A Neocon/Neolib Apologizes to Hillary Clinton

    19th International AIDS Conference Convenes In WashingtonDear Hillary Clinton:

    I am writing to apologize for all the nasty things I've said and written about you over the past 20 years. I really really misjudged you. It's taken me like forever to get over that universal healthcare stunt you tried to pull in the early 90s. But since we put a stop to that nonsense with Harry and Louise, I've got to admit you've been a real trooper.

    Because I'm a generous sort, I'm going to give you partial credit for the big dog's accomplishments. I think it's fair since Bill told us back in '92 that we were getting two for the price of one.  Plus, you haven't proposed rolling back his signature legislative accomplishments.  So here's my mea culpa.

    I thought you'd be in favor of profit-killing regulations.  I was never so happy to be wrong.  NAFTA was such a bonus that I never expected.  Bill campaigned against it.  That was really smart.  He might not have won if he had said he would sign it and then we'd have been stuck with that bastard RiNO tax raiser.

    You and "dog" deserve beaucoup credit for the three strikes and you're out legislation too.  It's made me beaucoup bucks since I got into Corrections Corporation of America early.  Thanks!

    I gotta say continuing media deregulation, started by Reagan and Bush, was great too.  Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and lots of other right-wingers on thousands of radio stations made it that much easier for conservatives to take over Congress, statehouses around the country, cut my tax bill, gut environmental regulations, and pass "right-to-work" laws.

    You know what else worked wonders - triangulation.  It's true that genius Dick Morris probably deserves the lion's share of the praise but it took a Clinton to implement the strategy of pitting different members of the Democratic coalition against each other.  I'm thinking Sister Souljah coupled with "welfare reform".  Making Americans poorer and more desperate to hold onto a job any job, worked wonders on my employees.  Boy did they stop whining about raises fast.  Another benefit, that you may not have intended, is it really put a lot of people off the Democratic party.  Divide and conquer I always say.

    Bill capped off an amazing eight year run when he signed the repeal of Glass-Steagall.  My daughter's hedge fund really took off when the big banks started buying up those derivatives.  It's true I was a little concerned in 2008 when the crash came but it all worked out in the end didn't it?  Don't think I'm not grateful for that bail-out which you agreed to by the way.

    But hey I'm getting ahead of myself Hillary, can I call you that?  I have so many other things to thank you for.  The permanent most favored nation status that you supported for China was the impetus for me to move permanently all manufacturing operations overseas and it's netted me billions.

    Hillary I could go on and on.  There's the war on Iraq and Libya and Syria.  Keeping Americans focused on overseas adventures and waving old glory at every opportunity helps stop dead in its tracks any progressive peacenik movement like the one that Democrat Socialist is trying to launch.  Plus, it puts even more money in the pockets of military contractors and you know I own lots of shares since Dick recommended I put some spare funds into Halliburton back when you were first lady.

    That push to increase the number of H1B visas has been a godsend.  Some of these smart guy techies thought I couldn't run my business without them.  The hell I can't and I owe it all to your work to increase the number of visas available to "skilled" foreign workers.  Importing a a bunch of Sri Lankans and Indians has made me another pisspot full of money.

    Hillary - I underestimated you in the past.  I won't do it again.  It makes sense that to get over on the Demorats you need to tell 'em you oppose the TPP and the Keystone pipeline.  So, the feints left you're making now won't spook me one bit.

    I love how you're attacking BS's bleeding-heart single-payer plan as too expensive.  You're poisoning the public against this terrible idea for the owners of for-profit healthcare companies.

    Thanks again so much Hillary and to show my appreciation more tangibly, I'll have my girl send your girl a few dates and times for you to deliver a speech at our corporate headquarters.  Of course, all travel expenses will be paid along with your customary fee.  Look for a healthy donation to the Clinton foundation in the next few weeks as well.  Finally, that David Brock you've got on your payroll is one sharp operator.  You should know we'll be working closely together through November.


