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Hillary Clinton and the Terrible, Horrible, Not so Good Couple of Days

Hillary Clinton did not enjoy the best of weeks. Her performance at the NBC Candidates Forum did not inspire confidence. Yes, NBC's Matt Lauer has been roundly and rightly criticized for badgering Clinton on the emails while tossing up softball questions for Trump and blithely ignoring outright lies. The Trump campaign went conventional with a tried and true conservative tactic that goes back come fifty years, and it worked again. Cry "liberal bias" loud and often enough and the so-called liberal media will demonstrate its impartiality by giving you a pass on blatant horse manure while hanging your liberal opponent out to dry.

I remain baffled and disappointed by HRC's inability to come up with some sort of pat response for the inevitable email questions. Memorize, repeat, repeat again if need be. I advise her to consider adopting the Rasheed Wallace technique. Whatever the question, if it has anything to do with email, she should answer, "Both teams played hard." Four words. Stay with them. The blowback can hardly be more negative than what she has seen to date.

I refer you to Juan Cole for analysis of the event. Clinton hewed to the neocon line on Daesh and the Middle East, and Cole demolished it, summing up that "[t]hese talking points on Iran may as well have been written for Clinton jointly by Bibi Netanyahu and Saudi Arabia’s King Salman."

The problem for those of us who believe it does matter who wins in November is that Trump is even worse on these issues, and it is not close. Cole documents instance after instance where Trump is woefully ignorant, and apparently does not care that he is ignorant, or lying, and does not care about that either, or both. Cole's conclusion, which I share:

It was a low, wretched performance, by the network and both candidates, full of fluff and posturing and Alice in Wonderland statements of policy along with an almost complete derogation of authority by the anchors. It marked a low point in our national discourse about world politics.

This morning Clinton was visibly wobbly as she made a premature departure from the 9/11 memorial ceremony. Her doctor says she was diagnosed with pneumonia on Friday, prescribed antibiotics, and became overheated and dehydrated at the morning event. The doctor examined her later and pronounced her recovering nicely after rehydrating. Seems it might have been prudent for her to skip the ceremony, but then she would have been called on to explain that.

I offer this bit of anecdotal evidence. In February of last year I experienced two episodes of "transient loss of consciousness" the evening after I fractured my wrist. The doctors put the cause at dehydration or pain or a combination of the two. I ran a marathon the following October. My point is that there is nothing the morning's episode by itself to indicate that Hillary Clinton a health problem. The explanation is plausible. No doubt those who view Clinton as a dragon lady will see this as further proof of her unfitness for the presidency. A clean bill of health would change nothing. If not her health, it would be something else.

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