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I'm gonna get on my knees and pray, we don't get fooled again.
November 12, 2007 6:45 AM   Subscribe

Clinton in planted questions row. The US presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, has criticised her aides after she was accused of taking pre-arranged questions at a rally in Iowa. A case of meet the new boss, same as the old boss?
posted by Tommy Gnosis (74 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
Another manufactured issue.

May I politely suggest that this quote be stamped on the forehead of every editor and reporter in every single newsroom in America? Or perhaps read aloud at the start of every daily news meeting?

This is from a waitress being interviewed over whether Hillary Clinton's team left her a tip:

"You people are really nuts," she told a reporter during a phone interview. "There's kids dying in the war, the price of oil right now -- there's better things in this world to be thinking about than who served Hillary Clinton at Maid-Rite and who got a tip and who didn't get a tip."
posted by etaoin at 6:51 AM on November 12, 2007 [28 favorites]


doubtless there will now come forth a flood of anti-Hilary snarky comments, peppered with the usual Both Parties Suck and on and on. Suffice it to say: not unusual stuff. After all the Rove-directed Bush declaring victory in Iraq aboard a ship is just a part of the world we live in. In my very very small town, candidates for First Selectman have their party faithful write in letters to local papers and then have the letters signed by folks who live in the area b ut are not associated with the party...all part of the game. What is bothersome is not that it was done but that they got caught up doing it...that is not how the game is to be played!
posted by Postroad at 6:52 AM on November 12, 2007


There's something wrong with this... while this may be crappy, one cannot assume that one characteristic in common implies all characteristics in common.
posted by jeblis at 6:53 AM on November 12, 2007


doubtless that will all be pre-empted by a "oh well, son, that's life" summation.
posted by phaedon at 6:55 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


FTA: She has already been accused of avoiding tough questions, analysts say.

And what candidate doesn't?
posted by jeblis at 6:57 AM on November 12, 2007


Asking someone to ask a question on a certain topic != requiring loyalty oaths of anyone to enter the building where the candidate is going to speak.

Clinton's aides might deserve some mild criticism for this. But don't pretend that this is Bushesque.
posted by ibmcginty at 6:57 AM on November 12, 2007


As much as I dislike Hillary as a candidate for her extreme reluctance to take a clear position on any difficult issue, this is a manufactured scandal, another $400 haircut moment.
posted by psmealey at 6:57 AM on November 12, 2007 [4 favorites]


...has criticized her aides...
posted by rockhopper at 6:57 AM on November 12, 2007


Truly unimportant.
posted by interrobang at 6:59 AM on November 12, 2007


I dislike her, but this isn't news.
posted by hjo3 at 6:59 AM on November 12, 2007


But don't pretend that this is Bushesque.

She's just getting warmed up.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:03 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


Is title for this post actually a Bush quote? Sounds suspiciously like:

"There's an old saying in Tennessee — I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again."

— Nashville, Tenn., Sept. 17, 2002


Can we wait until this wise man is out of office before we start "quoting" him like some kind of Reaganesque Chairman Mao-type Founding Father?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 7:11 AM on November 12, 2007


Is title for this post actually a Bush quote?

Pheh... Kids today
posted by Tommy Gnosis at 7:15 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


stupidsexyFlanders, please tell me you're joking.

BP, Bush wasn't the same thing as Gore in 2000, and Clinton is not the same thing as Bush today.
posted by ibmcginty at 7:15 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


For the record, I am 75% convinced this is a manufactured scandal too, but there's that lingering 25% that is suspicious about Clinton's obsession with message control, which does hearken the current administration's tactics.

Besides, basic self-control in executing political campaigns is so degraded nowadays, I wouldn't put this kind of thing past anyone.
posted by Tommy Gnosis at 7:18 AM on November 12, 2007 [4 favorites]


The problem with the American voting system is that we are not allowed to vote for no-one. This country could really benefit from a four year term of honest, unmitigated chaos. Instead, we live in a bait-and-switch world where our politicians are selling us rhinestones as if they were diamonds. "Oooohhh.. look at my beautiful, well-thought out answer to global warming... I care about young peoples' issues because I'm hip.... oops! Fucking aides. I TOLD YOU TO FUCKING HOLD THE RABBIT BY ITS EARS!"
posted by phaedon at 7:20 AM on November 12, 2007 [4 favorites]


Clinton is not the same thing as Bush today.

