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Hillary the Hawk

The NEW REPUBLIC provides a surprising amount of evidence that Ms. Clinton is more realistic and more bellicose when it comes to our country’s responsibilities than her husband. Amazingly enough, her foreign policy opinions seem to be about the same as those of the NEW REPUBLIC. One particularly amazing fact: Law Professor Hillary Clinton actually tried to enlist in the Marines. (It turns out the Marines weren’t looking for women law professors with really bad vision,) As far as I know, Bill didn’t. If you think, as I do, that it’s going to be pretty difficult for any Republican to get elected president in 2008, this article does show why, however eloquent and cool we think Obama is, we ought to hope that the Democrats make the more responsible choice.

Discussions - 17 Comments

It will be difficult for the GOP in ’08, but not impossible. If we field the right candidate, and if we get in the face of this administration, and force some major changes in substance and in style, we may yet pull it off. We may yet.

As for her foreign policy, it will be like Clinton’s, sporadic, unsustained gestures masquerading as "policy." It will be like her husband’s in that there will be much discussion of issues, but not much follow through. Recall their protestations "that their hair was on fire...," it will be like that. Their idea of policy implementation is batting memos back and forth, back and forth. It will be like Blair’s handling of this act of war against Great Britain, the suggestion of "another phase" means taking it to the transnationals at the UN. And for some, they actually think THAT IS doing something.

The more interesting suggestion isn’t what Hillary’s foreign policy WILL look like, but whose foreign policy does the present Bush administration more resemble, his own first term policies, or the suggestions of Kerry, complete with "the global test" and the United Nations.

It’s as if Kerry had won, it’s no coincidence that Bush has reached out to the Kerry foreign policy team for staff selections at the State Department. He beats the establishment candidate, but then in a squalid, misguided attempt at ingratiation, he reaches out to their foreign policy advisory staff for staff appointments.

It’s utterly insane, it’s the type of thing that only a Bush, {and his Bushies...} could possibly make sense of, possibly explain.

But there you have it.

Somebody cue right now an old tune, "The World Turned Upside Down."

Yes, among the Democratic competition, Hillary is the most reliable and thoughtful on foreign policy. But will this TNR piece help her among Democratic primary voters? Room for doubt, room for doubt. Despite the matters reported in this article, Hillary also still has high "negatives" among independents. So I think she is vulnerable, in both the primaries and the general election. Among many conservatives she is, of course, a relentless liberal of the worst sort, despite the evidence. I myself confess that I can hardly stand listening to her. As Twain said of Wagner, perhaps her music is better than it sounds.

Actually, the most responsible Democratic choice in my opinion would be Bill Richardson. He has the most experience of all the candidates--congressman, Secretary of Energy, UN Ambassador, all-around American diplomat, two term governor. If only the Dems would see that he is their best choice... But oh well... Name recognition is everything in these primaries- either recognized as a bad choice or recognized as a good choice.

This election cycle reminds me of 1968, save one where JFK does not die and gets his second term.... where the Bay of Pigs is the Recon plane in China, and Iraq being VietNam... The problem here is the anti-war candidates of the statue of Bobby is nowhere to be found... that is to say.. Obama ain’t no Bobby K.. no matter how badly people would want him to be.

Hillary reminds me of Dick Nixons, both with regards to intelligence, paranoid sense of people out to get her (which for both there was elements of truth to it), where being a liberal on domestic issues and hawk on foreign policy. But the problem is that its her party not the GOP that is going to have the very vocal and very active and rather large anti war base who feed on move on.org and other leftoblogs and the rhetoric of Howard Dean and the red shirt of the anti-bush hatred that is the animus of this movement.. makes me feel that the Democratic convention could become another Chicago .. but perhaps less violent, ok no police clubing the anti-war protesters... recalling Marx’s remark about the second time it’s farce.

No Hillary is the Nixon but not a Nixon in the GOP.. but in the Democratic party, which means in this equation.. she is the Humphary in her party.. she may win but her party will be so divided that if the Greens run, the anti war left might go off and vote for it.

So here I disagree with Peter about the chances for a GOP candidate to win the Presidency... the problem again is the Democrats are in no position to win it given their divisions on the War, again echoing 68.

I think the whole issue for the GOP is what are we going to do to win back the gov and what will we do when we get it. Here the lurch of the Hassert governance of the House that had no vision but self-interest and keeping GOP control echoed into the sleeze factor that undid Tory rule under John Major. An unprincipled GOP lost this election, but the Dems are ungoverning themselves and will most likely put at risk many of the seats they won with the policies and antics they are persuing to try to Humiliate Bush at any cost. So it is likely that a GOP victory by either McCain or Rudy will have enough coattails to pull the House and Senate over to the GOP. But without a real vision of governance things will just stay the same and we cannot afford that anylonger. Ironically the only one who has the vision about what needs to be done both to the executive branch (which needs to be reformed in order not only to govern in the 21st effectively but also in a way that does not harm our ability to win the war on terror) but also fix the way congression governs to fix the congressional system of economic and budgetary misrule that has been arround since the new deal, a heming of congressional oversight and return of control of the exective branch to the president as the framer’s designed.

