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Posts Tagged ‘Hillary Clinton’

Earlier, I praised the emotional aspect of Hillary’s last night speech and it’s effect on Barack Obama’s electoral prospects.

As for the actual political content though, my thoughts are closer to Matt Welch’s, whose excellent take on it I highly recommend.

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She was poignant, she was stylish and she electrified the audience. And she came out strong for Barack Obama.

I have never liked Hillary much. I didn’t like her manipulative side that she displayed during the primaries and I detest her nanny-state approach to government. I was more than relieved when it became certain that she would not be the nominee. But credit where credit’s due — she was very good tonight. She not only exceeded my expectations with her choice of words but she said them in a fashion that sounded both emotional and sincere. I suspect that many Republican strategists are kicking themselves right now.

Whoever wins in this election, this speech has ensured that no one will say Hillary didn’t try hard enough.

[Update] Andrew Sullivan isn’t impressed:

To my mind, however, it was an average performance, not a slashing attack on the Bush-Cheney record, nor a rousing rallying cry for Obama, nor a very insightful analysis of the country’s problems. There was virtually nothing about foreign policy. She did what she had to do, tell her voters to back Obama. But she gave nothing more.

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Delightfully inventive or nauseatingly sexist? Or just a plain boring nutcracker?

You decide.

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A very funny animated video parodying the Clinton 3 am ad.

(Link via Andrew Sullivan)

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The Washington Post has a fine article about Samantha Power, the top Obama aide who was forced to resign after a Scot newspaper published her ‘off-the-record’ remark that Hillary Clinton was acting like a ‘monster’ and ‘stooping to anything’.

How does a Harvard professor and Pulitzer Prize-winning author manage to blow up her brief political consulting career over the use of the phrase “off the record”?
Samantha Power resigned as a foreign-policy adviser to Barack Obama yesterday, hours after the Scotsman newspaper quoted her as making a disparaging remark about Hillary Clinton — although, immediately after uttering the comment, she asked the reporter not to use it. As the story recounted:

” ‘She is a monster, too — that is off the record — she is stooping to anything,’ Ms. Power said, hastily trying to withdraw her remark.”

Read the whole article for a wonderful profile of Power, a brilliant academic who was also once called the world’s most beautiful woman by Vogue magazine and whose life changed forever when the words “It’s Obama, call me” showed up on her cellphone one day.

It is unlikely Samantha Power will be asked to play a role as a political advisor by anyone again. It is even more unlikely that Clinton’s spokesperson Howard Wolfson will resign for comparing Obama to Kenneth Starr earlier this week. Such is politics.

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It took a long time coming but it is here at last. Hillary Clinton finally unveiled her healthcare plan this week.

The key feature of her plan is what she calls individual mandate. It requires that every American buy health insurance. A similar law already exists in the state of Massachusetts and is supported by the governors of several other states, including California.

However her clever choice of phrase does not obscure the fact that this is essentially a plan for individual coercion. Forcing an individual to pay money for a service which deals with the well-being of his own body -something that is no one’s concern except his- is wrong, in my opinion.

Most Americans agree that the health-care system needs an overhaul. Hillary Clinton, whose political career has been a mix of leftist righteousness and clever opportunism (displayed for instance by her history of voting on Iraq and her defence of it) realises that healthcare is the issue that will decide this election. Unfortunately she fails to realise – or worse, perhaps realises yet chooses to ignore for political expediency – that the American system is broken primarily because government interference and regulations over the last fifty years have driven insurance premiums through the roof. Plans such as Clinton’s or Edward’s are further steps in the wrong direction. They push health-care towards a heavy-handed bureaucratic system with more controls, apart from being an assault on personal liberty.

A much more reasonable and effective first step would be to distribute vouchers to families that they can use only for insurance, while simultaneously eliminating the regulations on private insurers and retaining one government-owned catastrophic health insurance program. The next step would be to formulate policy that would encourage – for the purpose of basic health needs – a paradigm shift away from insurance. On that note, read Milton Friedman’s excellent article on this subject.

Sadly, the most effective solutions are often not the ones with most political pizzazz.

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