at me, Cole. Take a look around, chump.

  131. 131

    I also love how any fucking statement about the Clintons also has to come with 500 other qualifying points about how bad the Republicans are. Yes, the Republicans are bad and worse, without exception. But that doesn’t mean that there isn’t still a stink about HRC and Bill earning 25 million for doing NOTHING.

    I’ve seen Hillary speak. She ain’t Barack.

  132. 132
    Corner Stone says:

    @Ultraviolet Thunder:

    Is that Republican’s wealth a problem in terms of optics or does that issue only apply to Dems?

    And the beauty of that is that the wealth for Cruz and Rubio is basically from their wives earnings. Hmmm, wonder what industry they worked in?

  133. 133
    mai naem mobile says:

    @Ultraviolet Thunder: wealthiest would.probably.be Trump or.Fiorina or possibly the.Huckster if.he had a sweet syndication radio deal which I doubt because he would not be running for president.

  134. 134

    @Bobby Thomson: Rockefeller was run through the ringer around here because he essentially bought his way into the Senate his first run. He spent massive amounts per vote before it was the in thing to do.

    Rockefeller would get wiped off the map if he ran again.

  135. 135
    Tree With Water says:

    @Patrick: I think it’s less they don’t care, than they refuse to waste their time attempting to differentiate between the un-differentiable (among candidates). The system as constructed is a cesspool. Presented with genuine campaign finance reform to overthrow that rude truth, and a majority of people would support it. They know the system is broken. A majority of people would support a lot of change, as Barack Obaoma admitted to the bankers in his the first weeks of his presidency. Remember? He noted that he was the only one standing between them and a mob with pitchforks.. and he was right.

  136. 136

    I don’t get why this is an issue. Since when do we in America have a problem with people making money? The problem people had with Mitt Romney wasn’t that he was rich, it was that he was a fucking dick about it. The rich Republicans always act like being rich makes them better than everyone else and if only the lazy poors would get off their fat asses and work 3 jobs at McDonald’s they’d someday be rich too.

    I don’t give a crap how much money the Clintons made on speaking tours and book sales. It’s the fucking free hand of the market — people paid that amount because they want to hear what they have to say. No one paid Bush The Lesser a bazillion dollars per speech because he trashed the country and left the White House in disgrace. He didn’t warrant the high speaking fee.

    And I’m fucking sick to death of people acting like Democrats aren’t allowed to get rich, and if they are, they can’t also be concerned about working class people who didn’t have the same good fortune. What is this double standard about, anyway? Why can’t Democrats be rich? Why can’t a Democrat say, “Yes I earned $25 million over 10 years. Yes, I was supremely fortunate and lucky, and I want to make sure the playing field is level so even people who weren’t as lucky as me have a shot, because we have inequities in this country and that can’t be tolerated any more.”

    What the fuck is wrong with that?

  137. 137
    jharp says:

    @John Cole +0:

    “HRC and Bill earning 25 million for doing NOTHING.”

    Utter nonsense.

  138. 138
    scav says:

    @efgoldman: Looks like train conductors have more responsibility about train safety and making schedules than flight assistants attendents. Rather makes sense as they’ve certainly got to hop on and off the trains and wave them to move after checking for passengers, if nothing else.

  139. 139

    @Corner Stone: I’m testy? Like I said. Look in the mirror at your reaction to any post that so much as does not tongue bathe HRC. Then you’ll see testy.

  140. 140
    Corner Stone says:

    @Tree With Water:

    He noted that he was the only one standing between them and a mob with pitchforks.. and he was right.

    Are we still sure that’s a positive thing?

  141. 141
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Why do the Clintons make money seem like a dirty thing? Meanwhile, money makes Republicans better people.

  142. 142
    eyelessgame says:

    Wait – what? A person who makes too much money can’t advocate for the common person?

    Somebody tell FDR he’s now invalid.

    You can’t advocate effectively for anything if you’re not fucking rich.

  143. 143
    Ultraviolet Thunder says:

    @John Cole +0:
    Thank SCOTUS for allowing money to crowd out every other consideration in our elections. It does stink that public servants are earning a year’s middle class salary for a single speech. But without that fire hose of dollars they might as well run for dog catcher. Democracy is for sale thanks to The Supremes and if you want a piece the price is high.

  144. 144
    Mary G says:

    The sky is not falling, Chicken Little.

  145. 145
    Ruckus says:

    @Gindy51:
    You and Patrick are right, most people who are going to vote for her, or any democrat are probably not going to worry much about this. But if you think the other side is going to let anything go that they might be able to use to discredit any democrat then you haven’t been paying attention. Patrick is correct that people are concerned about their paycheck, but when I sit around the lunchroom and listen to some of the comments from not even raving conservatives I know that this will not be an easy election even given the opposing side’s choices of candidates.
    YMMV of course.

  146. 146

    @eyelessgame:

    Apparently Democrats aren’t allowed to be rich. That’s just for Republicans. #NewRules

  147. 147
    Tree With Water says:

    @Corner Stone: I never thought it was, and never will, either.. “..in their lives there’s something lacking, what they need’s a damn good whacking..”.

  148. 148
    Corner Stone says:

    @John Cole +0: C’mon, man. If you can’t see that you continue to maintain an inherent natural dislike for HRC and anything named Clinton, then that’s not on me.
    Sure, I have something to say to refute the bullshit that sometimes gets posted here.
    FFS, she was trashed here for saying THE BIBLE was a daily source of inspiration!
    She’s not giving enough access to the MSM (!). Her events are too sterilized, she had emails, Bill goosed a waitress in BFE that one time!
    Give me a frackin break. Next time let’s see another Time to Change My Colostomy Bag post headline when you have something to say about HRC that “stinks”.
    Take a gander here. It’s not me that’s getting blown out of the water.

  149. 149
    Donut says:

    John Cole, the fucking fascist bastards who run the GOP will attack Hillary and Bill relentlessly no matter what. If not over this, then something else. So what? I’d rather the Kochs, Adelson, et al and their lap dog field of clown candidates waste their time and money on this crap. Let them have it and have at it now, before any one besides us political junkies are paying attention. Most people won’t give a shit about the election until next September, anyway, because a hell of a lot of general election voters don’t show up for the primaries. That group of people is tuned out and gives less than one fuck about this. And primary voters favor Hillary in huge numbers, and while I welcome Bernie and O’Malley, assuming he gets in, neither one of them is going to move the needle far enough.

    Hillary is simply the most qualified and most well known, and she will be the nominee, and she’ll pick Sen. Warren as her Veep and she’ll be sworn in come January 2017. Plenty of work to do to make that happen, but that’s my prediction.

  150. 150
    feebog says:

    From 2001 to 2017 Alex Rodriquez will have made well over 500,000,000. To catch and hit a baseball. To play a game. Yes ARod is enormously talented, but really, half a billion dollars to play a game? Harry Shearer just walked away from a 15 million dollar a year contract. But Harry has been making millions from doing voices on the Simpsons for 26 years. He is likely richer than Mitt Romney. Because he can do voices that amuse us on a cartoon. So a former President and former first lady/Senator/Secretary of State make a few million giving speeches, and there’s something wrong with that? Get a grip Cole.

  151. 151
    kindness says:

    Unseeming. Wish it wasn’t such a large figure. In the end it will all depend upon whom is against whom. Right now, if the Democratic winner is Hillary, I see Hillary (and Bill) as being cleaner and more to my preferences than any one of the clowns running on the Republican side. Cause you know, really we are contrasting the Clinton’s rule vs the Koch brother et al rule. In that scenerio Hillary is an angel.

    I’d prefer Warren but I’d really prefer to win and Warren I don’t know could. Hillary I know can.

  152. 152

    @John Cole +0:

    But that doesn’t mean that there isn’t still a stink about HRC and Bill earning 25 million for doing NOTHING.

    Again, they are paid what people think they are worth. That’s how speaking fees work. The high fee is not for the effort of speaking for 30 minutes. It’s for their stature and status and name value, which stems from the years of work that went before it. I guarantee you, putting Bill or Hillary Clinton’s name on a marquis will sell out any fundraiser/event in under 10 minutes. THAT is what you are paying for, my dear.

  153. 153
    Gator90 says:

    @John Cole +0: @John Cole +0:

    I’ve seen Hillary speak. She ain’t Barack.

    So how much compensation would be permissible if she were a better speaker? Is there some kind of scale?

  154. 154
    maya says:

    Dems really ought to seek out an apprentice carpenter type with good community speaking creds where not only were no speaking fees charged, s/he actually gave free stuff out, like sour dough rolls and pickled herring, to those who came to hear her/him speak. Knowledge of near east foreign policy a plus.

  155. 155

    What’s interesting to me from a political standpoint is that the right is attacking Hillary on stuff like making too much money, Benghaaaazi, old Vince Foster stuff, the emails, etc. But not one of them has mentioned her involvement in healthcare reform when Bill was president.