That's correct, with the exception of wanting to keep the illegal war going. But by manipulating her media image, she is just warming up to be the same entity as Bush.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 7:21 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


This country could really benefit from a four year term of honest, unmitigated chaos.

That's pretty much what we've had for the past six years. The wheels are only coming off now because the systems was reasonably well constructed to be able to weather poor leadership for a few years... but I think we hit the limit of what it could withstand about four years ago.
posted by psmealey at 7:27 AM on November 12, 2007


I can hardly wait until 2016 when Tipper distances herself.
posted by Reggie Digest at 7:35 AM on November 12, 2007


As much as I dislike Hillary as a candidate for her extreme reluctance to take a clear position on any difficult issue, this is a manufactured scandal, another $400 haircut moment.

Truth.
posted by supercres at 7:45 AM on November 12, 2007


I'm no big Hillary fan, but this is a tempest in Karl Rove's polonium-laced teapot.
posted by digaman at 7:50 AM on November 12, 2007


stupidsexyFlanders, please tell me you're joking.

I don't think it would make you feel any better.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 7:51 AM on November 12, 2007


I don't like Hillary either but then I find myself defending her from the nut case publisher of the local newspaper who says that Hillary is a socialist, always has been a socialist, and will be a socialist President.
posted by wrapper at 8:16 AM on November 12, 2007


pepsi red, white and blue?

the national press corpse treats the presidential election as the ultimate reality tv show: amateur actors but a script designed to create artificial drama. this is like posting the latest development from Big Brother: End Times...

total shit.
posted by geos at 8:24 AM on November 12, 2007


Why, oh why, did Michael Moore not end that movie with The Who instead of Rockin in the Free World?
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 8:29 AM on November 12, 2007


Meet the new boss: The same as the old boss.

(StupidSexyFlanders, wanna guess the provenance of that aphorism?)
posted by pax digita at 8:31 AM on November 12, 2007


It's become a broken record since the 1992 presidential campaign:

Everyone else does it and no one makes a peep- until a Clinton does it. Then it's suddenly ok to report it and make it a huge news story.
posted by wfc123 at 8:33 AM on November 12, 2007


I'm not voting for this woman, by the way. She's turned Right.
posted by wfc123 at 8:36 AM on November 12, 2007


maybe the chinese peoples army could get the tip....
this story is very telling. OH, but people are dying...yatta, the economy is tanking yatta.

how many of you all have wanted to 'kill" when those idiots and cheapskates forget to tip.
posted by clavdivs at 8:38 AM on November 12, 2007


I think Hillary's politics align pretty closely with those of President Richard M. Nixon's, for all the good and bad that entails. In 2007, this makes her a "socialist".

A Nixonian centrist type might have been a good call in 2000 and maybe less so in 2004, but definitely not now. At this point, we need an FDR.
posted by psmealey at 8:43 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


Why, oh why, did Michael Moore not end that movie with The Who instead of Rockin in the Free World?

Townshend wouldn't give him permission.
posted by teleskiving at 8:58 AM on November 12, 2007


I'm not voting for this woman, by the way. She's turned Right.

Oh, how I wish it were so!
posted by Kwantsar at 9:11 AM on November 12, 2007


Plant a Question, Save a Democrat
posted by brain_drain at 9:13 AM on November 12, 2007


I wonder if their campaign strategy rooms have a constant argument going on between optimizers and role players. Both groups must hate it when the candidate does something on its own, though.
posted by Free word order! at 9:20 AM on November 12, 2007


wfc123: "I'm not voting for this woman, by the way. She's turned Right."

Holy Christ on a saltine cracker.

All politicians are concerned about message control. All politicians want to control the spin. They want to know what you are thinking, and they want to be able to manipulate that.

All football players could give a shit if you root for their team, but they hope you come out to the stadium and buy a ticket and sit in the stands and eat hot dogs & drink beer, cuz then they can buy their second lamborghini or put their kids through college. All football players want that, regardless of team. Maybe they differ in whether they wanna put their kids through college or buy that lamborghini, but that difference isn't really that big a deal when you think about it.

In some superficial respects, politicians differ, but when it comes to the bottom line, where the rubber meets the road, they are all the same. They want spin. They want control. They want power. They want to manipulate you. How can you proudly stand behind any of these people, unless they have already succeeded with you?