    H/t Dr. Cleveland whose remark spurred me to write this post.


    Hal, in fact it does sound like bleeding heart BS.

    But in your "feint left" comment you denigrate me and in so doing you dilute the effect Bernie has had on me and thus you denigrate Bernie.

    I think Bernie has had an effect and you apparently do not.

    But in general, Hal, don't you think adults can adapt and change positions?

    In any case are you going to be o.k.?  I can't come upstairs right now cause I'm having drinks with George Soros.

    Oxy - You believe Hillary really has changed/adapted/moved to the left - as of course many people we all change/evolve in various ways over the course of our lives.  I do not.  You take my use of the word "feint" as an insult.  Given your view that Hillary truly regrets past pro-military/pro-corporate/anti-worker/anti-poor/anti-middle class votes and actions, my insistence that she is feinting or faking can only mean I think you're a dupe.  I can see why this would upset you. 

    Of course, your insistence that you're not a dupe implies that I'm paranoid/delusional.  I could therefore claim with as much justice that you denigrate me by insisting that Hillary is not feinting.  But I don't feel insulted. 

    I feel curious about why you are confident she really means what she says.  I have adduced quite a bit of evidence that I argue demonstrates she does not.  What evidence do you believe supports your contention that she is in fact truly on the side of the people and the actions of which I complain are either 1) anomalous, 2) reflect her previous but not current views, or 3) aren't serious?


    "In any case are you going to be o.k.? I can't come upstairs right now cause I'm having drinks with George Soros."  - I can't give the Dick Day award, but I'll give it the Peracles Please Panoply award. The casual, laid-back image I have of you & George in the smoking parlor, casually sipping your liberally poured drinks out of proper sifters...  And I was going to leave out the first sentence, but the concern, the near empathy, the bathos shines through. If only we had time to handle all our cohorts' problems, but there important people to see, things to do, drinks to be drunk. Anyway, I'll let you get back to your well-deserved delights. Touché.

    So, neocons are a very specific type and generation of conservatives, certainly no longer ascendant.  To the extent that they are still around, though, they haven't taken up your mantle at all. They don't approve, for example, of the Obama/Clinton actions in Libya or Syria and even if they did, it would not be because they think that foreign adventures distract workers from pocketbook issues or some nonsense.

    I could go on, but the real point here is that I've known plenty of neocons and none of them are exactly shy.  If they secretly thought that Hillary Clinton was doing their bidding, it would not remain secret for long.  The opposite of what you say is, in fact, true.  They've never liked the Clintons either socially or politically.  That Bill and Hillary have grown in worldwide stature that they have eclipsed Davos Man probably irks them even more, though here's another secret -- there were never many neocons at Davos and they don't dominate the executive ranks of large corporations, either.

    But, I'm back in the weeds again.

    If neocons really loved or even appreciated Hillary Clinton, they would not need you, Hal, you write so on their behalf.


    Michael - in response to your legitimate criticism of my use of the word neocon in the title of this post, I have renamed it.  Neocons are defined by their support of aggressive use of the military to achieve specific objectives up to and including regime change.  Certainly, the term accurately describes Hillary Clinton.  But it is insufficient for this piece since her admirer is as taken by her corporatism as her militarism.  Hence, the new title is "A Neocon/Neolib apologizes to Hillary Clinton".  Thanks for helping me improve my work!

    Neocons are defined by their support of aggressive use of the military to achieve specific objectives up to and including regime change.  Certainly, the term accurately describes Hillary Clinton.

    That's really not how you define neocon, either.

    Also, it's not a good description of Hillary Clinton's foreign policy stance at all.  If you're interested in what she actually believes, it's that developed democracies have a responsibility to protect people against their own governments or against forces bent on committing atrocities and to a lesser extent to stop rogue governments from gaining WMD access.  It's not the same as neocon foreign policy at all.  Look, I disagree with "responsibility to protect" foreign policy ideas as well, but I've done a heck of a lot of reading on the topic so that at least I know what I'm dealing with.  Trying to make Hillary Clinton the equal of Donald Rumsfeld is just cheap.

     use of the military to achieve specific objectives up to and including regime change. 


