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Thursday, January 10, 2008

Hillary and the New York Post

Let me be very clear about my biases here. I HATE the New York Post. My disdain for it goes back to the Summer of Sam in 1977, when the paper indicated, in screaming red letters that the killer had been caught. More egregious, though, was when some photographer slipped into the NYC morgue in December 1980 and took a picture of the deceased John Lennon, a photo that the Post, in its infinite taste, published on the front cover.

So when NewsCorp, a/k/a Rupert Murdoch, bought it a few years back, it only solidified my disdain for the rag. Though to be fair, its sports coverage is decent. Understand that I don't actually READ the paper; those headlines are generally enough. And on those rare occasions when I HAVE read it - usually an abandoned copy on a bus - my suspicions about the newspaper's character, or lack thereof, are confirmed.

I'm not a great fan of Hillary Clinton. Sure, she was wrong on the Iraq war, but my disdain actually predates that. I didn't vote for her in 2000 or in 2006. I think part of it is that she's one in a line of carpetbaggers who came into New York State merely as a matter of convenience, so that they could run for the U.S. Senate. Remarkably, the last three were actually elected: Robert Kennedy in 1964, James Buckley (brother of William F., who had denounced RFK six years earlier for the same reason), and HRC in 2000.

Still, the vitriol that she engenders is astonishing to me. They hate her because she's too tough. They hate her for using Rodham in her name. They hate her because she didn't leave Bill over Monicagate. They hate her for reasons I've heard explained and STILL don't understand. It almost seems that she has personally insulted them, the way many right-wing magazines and books have keyed on her. I mean, she's not my pick for President, but yeesh!

And among her nastiest, and most persistent, critics is the slimeball tabloid New York Post, which seems practically obsessed with her, based on these newspaper covers from successive days (January 3-8, 2007). Other New York State papers cover the Presidential campaigns; the Post covers it largely in relationship with the fortunes (or misfortunes, so they hope) of "Hill" (rhymes with Bill). I read a story some months ago about her in the Post. The details now escape me, but it was clearly opinion, and negative opinion at that, posing as a "news" story.
So, when she cries, or almost does, one can practically hear the Post editors smacking their lips. "Hill cracked! We got to her! She's going down!" But a funny thing happened: Hillary won in New Hampshire. And according to this piece, and others, it was BECAUSE she cried, or almost did. She allowed herself to be "real" and the voters, especially the women voters, responded.

And, peculiarly, I was glad she won in New Hampshire. Anyone denying that there is this sexist double standard isn't looking very hard. The man can cry and be sensitive yet manly and Presidential, but the woman who cries is probably "in a tizzy" and can't be trusted with heading the government. This is the balancing act Hillary Clinton has been trying to maintain for a long time, but letting her emotions show seems to have helped her, at least for one day.



Scott said...

I probably won't vote for Hillary if she gets the nomination. I don't like her. It's not a sexist thing. I have no problem with a woman being President, I just don't like her. However, I agree with those that applaud her for showing emotion. More candidates need to do this. Too many of them seem like cardboard cut-outs or robots. There is no problem with being emotional. You can still show your emotions and be able to be rather calm to handle a very important event/problem while being the President. These people are real human beings, therefore should show their real emotions. I am glad that Hillary let her strong exterior crack a little. Though still not my choice, she won points with me for doing it.

Thom said...

I think if her moment of misty-eyed-ness had gone uncommented, it would left her closely behind Barak. But she took such a beating from Edwards and the press for it, I think it engendered real sympathy from voters. nd the hits she took for this were appalling.

Uthaclena said...

Pretty much everybody in the United States is from "somewhere else," so the carpetbagging accusations never mean much to me. I want an elected representative to be an effective representative, and I voted for Hillary for Senator in 2000. I did not vote for her in 2006, because of AUMF on Iraq, making the easy liberal votes, but showing no leadership on the difficult choices, but mostly her "triangulation" solely aimed at stepping up to the Presidency.

I will not be voting for her in the primary; if necessary, I will vote for her in the general election, but I surely hope that I do not have to. She may be a Democrat, but she is no Progressive.

Roger Green said...

While it's true everybody is from somewhere, the Senate seat for NYS is like Delaware corporations, or better still, Liberian ports of convenience. RFK moved here in '63 (Tom Lehrer once said that Massachusetts was the only state with three Senators). Buckley not long before 1970 (from CT), Hillary in '99, though her husband - I gather - had a residence in the District of Columbia.
When Alan Keyes of IL tried that in MD recently, he was roundly trounced.