    I wonder why that is.

  156. 156
    Linnaeus says:

    @eyelessgame:

    You can’t advocate effectively for anything if you’re not fucking rich.

    Which is part of the problem. But I don’t blame the Clintons for that.

  157. 157
    Death Panel Truck says:

    I’ve seen Hillary speak. She ain’t Barack.

    Not by a damned sight.

    Look in the mirror at your reaction to any post that so much as does not tongue bathe HRC. Then you’ll see testy.

    I skip over CS’s comments. They’re too inane to bother with.

  158. 158
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @efgoldman: It’s OK to inherit it, though. Look on a dime, or a half dollar.

  159. 159
    Keith G says:

    @John Cole +0:

    I’ve seen Hillary speak. She ain’t Barack.

    You are absolutely right. And it is a difference that I am completely okay with. Oratory is great but is has its limits.

    Look, whether or not this ever is a contributing issue to some regrettable public reaction depends on how much other news there is to bump this to the back. And if Hilary decides to embrace this fact and say, “We did this, we followed the law, and (hope to god) we paid our taxes”….this will be a fun barb for speeches in front of the Tea Party, but that’s about all.

  160. 160

    @efgoldman:

    No, it’s Democrats. Remember John Kerry was trashed for being rich, too. Al Gore is fat AND rich and dares to fly around on private jets instead of riding a bicycle to climate change events while Tipper churns butter by hand at home. Ad nauseum.

  161. 161
    Tree With Water says:

    @Southern Beale: Because she gave it the old college try, that’s why, and people (especially partisan voters) respect effort. It reflects well on her, and republicans know it.

  162. 162
    Corner Stone says:

    @maya:

    Dems really ought to seek out an apprentice carpenter type with good community speaking creds where not only were no speaking fees charged, s/he actually gave stuff out, like sour dough rolls and pickled herring, to those who came to hear her/him speak.

    Those Dems never seem to stay in the race past about April. And they’re more likely to be Republicans, also too.

  163. 163
    Corner Stone says:

    @Death Panel Truck: I appreciate your significant contribution to the discourse.

  164. 164
    EthylEster says:

    @John Cole +0:

    HRC and Bill earning 25 million for doing NOTHING. I’ve seen Hillary speak. She ain’t Barack.

    Stop digging!

  165. 165
    Ruckus says:

    @John Cole +0:
    I’ve seen Hillary speak. She ain’t Barack.

    It’s pretty noticeable that she’s not. So how many other Barack Obama’s have you heard speak?
    I’ve heard some that might qualify, John Kennedy could do pretty good and he was no Barack Obama.
    Who else you got?
    How much do you think President Obama’s speaking will fetch in 2 yrs?

  166. 166
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    @Gian: I don’t think the money was given to Bill and Hillary because they were anxious hear their insights about the issues of the day.

    Bill and Hillary were given money to gain access to them. The speeches are the standard pretext. They want to be able to call Hillary in January 2017 and say, “Hi Hill, remember when you came to visit? That was great. I was wondering…”

    That’s the problem with this arrangement. The rich and powerful have ways to gain access to our politicians that normal people don’t. Since campaigns are so expensive and we don’t have public financing, politicians need access to people and groups with money. So they need each other. Unless the candidate has a few billion of their own, of course.

    If presidential campaigns didn’t cost $1B and candidates didn’t have to raise millions or even hundreds of thousands for state and local races, then the rich and powerful wouldn’t feel as much of a need to pay hundreds of thousands for access a speech.

    All that said, this is a nothingburger. As long as they paid taxes and there’s nothing nefarious, good for them.

    My $0.02.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  167. 167

    @Keith G:

    Again, it’s totally beside the point. She could read from the Yellow Pages, it wouldn’t matter. If you’re having an event and Hillary Clinton is your keynote speaker, the damn thing will sell out and they’ll be scalping tickets out on the street. That’s the value.

    In her heydey, before she was a national joke, Sarah Palin was raking in millions of dollars in speaking fees, too. It’s all about who can deliver the result. The result is not the content of the speech, it’s butts in chairs and donations flooding to the cause.

    Think of these people like concert promoters and you’re booking The Rolling Stones.

  168. 168
    Corner Stone says:

    @John Cole +0:

    I’ve seen Hillary speak. She ain’t Barack.

    Well then I wonder what you’ll say when President Obama and the FLOTUS are worth north of $100M in less than 3 years after leaving office?
    Oh, it’s the distinction that plans for public office matter? If HRC retired to their NYS estate and baked cookies in between doing NOTHING (aka giving speeches) this would not be an issue for you?

  169. 169

    @Tree With Water:

    Ah, “Hillary care beats I don’t care.” Good one, that.

  170. 170
    Emma says:

    @Ruckus: How many of you here wouldn’t accept millions to stand up and speak to groups? Let’s be honest, you are of SS/retirement age and you are going to give up easy money? Your ass you will. And if you give a good portion of it to charity, even if it is your own charity? Or maybe you do it because it is your charity.

    Amen! I’m within 10 years of retirement. If someone came to me and said “you can make $10,000,000 between now and then, without legal or moral issues” I’d grab it faster than you can say upper income bracket.

    Oh, the “controversy”? The controversy is ginned up by the bottom feeders of the MSM, who envy and hate the Clintons and always have, and is directly aimed at people like Cole, who are convinced, absolutely convinced, that the Clintons are somehow, always, guilty of something, proof be damned.

  171. 171
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Ruckus:

    How much do you think President Obama’s speaking will fetch in 2 yrs?

    If he doesn’t do it for free, then he’ll be selling us out even after leaving office, which is, if you think about it, a neat trick.

  172. 172
    Ruckus says:

    @Death Panel Truck:
    I have about a half dozen regular/semi regular commenters in Cleek’s pie filter. CS is one of them. All of them are too inane or vicious or stupid to listen to (some all three) and none of them is willing to listen to anything besides their own caterwauling.

  173. 173
    The Thin Black Duke says:

    This is a non-issue and anybody who thinks differently is fucking delusional. There are are only two choices to make next November, and guess what? It ain’t that goddamned difficult. Jesus.

  174. 174
    ralphb says:

    @Southern Beale:

    If you’re having an event and Hillary Clinton is your keynote speaker, the damn thing will sell out and they’ll be scalping tickets out on the street. That’s the value.

    I don’t know why that seems so hard to understand. Seems obvious to me.

  175. 175
    Corner Stone says:

    @Ruckus: Man, breaking my heart over here. I thought we had something, Ruckus. I thought we had something.

  176. 176
    Ultraviolet Thunder says:

    @Ruckus:

    It’s pretty noticeable that she’s not. So how many other Barack Obama’s have you heard speak?

    I had never heard of Obama until I was riding in the car and heard a recording of the famous 2004 Boston convention speech. I turned to my wife and said “That guy could be President.” So while oratorical skill is neither necessary nor sufficient, it doesn’t hurt. Sure got my attention.

  177. 177
    Kevin says:

    For the life of me, i don’t see how one (making money) precludes them from advocating for the other (the common man).

    “if only the Clintons were paupers, then they would be pure and we could vote for them”.

    Sorry Cole, but this appears to be part of your Clinton derangement. You should probably have someone edit your Clinton posts for rage and idiocy.

  178. 178
    jl says:

    @Southern Beale:

    Probably because if the corrupt mediocre reactionaries on the SCOTUS intentionally misread the PPACA in order to damage it, the GOP hacks want their BS replacement proposals to float around in a vacuum, except for ‘tainted’ responses by the blah president. So, best not to bring it up and hope HRC will not notice. That is my best guess.

    But of course HRC will notice and will start blasting the GOP scams to pieces.

    And that is why we hear about speaking fee BS.

    BTW, I notice how the ‘senior political’ corporate media analysts/directors/reporters/GOP hacks are spinning Jeb!’s belly flop this week. It is really good news in the end because Jeb! finally found his ‘voice’, Problem for Democrats that this foreign policy issue is finally put to rest. Well, better this than HRC’s problem with emails and BANGHAZZII!!! I actually heard people say that crap. Why does anyone pay attention to the GOP propaganda the corporate media wants to sneak into every story they can? It’s BS and the vast majority of people don’t care a fig.

  179. 179
    Ruckus says:

    @Emma:
    I am retirement age. And still working, not because I love it so. I’d love to give one speech a month for a couple of grand. You want to give me 50 grand? Send a check and I’ll be there with bells on. You want me to do it naked? Must be for a blind group if you want that but OK I’m there.
    If I’m a retired president and/or retired senator/SOS and you want to give me a 1/4 mil to stand up and speak? And don’t mind that a portion of the money is going to my charity, No fucking problem, I’ll be there.
    And yes I’ve done public speaking and no it isn’t that difficult, even off the cuff. I’d imagine that some paying a 1/4 mil might want a bit more prep than waking up in the morning but still I’d manage.