She's left. He's right. She's turning right. He's faking moderate. blah blah blah blah blah. Puh-leeze.
posted by ZachsMind at 9:24 AM on November 12, 2007 [2 favorites]


This was a pretty stupid thing to do, if only because the "Republicans did it too" cop-out just doesn't cut it.

But that said, when the current White House finally gets around to explaining why a professional man-whore with no journalism experience and a name as fake as the news agency he invented for himself gets security clearance to come within ten feet of the President of the United States, conservatives then get to snark about Hillary's press gaffes.*
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:28 AM on November 12, 2007


*= No idea. Ignore that.
posted by XQUZYPHYR at 9:28 AM on November 12, 2007


A case of meet the new boss, same as the old boss?

"It was news to me," Mrs Clinton said, "and neither I nor my campaign approve of that, and it will certainly not be tolerated."

The response seems to be different than that of the president/McClellan (i.e. deny).
posted by mrgrimm at 9:48 AM on November 12, 2007


I'm not voting for this woman, by the way. She's turned Right.

Hillary Clinton was the head of her school's College Republican, a Rockefeller Republican, and hasn't substantially changed since. She hasn't "turned" anything.
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:57 AM on November 12, 2007


Reporters never get answers to their questions anyway, how does planting the question make any difference?
posted by 517 at 10:11 AM on November 12, 2007


"As a young person," said the well-spoken Muriel Gallo-Chasanoff, "I'm worried about the long-term effects of global warming. How does your plan combat climate change?"

"Well, you should be worried," Clinton replied. "You know, I find as I travel around Iowa that it's usually young people that ask me about global warming."

So you're telling me this woman is flying around the country answering questions, and noticing patterns in questions, and all the time she is being duped by her assistants. No, she's not being softballed questions on a systematic basis by her underlings, no... she is literally unaware of a plot to keep her from answering any difficult questions. God, some of you people will swallow anything. I mean, isn't the story here what a hellaciously bullshit excuse Hillary came up to cover her tracks? Am I suppose to provide her with prima facie forgiveness because her husband was getting blowjobs from his secretary?
posted by phaedon at 10:21 AM on November 12, 2007 [2 favorites]


Meet the new boss: The same as the old boss.

I dunno. Who?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 10:33 AM on November 12, 2007


This incident or set of incidents, is officially Non-Issue #5256 in the over-long 2008 presidential campaign, when all non-news is elevated to the status of news, all innuendo becomes fact, and all that is real is swept under the carpet and left to rot.
posted by blucevalo at 10:33 AM on November 12, 2007


she is just warming up to be the same entity as Bush


oh Lordy, no. I respectfully remind all my Hillary-is-a-closet-Republican MeFi friends one tragic fact: John Paul Stevens was born on April 20, 1920.

unless you think she'd appoint another Thomas or another Alito to replace a vacancy on the Supreme Court, she's not a Republican. having said that, for a liberal voter she's quite certainly the least appealing candidate in the Democratic field. but she's not really another Bush, not by a long shot. and God knows Kucinich doesn't stand a chance.

I'd also like to remind you that the Gore=Bush equation back in 2000 turned out to be, well, not entirely correct.
posted by matteo at 10:43 AM on November 12, 2007 [3 favorites]


I dunno. Who?

Who's on first.
posted by telstar at 10:50 AM on November 12, 2007


oh Lordy, no.

When people compare Hillary to Bush, they're not talking about her politics; they're talking about her management style. Basically, her authoritarian tendencies, the with or against us postures she often takes with internal staffers and the stonewalling tactics she tirelessly advocated for during her husband's administration.
posted by psmealey at 10:55 AM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


That reminds me of the Billionaires for Bush (or Gore) campaign thing back in 2000. I miss that sort of hip, snarky and utterly ineffective politics.
posted by chlorus at 11:08 AM on November 12, 2007


Townshend wouldn't give him permission.

I am astounded. Maybe that's why we did get fooled again.
posted by Slarty Bartfast at 11:09 AM on November 12, 2007


And, hey, remember when her husband bombed Iraq? Everyone was saying it was just to divert attention from that blue dress, but we all know he had legitimate reasons:

"Saddam Hussein has spent the better part of this decade, and much of his nation's wealth, not on providing for the Iraqi people, but on developing nuclear, chemical and biological weapons and the missiles to deliver them. The United Nations weapons inspectors have done a truly remarkable job, finding and destroying more of Iraq's arsenal than was destroyed during the entire gulf war. Now, Saddam Hussein wants to stop them from completing their mission. I know I speak for everyone in this chamber, Republicans and Democrats, when I say to Saddam Hussein, "You cannot defy the will of the world," and when I say to him, "You have used weapons of mass destruction before; we are determined to deny you the capacity to use them again." *
posted by Reggie Digest at 11:11 AM on November 12, 2007


