Friday, November 02, 2007

Advice for Congress, Hillary

Let it not be said that the Rude Pundit, despite -- or perhaps because of -- his tendency toward unrestrained profanity and vulgarity, can't offer some kick-ass advice to Congress in general and Congressional Democrats in particular.
Note to Democrats: when some little boy double dog dares you to step across this line, sometimes you gotta just take a giant goddamn leap right into his puny face.
Not that you'll take that advice of course. Like many abused spouses, even when you have power over your abusers you still capitulate to them. I guess you've been beaten so many times you're afraid of your own shadows, and can no longer fathom the notion of using the power you've been given over your tormentors. Time is running out, both for America and for the relevancy of the Democratic Party. Wake up, grow some backbone, and end this war and the regime that started it.

And now for some advice to Hillary Clinton, who never passes up an opportunity to pass up the opportunity to give a straight yes or no answer to a straight yes or no question. When Tim Russert asks you if you think giving drivers' licenses to illegal immigrants is a good idea, you answer yes or no depending on your honest assessment of the idea. You do not triangulate, appearing to take one position and then backtracking when it looks as if you made a mistake and want to avoid taking the heat. Believe it or not, people do respect honestly held opinions even if they're erroneous. Sure, if they disagree you might lose their votes in the primaries. But you'll guarantee yourself losing their votes if you appear as if you can't make up your mind under pressure.

In my opinion it is a grave mistake for New York state to give drivers' licenses to illegal immigrants. I simply see no way such a cockamamie scheme would do anything other than send the wrongest of wrong messages while doing absolutely nothing to solve the problem it purports to address -- namely, tracking illegal immigrants. Hillary Clinton obviously disagreed, thinking it makes sense. But, once given the opportunity, she should have explained her position clearly if some had trouble understanding it. And given the opportunity to answer whether or not she actively supports the New York plan, she should have said yes or no depending on her support or lack thereof.

But she didn't. Instead, caught off guard, she triangulated just like her husband and came off looking like her much-maligned (some of which is admittedly deserved) husband, Bill. In an era where straight answers are a rare virtue, Hillary had a chance to show where she stood on a particular issue. She blew it. And then, having blown it, her handlers brought out the little girl card, acting as though Hillary is some defenseless little girl who was unfairly "piled on" by those nasty, mean, cruel bigger boys. What is she, five? No, Hillary is pushing sixty. Yet she acts as if she is a helpless damsel when called out for saying something stupid. I can't see her bumbling and whining afterward growing support from true feminists.

So here's another bit of advice for you, Hillary (may I call you Hillary?): act like an adult. You're pushing sixty, you're running for president of the United States, and after so many years of attacks from the frothing-at-the-mouth far right you ought by now to have developed a thicker skin. Take ownership of your opinions, answer direct questions with direct answers, and respond to criticism with wisdom and grace. You'll never get any respect until or unless you grow up. We're already stuck with overgrown children ruling this country; we aren't seeking another overgrown child to replace them.

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