It’s sad to say, but Hillary Clinton shares a moral failing with George W. Bush – a lapse that makes her fail not only herself, but her country, too.
Just as Bush has.
Fortunately for America, Barack Obama does not share this moral failing, which is why our next president will not be another Clinton.
So what is the moral failing that Hillary shares with Dubya?
Let’s look at how Bush failed first.
It’s now clear he failed the moral component of the challenge of 9/11 spectacularly. He brought America to its current stinky state with a massive miscalculation. Instead of calling on the better angels of our nature in the face of 9/11, he was corralled by Cheney to call upon our most cowardly fears and self-delusions, unleashing every bad Satan of our nature, of which we and he and Cheney share plenty (including a medieval desire to torture our enemies). And why was Bush so ready to do this? Blame a lifelong moral vacuum in his character, which his late-life conversion to a low-life brand of dimestore Christianity stripped even barer.
Now Hillary is not Bush, so she could never wreak that much damage. She lacks Bush/Cheney’s dim-witted evangelism that nukes everything around it in its neocon-blind and Taliban-fundamentalist fervor. She is but a flimsy fart to Bush’s excrement-sized immorality; a doubting Thomas to his scheming Judas; an ambition-compromised Albert Speer to his outright Hitler-lite blue-meanie.
She is failing the greatest moral challenge of her life –- the 2008 presidential election – for another reason.
The nature of her failure is one of omission rather than commission. Her moral lacuna? She has failed to see what America needs after being stuck inside a hellhole dug by Bush/Cheney.
We need way more than another Dukakis promise of minimal competency — the loser’s campaign that her campaign most resembles with her mantra of having the “experience to be ready on Day One.”
Not that we don’t need some basic competence after a mismanaged economy, a mismanaged war, and a mismanaged Katrina, courtesy of our supposedly super-competent MBA CEO administration.
But that ain’t enough, folks. Not nearly enough, Hillary. We need us some major cancer surgery, girl. Some bad-ass devils cast-out-of-our-nature exorcism.
Let’s face it, America is in trauma from eight years of Bush/Cheney abuse. We need a massive moral enema throughout the entire length of the national colon. A volcanic irrigation all the way from the bad taste in our mouths down to the steel-hard Godzilla-sized stool lodged in our collective butt.
We need deliverance. We need healing. We need the binding up of wounds. We need actual saving — from ourselves. We need redemption, because we have sinned against ourselves and the world.
This is what undergirds Obama’s campaign, and this is why America will make him our next president.
Why has Hillary Clinton not grasped this simple fact of America’s current psychosis — enough to make it the thundercall of her campaign?
To understand why the foremost female leader of her generation, whose college valedictorian speech was reported in Life Magazine, has failed her brilliant early promise, we have to time-machine back to when her husband, the new governor of Arkansas in his early 30s, lost his first election defending his governorship.
Bill and Hillary lost that election because they did not suck up to the Tyson agribusiness corporation in Arkansas during Bill’s first term as governor.
So when he ran again for governor, the Clintons made sure to vanish right up Tyson’s sphincter, and won back the office they’d lost. That was the moment when, along with Bill, Hillary decided to confine herself to acting like a human being only in her private life. In her public life, she morphed into that pathetic avatar of our great democratic experiment: the Eternal Politician.
A lifetime of triangulation followed from her Clintonian/Faustian bargain. Ambition usurped principle. Political aspiration replaced moral obligation. (Few people understand that the Clintons were such triangulators, they became the true heirs of Ronald Reagan. Reagan talked smaller government, but expanded it. Bill Clinton walked Reagan’s talk, and completed the Reagan Revolution for him.)
So now, when Hillary finally gets her big chance to follow in her spouse’s presidential footsteps, she’s blind to the moral challenge of what the country needs after the trauma of Bush/Cheney.
This has left the field open to Barack Obama, a decent-enough, not-so-experienced fellow who was fortunate to cut his political teeth not on a Faustian bargain, but on eight years of community organizing among poor and underprivileged blacks in Chicago.
Of course, Obama also happens to be brilliant. He talks better than Hillary. He writes better than Hillary. He’s the hippest, coolest politician since JFK. And he’s better at Hillary’s own nuts-and-bolts game than she is. In less than a year from announcing his candidacy, he engineered a campaign vehicle from scratch that rolled right over the formidable Clinton machine that got Bill elected to a two-term presidency. With less “experience to be ready on Day One” than Hillary, Barack has revealed superior executive skills. He has stopped the inevitable candidate cold in her tracks. He has made her husband, the most talented politician of our time, look like a bumbling amateur. Hey, if he can run a better nuts-and-bolts campaign on shorter notice than Hillary, it stands to reason he’ll be a better nuts-and-bolts president than her.