THIRD BASE!
posted by CitizenD at 11:53 AM on November 12, 2007


It's infuriating to me that anyone on the right would dare bring this up after watching Bush for the last seven years. Not just planted questions, but entire town hall meetings have been fabricated, and as ibmcginty brought up Hell, his entire reality is fabricated- his staff filters out the news they don't want him to see. Even the intelligence they don't want him to see. They literally place anyone who might possibly disagree with his opinion in fenced off area miles away from where the president is speaking. And look at the FEMA event of a few weeks ago. When I hear the neocons talking about this, it makes me so mad I can't even type. dflkjaldkfjadflskj! Somebody lobbed a fake-question softball at Hillary Clinton at a campaign rally? Big deal. When her VP cherry-picks softball intelligence to start wars, then I expect people to become outraged. I'm just aghast at the gall of any conservative who would complain about this, of all things.

But then, I guess that's the point. They're better at this stuff than the dems, and they refuse to be embarrassed by their behavior. Still. DFSlkjafljadsfdjsa!
posted by jiiota at 12:08 PM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


Sack of Shit. The whole thing. It's just a great big Sack of Shit they keep slapping us over the head with.

Hillary is "turning right" this statement is pure comedy gold and I thank anyone who mentions this for giving me the chance for a good belly laugh - 'cause it's good to laugh at least once a day and this nugget never fails.

Controlling her message. Dude. Anyone who repeats this is barfing up some elses barf. Whether they know it or not, this is vomitus that has already been expunged from a stomach. Hence, you are engaging in a tiresome redundancy. Please stop. Or, at the very least, recognize when you are being fed vomitus and try to remember that vomitus is not nice to eat.

The only chance We The People stand is a reform of election laws, standards and practices and have you noticed how loud the appeal is for that?
posted by From Bklyn at 12:18 PM on November 12, 2007


It's infuriating to me that anyone on the right would dare bring this up after watching Bush for the last seven years.

It's all down the memory hole. Just as right wingers had forgotten how brutally nasty they themselves had been about Bill Clinton right from inauguration day and had the balls to accuse lefties of being "irrational" Bushaters, we will again have to deal with more of their bullshit amnesia when they are out of power.

Lather - rinse - repeat.
posted by psmealey at 12:19 PM on November 12, 2007


“Another manufactured issue.”

Yeah, just like Jeff Gannon. (Unprecedented for a presiden to put plants in the WH press corps is it? Perhaps not as odious a violation).
Principles are principles. Someone else being wrong about a whole lot of things doesn’t justify it. And -there are the same old form(s) of attack the neo-cons use (”Well, just look at what the other guy has done,” “It’s a non-issue” “Everyone does it but only our guy gets attacked for it” “Look at all the other stuff going on” “This is a manufactured partisan attack” etc etc etc) Don’t any of you using those see that?

Jesus, just call a spade a spade and move on. She’s not fucking flawless. This is a flaw. Certainly Bush has flaws, but he’s not running. So weigh her bullshit against the bullshit being packed by the other candidates, if it weighs less to you, or you can tolerate hers better - swell, but that’s not the reason to vote or not vote for her. Either you like her policies and what they’re going to do for you (& us) or you don’t.
Been hypnotized by media so long some folks are learning to like it and think like it.
This just confirms to me what I was pretty sure of anyway. But I don’t particularly care.
The last barrier is the total mindfuck, where you have someone who talks like Jefferson get into office and starts acting like Stalin.
Of course, only a matter of time before that happens I think. And yet - will anyone notice? Or will we still engage in this Orwellian “debate” where what is a vice in the opposition is a virtue within our party?

(I think part of the problem was that Hil wouldn’t get on her knees.
...too soon?)
posted by Smedleyman at 12:21 PM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


+ what From Bklyn sed - the silence is deafening.
posted by Smedleyman at 12:23 PM on November 12, 2007


She’s not fucking flawless. This is a flaw.

I don't think anyone said she was flawless. In fact, so far the overwhelming majority of posters seem to hate her with a passion (which, given the dominant political orientation of MeFi and her status as presumptive Democratic nominee, is a pretty sad state of affairs).

