A Woman in the White House

As we have struggled with partisanship over the past eight years, one wonders how much is due to racism. Or maybe not exactly racism in the strongest sense of the word, but just the uncertainty of making a change that most sensible people know makes no difference: having a black man do a job formerly held only by white men.

The argument goes that most white Americans probably haven’t had supervisors, teachers, preachers, or other authority figures that were black men, so they worried about it a lot. Like if they went on a blind date with a black woman. They see a certain amount of cultural differences, and they know how fraught with peril culture clashes can be. It’s easy to feel uncomfortable in a room of people who are different than you.

Hell, they probably worried about Obama sagging his pants. Worried about the national anthem being changed to a rap song. Worried about filing their taxes in Ebonics. All those insane thoughts they couldn’t tamp down.

And we face basically the same problem of cultural-ignorance now that a woman may take office. Are we all going to have to watch RomComs for the next four to eight years? If we have a smudge on our face, will the police pull us over and wipe it off with a spit-wetted Kleenex?

Hell no, we need Trump, they think. He’ll let us scratch our crotches when we itch, while Clinton will require us to wear clean underwear when we go out.

But this election isn’t about forcing us all to put our napkins in our laps and tuck in our shirts and sit up straight. It’s about an eminently qualified candidate who wants to address the problems our nation faces. She hasn’t done the best job explaining it, but in all honesty if you read the policies proposed by both sides, Hillary Clinton has more right to claim the slogan “Make America Great Again” than Donald Trump does (caveat: it should really be something like “Make America Greater Still”).

She actually wants to deal with climate change, not just use it as a minced oath for those crazy people in white coats doing that science crap. She wants to fix immigration in a way that recognizes the economic realities of labor as they stand. To improve the lot of all workers through practical solutions, like paid family leave.

While Trump wants to cut taxes for the rich, Clinton actually wants to get down under the sink and actually replumb our revenue streams to fit the way money flows in modern America. She wants to take those streams and devote them to betterment of health coverage and education access.

The main criticism against Hillary Clinton is the notion she is corrupted by power, but for all of the attacks, the woman is still standing, which says more about the attacks than it does about her. Sure, it’s tough to stay up and keep fighting, but it’s unrealistic to believe that if the Republicans had ever found a real, honest-to-God scandal to hit her with she would still be around.

We’ve seen countless political figures felled by scandal. Either Clinton is very lucky, possesses Moriarty-level cunning, or the alleged scandals are wildly overblown. Of those three, Occam’s Razor slices and dices the first two, leaving the conclusion that if there is real corruption there, it hasn’t been shown. Hillary Clinton remains viable and respectable.

So get sloppy while you can, America. Come January 2017, you’ll be forced to wear bow ties and straw hats. Your shirts will be pastels, starched and itchy. You will wear either a handkerchief in your breast pocket or a flower in your lapel. And you will be forced to hum or whistle as you walk down the street, a spring in your step, smile on your face, twinkle in your eye. You will say sir and ma’am, please and thank you, wash your hands before every meal, say grace, wash behind your ears, and pass the dutchie on the left-hand side.

Gross Negligence versus Less-Than Criminal Malfeasance

The Clinton email uncovers some widespread ignorance of law, reaching to the highest levels of the Congress. The House GOP, in the wake of the news delivered by FBI Director James Comey, is out for blood in the form of some type of indictment of Hillary Clinton. If the Constitution did not bar ex post facto laws, I’m sure they would be passing them “in a few hours,” to quote Chaffetz. The media has also been seeking the juicy chance to tell the American people that the Democrats would face the unprecedented choice between running a candidate who’s out on bail and ditching her for someone else.

But the wisdom of law is that it doesn’t bend to the political winds, but holds up. It continues to exist right beside whatever politically expedient thing might be in the here and now.

If Clinton were an ordinary employee, or even if she were presently in the employ of the Federal government, she would undoubtedly be sanctioned for mishandling of classified materials (as would her staff). That not being the case, where is our pound of flesh? It’s not like the Congress could pass new laws that would obliterate the chances of similar issues in the future. It’s not like the Congress could look in a mirror and note that they failed to provide adequate oversight at the time Hillary Clinton was serving as Secretary of State.

But this is about Hillary Clinton, not Congress. Misdeeds lead to punishment. That’s how we’ve always done it. Never mind that we have no idea (and won’t until some future day when the emails in question are declassified) how severe the errors were. We still must find some manner of settling this score, a score we never would have known about if the conservatives hadn’t been so scornful of Clinton in the first place that they filed FOIA requests for documents relating to the handling of the attack on the diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya. Again, where was the oversight?

Wait, wait. Focus. Clinton. Did she lie to Congress? Did she lie to the public? She said she needed only one device, and possibly someone hacked the server. And sent classified information via email. Unarchived email. Would a new law really help? I mean, it’s not like there are other problems we’ve had in the same area. This was just one person (oh, and her staff) that screwed up. And it’s not like we could just have a law that would require normal government business to be conducted through normal government channels. It’s not like our founding document recognized the need for such a normal channel and empowered the government to create a service for the carriage of correspondence.

So, get mad as you like at Clinton. Elect Donald Trump instead. Hit the earth with a meteor, why don’tcha? It doesn’t really matter, because at the end of the day she’s still just one person, and punishment doesn’t solve problems. If it did, all the people suffering due to lack of immigration reform; lack of action on police, incarceration, and guns; lack of price controls on health care; lack of infrastructure maintenance; lack of climate action; lack of educational reform; lack of poverty reform; . . .; all of those people would have solved all of our problems years ago. They are being punished not because Hillary Clinton mishandled classified information.

They are being punished because Congress is nothing but a shitshow. So, go ahead, punish Clinton. How could one more person suffering really matter when that unholy body of the US Congress can’t do its job? Since they write the laws, rest assured their dereliction remains less-than-criminal malfeasance.

It’s 3am…

…and your children are safe and asleep. Who do you want answering the phone? Not the president, that’s for sure.

Way I understand the workings of the whitehouse, they have people (aides and secretaries) to answer the phone for them, then tell them there’s a call, who it is, or take a message.

Mrs. Clinton, for all her supposed experience, doesn’t even understand the concept of a secretary answering her phones. And she lived in the whitehouse for eight years, you’d think it would have sunk in.

She claims to know the world’s leaders, but if she really knew them would they be calling her at 3am? Most families have a cutoff of 9 (some say 9.30, others 10, and those wacky republicans don’t take calls after 2.30 in the afternoon, but 9 is the average). If you really knew the leaders of the world, Mrs. Clinton, they would respect your cutoff.

Anyway, boys and girls, don’t vote based on fear. If you want a president that will spend the next four to eight years continually banging the fear horn with strobe lights shining in your face, vote for they that will fearmonger in the campaign. Assume their message now is their message later.

I, for one, don’t want to have to wake up at 3am to make sure Mrs. Clinton isn’t getting phonecalls so I can sleep the rest of the night in peace.