  180. 180
    chopper says:

    the only part of this that gives me any pause is not that she’s making bank giving speeches but rather who she’s giving speeches to, like big corporations and banks. somehow i doubt she’s getting up there and yelling them “you guys need to be taxed and regulated more!”

    it doesn’t instill confidence that she’ll put those guys’ feet to the fire as president.

  181. 181

    @chopper:

    That is a legitimate beef. And probably the ONLY one. Too bad more people aren’t making it.

  182. 182
    jl says:

    BTW, if $30 million is too much, what number would be ‘just right’? Fifteen mill, ten, five? Or they should speak for free.
    Then of course there would be corporate media stories and GOP hack ‘political analysis’ talking about how the Clintons are all washed up, Trouble for Democrats! Hey, emails, and BENGHAZZI and the suspicious circumstances of Socks the cat’s death have really damaged the Clintons! Probably good time to dip into the history of Clinton scandals in order to understand their Fall from Grace.

    I would like play poker with Cole and some of the other commenters here. I stink at poker and I can’t bluff, and I would like have one game in my life where I clean the table. Something to tell the grand kids about.

  183. 183

    @jl:

    What annoys me about the whole Jeb thing is that they are pretending it’s about Jeb being unable to distance himself from his brother. When in fact, Jeb has ALWAYS been a major Neocon. He signed PNAC’s Statement of Principles in 2007, which advocated regime change anywhere we felt it was warranted because Murca Fuck Yeah. It’s American Exceptionalism all the way around, Jeb bought that T-shirt and wore it too and now we’re supposed to pretend he isn’t a Neocon Warhawk he just loves his brother and doesn’t want to embarrass him? Fuck that.

    We have such short memories in this country.

  184. 184
    Keith G says:

    @Southern Beale: I am trying to suss out the intersection between your comment and the one of mine that you reference.

    eta Never mind, after the third read through I got it. Too much sun today.

  185. 185
    Ruckus says:

    @Ultraviolet Thunder:
    Oh I agree 100%. It’s just that President Obama is about as good as it gets. He has material, timing, inflection, a great voice and something that is impossible to fake, sincerity.
    When I heard Kerry’s concession speech I was floored. My first and only thought was where the hell had this man been hiding for the entire campaign. And he is no Barack Obama.

  186. 186
    Corner Stone says:

    @jl:

    and the suspicious circumstances of Socks the cat’s death have really damaged the Clintons!

    Didn’t they try to do away with Socks and the US Marshals had to step in and place Socks in WitSec?

  187. 187
    muddy says:

    @Southern Beale: Democrats can’t have money, because they are supposed to be looking out for those who don’t. Thus, if they have money they are total hypocrites and don’t have a moral compass. FFS

  188. 188

    @Keith G:

    I think I maybe responded to you in error. I was responding to someone who said Hillary was a lousy speaker and didn’t warrant that kind of money.

  189. 189

    @muddy:

    But if you don’t have money you are a lazy poor who just wants to riot in the streets and have the gummint hand you everything for free and you’re afraid of work.

    Can’t win for losing.

  190. 190
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @muddy:

    Democrats can’t have money, because they are supposed to be looking out for those who don’t. Thus, if they have money they are total hypocrites and don’t have a moral compass.

    “I never realised that in order to become a jockey you have to have been a horse first.”

    Arrigo Sacchi, former coach of gli Azzuri , 2x manager, AC Milan.
    Never played a day professionally.

  191. 191
    patrick II says:

    @Fair Economist: see @Holden Pattern:

    With whom I generally agree. Plus I speculated that it might have something to do not with just speaking, but with political power. I wonder how much someone equally famous in another field, Paul McCartney perhaps, would get paid for a graduation speech?

  192. 192
    bcinaz says:

    All the “wealth” issues always only ever apply to Dems or people named Clinton. Does Hillary’s wealth make her better or worse than Mitt’s $260 million or Trumps seven Chapter XI bankruptcies? Is Hillary more beholden to her rich donors than Scott Walker is to the Kochs?

  193. 193
    Corner Stone says:

    @bcinaz:

    All the “wealth” issues always only ever apply to Dems or people named Clinton

    Republican candidates are just assumed to be uber wealthy, and that’s the way it should be. And somehow reach downtrodden working class people, also too.

  194. 194
    shell says:

    Oy. Going on the lecture circuit has been a given for all x-presidents and other pols for decades. It only matters because, for some reason, Democrats aren’t supposed to have any money. It’s supposed to make them hypocrites, according to wingnuts.

    Jimmy Carter put on a hardhat and built homes for the homeless, and he got ridiculed for that. Damned if you do…………..

  195. 195
    pluege says:

    greed is a mental disease – they (the plutocrats, of which the Clintons are just two of thousands) can’t seem to help themselves.

  196. 196
    debbie says:

    No one’s mentioned Ronald Reagan “showing up” for a speech in Japan for $3 million?

  197. 197
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    @shell:

    Jimmy Carter put on a hardhat and built homes for the homeless, and he got ridiculed for that. Damned if you do…………..

    Jimmy Carter also makes $50,000 a whack in speaking fees (I assume, but do not know for sure, that he plows almost all of that income back into The Carter Center and its programs).

    But you can hear him for free if you visit Plains, GA and go to the Maranatha Baptist Church on a day when he is giving the Sunday school lesson. Which is every Sunday he’s in town.

  198. 198
    GHayduke (formerly lojasmo) says:

    7 posts before it was wiping clinton drool off it’s chin. Record time.

    For my part: Meh…she and Bill earned a bunch of speaker fees. Rain is wet, the sky appears blue.

  199. 199
    PsiFighter37 says:

    I don’t really care about this, but it does speak to a lack of any kind of moral center, IMO. Jimmy Carter didn’t sell his soul out and rake it in on the cash circuit. If Obama does (and I feel like he might, given he isn’t super-wealthy despite the books and has two kids to put through college with tuition being stupidly expensive nowadays), I would be disappointed.

    As for HRC – Bill has been raking it in since 2001, so I’m not sure why Hillary wouldn’t either. Hell, if you paid me $200k+ to say words somebody else prepared for me for 60-90 minutes without really giving it any thought, I’d do it in a heartbeat.

  200. 200
    Cervantes says:

    @patrick II:

    I wonder how much someone equally famous in another field, Paul McCartney perhaps, would get paid for a graduation speech?

    It varies.

    Within the last decade:

    $200,000+: Jerry Seinfeld;
    $100,000+: Alan Alda, Katie Couric, Bill Cosby;
    $50,000+: Rudy Giuliani, Jane Pauley (remember her?), Ben Stein, Bill Maher;
    $20,000+: Toni Morrison, Spike Lee;
    $10,000+: Samantha Bee.

    Some speakers specify that their honoraria should be given to charity.

    Many speakers do not ask for an honorarium at all.

  201. 201
    Corner Stone says:

    @PsiFighter37:

    If Obama does (and I feel like he might, given he isn’t super-wealthy despite the books and has two kids to put through college with tuition being stupidly expensive nowadays), I would be disappointed.

    Why would you be disappointed that a former leader of the free world finally makes more per year than you do after he leaves office?

  202. 202
    Cervantes says:

    @PsiFighter37:

    Jimmy Carter didn’t sell his soul out and rake it in on the cash circuit.

    Not sure about his soul but he is registered with an agent and does charge upwards of $50,000 for a commencement address; plus he has received many a six-figure honorarium for other engagements.

  203. 203
    different-church-lady says:

    You’ve seriously lost the thread here, Cole. People didn’t hate Romney because he was rich. They didn’t hate Romney because he was born rich. They didn’t even hate Romney because he couldn’t relate to poor people.

    They hated Romney because he actively believes poor people are parasites, and they could sense it even before the 47% speech leaked out.

    If you think it is impossible for an affluent person to advocate for the poor, then best of luck to you finding any presidential candidate you can get behind here in early 21st century America.

  204. 204
    Germy Shoemangler says:

    I remember reading about a baseball player who was asked by someone how he felt about making millions of dollars for hitting a ball. “I don’t get paid millions to hit a ball. I get paid millions because I put asses in seats.”

    Some of the more serious baseball fans here remember the exact quote and who said it.

    I suspect HRC really can’t win, because if she wasn’t making a ton of cash, the right would be saying how incompetent she is with money and how can we trust her to run the economy.

  205. 205
    Morzer says:

    So John Cole has gone back to inspecting HRC’s counter tops? What absolutely shocking news!

  206. 206
    Len says:

    You really think somebody who is not rich is going to run for president? Besides, by the time the Koch brothers get through giving money to whomever the Republican candidate is, any money Hillary has will pale by comparison.