What people are saying, and I agree, is that given how much substantive stuff there is to dislike about her, this particular "scandal" is a crock of shit. Also, whoever mentioned the appointment of Supreme Court Justices: you are right. And it's not just Stevens. Odds are good that the next president will have three, and possibly four appointments. As someone who who wonders when "card carrying member of the ACLU" became the opposite of "patriot" instead of synonymous with it, I'm not at all sure I'd be happy with Hil's choices (though God knows they'd be better than Bush's). I'm a one-issue voter in that sense: judicial appointments are essentially the only thing I care about.
posted by The Bellman at 1:35 PM on November 12, 2007


As someone who who wonders when "card carrying member of the ACLU" became the opposite of "patriot" instead of synonymous with it

I have always wondered about this as well. The first I can recall is 1984, when Reagan used it repeatedly to bash Walter Mondale. I think the association he was trying to make was ACLU = communist/anti-American. Apparently, in earlier times, to refer to someone as card-carrying invariably meant they were communists, and therefore "un-American". I do not know if communists did carry cards, but I'm pretty sure that's where it originates.
posted by psmealey at 1:48 PM on November 12, 2007


I agree with The Bellman.

Smedleyman, the main reason why so many commenters here said that "Bush was worse!" is that the FPP is set up that way.

The fact that everyone does this is, while lamentable, an indication that this isn't worth a single story anywhere in the world. And this "issue" has damn little to do with how a President Clinton would govern.

This story signifies nothing.

And I put Clinton behind Obama, Edwards, Dodd, Biden, Richardson, and maybe another candidate or two. But the fact is that this is simply not a big deal.
posted by ibmcginty at 1:53 PM on November 12, 2007


“this particular "scandal" is a crock of shit”

The Bellman - How so? It’s completely unsubstantiated? There is absolutely no factual basis for it? The evidence shows that this did not happen?
To be more clear, I don’t consider it scandalous, merely affirmation of something I’ve suspected.
But in form - how is this different from the Gannon scandal? Given the denial, the acknowlegement, the comparison with other public figures, the blaming of someone else and so forth.
(I’ll grant the degree of odiousness is greater with Gannon and that Bush is sitting in office and such, I’m talking merely the structure - the sockpuppetry)
Was Bush doing the same thing also then overblown?
Do we then cede this as a universal tactic?
I’m curious if we are then to allow such sockpuppetry to overtake genuine discourse.
For me the problem is not the Clinton does it, but precisely that “everyone” does it - and so the actual real voices of voters are marginalized and this whole fake world is invented.
That isn’t a problem?

“the main reason why so many commenters here said that "Bush was worse!" is that the FPP is set up that way.”

Ok, so they’re dittoheads (albeit left leaning).

Allow me an analog: “The fact that everyone does this is, while lamentable, an indication that this isn't worth a single story anywhere in the world. And this "issue" has damn little to do with how President Bush governs.”

What exactly is different there?
I’ll allow this particular story may be an attack. I’ll grant it could well be overblown and “bullshit” in the sense that it doesn’t attack the issue of plants but places the focus on one candidate.
But that aside - how is the form of it different? If I’m speaking generally about the problem (or are we not recognizing it as a problem?) of politicians manufacturing reality and a cast Clinton’s thing here (in multiple news sources mind) and Bush’s thing and/or whomever else has done it - would that then be an illegitimate issue?

See, I don’t know whether anyone is upset that this is about what it is, or this is about Clinton.
If you cede that this is ok - you have to then allow for when the “other” side does it and, similarly, when the news media reports on it it is a “bullshit” scandal as well.
If it’s not ok, if it is wrong, then why is reporting on it bad?
(given that it’s more than just fox news or rightwing blogs - I mean The Nation? “Flagship of the left”?)
posted by Smedleyman at 3:10 PM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


unless you think she'd appoint another Thomas or another Alito to replace a vacancy on the Supreme Court, she's not a Republican. having said that, for a liberal voter she's quite certainly the least appealing candidate in the Democratic field. but she's not really another Bush, not by a long shot. and God knows Kucinich doesn't stand a chance.

I'd also like to remind you that the Gore=Bush equation back in 2000 turned out to be, well, not entirely correct.


That's fair, but she voted to legitimize and illegal war, she voted for the Patriot Act, and she is very good friends with FOX News' Murdoch. At least she voted against Alito and Roberts.

Gore did none of that to merit comparison with Bush — about the worst thing you could say about him is his taste in a fascist marital partner. Whatever, that's his kink.