    Let us turn a nostalgic glance to history, where George W. Bush and his "modest" foreign policy is to be found ....in the dustbin....("for me to poop on!"--Hey, Triumph, what are you doing here?)

    Whatever the correct definition of a neocon is, Robert Kagan is considered to be one of their leading lights. He says that Hillary is neocon enough for the neocons. is wife has worked herself from a position under Chaney to an appointment by Hillary. But of course you knew that already and of course I do not think that says everything about Hillary's foreign policy, but it says something. 

    That's me above. 

    I didn't know that!

    But, she's not a neocon.

    Hal:  "Neocons are defined by their support of aggressive use of the military to achieve specific objectives up to and including regime change."

    Michael: "That's really not how you define neocon[.]"

    Merriam-Webster - neoconservative:

    "2 :  a conservative who advocates the assertive promotion of democracy and United States national interest in international affairs including through military means"

    Michael is correct, HRC is a Liberal Interventionist who uses the R2P ideology to promote aggression, recall Libya. This is a distinction without a difference because the end result is the same, the death of Muslims to promote US/Western interests with a sheen of morality hiding the Beast underneath. Africa may be the next theater of this macabre folly with Burundi looking like the next target.

    Sanders may be a reluctant Interventionist but he did vote for the Libya incursion and he would never support R2P for the Palestinians.


    Thanks Peter (not verified).  You interpreted this blog is exactly as I hoped it would be. 

    This comment was mistakenly posted here.  I have reposted it in its proper place.

    Curiouser and curioser... the blog did it to me too.

    Anyway subtle difference between making up weapons of mass destruction vs. trying to figure out how to support the Arab spring & do the right thing with a popular revolt.

    Hillary's experience is also shaped by Rwanda and Bosnia meltdowns under Bill's watch. Was Kosovo ideal? Hardly. So what's the Goldilocks "just right" for the liberal set - do nothing? do something? do everything?

    Similar with ISIS but the situation's a bit different because we've been there for 12 years on the Iraq side, and we know they'd love to have us put boots on the ground. Yes, it's pottery barn - Democrats largely broke it, now how do we fix it? Or just leave and let ISIS & Assad and Putin and Saudi Arabia and Iran work things out?

    Go back and read the first definition.

    Both are acceptable uses.  But as you implied the first definition is somewhat anachronistic. The way I used the term is preferred today.


    Hal, you've written at least 20 (more, but I discounted those that included Sanders in a somewhat legitimate comparison) posts targeting Hillary Clinton in the last 11 months. I started the tally with "Hilaremail", which was published on 3/7/2015. There may have been previous ones, but that's when I became aware of you.

    I didn't even consider totaling the number of combined comments for obvious reasons, yet the final sum would have been impressive by any measure. Congrats! Lots of interest; lots of responses back and forth, pro and con, angry and calm. Many of us remember them well.

    My point to all of the above is simple: why do you keep asking - demanding - that Clinton supporters explain their support? Just as you've done in this comment thread, you set the stage and expect those questioned to follow your directions for the sole purpose of dissecting them. We've told you so many times that we should be out of breath. It seems to me that you don't have a genuine interest in anything we have to say ... if you did, after a rather exhausting eleven months of discussion, you wouldn't keep asking the same questions. It's tiresome and I'm through.

    Ah, but it's like those performers that everyone goes back to, knowing exactly what to expect. Steve Martin will do animal balloons, Ed McMahon will answer "How X was it?", Rodney Dangerfield will start out all nervous and sweaty about his wife, and we'll play along pleased with the familiar routine. That's vaudeville.

    And he's already got twice as many reads as my "What Matters Most" bit, and half of "Hillary Finishes 3rd from Last" and "Millennial Volgon" - there's something to say for pissing in the punchbowl - it gets a reaction every time.