  207. 207
    patrick II says:

    @Cervantes:

    Then Bill and Hillary aren’t too far out of line for top speakers then.

  208. 208
    Davebo says:

    @Cervantes:

    Matthew McConaughey just got $120,000 for his commencement speech at the University of Houston although he did devote all of it to his Just Keep Livin’ Foundation.

    So it’s a twofer! He took a large honorarium AND he donated it to his own foundation!

    Get a rope!

  209. 209
    Tree With Water says:

    @Germy Shoemangler: Owner Connie Mack (pre WW2) claimed his beau ideal of a baseball season saw his team in contention for most of the season, only to fade in the stretch. He said that way he’d make money AND hold the trump card in contract negotiations with players for the next year.

  210. 210
    Cervantes says:

    @Davebo:

    How long?

  211. 211
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    @Germy Shoemangler: I don’t know that one, but there’s the story about Babe Ruth:

    A reporter objected that the salary Ruth was demanding ($80,000) was more than that of President Herbert Hoover’s ($75,000) – “I know, but I had a better year than Hoover.”

    Bill and Hillary were criticized about lots of made-up stuff. They have been forced to live Michelle’s advice for a while:

    And at the end of the day, by staying true to the me I’ve always known, I found that this journey has been incredibly freeing. Because no matter what happened, I had the peace of mind of knowing that all of the chatter, the name calling, the doubting — all of it was just noise. (Applause.) It did not define me. It didn’t change who I was. And most importantly, it couldn’t hold me back. I have learned that as long as I hold fast to my beliefs and values — and follow my own moral compass — then the only expectations I need to live up to are my own.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  212. 212
    Tom Q says:

    @Germy Shoemangler: I think it might have been Reggie Jackson (he certainly said similar things).

  213. 213
    Tree With Water says:

    @shell: Harry Truman helped set that bar. Outside of his book deal, I believe he refused all offers to cash in. I know he disapproved when General Omar Bradley- a fellow Missourian whom Truman admired- signed a lucrative deal that secured a fortune for himself (with a watch company, I seem to recall). Truman believed it wrong.

  214. 214
    Emma says:

    @PsiFighter37: Jimmy Carter gets $50,000 a pop except for church groups. Ir takes big cash to keep up a charitable lifestyle.

  215. 215
    Tree With Water says:

    @muddy: Which ironically enough is what republicans accused FDR of being, and lacking..

  216. 216
    The Blog Dahlia says:

    Are you daft, Cole? She gets paid tens of millions of dollars a year to give handjob speeches to banks and massive corporations. If you can’t take the blinders off and realize that she’s a true crusader for the poor, you’re an idiot.

  217. 217
    Cervantes says:

    @Tree With Water:

    It was Bulova.

    I bought an Accutron shortly after (but not because) he became Chairman of the Board.

  218. 218
    Cacti says:

    Cole still hasn’t deconditioned his Pavlovian right wing response to all things Clinton.

  219. 219
    kc says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Hard to believe this is the same commentariat that gets bent out of shape over the schmoozing at the White House Correspondent’s Dinner.

    Go figure.

  220. 220
    EriktheRed says:

    Damn, I’ve had so many nothingburgers lately I’m running out of stuff to go with them.

    I’ve had ’em with nothingsauce and a side of nothingfries. I’ve had a special bun with nothingseeds on top.

    Any other ideas?

  221. 221
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @EriktheRed: Bacon is always nice.

  222. 222
    Myiq2xu says:

    @EriktheRed: I got nothing.

  223. 223
    Myiq2xu says:

    I just don’t know how even the most diehard of Clinton supporters can read this stuff and not wince

    But you’re still gonna vote for her.

  224. 224
    Jjohnnybuck says:

    I have no fucks to give here Cole. She aint fracking, or drilling off the coast, or fleecing the poor with payday loans, or shilling for smake oil diabetes pills.

    Grab some perspective hoss. I get the Clinton hatred is strong and I could give a shit, but Barack aint running next year, and that’s the only reason she lost in the first place.

  225. 225
    Davebo says:

    @Cervantes:

    Too long apparently. http://abc13.com/news/matthew-.....ss/725074/

    But then, aren’t they all?

  226. 226
    Cervantes says:

    @Davebo:

    That’s funny, but I was asking about the rope you wanted.

  227. 227
    blueskies says:

    @Patrick:

    Just like they don’t care about Benghazi.

    FINALLY, somebody gets me…

    >sniff<

  228. 228
    WaynersT says:

    Not defending them but –
    This is their FU money – after leaving the white house $12mill in legal debt they’re building a money fortress. I imagine after all the investigations and impeachment they prob determined to build up a humongous money wall as their only real defense. (They also donated over $14 million to the CGI themselves.)

    Also interesting that they keep most if it in cash – not investments and losing the 15%
    tax rate. http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....y-in-cash/

  229. 229
    samiam says:

    Things Cole would NEVER say about fat bastard Kristie or Rand Paul.

    I guess Cole isn’t trying to pretend any more. Once a Republican always a Republican.

    Say what you want about Hillary, she is a hell of a lot better than the fat bastard or ANY other Republican. Cole doesn’t think so which is why he’s an idiot that should stop pretending to be something he is not.

    But oh noezzzzz…she made a lot of money [gasp!] speaking….seriously Cole, you are such a wanker.

  230. 230
    blueskies says:

    @John Cole +0: Geeze, what a WATB you’ve become. Grow up. I don’t give two shits whether Clinton pere and Clinton mere bathe in $100 bills. Or the blood of aborted fetuses, for that matter. Just like I don’t care the whether Dumbya was actually that dumb or Reagan was dumb or smart-and-evil.

    I.Do.Not.Care.

    P-O-L-I-C-Y.

    That’s all that matters. Learn it. Love it.

  231. 231
    Glidwrith says:

    @Southern Beale: If you are still around, about why Democrats can’t be rich: because if they are rich and didn’t do it by screwing over everyone else and say that other folks can get rich (or be better off), it just shows how corrupt the Republicans really are. Not one of them has made their money honestly and they are sociopathic pigs, therefore anyone else can’t be rich because that is what they had to do to become so.

  232. 232

    Look, I ain’t exactly happy about Hillary as president. I’d much prefer Sanders.

    But given the system we live under where every viable candidate (male and female) is a big ol’ whore for corporate cash, I can’t exactly begrudge Bill and Hill for cashing in on their name and his former (and her future) position.

  233. 233
    rikyrah says:

    @Holden Pattern:

    That’s not productive labor, not hard work, not an inheritance that you’d have to renounce. That’s payola, no matter who does it. The level of compensation is out of all compass with the value provided. And that payola cannot help but be on the mind of politicians while they’re in office, and when they’re running again after having done so.

    so true.
    so true.

  234. 234
    rikyrah says:

    @chopper:

    the only part of this that gives me any pause is not that she’s making bank giving speeches but rather who she’s giving speeches to, like big corporations and banks. somehow i doubt she’s getting up there and yelling them “you guys need to be taxed and regulated more!”

    it doesn’t instill confidence that she’ll put those guys’ feet to the fire as president.

    No, it doesn’t. Remember, her husband repealed Glass-Steagall. Just how committed will she be to enforcing, let alone strengthening Dodd-Frank?

  235. 235
    Suzanne says:

    Could not care less about this. She and her husband got rich by exchanging their time/knowledge/position/celebrity for money. Just like a shit-ton of other people. Like NFL football players, and movie stars, and Stephen Colbert. She pays taxes on it and does good for other people.

    You go, Hills. Make all the money you can. Fuck the wage gap.

  236. 236
    DTOzone says:

    Of all the things Clinton could be criticized for, this seems be the milquetoast at best.

    So she makes money speaking? So what? The real scandal is corporations are paying millions for someone to come say a couple of words, while not giving their workers a raise.

  237. 237
    DTOzone says:

    @C.V. Danes:

    Lest we forget, FDR was quite wealthy…

    FDR would never have survived in the modern progressive blogsphere. He wouldn’t have gotten to 1934.

  238. 238
    socraticsilence says:

    I have little to no problem with retired pols doing this, the problem arises for someone like Hillary making the speeches and then turning around and running for president, its not illegal but it just smacks of “bribes in all but name”. I mean people do get how bad it looks right?

  239. 239
    Corner Stone says:

    @John Cole +0: And I’m going to do you another solid here, asshole.
    Take a look at the almost 250 comments telling you that you have once again been wrong from jump.
    Shocking!

  240. 240
    socraticsilence says:

    @socraticsilence:

    Now, in Hillary’s case all of her likely GOP opponents are doing the same so its not a political issue (or shouldn’t be) but its still odd that this is an accepted facet of our system now.