From the way Hillary behaves on the campaign trail and from her upbringing, I have a difficult time seeing her as anything but an opportunist authoritarian who will throw minorities and disenfranchised people under the bus, while lining the pockets of big business.

Being a woman doesn't make her a liberal and is not an automatic qualification for presidency, as far as the massive repair work this country needs. I don't we can survive another four years of nepotism.

This is all MHO, of course.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 3:39 PM on November 12, 2007


Winnowing the Field without the Voters
posted by homunculus at 3:43 PM on November 12, 2007


Ok, so they’re dittoheads (albeit left leaning).

Smedleyman, please read the FPP to understand my point before you go and entirely miss the point like that. The post is all, "OMG Hil = GWB?!?" To which the answer is, "no, this is not like what Bush has done."

“The fact that everyone does this is, while lamentable, an indication that this isn't worth a single story anywhere in the world. And this "issue" has damn little to do with how President Bush governs.”

That was more or less my take on allegations of Bush's previous cocaine use during the 2000 campaign. I'd rather hear about what candidates are likely to do once in office than stupid BS. In fact, given that this story is something that Clinton's staffers did, and coke was something that Bush himself had (allegedly) done, even that lame crap may well have been less lame than this lame crap.

When a candidate betrays ignorance about the world, or misrepresents his views on things, or distances herself from her own actions, that is a story. Blazecock points out some actual issues that Clinton has been wrong about, ones that I think she hasn't been forthright about. Now that is a big deal, and that's why I'm not going to vote for her in the primary.


how is this different from the Gannon scandal?

These people were never issued press passes to the White House, and never posed as journalists. These were campaign events, which are inherently stage managed, rather than press conferences.

If you cede that this is ok

No one is doing this. Who is doing this? People are just saying that this isn't a big deal.

I mean The Nation? “Flagship of the left”?

The story is dumb regardless of who reported it, because it's a very low level transgression that everyone engages in. It doesn't matter whether the story is reported by comrades or traitors, it's a dumb story.

If her campaign did this for every questioner, that would be really bad. If they refused to allow non-supporters anywhere near the candidate, that would be bad.

Asking someone to ask the candidate about a particular issue is a great big zero on the outrage meter.
posted by ibmcginty at 4:16 PM on November 12, 2007


Metafilter: dflkjaldkfjadflskj!
posted by JHarris at 5:15 PM on November 12, 2007


“The post is all, "OMG Hil = GWB?!?" To which the answer is, "no, this is not like what Bush has done."”

The post is all bbc news, hillary clinton’s campaign site, the nation, the la times, abc newsblog, fox, and then a bit from media matters on Bush’s deal with Gannon.
I’ll grant the wording asserts that what Clinton did is equivalent to what Bush did. But your assertion that it isn’t, doesn’t prove it isn’t.
I see that it’s similar in form, apparently that’s what others are seeing - how isn’t it?

From the first link bbc story: “Question-planting has been used in US campaigns, but is usually avoided because it can become an embarrassment for candidates when revealed.”
Anyone here feel the same way about it’s revelation for all candidates? Or just the person they oppose? Or back? (Rhetorical question there)

“I'd rather hear about what candidates are likely to do once in office than stupid BS.”

So for you it’s a non-issue on all particulars - which is answer enough. Excepting the act in and of itself as bad and something to be discouraged (and reformed, and - such as it is here and now- divorced from any particular candidate) I agree.

But...
“These people were never issued press passes to the White House,”

Is there any reason to think that Clinton wouldn’t do the same given this action? But again, in form. The particulars of each respective event don’t matter to me. I’m asking conceptually how do the two differ?
Each event seeks to manipulate reality. Your point is that you don’t care overall. Ok. But that doesn’t refute that point.

I think, overall, it’s bad, but given it’s a campaign it could be considered a kind of smear. I’d rather see a story on the issue as a whole with perhaps Clinton being noted. But that’s not how the media generally does things.

“No one is doing this. Who is doing this?”

My hypothetical opponent I’ve set up to point out one of the facets of the argument and elicit comment.

“People are just saying that this isn't a big deal.”

Then it’s not a big deal when it’s done by right wingers either. And, at least if I’m reading you correctly, you agree.