    My final reaction? ***raspberries***

    Your high dudgeon response to Hal's hilarious and revealing piece of political satire is a bit whiny, this is politics and as long as he maintains this honest level of polemic HRC is fair game and her supporters are only showing their bankrupt defense of a known corrupt politician.

    Doc's phony  Road To Damascus conversion deserved a pointed response and Hal nailed this one.

    Thanks Peter (not verified).  You interpreted this blog is exactly as I hoped it would be.

    Sadly, this time your need to attract attention through your use of nonsensical wordplay (though not your best) didn't particularly work. Odd, really.

    Then again, here I am. You know what's weird, Peter? I expected more from you, and, strange as it is, I need to say that. Read my comment to Hal one more time ... I didn't critique the blog at all - what's in it to inspire more than laughing at him as you suggest?

    I dunno, barefooted.  It was nice of you to be polite to Peter after this:

    HRC is fair game and her supporters are only showing their bankrupt defense of a known corrupt politician.  Doc's phony  Road To Damascus conversion deserved a pointed response and Hal nailed this one.

    I was thinking more in the line of raspberries.  .

    Oops! I thought he wrote, "HRC is fair and her supporters are only showing their defense is deserved." My bad.

    I thought you had dismissed us nonbelievers with your raspberries and I'm sorry my comments are not as entertaining as you once wrote. Your comment appeared to me to be  whining about all of Hal's posts on this subject. I think most of your and other's reasons for supporting HRC and denying her public record have been addressed and shown to be lacking. You may think it is unfair that he keeps asking for answers to tough questions about your support  but that only seems to be because you and others are unable to face the reality of what you are supporting.


    I'm sad too, BF because we live in very dangerous times and too many people seem to be basing their choices on fear, Identity Politics and blind  Party  allegiance. HRC is the most dangerous candidate  because of her proven, public performance and her clearly stated aggressive militaristic goals and disregard for human  life. I don't base my views on her gender but on her character, or lack of character, as a person.

    I think most of your and other's reasons for supporting HRC and denying her public record have been addressed and shown to be lacking.

    They may have been addressed but "shown to be lacking" is in the eye of the beholder.  You want a good discussion?  Leave your arrogance outside.

    I think I'll close with the wisdom that one Wise Guy left us, You're entitled to your own opinions but you are not entitled to your own facts.

    And again. . .

    That old bugaboo, arrogance.

    The use of the term neoconservative in this post treats the development of that political formation in a careless fashion. Since Robert Kagan has been listed as a cheerleader for the group, lets consider one of his articles that highlights how not unusual "interventionist" policies are in the dialectic of American Foreign Policy. It is worthwhile to read the whole thing but the nub of it in regards to the present discussion is the following:

    Today, a true debate about foreign policy doctrine would examine not some fictitious neoconservatism but what remains the dominant worldview that Halberstam and his generation came to criticize. That worldview has its critics in the intellectual world, today as in the past—from Chomsky to Buchanan to John Mearsheimer—but in the political world those who even remotely stand in criticism of this dominant approach—Ron Paul, Ralph Nader, or Dennis Kucinich, for instance—can barely fight their way onto the ballot. In 2008, as in almost every election of the past century, American voters will choose between two variations of the same worldview.

    Kagan has provided a helpful point of distinction here. It is obvious that Clinton supports the dominant worldview. What I have read of Sanders' views are critical of many of its prerogatives but do not add up to a rejection of it. I am sure somebody will correct me if I am wrong.

    Beyond (or perhaps prior) to that point of contention, the casual imprecise use of the term overlooks a critical moment of conflict in our political history. Andrew Hartman has written a fine article (and book) delineating the lines drawn between the Neoconservatives and and the New Left. Against that background of ideological difference, I presume you will have no trouble finding where Clinton and Sanders fall on the spectrum.

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