  241. 241
    PsiFighter37 says:

    @Corner Stone: Good to see that you still have yet to mature at all. Aside from your statement being false, I do think it is a matter of perception, and the fact that if you go to any industry group that is willing to shell out money to take selfies with them (let’s be real, no one gives two shits what they actually say at these things), it does show that you have a price.

    As for everyone else mentioning Jimmy Carter getting speaking fees – I didn’t know. At the least he does not seem to be as conspicuous about it, nor do I ever see him in the news for speaking to groups of questionable motives.

  242. 242
    liberal says:

    @Holden Pattern: agreed. It’s payola.

  243. 243
    Corner Stone says:

    @PsiFighter37: You mean you don’t live in the Flatiron bldg near Madison Sq Park? How much do you think the office of the President pays? He couldn’t live two blocks off Park Ave.
    And the fact that you cited Jimmy, but have no idea about his actual life…
    Hmmm

  244. 244
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @different-church-lady: yeah, this.

  245. 245
    J R in WV says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Well, not all 234 comments aretelling John Cole how wrong he is, even though he is wrong. Anything legal can be done for money, and this isn’t even ugly but legal, it’s meh AND legal.

    FU money is needed by people like the Clintons. They have been fucked over by every media outlet in the nation, all the Republicans in the country, and a lot of the Democrats, too. So no wonder they feel like they need F U Money!

    They’re doing good work with that money, including Hillary running for President, which is good work, it is.

    My friend called me this morning, after he checked his mail. The letter told him that his pension was gone, and he could piss up a rope for a retirement, after working all his life. He didn’t have much of a leg up in the world. The Mrs J gave him a recommendation, which may have helped him get a job he has had for many years.

    But the owners of the business turned his pension over the the federal pension benefit guarantee corporation, where it will turn into a dollar.97 or some such bull shit, instead of a real retirement.

    And this is with a Democratic administration in office. How many pensions will be stolen with a Republican in office?

    So if Hillary will run, I will help her, because she isn’t a greedy stealer, like all the Republicans. She’s a Democrat, and that still means something, no matter how much the Mainstream Media cries about it.

    Screw the greedy power-mad Republicans, all of them, with the rusty farm implement of your choice.

  246. 246
    Corner Stone says:

    @J R in WV: Eh.

  247. 247
    Ruckus says:

    @J R in WV:
    Should be a very large, very oxidized lumber carving tool. With a lot of HP so it doesn’t stall. Couple hundred cc and a 6 ft bar should be adequate.

  248. 248
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ruckus: Wouldn’t that be rather heavy? Two person job?

  249. 249
    Ruckus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    Not that heavy if you are motivated. Can’t imagine many here that wouldn’t have enough of that. Hell I’m on SS and I could pull a shift. Gladly.

  250. 250
    Ruckus says:

    @Ruckus:
    Throw in some of those financial geniuses who melted the economy and probably could be persuaded to pull two shifts.
    @J R in WV:
    I get it. I lost everything in the recession brought on by those thieving brainiacs in the financial sector. And given that half of our grand political system is batshit crazy I doubt the BS will end before I do.

  251. 251
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ruckus: The other thing is I really have trouble with the concept of a cutting tool that is rusty and not kept razor sharp.

  252. 252
    Ruckus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    Oiled and sharp would cut faster and cleaner. I don’t think that is the desired effect. I’d bet the exact opposite, knowing where the whole rusty farm implement idea came from.

  253. 253
    Earl says:

    It’s amazing — apparently $100 million dollars wasn’t enough for her and her two-bit husband, so they decided to whore themselves out to every corporation who could scrape together a million dollars and wanted to purchase favorable access to someone who unfortunately stands a good chance of being the next president. It’s bribery.

    I don’t know if those two just can’t stop themselves or what, but seriously — $100m wasn’t enough; they had to do this right before an election. It’s just unbelievable.

    She’s a woman of the people! who got paid $30m to hobnob with bankers, ceos, pharma execs, etc. In a *year*, right before she declared herself as a presidential candidate, in an election in which everyone in the world assumed she would run.

    It’s incredibly unseemly, and insulates eg Bush from being attacked over his financial industry payola; Hillary does the exact same shit.

  254. 254
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ruckus: I understand that, but I just will have to use someone else’s tool. Mine are well cared for.

  255. 255
    Corner Stone says:

    @Earl: No one’s ever going to pay me five figures to show up and speak, either. I feel you, brother.

  256. 256
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Earl: It seems like you have anger issues.

  257. 257
    Ruckus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    As are mine. The ones that are supposed to be are sharp and none are rusted. But then micrometers or 50 millionths indicators that are rusted are way past useless.

  258. 258
    Ruckus says:

    Well, Fuck You Word Press.
    Today must be a fuck over commenters on WP day. Words that are totally innocuous just get you thrown in the trash.
    @Omnes Omnibus:
    As are mine. The ones that are supposed to be are sharp and all are free of oxidation. But then I am a machinist/mold maker and tools are how I make my living.

  259. 259
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Ruckus: I learned from people like that.

  260. 260
    The Blog Dahlia says:

    @Ruckus:

    I lost everything in the recession brought on by those thieving brainiacs in the financial sector.

    I’m sure a candidate who gets paid big money to give friendly speeches to the those asshole bankers will totes put those thieving assholes in their place.

  261. 261
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @The Blog Dahlia: I am sure that your concern will not go unnoticed in the quarters that matter.

  262. 262
    Origuy says:

    Carly Fiorina got $20 million just for getting fired from HP. She was on and off of various boards of directors after that.

    Jimmy Carter pulls in $50,000 to $100,000 per appearance; GW Bush gets around $100,000. Source

  263. 263
    TriassicSands says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    It stinks a hell of a lot less than any of the vile shitstains running for the GOP nomination, John.

    Maybe, but is that really what we want our party to be — merely better than the obscenely vile and certifiably insane Republicans? That has to be the lowest bar in history.

  264. 264
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @TriassicSands: Please tell me what HRC did that was wrong.

  265. 265
    Citizen Alan says:

    @Corner Stone:

    You joke about Socks, but I swear to FSM, there were actual editorials in actual RW newspapers suggesting that when Buddy (the Clinton’s dog) got run over and killed, Bill actually engineered as some sort of bizarre scheme to build sympathy for HRC’s Senate run.

  266. 266
    Ruckus says:

    @The Blog Dahlia:
    Being friends with thieves is not the same as whoring out to them. It may be semantics to some but there is a difference. And if I may be so bold, do you think our current president would talk to them or what?
    To steal from the Stones, You can’t always elect the one you want, you have to elect the one that is running. Hillary Clinton was not my choice last time she ran, probably wouldn’t make my short list if I’m honest but even being friends with those evil motherfuckers who stole lively hoods from so many, she’s still miles better than any rethug and she may be the most electable on our side.

  267. 267
    Ruckus says:

    @TriassicSands:
    Better than the other sides crap is usually about as good as it gets in politics. Unless you are qualified and want to run. Then maybe we could go out in an orgasmic flame. Same as if I ran. Cause I’m probably left of Senator Sanders.

  268. 268
    BillinGlendaleCA says:

    @Citizen Alan: Buddy was killed after the Clinton’s left the White House. Hillary was a Senator WHILE still first lady(for about 2 weeks in 2001). Unless you’re talking about HRC’s re-election?

    Oh, and Cole, if you really want to know why the Clinton’s act the way they do(a bit paranoid) and why they think they need “so much money”; read “The Hunting of the President”. You’ll understand this much better.

  269. 269
    Ruckus says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    Well for one thing she’s currently making us listen to crickets.

  270. 270
    Kevin says:

    @BillinGlendaleCA:

    Or, instead of reading that book, Cole could just read his tweets and posts any time he writes about HRC. The hysterics and the “OK, this time THEY’VE GONE TOO FAR” and “SEE THIS IS WHY THEY ARE AWFUL, THE REPUBLICANS AND ME ARE RIGHT!!!” posts are why they have to keep on. Some people have this irrational hate of them, Cole is one of them.

  271. 271
    dogwood says:

    I can vote for Hillary Clinton, but I won’t spend the next 6-10 years playing Lanny Davis on the internet. Most of the problems I have with the Clintons are with him. Like Teddy Roosevelt he insists on being the groom at every wedding and the corpse at every funeral. I expect the next Clinton administration to be much like the first. Lots of drama lots of CGI fat cats having slumber parties in the residence, maybe we’ll meet some of Bill’s more recent girlfriends. None of it illegal, most of it unseemly, and whether democrats will admit it or not, a great deal of the drama will be self inflicted.

  272. 272
    Kerry Reid says:

    She should get out there and clear some brush to show she’s a real Person of the Peoples!

  273. 273

    @BillinGlendaleCA: I’ve read it. And I read Brock’s book (blinded and the noise machine).

    If you read the reactions here, it’s like I read the Clinton’s riot act. That’s how thin-skinned her supporters are- they’re insane. There is a reason Hillaryis44 and all the PUMA’s were so god damned funny the last time.