If it is a big deal when someone else does it - again hypothetical statement, not asserting anyone in particular is literally and explicitly saying it is a big deal when right wingers or GOPers do it but not when left wingers or Dems do it, but instead pointing out the unstated inferences in some arguments and to ask: then why do those actions - similar in goal and form albeit different in particulars of execution - merit criticism and attention when this one doesn’t?
I don’t buy that the president doing it is different from a candidate doing it. Spin control is spin control. You’re doing it, or you’re not (you can’t be a little bit pregnant).

“Asking someone to ask the candidate about a particular issue is a great big zero on the outrage meter.”

And again - why then the outrage over it when Bush or this administraiton does it? That’s not a question pointed at you, but generally speaking it’s been covered and there’s been plenty o’ outrage when Bush has done it (and he has done it even if we’re not talking Gannon)
posted by Smedleyman at 5:19 PM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


Rallies are showcases to pump up a candidate. Press conferences are not. You issue press passes to journalists; you do not issue press passes to everyone who asks a question at a rally. There is a presumption that a journalist isn't allied with the questionee; not so at a rally.

This is in no way comparable to Gannon, a fake newsman.

Asking someone to ask a question about a particular topic is in no way comparable to requiring loyalty oaths of anyone who attends campaign events.

If Hillary does those things, she should be criticized harshly. She has not done those things.
posted by ibmcginty at 5:36 PM on November 12, 2007


where you have someone who talks like Jefferson get into office

it'll never happen again -- too liberal
posted by matteo at 6:07 PM on November 12, 2007


from fourth link:

But here's the catch. Although other campaigns are righteously denying it tonight, virtually every professional presidential campaign plants questions. It's a routine part of preparation for the advance people staging every event.

this is absolutely true. but that doesn' make it a manufactured scandal. it means every candidate needs to get caught in this act also.
posted by 3.2.3 at 9:02 PM on November 12, 2007 [1 favorite]


Agree with 3.2.3.
posted by darkstar at 10:50 PM on November 12, 2007


Rallies are showcases to pump up a candidate.

Except neither of these 2 recorded instances were at rallies, but at "town halls"--which are specifically promoted as open forums for actual people to have conversations with the candidate without restriction. These weren't events at High School gyms with cheering crowds, but actual "conversations", purportedly.

Hillary in 99: ...
(voice-over): Under pressure to either get in or get out, Hillary Clinton finally makes it official by answering a prearranged question from a friendly union leader. ...


Rudy does it all the time too--and of course Bush--is that what we want more of? Seriously?
posted by amberglow at 4:41 AM on November 13, 2007


And one more thing--it's the worst possible way to start talking about a topic, given the intense scrutiny she's under all the time--she should have just brought it up herself instead of playing this stupid game.
posted by amberglow at 4:43 AM on November 13, 2007


Asking someone to ask a question about a particular topic is in no way comparable to requiring loyalty oaths of anyone who attends campaign events.

If Hillary does those things, she should be criticized harshly. She has not done those things.


You don't know that at all. Why wouldn't she also be doing that? No candidate wants a hostile crowd when generating soundbites for the evening news.
posted by amberglow at 4:46 AM on November 13, 2007


“There is a presumption that a journalist isn't allied with the questionee; not so at a rally. This is in no way comparable to Gannon, a fake newsman.”

What amberglow sed. So is there a presumption of legitimacy at a town hall? Bearing in mind Bush has manufactured - and taken flak from the left for - manufactured questions at town hall meetings.

My original question stands - (I’ll grant the difference in terms of Gannon being an illegitimate news man, but I’ve cut a great deal of slack on that particular anyway) - why shouldn’t Clinton get criticized for behavior that Bush or another candidate should, and has, gotten criticized for?

Given “If Hillary does those things, she should be criticized harshly” I suspect you cede that point.
As to whether all of her behaviors have mirrored Bush I grant that no, they don’t. And there are differences in the whole loyalty oath thing.

But again - who was it that had Free Speech Zones? Couldn’t have been Bill Clinton amirite? Yeah, that was him.
Principle over persona.
posted by Smedleyman at 2:55 PM on November 13, 2007


Sidney Blumenthal is joining the Hillary Clinton campaign as a senior advisor, and this is his last column for Salon.
posted by homunculus at 5:47 PM on November 15, 2007


“The post is all, "OMG Hil = GWB?!?"

Damnit, I forgot to put that in my FPP text. Thanks for the reminder... hope it's not too late:

OMG Hil = GWB?!?
posted by Tommy Gnosis at 7:45 AM on November 16, 2007


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