Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The "progressive" worry with Hillary

I get the feeling that the real reason "progressives" are souring on Hillary Clinton comes down to the limits of cognitive dissonance.

Hillary is awkward and unconvincing. Sure, she's a bullshitter, but unlike Bill, she's not very good at it. Beyond that, it's pretty clear that the Clinton family is ridiculously corrupt - even if you argue that there's no laws they've technically broken, the wealth they've sucked in and the terms on which they've sucked it in is transparently foul.

But as president, Hillary would be the Pope of their religion. In fact, more than the Pope, because at least Catholics can regard the Pope as wrong on political or moral questions - but neither can be questioned by the progressive. The prospect of having to spend eight years pretending that Hillary is the champion of the poor and downtrodden, and a pristine moral example besides, has to be daunting.


B. Prokop said...

No the real reason they are "souring" on Clinton is because they're beginning to suspect she might lose.

If Clinton does win, she'll be beating a remarkably predictable postwar trend of the Presidency switching parties every 8 years (the failure of Carter to win a second term being the sole exception to the rule).

Crude said...

No the real reason they are "souring" on Clinton is because they're beginning to suspect she might lose.

That's part of it, but I think the distaste for having to lie to themselves and others quite that much is real.

Craig said...

It's not an either-or. I would also suggest that the prospect of years of Clinton scandals has to be wearying -- and the campaign has already made it obvious that necessarily comes with her.

("sole exception" also has to exclude Bush I following Reagan.)

B. Prokop said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
B. Prokop said...

Reposted due to typo in original that changed intended meaning completely.


No, the Bush term does not constitute an exception. Here's the way I calculate:

Truman - 8 yrs Democrat
Eisenhower - 8 yrs Republican
Kennedy/Johnson - 8 years Democrat
Nixon/Ford - 8 years Republican
Carter - 4 yrs Democrat

Now here's the exception. Had Carter won a second term, then the pattern would have held at 8 full years Democrat. But Reagan's first term occupied the last 4 years of that period. /the second Reagan term and Bush's solo term together make up the 8 Republican years that follow the pattern. Followed by:

Clinton - 8 yrs Democrat
Bush - 8 yrs Republican
Obama - 8 yrs Democrat

In summary: 8,8,8,8,4,12,8,8.

So there's really only one exception to the rule - Carter's would-be second term. I'm not counting by the person, but by the party.

BONUS MATERIAL (as long as I'm re-posting): I believe that although patterns are not eternal (George W. Bush broke the dismal pattern of every president elected in a year that ended in zero since 1840 either dying in office or at the least being shot - Harrison (1840), Lincoln (1860), Garfield (1880), McKinley (1900), Harding (1920), Roosevelt (1940), Kennedy (1960), Reagan (1980)), the postwar pattern of the 8-year itch augurs for a Republican victory in 2016.

We'll see.

Craig said...

Fair enough. I have my doubts about the strength of the pattern, but no objection to additional reasons for hope we can avoid another Clinton presidency.

Anonymous said...

B. Prokop,

Given the pattern expressed above: Which Republican candidate are you rooting for? :)

B. Prokop said...

None. Had you asked me 2 months ago who I thought was likely to win the nomination, I would have bet real money on Rand Paul. Now I think there are three or four possibilities. It's easier for me to opine on who I think doesn't have a snowball's chance: Cruz, Carson, Jindal, Christie, Santorum. And maybe Perry ought to be on that list as well. Please don't quote me on this in 3 or 4 months, but right now I suspect it will come down to a showdown between Paul, Bush, and Huckabee, with everyone else playing the part of also-rans.

As for the Democrats, I personally think Biden would have a better shot at winning the general election than Clinton, but (barring some as-yet undisclosed scandal) I doubt that anyone can stop her from grabbing the nomination.

B. Prokop said...

It might even come down to Paul and Huckabee. Bush has two huge albatrosses around his neck - his last name, and Romney. By Romney, I mean a general sense in the Republican Party that they've been burned too many times now by going with the "safe" candidate, and this year Bush is playing that position.

The last time the Republicans nominated the establishment candidate and won was 1988 (unless you also count Bush's 2004 re-election, which for good reasons I don't). There's another trend for you.