    All I said was that after earning 100 million dollars, did they really need to spend the last 16 months since SHE FUCKING KNEW this would be an election issue raising 30 million bucks? It stinks and it looks bad.

    And the defenses here are great- no one will care, all that money wasn’t a problem for Mitt, so on and so forth. Did you all even watch the 2012 election? They hammered Romney NON fucking STOP. Seriously.

    And Cornerstone is just the worst of them on the Hillary issue. She’s a downright frothing mad on the topic. She sees a muted post like this and completely loses her shit, and then tells me I’m the one irrational on the issue. It’s pretty funny.

  274. 274
    Xjmueller says:

    HRC didn’t earn speaking fees while a senator or Secretary of State, as far as I can tell. I’m sure she got campaign contributions. In 2013 and 2014 she earned a ton. She’s apparently stopped speaking for fees now that she declared-back to fundraising. Will this be used for her presidential campaign? Campaigns don’t pay for themselves. She’s playing by the rules as currently in place. She didn’t pay attention to the rules closely enough and lost the primary.

    Also, how much did she and Bill give to their foundation? I haven’t seen any numbers, but I think it would be useful to know. Sometimes the fees went right to the foundation. Are these included in the reports? If they waived the fee for a donation, probably not counted. Will the press get these facts? C’mon, I kid.

  275. 275
    askew says:

    I think it was tone-deaf and I’d love to see the transcripts of what she said at some of those speeches for Wall Street/Banking firms, but this is bottom of the list of things that worry me about Hillary.

    I am more horrified by this article on the Clinton Foundation and their Moroccan dealings and possible conflicts of interest while Hillary was at State.

    “Hillary Clinton sold her soul when they accepted that money,” declared Mohamed Lahwaimed, who gathered with the other former miners in a second floor walk-up in the Western Sahara capital of Laayoune, a modern-looking desert town with a population of 200,000 people about 500 miles southeast of Marrakech. Wearing traditional Sahrawi dara’a robes and lounging on worn pillows, they sipped green tea and spoke Arabic. “And now we are concerned that if Hillary Clinton wins the presidency of the United States of America, she will take the side of Moroccans even more,” Lahwaimed said through an interpreter.
    Added fellow former miner Lahbib Salhi, “All the tainted money that Morocco has gathered from taking away our rights has been used to bribe the Clinton Foundation and the international community.”

    In 2009, President Barack Obama appeared to stray from that stance, when he wrote to Mohammed VI supporting U.N. efforts to settle the Sahara dispute. Five months later, though, Hillary Clinton asserted herself on the issue as secretary of state, telling the Moroccan government during a visit “it is important for me to reaffirm here in Morocco that there has been no change in policy.”
    While the U.S. condemned other Arab governments for cracking down on protestors during the pro-democracy street demonstrations that swept the Arab world in 2011 and 2012, the Obama administration—with Clinton leading the way—stood by Morocco, even as the country’s justice minister later admitted “cases of abuse” by police against protesters.

    That coupled with the in-depth article on the clusterfuck surrounding Haiti and the Clinton Foundation show at the bare minimum the Clinton Foundation is a mismanaged and disorganized as Hillary’s 2008 campaign and Bill’s WH was.

  276. 276
    askew says:

    @dogwood:

    . I expect the next Clinton administration to be much like the first. Lots of drama lots of CGI fat cats having slumber parties in the residence, maybe we’ll meet some of Bill’s more recent girlfriends. None of it illegal, most of it unseemly, and whether democrats will admit it or not, a great deal of the drama will be self inflicted.

    That pretty sums up the Clintons in a nutshell. They are their own worst enemies in many ways. I had more than enough of defending the Clintons during Bill’s admin. I have no interest in doing it again. It’s exhausting and the party ends up spending all their time doing that instead of actually improving the country.

  277. 277
    TriassicSands says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    I’d be glad to, if I had said HRC did anything wrong. My comment had nothing to do with the Clintons and everything to do with thinking that as long as the Democrats are better than the Republicans, that’s good enough. I don’t want to settle for a party that’s merely better than a bunch of sociopathic lunatics.

    There’s a huge psychological difference (for me at least) between voting for someone I really want to hold office and represent me and someone who is merely better than Ted Cruz or Jeb Bush. There are plenty of people in prison who are better than Cruz and Bush. (Two of my three cats are better than Cruz and Bush and the third one is too lazy to serve.)

  278. 278
    Kay says:

    @askew:

    While the U.S. condemned other Arab governments for cracking down on protestors during the pro-democracy street demonstrations that swept the Arab world in 2011 and 2012, the Obama administration—with Clinton leading the way—stood by Morocco, even as the country’s justice minister later admitted “cases of abuse” by police against protesters.

    If Clinton was influenced by donations to the Clinton Foundation while working for Obama it’s much worse for Obama than it is for Clinton.

    The policy positions adopted by the Secretary of State are the policy positions of an administration, not the individual Secretary of State. She quite literally spoke for the administration.

    Competence, or her handling of the administration policy objectives, is 100% on her, but unless she was some rogue actor (which no one has ever indicated) she pursues the goals of the Obama Administration in that job.

  279. 279
    Kay says:

    @askew:

    I’m not defending the foundation. I think foundations have too much influence and they’ve become almost quasi-governmental institutions that aren’t accountable to affected people and have very little transparency (including in the US) but the President is directly responsible for what the Secretary of State pursues or doesn’t pursue once that person is confirmed. The only possible defense is “I didn’t know that’s why she was pursuing that goal” and that’s not a great defense for the chief executive.

  280. 280
    The Blog Dahlia says:

    @Ruckus:

    Yeah I’m pretty sure the one thing Hills isn’t going to do is anything at all that could make the bankers’ lives harder. This isn’t going to be a case of her delivering happy back-slapping speeches to the guys and then turning around and fucking them over when president.

  281. 281
    low-tech cyclist says:

    As the late (and deeply missed) Molly Ivins said, “as they say around the Texas Legislature, if you can’t drink their whiskey, screw their women, take their money, and vote against ’em anyway, you don’t belong in office.”

    AFAIAC, this is a total non-issue. Sure, Bill and Hillary have amassed a freakin’ fortune by getting our ruling class to pay them to give speeches. (Can you blame them? Free money!!) And as a result, they now have more than enough money to tell that ruling class to fuck off. It’s not like the banks and Wall Street can say, “we don’t like your policies, now please return all that money.”

    So it all comes down to what positions Hillary’s actually taking, and what she’s going to fight for. And so far, Hillary seems to be running well to the left of where I would have expected, and that’s good.

    And sure, the wingnuts and their useful idiots in the MSM will make an issue of the money. They were going to throw the kitchen sink at Hillary anyway. So I’m not perturbed.

  282. 282
    Bobby Thomson says:

    @John Cole +0:

    And the defenses here are great- no one will care, all that money wasn’t a problem for Mitt, so on and so forth. Did you all even watch the 2012 election? They hammered Romney NON fucking STOP. Seriously.

    And as has been pointed out to you repeatedly, the RomneyBot was hammered not for his wealth – which was orders of magnitude different than the Clintons in any event, and made possible by Romney being born into privilege – but for his undisguised contempt for working people. The next time the Clintons forget the number of houses they own or install a car elevator in one, maybe it’s an issue, but until then, you’re smoking dope. The talking heads won’t go after them on this because they all have their own book deals.

  283. 283
    The Blog Dahlia says:

    @Ruckus:

    As someone to the left of Sanders I’d figure you of all people would be sick to death of the constant refrain of “yeah well whatever, the other guy is way worse”.

    Just because people vote against the shittiest candidate in the general doesn’t mean they have to like that system.

  284. 284
    different-church-lady says:

    @Bobby Thomson:

    The talking heads won’t go after them on this because they all have their own book deals.

    Oh you kidder you. Since when do talking heads have a sense of shame or irony?

  285. 285
    LAC says:

    Wow! This was a hell of a thread. I don’t know, Cole. Optics maybe, but the money was earned legally and you do not have to be building homes and eating tuna sandwiches a la Carter to get the economic disparities in this country. I have never got that disconnect from the clintons. Neither one of them were born on third base and swore they hit a triple.

    But it was lively debate and I learned that corner drunk is a she. So thanks. 😉

  286. 286
    AxelFoley says:

    @Ruckus:

    I may not like all their policies or how they worked while in office but they were in elected office and they didn’t disgrace themselves there.

    You sure about that?

  287. 287
    AxelFoley says:

    @Ben Cisco (onboard the Defiant):

    Hillary gets fucked over on this kind of hot garbage regularly. It’s pathetic, actually. And hysterically stupid.

    As for things that have never mattered before being the WORSE. THING. EVAR. Welcome to the last seven years of my life as an Obama supporters.