But more importantly, he grasped something her Clintonian/Faustian-bargain basement experience could not buy her – that this is a transformative moment in American politics.
For chrissakes, Hillary, we’ve been through the worst presidency in American history, and you think all the country needs is “experience”?
Girl, get yourself a clue. What the country needs is change, big-time.
Didn’t you realize it right after you lost Iowa? Didn’t you realize it after you won New Hampshire, when your human being popped out of your Eternal Politician armor in that moment of tearing up, when you said you see what’s happened to America, and we need to stop it – didn’t you realize then, lady, that we’re more likely to respond to a leader who brings the experience of a human being to politics rather than the experience of a politician?
Poor Hillary. She was so blinded by her experience, she didn’t see that she had a bigger claim on being a change agent than Barack.
Why? She’s a woman, for chrissakes. And what is Barack? He’s a man, for chrissakes. One of the penis people. Like every president before him.
Hillary embodies a bigger change than Barack, dammit.
But she didn’t see it.
It was up to her to see it, too. She couldn’t expect her campaign chief, that moron Mark Penn, to see it. After all, he’s a penis person, too.
With so many vagina people on her staff, did none of them see it?
Hillary should’ve played the gender card big-time all-the-time. It’s the biggest card she has. Yet she ignored it. Despite the obvious fact that more voters in America have vaginas than penises.
Instead of her pallid slogan of “Solutions for America,” she should’ve had a slogan that stuck her gender out front right under every voter’s nose.
For example: “It’s our turn.”
Instead of promising America her experience, her campaign theme should’ve said this, plain and simple: only a woman can give America the big change it needs.
Instead of running through a laundry list of issues in her speeches, she should’ve campaigned with a microphone in one hand and a shovel in the other — and said that because she’s a woman, she’s best equipped to clean up the mess that a bunch of men have made of America.
Cleaning up is a duty that has fallen to women for millennia: they are always having to clean up after men. It’s one thing they know how to do far better than men. Every woman alive would’ve felt the emotional truth of that call in her very bones.
But Hillary was too blinded by her political experience to grasp the obvious transformative nature of her candidacy — at a moment when her country needs transformation much more than political “experience.”
She didn’t see that it was her experience as a woman that the country needed, not her experience as a politician.
In stark contrast to her, Barack Obama did grasp the transformative nature of his own candidacy. Born of a white woman and a black man, he could bring the country together, and that is what he is running on.
That’s his emotional truth. He goes for our hearts, and she goes for our heads. She’s running the male campaign of reason, and he’s running the emotional female campaign. Unfortunately for her, emotion is always more persuasive than reason. All advertisers know this. It’s because Barack targets our hearts instead of our heads that the country is responding to him with such massive enthusiasm.
Take just one response. Which candidate inspires voters to put music videos on YouTube?
Not Hillary. Barack is the one who moves our youth to song. So far there are three music videos that sing Barack’s praises. The Obama Girl video from last year; the Yes We Can celeb video by Will.i.am; and now the latest video, the Obama Karma Song.
The lyrics of this new YouTube video are worth quoting:
He is the one to clean up our karma
Come and save us from this goddam Bush-Cheney
Got the bad bad economy blues
My family’s foreclosed, how are youse?
Mama’s lapdancing for lousy dollar tips
Sissie’s turning tricks to make our rent
Papa got outsourced
He cleans toilets on the weekend
And I’m checking out the dog
Because I can’t afford a girlfriend”
There’s more funny stuff, but you get the idea: the song says Barack Obama is here, like some kind of savior, to deliver us from the bad Bush-Cheney years.
The song doesn’t say we need experience to get us out of the hole Bush-Cheney has dug for America. No, it says here’s a man who will do way more than that – he will actually clean up our bad karma.
That’s what America needs. One can go further: that’s what the world needs. Not someone with “experience to be ready on Day One,” but someone ready to save us — from global warming, from war, from poverty.
Barack gets it. Hillary doesn’t. Not to see this, is a moral failing, because we and the world face something bigger than a political problem: we face an existential moral crisis. That’s why Barack is beating the pantsuits off Hillary. She can’t help being the Eternal Politician. He, on the other hand, sounds like an authentic human being, and our voters see the difference loud and clear.
President Obama. Get ready, America. We need saving. Barack will do it. Why? Because he, not Hillary, knows this is the job that most needs doing.