by John Kass | May 19, 2016 12:02 am
Hillary Clinton’s political advocates — I prefer “meat puppets” — are wringing their hands over the Republican vulgarian Donald Trump.
They’re upset over the boorish things he says about women, but, even worse, they’re anguishing over the death of American outrage.
What bothers them is that anti-Trump outrage isn’t as widespread as the Clinton campaign hoped. And GOP Chairman Reince Priebus triggered them even more by suggesting that Trump’s character issues weren’t all that big a deal.
This so enraged the Clinton meat puppets that you could hear their teeth gnashing. Clearly, they’re in need of therapy. And I will prescribe a cure.
But first, what really set them off? It was that attempted New York Times hit piece about how Trump allegedly mistreats women. It blew up in their faces after the featured grievant, model Rowanne Brewer Lane, said it was all a negative spin job.
“They spun it to where it appeared negative,” Brewer Lane said. “I did not have a negative experience with Donald Trump and I don’t appreciate them making it look like that I was saying it was a negative experience because it was not.”
I’m not crazy about either Trump or Clinton. The fact that The Hillary or The Donald might be president almost makes me yearn for a yurt in the wilderness. There, I could read the Constitution alone, in peace, like some oblivious hermit, without worrying what the next president will do to it.
Except for tribalists and the willfully ignorant, most Americans should know by now that Trump is the GOP presidential nominee because the Republican Party Establishment lied to and manipulated its base for so long that voters stopped believing a damn thing it said.
And Clinton is the Democratic candidate because, even though she’s tired and stale and hopelessly establishment in the year of insurgency — and apt to change accents in midsentence — she still knows how to win the old Democratic way.
She’s backed by President Obama. And she’s lined up Democratic Party insiders as superdelegates. And they want her to slice them some big chunks of cheese as tokens for their fealty.
Right now, though, Clinton’s meat puppets aren’t worried about Queen Hillary handing out American cheese to party hacks. Instead, they’re worried about the lack of outrage over Trump. And so they whine and whine:
How does Trump get away with treating women that way? Why isn’t America as angry as we are? Does character even matter in American politics anymore?
If you’re mystified about Trump and the death of outrage and lack of character evidenced in our national political actors, here’s what you could do.
Find a dark room with a mirror. Bring with you a small lit candle. Stand before that mirror and spend three minutes in complete silence wondering about the death of outrage, then repeat after me:
“Bill Clinton. Bill Clinton. Bill Clinton.”
If that doesn’t work, try one of these: “It’s only about sex,” or “Everybody does it” or “It’s a private matter.”
Repeat until the words lose all meaning, becoming mere sounds, unintelligible, so they’ll transport you to your safe meditative space.
If that doesn’t work, there’s one more. Repeat the following:
“If you drag a hundred-dollar bill through a trailer park, you never know what you’ll find.”
Those immortal words belong to James Carville, the Clinton Democratic operative who — with Hillary’s assent — set the tone on how the Clintons would treat women who dared accuse former President Clinton of sexual harassment.
And the woman Carville referred to was Paula Jones.
She wasn’t fancy or rich, just a working woman sexually harassed by Bill when he was governor of Arkansas.
But she was denigrated by Clinton’s top advisers as “trailer park” trash, as someone so craven she’d crawl on dirt for the cash to slander Bill.
She was telling the truth. It was a straightforward sexual harassment case. If Bill had been a private-sector CEO, he’d have been fired.
But Hillary and Bill fought back, using the “nuts and sluts strategy,” denigrating Jones and others, including Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey and the intern Monica Lewinsky.
As part of all this, Bill Clinton, as president, lied under oath. He committed perjury.
Just consider the mental gymnastics it takes to excuse perjury in a sitting president. Consider the lack of character it takes to defend it. Consider the lack of foresight it takes to do this while avoiding the effect it could have on the republic.
Not only was sexual harasser and liar Bill Clinton defended, but he also was politically rehabilitated by many of the same actors, by feminists and by the Democratic insiders. And the damage was done.
Hillary and Bill and their meat puppets told us then that character didn’t matter. It was all a private thing.
In essence, they helped give birth to Trump. You might say Hillary — protecting Bill to guard her own ambition — was midwife to the Trump campaign.
Because without a rehabilitated Bill Clinton there could never have been a Trump candidacy. Trump would not have been conceivable, let alone possible.
So if Hillary Clinton and her meat puppets wonder about what happened to character and outrage in politics, all they have to do is this:
Just look in the mirror.
And tell themselves the death of outrage is only a private matter.
(John Kass is a columnist for the Chicago Tribune. His e-mail address is [email protected], and his Twitter handle is @john_kass.)
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