    You’d better cowboy up, Cole. Prelims haven’t even started yet.

    The Emissary is wise.

  288. 288
    Emma says:

    So I return this morning and read through every damn message. Here’s the synopsis:

    1. Democrats can’t/shouldn’t make money because in doing so they will forget their roots and become criminal plutocrats.
    2. Even if they don’t become criminal plutocrats, they will look like it and that’s worse.
    3. Rule 1 and 2 can be placed in abeyance unless the person’s last name is Clinton.
    4. If your name is Clinton, you’re de facto a traitor to the working class. Possibly a criminal. If not a criminal at least a tacky, vulgar redneck, except that you got all that money so you’re a traitor to all the tacky, vulgar rednecks.

    Y’all are going to enjoy President Walker so, so much. Or if you don’t, well, at least he’s not a Clinton.

  289. 289
    AxelFoley says:

    @John Cole +0:

    @Corner Stone: I’ll give you a solid. Get your own fucking blog and you can decide what to write about and when.

    And if you don’t understand the insanity and the blindness that comes with the Clintons and their supporters, go back through every Clinton post and note you ALWAYS have 20 nasty comments in each one.

    BOOM!

  290. 290
    different-church-lady says:

    @Emma: Well, there’s one thing we’ll never catch President Walker doing, and that’s pretending to care about the poors.*

    Which will be absolutely great, because it seems there’s one thing we can’t stand in a politician above all others, and that’s the appearance of hypocrisy!

    *(Well, two things actually: proposing any legislation that helps the poors ain’t gonna happen either.)

  291. 291

    Given the large amounts of money a Presidential campaign requires these days, well, what’s she going to do? She has to go into the campaign with as much money as possible.

    I don’t (you know) love Hilary Clinton, but I won’t fault her for fund-raising.

  292. 292
    askew says:

    @Kay:

    Yes, the buck stops with Obama and he’d be the first to say that, unlike Hillary who hides from taking responsibility. However, Obama isn’t on the ballot in 2016, Hillary is and her role at State and the Clinton Foundation’s decision in Haiti and Morocco give 1 more reason why I can’t support her. The constant mismanagement, little concern for ethics, and conflicts of interest presented really prove that she doesn’t have the character to be president. With every story about the Clinton Foundation, you find more problems. It’s actually incredibly depressing.

  293. 293
    askew says:

    @The Raven on the Hill:

    That money isn’t going to her campaign. It’s going to her personally. That’s the problem. Hillary isn’t going to be putting that money into her campaign.

  294. 294
    different-church-lady says:

    @askew:

    It’s actually incredibly depressing.

    I’m pretty sure you meant “thrilling”. Don’t try to hide it.

  295. 295
    dogwood says:

    @The Raven on the Hill:
    Fundraising? For whom? I’m glad that there are plenty of democrats willing to go full tilt boogie defending the Clinton’s right to bank some big bucks for themselves right before an election, because I’m not gonna go there. But to euphemise this as “fundraising” is beyond laughable. It borders on palinspeak.

  296. 296
    Emma says:

    @Tdifferent-church-lady: Did you notice all the presuppositions? “They won’t do this, they won’t do that, she did this, he did that.” Not once ounce of proof, but it’s not needed with the Clintons.

    I get it. Two people, he working class, she middle class, got above themselves. They lifted themselves out of middle class scarcity through terrible, secret, villainous means. They are the representation of everything that’s wrong with American politics today.

    We sound like the Republicans talking about the Obamas.

    (EDIT) And we turn on each other. I am amazed that the Democrats manage to elect ANYBODY, considering how fond we are of the circular firing squad.

  297. 297
    askew says:

    @different-church-lady:

    No, it’s depressing. There are a lot of people giving money to the Clinton Foundation expecting it to improve the lives of the most desperate on the planet. And while they are helping some people, they are wasting millions of dollars through lavish events, administrative costs, mismanagement and PR projects that do nothing to help anyone. There is no other word for it but depressing. Not terribly surprising knowing the Clintons’ history, but still depressing.

  298. 298
    Emma says:

    @askew: Charity Watch gives them an A for spending 89% of its funds on charity programs. Charity Navigator raises a number of “potential problems”. http://www.washingtonpost.com/.....oundation/

    The “watch list” designation came from a second group, Charity Navigator, which cited potential issues that could concern donors. According to its Web site, Charity Navigator puts charities on the list whenever a third party identifies issues that potential donors might find interesting. It said it does not assess the merits of those accounts. In the case of the Clinton Foundation, it cited recent media accounts about foreign government donations.

    Guess which report the MSM, the rightwing blogs and the Democratic purity wing concentrated on?

  299. 299
    AxelFoley says:

    @PsiFighter37:

    If Obama does (and I feel like he might, given he isn’t super-wealthy despite the books and has two kids to put through college with tuition being stupidly expensive nowadays), I would be disappointed.

    GTFO

  300. 300
    Emma says:

    @AxelFoley: Hey $50,000 per speaking engagement is OK, as long as it’s Carter!

  301. 301
    Heliopause says:

    Why, for the love of FSM, why?

    John, I’ve got a newsflash for ya: 85% of voters are already locked in, and the swing voters out there are convinced that all politicians are like this. Hillary’s not worried.

    What it does mean, though, is that the 110 million or so non-voting adults will once again have ample reason not to go to the polls, which will limit downballot success for the Dems.

  302. 302
    Corner Stone says:

    @Heliopause:

    What it does mean, though, is that the 110 million or so non-voting adults will once again have ample reason not to go to the polls

    Isn’t that approx about 30% of the entire US population?

  303. 303
    askew says:

    @Emma:

    So, you haven’t actually read any of the in-depth articles on CF and Haiti or CF and Morocco then? Because if you had, you wouldn’t give a shit about some rating by a charity group. You’d be appalled at what they were doing in Haiti/Morocco and how they failed to deliver on promises.

  304. 304
    Ruckus says:

    @The Blog Dahlia:
    Where did I say I like it? I’ve even posted on BJ before that I’ve never voted for the great person, only the lessor of two evils.
    It isn’t that I wouldn’t like someone else to vote for, someone say 45 yrs old, about 5 steps left of Senator Sanders, with a history of successful management and some friends that could help turn the country away from the racist, financial ruination, lawless law place it’s in now, but that person only exists in my(and maybe a lot of others) head. I am left of Senator Sanders in my desires but I am also a realist. So the question I ask is, instead of tearing down Hillary Clinton, whose record is not all that bad in comparison to many, many others in our political landscape, who you got? Who is electable? Doesn’t do any good to have an ideal candidate who couldn’t get elected to be dog catcher because only 4% of the people believe in them. We have to go with what we have. Right now as viable candidates go I see Hillary. Martin O’Malley looks like he might be good but the race is on now and he seems to be dithering around. In my mind Senator Sanders would be pretty good, but he is even older than I am. So who you got? Remember they have to run, and they have to win to be president. Second is first loser, no matter how great they might have been. OK is much better than might have been.
    So to sum up, I’ve never gotten what I want and even rarely gotten what I need. So I’ve learned that in a world of 325 million people, 40% are fucking idiots, 20% don’t know what they want, other than to be left alone, and of the other 40% half want both cookies and ice cream for breakfast.

  305. 305
    Aaron says:

    Are you accusing the Clintons of being Capitalist? of trying to make money? Those bastards!

  306. 306
    The Blog Dahlia says:

    @Ruckus:

    Didn’t intend to make it like you liked the idea. Just defending others’ criticism from the inevitable “well ease up cause the other guy’s gonna be worse” response.

    I’m personally sick of always being presented with varying degrees of evil, though I will continue to vote for the lesser one for pragmatism’s sake.

  307. 307
    john gurley says:

    Why does it matter how much money the Clintons make giving speeches? Why are Democratic candidates supposed to live like Ghandi in order to be accepted as legitimate Democrats?

    After 18 years of the Clintons as President, Senator, and Sec of State, I think we know where they stand on the issues. The Clintons come from the middle-class and made their way on their own without help from their daddies. Bill Clinton is in demand as a speaker because he is very, very good at it. In some sort of Karl Rovian twist, the media makes this out to be some moral failing.

  308. 308
    different-church-lady says:

    @Ruckus:

    …I’ve never voted for the great person, only the lessor of two evils.

    Look, we live in a political landscape where all politicians are perceived as evil, by definition.

    In that construction, nobody is going to ever do anything but vote for the lesser of two evils.

    The only way out is to change the construction. But nobody is going to do that. Because the construction is too emotionally satisfying on a warped level.

  309. 309
    Cervantes says:

    @john gurley:

    Why are Democratic candidates supposed to live like Ghandi in order to be accepted as legitimate Democrats?

    Well, you know, after his wife died, Gandhi insisted on taking baths with, and going nude to bed with, young women, including married ones and including his teen-aged grand-nieces and his long-time personal physician — all in a chaste effort, so he said, to test and prove the purity of his sacrifice.