Might I suggest that Hillary is just camouflaging her views and values?
This has been known to happen in presidential campaigns.

Cliff,
Thanks for all the historical insight. Maybe Hillary is part Nixon and part Humphery, not a pretty picture. And I agree with Steve that the hope of my post is that, in Hillary’s case, the music IS better than the sound... I too can’t stand listening to her, but she hasn’t really been all that bad as a senator.

Gosh Peter, you’re in a charitable mood.

Don’t you recall Hillary standing in the well of the Senate and asking of the Bush administration: "What did the President know, and when did he know it?" And she wasn’t asking about Plamegate, she was asking about 9/11. She seriously tried to affix blame for the greatest surprise attack in American history on this administration.

When and where has this woman taken on the nutjobs in her party? Just the other day, she promised that she would ram sodomy down the throats of America’s military. Just a couple of weeks ago.

She will install in power the foreign policy establishment of the Democrat party, creatures like Christopher, Vance, Berger, Lake, Brzezinski, Rubin and Albright. How much worse can it get?

Vance, he who resigned over the military effort to rescue the hostages in Tehran, BUT NOT over his own incompetence in failing to secure their release.

Christopher, a deluded fool who allowed his aircraft to idle on the tarmac in Damascus, unmindful of the fact that he was the foremost foreign official of the foremost power on earth.

Berger, he who allowed Osama to slip away when we had that murderous dirtball in our sights, he who covered up for the Clintons by erasing valuable documents in the historical record.

Brzezinski, Zbig and son, Mark, perfect finds for the Democrats, for both men are apt to make the occasional warlike statement, but then immediately fall back from it.

Albright, just picture that image of her toasting with Kim Jung "mentally" Il.

That’s the foreign policy establishment of the party of bewilderment. The party for whom every new year rings in 1968.

She will prove a disaster if victorious, just like her husband, just like Carter, just like LBJ. The last Democrat who had a clue was JFK. They’re none like him around anymore, not in that party.

It isn’t necessarily about her.

She represents a party with decided views of how to conduct foreign policy. Those views almost cost us the Cold War, those views cost us Southeast Asia. They almost cost us Central America. She isn’t separate from that, but rather wholly within it. ANY DEMOCRAT, even a fella like Zell Miller, will staff his Executive Branch from the ranks of that party. Personnel IS policy.

Recall the words of former Mayor Ed Koch, "The Democrat party doesn’t have the stomach for this fight."

It is institutionally incapable of closing with America’s enemies, and destroying them.

Remember Madelaine Albright occasionally suggesting deployment of American troops for HUMANITARIAN purposes, what happened to those suggestions? Nothing. Because the Democrats are not capable of such deployments. Remember when Prime Minister Blair forced Clinton’s hand in the Balkans, and we sent in our Air and Naval Air. Remember when Cohen, Albright {and I think it was Berger...} showed up in some college in the Midwest, to explain and answer questions about their policy. Recall how the base of the Democrat party made that an absolute shambles. Recall too how Albright and the others were incapable of explaining themselves, they couldn’t even make a coherent point, NOT only because of the behavior of the audience, but because they lacked the will and the nerve to stand up against serious, sustained attack from the left within their party.

We should recall such events, we shouldn’t allow ourselves any delusion about what a Democrat Presidency will mean.

’08 is going to be a turning point for the whole world. It will be seen in retrospect as one of the defining moments of this Age. For either Iran will be stopped, or they will get the bomb. And if they get the bomb, the very foundations of Western security will be shattered forever by that dread event.

We are on the verge of great events my friends, great, history changing events.

The election of Hillary Rodham Clinton, after all of the scandals of her husband’s administration, after the clear fecklessness of his foreign policy, such an election would be a damning verdict upon the seriousness of the American electorate. It would represent a repudiation by the American people of their high duty to champion and defend Western Civilization and Christendom. It would be a declaration of isolation, and thus irresponsibility. It would mean, simply by virtue of her election, a VAST accession of power, by the UN. It would be a disastrous milestone in this nation’s journey.

Heartily agreed, Peter, that president HRC seems a lesser evil than president Obama. The TNR article is fascinating, and not just for that tidbit about her trying to join the Marines. (Which cries out for careful analysis, seriously--what in the world was her 27-year-old, teaching law, living-w/Bill-but-not-yet-married, rationale? Feminism? Patriotism? Calculation about future political career? Cold feet about Bill? All of these?) But as to the whole article, what emerges from behind the wall of HRC PR-opinion-management-reticence is a woman who definitely has some (sensibly) hawkish bones in her body, as well as an experienced understanding of the importance of executive power in foreign policy.

