All things act according to their nature. You must keep this old truism in mind when reading anything about the Clintons:
While media coverage has focused on a half-dozen of Hillary Rodham Clinton’s personal emails containing sensitive intelligence, the total number of her private emails identified by an ongoing State Department review as having contained classified data has ballooned to 60, officials told The Washington Times.
That figure is current through the end of July and is likely to grow as officials wade through a total of 30,000 work-related emails that passed through her personal email server, officials said. The process is expected to take months.
And it won't matter. Irrefutable proof could be obtained that Hillary Clinton had accidentally cc’ed the Chinese Ambassador with America's latest encryption algorithms and nothing would happen. Attachments could be found containing images of the former First Lady hunting lions in the African bush and nothing would happen. An accidental "reply all" might have given Vladimir Putin detailed insights into US strategy in the Crimea - hint: Surrender - and still nothing would happen. Bill Clinton was the teflon president and the Wife of Bill is the teflon candidate.
This overwhelming nothingness, this deafening silence, is the fault of the media only up to a point. The conceit of armchair political strategists notwithstanding the electorate is not so witless as to believe everything they see on television. The MSM can twist, fudge and adjust but it has not yet acquired the power of mind control.
The Clintons have littered the political landscape with nearly a quarter century's worth of scandals, corruptions and double dealings. Only the very young or the very inattentive can plead ignorance about the nature of Clintonism. The tires have been kicked very firmly, the Pinto has toppled over and the dealer is still going to make a sale. Who's fault is it really? A sucker and his freedoms are soon parted.
At the heart of this is a new truism: Actions don't matter in modern American politics. Gross incompetence did nothing to impair the re-election of Barack Obama. A crippling national debt and deficit seem like an afterthought in the media cycle. The world of objectively demonstrable action is taken to be nothing more than shadows on the wall. The deeds no longer matter. What does matter are certain words as they exist in the mind of the voter.
Now imagine if Hillary Clinton was to accidentally drop the n-word. She would have her defenders - her payroll is mighty large and mighty long - but if anything could destroy the good ship Clinton once and for all that might be it. When Donald Trump met Megyn Kelly the phrase "blood coming out of her wherever" was imbued with an electrified meaning. Had the world's most famous billionaire actually inflicted physical harm on Fox News' most famous broadcaster, I doubt the outcry would have been much worse.
The modern politician, unlike his predecessor from even a generation ago, doesn't really care what he is caught doing. Taking drugs? Marion Barry survived and thrived after that video surfaced. Manslaughter? Chappaquiddick. Treason? Take your pick of Democratic senators. Extra martial affairs? The list is too long to count. Scandals that once destroyed careers and toppled governments today are not just survivable but easily manageable.
What the modern politician is terrified of doing is uttering an incorrect thought. Words that were once innocuous are today career-killers. Vague expressions are easily interpreted as "dog-whistles" to the lunatic fringe. Those who seek high office are in the tightest of verbal straight jackets. This is reflected in the strange paradox of tongue tied politicians with loose personal lives. They know perfectly well where the greatest risk lies.
A greater degree of cynicism among the electorate doesn't fully explain this paradox. It tells us why voters care less about actions but not why we care more about words. There has been a shift in judgement, not simply in standards but in the method of judgement as well, in American culture. Actions were once the paramount standard. Did you tell a lie? Did you mow the lawn? Did you save the drowning child? This objective standard has been replaced by an emotional standard.
Now your actions pale in significance to your emotional intentions. I really wanted to tell the truth. I truly felt that mowing the lawn was a good idea. I grieve for the loss of the child. If we feel the right feelings then we are good people. Using an evil word betrays evil feelings. This is why the gaffe is so potent an element in political discourse; it's an alleged glimpse into the soul of the speaker. Someone might do the right thing out of social obligation. No one feels the right thing of social obligation.
Hillary Clinton has played the game long enough to keep her soul very well hidden.
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