    Where, I ask you, is the Democrat who could get away with this? Republicans? Sure — but a Democrat?

  310. 310
    Cervantes says:

    @The Blog Dahlia:

    I’m personally sick of always being presented with varying degrees of evil, though I will continue to vote for the lesser one for pragmatism’s sake.

    If you have not tried conventional Christianity, perhaps you should try it. It might prove to be a source of clarity for you.

    Or if you already are conventionally religious, then you’re doing it wrong.

  311. 311
    The Blog Dahlia says:

    @Cervantes:

    Naw, I’ll just go back to voting for the ‘lesser evil’ without any complaints at all. Sorry I almost got a little idealist there for a second guys.

  312. 312

    This is not money going into campaign coffers. This is not money going into the Clinton Foundation. This is not money going into super pacs. This is money going directly into her bank account.

    You all just keep seeing what you want to see.

  313. 313
    Ruckus says:

    @different-church-lady:
    Sort of my entire point.

    I don’t really think it’s very satisfying, though maybe it is to those who like evil

  314. 314

    @John Cole +0:

    How dare she make money. Everybody knows the most successful presidential candidates are the ones earning minimum wage!

  315. 315
    Ruckus says:

    @John Cole +0:
    John
    I know that the Clintons make far more in a month than I have in my entire life but so do lots of people. I make more than people I work with. I get more because I know more and have more experience than they do. Am I better than them? No, just more experienced. Both Bill and Hilary are far more experienced than you or I at being at the top of the political heap. Some people are willing to listen to what they have to say and pay them for that. How is that different than me getting paid for my experience? Or you?
    Does it have the appearance of impropriety? And if so is that based on the fact that they are speaking or that they are getting paid huge sums to do it?
    They are both within a couple of years of me and as I said up thread, I’d love to get a couple of grand a month to give a speech or two so that I might actually be able to eat, clothe and shelter myself. It would be far easier than what I do now.

    People are questioning you because we don’t see the issue here. You just keep saying it’s wrong but we don’t see how it is.

  316. 316
    I'mNotSureWhoIWantToBeYet says:

    @John Cole +0: A big fraction of the money is going to Bill. It’s not all hers.

    I just looked at the disclosure form (20 page .pdf). Is there something in particular that you find egregious? Her speaking to the “Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries” perhaps? Earning over $5M from her latest book?

    You don’t know how much she and he are going to give away. This is just an income statement. (In the past they gave ~ 9% to charity according to a recent BI story.)

    Do you think she will be corrupted by the income she’s able to get from these companies and organizations? Do you think her policies will be somehow different because she has taken money from these groups? Do you think that the unhinged Republicans would somehow treat her better if she hadn’t made these speeches and written these books?

    I don’t.

    Remember, she has had people raising money for her (“Ready for Hillary”) since January 2013. There are lots and lots and lots of people and groups quite anxious to give her money. She doesn’t need to sell herself to them.

    FWIW.

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  317. 317

    @Southern Beale:

    How dare she make money. Everybody knows the most successful presidential candidates are the ones earning minimum wage!

    The strawmen here are impressive. Read the thread. That was directed at all the people saying she needs money for the campaign. She is not going to be privately funding her campaign. If you think she is, you’re dumber than y’all claim I am.

    @Ruckus: This kind of stuff I find inappropriate:

    There’s a solid set of companies and associations that had nothing to do with the foundation but lobbied State while Clinton was there and then paid for her to speak to them. Xerox, the Biotechnology Industry Organization, and the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, in addition to Corning, all lobbied Clinton’s department on trade matters and then invited her to earn an easy check.

    By this point, most Clinton allies wish they had a button so they didn’t have to go to the trouble of rolling their eyes at each new Clinton money story. The knee-jerk eye-roll response to the latest disclosure will be that there’s nothing new to see here. But there’s something very important to see that is different than the past stories. This time, it’s about Hillary Clinton having her pockets lined by the very people who seek to influence her. Not in some metaphorical sense. She’s literally being paid by them.

    That storyline should be no less shocking for the fact that it is no longer surprising. The skimpy fig leaf of timing, that the speeches were paid for when she was between government gigs, would leave Adam blushing. And while most Democrats will shrug it off — or at least pretend to — it’s the kind of behavior voters should take into account when considering whether they want to give a candidate the unparalleled power of the presidency. It goes to the most important, hardest-to-predict characteristic in a president: judgment.

    If you don’t have a problem with that, fine. I think it stinks. I’m still going to vote for her if she is the nominee, but I hate this kind of shit.

  318. 318
    Cervantes says:

    @John Cole +0:

    If you don’t have a problem with that, fine. I think it stinks.

    Do you know what Illinois state Senator Barack Obama’s income from speaking engagements and other external employment was in, say, the years 2000-2004?

    Not only was he an incumbent elected official at the time, he was also thinking about the White House. Should his non-state-Senate income have been zero? And if it wasn’t, then what?

  319. 319

    @Cervantes: His income from 2004-2008 ranged from 200k to 250k, and your comparison just is laughable. Here are all the returns.

    250k is what Hillary collected for a 30 minute speech via teleconference.

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    Cervantes says:

    @John Cole +0:

    Oh, I had all those returns and more, thanks.

    Point was that Obama accepted money from “external” sources while he was an elected official.

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    different-church-lady says:

    Things I learned on Balloon Juice: it’s okay to earn money through speaking fees, as long as it is not too much money and as long as you don’t claim you’re interested in helping the poors.

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    Ruckus says:

    @John Cole +0:
    Yes, I have a problem if it brought her vote or her policy stance. But I see her being a lot more left that prior. So I’m not so sure that was money well spent. And yes she could be just jiving us for votes and if she wins we could all get screwed like never before. How is that different than any other politician? OK except the ones on the other side of the aisle who we know will fuck us.
    I’ve stated in this thread and on others that I’d like someone better, I’ve made no secret about that. But we only get to vote for the people who run. And we hopefully get to elect someone who is capable of doing a good job and actually does that. The other side will try to shoot all of our candidates down, why is it that we have to as well?

    So my real question, which no one seems to have answered at all, who is running that is better?

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    The Blog Dahlia says:

    @different-church-lady:

    There’s nothing wrong with earning money from speaking fees, but if you’re earning that money by giving friendly speeches to big corporations and banks don’t expect people to assume that you’re really all that interested in helping the poors.

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    Procopius says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Not so sure about the Koch Brothers “just showing up.” David and Charles were active in the management of the empire and took an inheritance of just a few hundred million dollars and turned it into real money. I think it’s Charles who is still active in management, David occasionally so, and Robert and Fred “just show up” (although Fred seems to be active in a large enterprise of his own).

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    Procopius says:

    @Full metal Wingnut: They’re really quite modestly set up compared to most of the people they hang out with.

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    different-church-lady says:

    @The Blog Dahlia: If only the poors would pool their money, then there would be speaking fees that were acceptable.

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    low-tech cyclist says:

    @John Cole +0:

    This is not money going into campaign coffers. This is not money going into the Clinton Foundation. This is not money going into super pacs. This is money going directly into her bank account.

    And??

    Again, Molly Ivins: “as they say around the Texas Legislature, if you can’t drink their whiskey, screw their women, take their money, and vote against ’em anyway, you don’t belong in office.”

    And FDR was rich from birth. Yet he didn’t do a bad job representing the rest of us.

    Also, the track record’s pretty clear: what politicians run on is what they try to do while in office. As long as Hillary’s coming down where we’d like her to on the issues, that’s all I want from her.

    And as I said before, having banked tens of millions of dollars from speaking fees means she is in as good a position as anyone to tell the people who paid those fees to fuck off. She will be a wealthy woman in 2025, no matter what. And if she needs a private plane during the campaign to get her from here to there, she can hire her own plane if the campaign doesn’t have the money for it. No need to depend on the loan of a plane from some sugar daddy when she needs to travel in comfort.

    You all just keep seeing what you want to see.

    I dunno, John. Usually I see your point, but I’m missing it this time.

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    brantl says:

    WTF was wrong with FDR being a millionaire and being for the common people? He was called
    “a traitor to his class” by the Republicans of his time, and no one doubted his commitment to the working man and the poor. If it can work for FDR, it can work for the Clintons. If they put any of the money they make back into their charity, they can let that “leak”, and just shut the Republicans down, stone-cold.

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    Pete Johnson says:

    With all due respect, a lot of very wealthy people have been champions of the poor and middle class and/or taken positions that were arguably not in their own financial interest: the Kennedys, Franklin Roosevelt, Bill Gates, and so forth. I agree that it is just something else Hillary haters can bitch about, I truly don’t feel it is automatically proof of insincerity or somehow disqualifying of her taking more progressive/populist positions.

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