Commenting comrades, do note what Peter and I are saying: a lesser evil. That is, a lesser EEEEEEVILL!!!

Carl is right about me and about evil. That’s why we have to face up to the fact the Giuliani, despite his social liberalism and his dramatic personal life, would be MUCH better. I’m not saying I’m for G. at this point, but I sure would like to avoid the wave of domestic political correctness that would consume us all if H. were elected.

Yes, Peter is right. Absolutely the time to circle the wagons. And those who feel like they are being scared into voting for a social liberal, well...be afraid, be very afraid. The threat is quite real in 2008.

I suppose I’d vote for any Republican over Hillary (or Obama)--but I really, really, really hope that McCain isn’t the candidate.

I really really really hope so too, John. I just don’t trust the man.

Peter, I’m not convinced that Giuliani is as socially liberal as some suggest. If he were, he wouldn’t have cracked down on crime. His tenure would have been marked by time serving. He wouldn’t have found the gumption to save his city.

Here’s a question. Can you imagine George W. Bush cracking down on "the Squeegee Men" in NYC? Can you imagine Bush, he of "new tone," cracking down hard on the NYC bureaucracy? The answer has to be no way, there’s no way that Bush would have cracked down hard on crime in New York City. There’s no way Bush would have found the moral fortitude and the Conservative convictions necessary to crack down on parole violators, on traffic scofflaws and a host of other low level criminals. Giuliani did a great deal to sweep panhandlers off the streets of the Big Apple. There’s no way Bush would have done that. And Giuliani did all of that and more, in the face of withering criticism. Placards and protests did not sway Giuliani from cleaning up the city he loved.

And THAT’S CONSERVATIVE. It demonstrated love of community, love of neighborhood, passion for justice, passion for the quality of life issues that many Republicans had conceded. Because they were unwilling to stand up to the withering criticism they knew they would endure if they were to do anything about street crime, violence and rape. Love of community IS conservative, passion for your country is likewise.

Braving the criticism, cracking the whip on the bureaucracy, defying the media, Giuliani stood strong under a hailstorm of criticism that would have broken to heel a lesser man, or rather a man without firm Conservative convictions , {it’s forgotten how low HIS numbers were during his second Mayoral term...}.

I think Giuliani has a far more Conservative soul than any member of the Bush family. And unfortunately, Giuliani may be far more conservative than any member of this administration.

Peter, not that we on NLT are some sort of power-brokers, but as far as big-tent conservative/social conservative pledges to support Rudy, let me quote the old Smith’s song: You just haven’t earned it yet, baby!

It’s way too soon to write off Romney, McCain, or Thompson. To quote another rather fey song: All we are saying...is give Mitt a chance...

I actually agree that Rudy still needs to prove himself. And the same with Romney. There’s an upside to the long campaign this year.

Peter, the time for proving is over. The quest for the nomination is about presenting your resume: What you’ve done, what you’ve accomplished, what you’ve said, what positions you’ve taken, what criticism you braved, what vision you’ve unfolded. I’m not looking for men who’ve lived to an advanced age, such as McCain or Romney, I’m not looking for them to "grow" on the campaign trail. If you haven’t rock solid convictions in your soul, you shouldn’t even try for the Presidency. Because the pressures at that level are ungodly, absolutely ungodly. And you have to be a man like Churchill, Roosevelt, Reagan, to withstand them, and to advance the cause of ordered liberty throughout the world.

Has a man demonstrated the rare skill of sifting "the wheat from the chaff," does he know the difference between the ruling and dicta? Can he cut to the essentials, Carter never could. Has he demonstrated that he’s MINDFUL of who and what he is, what country he represents, what cause she champions. When Giuliani refused to allow Arafat a pass, he demonstrated PRECISELY that self-awareness that all high officials need. When he told that Saudi what he could do with his ten million dollar check, again, he demonstrated the attitude that all high officials should have. Unfortunately, when George W. Bush gave Kofi a farewell dinner, when he was out there holding hands with the ruler of saudi arabia, he demonstrated precisely the opposite. He dishonoured his office.

But getting back to my main point, I’m not giving anyone the chance to prove himself on this campaign. They’ve either done it by now, or they haven’t. And if they haven’t, they need to be told to go improve their resume.

I mean think about it, is there really anything that Romney could possibly say that would lead you to believe him? His political ambitions dictate his political convictions. How convenient! That wasn’t the case for Lincoln, for Teddy, for Coolidge and for Reagan.

Step back, cast your glance back in our glorious past. And now ask yourself, which man DESERVES to be the standard bearer of the Party of Lincoln? Surely not Romney! McCain maybe, Giuliani without a doubt, likewise Gingrich. Thompson’s record I’m not that familiar with.

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