Sunday, June 12, 2016

Is Hillary the Most Qualified?

President Obama didn't do Hillary Clinton any favors when he declared that no one since George Washington has been as qualified to be president.

True enough, she is more qualified than Barack Obama was, but seriously, Obama’s praise only points to the fact that Hillary is not qualified at all. Unless you are a true believing zealot and reject the judgment of reality.

Today’s ideologues and zealots do not believe in real qualifications or real achievements. They believe that all jobs are affirmative action jobs, that if a woman or a minority is manifestly unqualified you can make him or her more qualified by repeating over and over again that he or she is qualified. Or by running yet another television series in which a woman or a minority is the most qualified, the most competent, the best of the best.

As Vladimir Lenin famously said: “A lie told often enough becomes the truth.”  The quote has also been attributed to Josef Goebbels.

If you didn’t know it before, now you do. Obama and other social justice warriors believe that life imitates art and that if you want to change the world you need merely change the way people talk and think. You do it by controlling the media and the arts, that is by turning all of it into propaganda.

Anyway, the New York Sun did a quick run through of the qualifications that different people have brought to the office of the presidency. In fairness, and in order not to appear to be beating up on only one candidate, the presumptive Republican candidate does not bring anything resembling a qualification to his run for office. In some ways he is less qualified than Hillary.

One does appreciate that Republican voters, in their transcendent wisdom, managed to find a candidate who was less qualified and who knows less than the dowager duchess of Chappaqua.

The New York Sun begins its comparison derby with George Washington:

Is Hillary Clinton more qualified than George Washington? He was the general who won the Revolutionary War, he was a delegate in both the First and Second Continental Congress, and chaired the constitutional convention.

Attempting to find a more apt basis for comparison, the Sun compares Hillary’s qualifications with those of Washington’s horse. Here again, she is less qualified. Considering today's political environment, this paragraph will doubtless be considered hate speech, requiring a trigger warning. Consider yourself forewarned:

By some measures, Mrs. Clinton isn’t as qualified as Washington’s horse, Nelson. The steed didn’t live long enough in human years to get over the constitutional age requirement, but he was famously steady under fire and disclosed a remarkable character and temperament, even in battle. Plus, Nelson never took any multi-million-dollar “charitable” contributions from foreign governments. Nor did he send government secrets via email. Nelson wouldn’t have been caught dead endorsing the articles of appeasement with Iran.

It doesn’t get any better when we arrive at the second president, John Adams:

John Adams may have been more qualified than Washington, at least by the time Adams was elected. For one thing, he’d won the hand of Abigail. It would be too much to say that he invented the idea of separated powers, but he brought concept of separated powers into law as principal author of the Constitution of Massachusetts. He was minister to France, the Netherlands, and Britain, and vice president for eight years. He still holds the record for breaking ties in the Senate.

But, what about Thomas Jefferson, the third president:

Thos. Jefferson had the best set of qualifications for president, according to one Web site that has a ranking. By the time the Virginian got to the White House he’d been a burgess (in the first elected legislature in the New World), served as a member of congress, written the Declaration of Independence, done a tour as ambassador to France, been governor of Virginia, Secretary of State of America, and Vice President. Plus, too, he’d written the Act of Virginia for Religious Freedom. We mean, c’mon.

If Obama was not offering an outright lie, he might have been demonstrating his own deficient knowledge of American history.

Among more recent presidents, George H. W. Bush brought sterling qualifications to his presidency:

George H.W. Bush had an underappreciated set of qualifications when he got to the door of the White House. He’d been a war hero, a congressman, director of central intelligence, ambassador to China, permanent United States representations at the United Nations, chairman of the Republican National Committee, and Vice President of America (and president of its Senate). And a successful businessman.

In the age of Obama the word “qualification” doesn’t mean anything anymore. The same is true of words like success and achievement. If no one can list any of Hillary’s real achievements that’s because the concept was invented by privileged white men in order to oppress everyone who was not a privileged white man.

But, we can define it differently. Among the women who have been candidates for the presidency of the United States Hillary is clearly the most qualified. And, among African-American candidates for the presidency, Barack Obama was clearly the most qualified.

I hope that clears things up.


Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

So Obama said there's nothing but daylight between George Washington and Hillary Clinton, in terms of qualifications?

This campaign gets better and better by the day.

Hmmmm... Aren't "qualifications" standards? I thought standards were tools of oppression. And what do standards have to do with wedding tackle? According to Hillary's campaign, that's all that matters.

I'm glad Obama was able to set aside George Washingron's owning slaves... for once. Just don't bring up stage subject with Michelle, since she seems to have taken a recent interest in architectural history. She says she wakes up in a house everyday that was built by slaves.

Interesting that Washington was not a lawyer, so thankfully Obama is giving that a pass. After all, lawyers know everything. Just ask 'em.

Washington served 15 years in Virginia's House of Burgesses, and we later found out how much power and respect the British crown had for civilian legislatures. So that seems to be an irrelevant qualification for Washington. Then again, Obama doesn't have much use for legislatures, either.

So Washington was just surveyor, then a failed military leader, then a slave-owning planter, then a Burgess, and then a military general. Not sure what kinds of qualifications those are. What's so important about all that? He just secured independence for 13 slave-owning colonies and then gave his sword to the civilian legislature. How hard could that have been? Everyone does that!

I'm ready for Hillary!

Ares Olympus said...

The idea of qualifications certainly is ambiguous. The only real ones are "natural born" and over than 35, and a resident for at least 14 years, and as best I know, Hillary qualifies there.

I'm assuming Obama's word were an implication of Hillary's many years of experience in public service, directly, or indirectly. Being a New York Senator for 6 years and Secretary of State for 4 years ought measure well, except in the eyes of partisans.

Its perhaps also useful to consider less formal disqualification, like an inability to speak in coherent sentences would disqualify Sarah Palin in my mind.

And reputation in the eyes of foreign leaders might be important. So we know our potential enemies, Russia's Putin and North Korea's Kim Jong-un. As best I can tell all our European allies hold a higher esteem for Hillary.

So if being admired by your dictatorial enemies is the standard, Trump probably got this election in the bag.

priss rules said...


Sam L. said...

Being that the Dem and Repub Parties don't like (or despise, or fear, or something) Trump, that seems like a pretty good endorsement of him. Considering what I think of both parties, as it seems the Trump partisans seem to think the same. Something like "a plague on both".

Ignatius Acton Chesterton OCD said...

Sam L. @June 12, 2016 at 8:13 AM:

"1Despise, fear or something..."

That's where it's at. That's the solution.

Ares Olympus said...

Sam L and IAC, I see David Stockman, Reagan's Budget director, and Grumpy old man by Krugman, is ready for the Trump Bandwagon, calling Trump the Disrupter.

So Stockman agrees what we need is to break the Status Quo at any cost. He says the Great Recession never ended, and we'll be back to trillion dollar deficits in a couple years anyway, so we might as well let Trump see things fresh. He hopes Trump will actually take on Wallstreet, although I think that's wishful thinking. David also seems to think Trump won't actually start any new wars, which I'm also doubtful.

Anyway, if we define the most qualified candidate for president is someone who will scare the Elite silly, then Trump is top dog. At least the Democrats know they'll never control Trump, while the Republicans are still willing to imagine he can be their tyrant and only break things they don't like.

If only 150 million people could find a way to withdraw their theoretical pensions and IRAs from harms way before the next crash, I'd be more willing to support the Disrupter. Of course if even 10 million middle class workers could do that, we'd CAUSE the next crash. Popping bubbles is fun if you and everyone you care about can leave the mad game first.