An autopsy of Hillary Clinton’s campaign

friends-romans-countrymenFriends, Democrats, countrymen, I come here not to praise Hillary Clinton, but to mourn her candidacy. The fact that the great ongoing American conversation has been reduced almost entirely to unfounded implications of alleged impropriety, absent the condemnation of the squandering of community in favor of the embrace of division, demonstrates that Donald Trump has robbed the American people of the debate we deserved concerning policy. Yet, let us now come together to sympathize with the plight of working class Americans, who resent attempts toward an agenda of equality in America, as it could encroach on their historic class-supremacy. These, white, working class Americans, the most powerful demographic group in our nation’s history, are, as we know, honorable men.

Clinton squandered her opportunities for making advances to the work of her predecessor by failing to simplify and substitute what is difficult and safe for what is easy and comfortable. She did not give the people what they want. And, we the people resent being told what we need. Donald Trump is cotton candy and Hillary Clinton is Brussels sprouts.

Her campaign erred in their agenda of incremental changes to feed hungry mouths, hearts, and minds, when they should have been feeding American appetites for drama. But, the media knew to prioritize the false equivalence between one candidate’s imperfect record and her opponent’s racist language, rambling rhetoric, ad hominem attacks, propensity for lying, ties to unfriendly foreign governments, seventy-five current pending lawsuits and a court date for underage rape. After all, what better way to entertain than placing a man who “tells it like it is” by making up a nostalgic utopia he will recreate without any blueprints or plans (but, instead with a limited supply of racially charged platitudes and hyperbolic adjectives) in equal standing to Hillary Clinton. In an American media landscape painted to shock and awe, instead of to observe and report, whoever raises frightening questions, rather than answering reasonable ones, taps into the fear needed to keep the headline-scanning public from forming conclusions and building confidence in pursuing long-term societal success. The media executives know the value of immediate gratification, and they are all honorable men.

Which is why it is better that they chose to ignore the Democratic candidate producing detailed policies for every issue in the Democratic platform – including topics agreed to between hers and her primary opponent’s campaigns – by devoting only 4% of stories to policy. Policy takes time and is difficult to distill down to a soundbite. After all, you cannot spell “immediate gratification” without “media.”

Clinton had a trust problem. Her never-ending email controversy makes us wonder if her emails read as compellingly as would have the hundred thousand emails wiped by Mitt Romney, before he used taxpayer money to offload government computer equipment to staff. Or, how about the years of emails erased by Trump’s corporation in the midst of a lawsuit, during the discovery process? Are these questions worth asking? No. because we need not question the motives of such honorable men. Lest we forget, the FBI was looking into Clinton and only Clinton and publicly disclosing traditionally confidential details of an ongoing investigation about transmission of confidential information for an undoubtedly good reason. Undoubtedly. And, as we would all agree, the FBI are all honorable men.

What about Benghazi, one might ask? And, rightly so. Should we, however, explore and explain why there have been tens of millions of dollars worth of hearings concluding no untoward activity on the part of Secretary Clinton? No. Congress saw fit to investigate and Congress is a reflectively representative gathering of honorable men. There was no mention of the embassy attacks resulting in exponentially higher numbers of American lives lost under both Bush administrations as well as Reagan? It is irrelevant to justify the motivations of such honorable men.

The larger issue at hand is a campaign not against Clinton, but against an informed public. Most of America’s history has experienced  a relatively awful standard of living for most people who lived here. Are things now perfect? No. Far from it. They are farther still, however, from the bleak, lawless, apocalypse described by Trump and his surrogates. But, when people are looking for someone to blame for an overwhelming illusion of tragedy based on collective discomfort, we are subject to Franklin’s statement about the type of government our constitution creates:

“A republic, if we can keep it.”

Donald Trump’s movement robbed us of a debate about issues. The mainstream media profited from stolen goods. The people are now responding the way they always do: with distrust of anyone who is different and resentment of any establishment that is familiar. We are making America great again by restoring the definition of citizenship to what it was when America was founded almost two-and-a-half centuries ago. Then, the heathens were punished, enslaved, or killed. Then, the poor resigned themselves to being “unfortunates” and knew their lives would be lived in suffering, but their suffering would be over shortly. Then, women existed for the noble cause of keeping a home and bearing sons to carry on the legacy of our founding fathers, perpetuating the American definition of honorable men. They owned land. They owned men and women. They owned the means by which to define honor.

I have no more words on this topic right now. I do not wish to speak of it further for quite a while. I suppose the trauma of such a wave of unexpected duplicity from polled likely voters has rendered me in a nasty state of shock and disbelief. Nasty, indeed. So, in the spirit of nasty women and honorable men who came before me, I will conclude my musings with words written by someone else.

“So we beat on, boats against the current, born back ceaselessly into the past.”- F. Scott Fitzgerald

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Jonathan Jacobs is a public servant for the State of Rhode Island. He also works as a government relations consultant, specializing in legislative affairs, communications, campaign strategy, and public presentation. Born and raised in Rhode Island, he lives in Rumford with his wife and two, young children.

5 responses to “An autopsy of Hillary Clinton’s campaign”

  1. PinkHatLib

    “The larger issue at hand is a campaign not against Clinton, but against an informed public.”

    It’s far easier to dismiss the very real grievances of many working class Americans than to address the Democratic Party’s decades long failure to address those grievances. What’s the matter with Kansas, indeed.
    There will be plenty of blame flying around in the weeks and months ahead. Yet, no matter what bullshit excuse Democrats come up with for Hillary’s historic embarrassment, they have only themselves to blame. She lost because she deserved to lose. She ran an awful campaign, mired in controversy, and was unable to excite voters to the polls. She believed neoliberalism could carry the day, but she was wrong. The DNC was wrong. The establishment lost because the establishment deserved its fate.

    By no means does this imply Trump will overthrow the status quo, it only means the outsider Trump was better able to exploit the boiling rage of middle America. All the workers who were undercut by Bill Clinton’s NAFTA. The hundreds of thousands that never rebounded from the Bush recession. Trump provided an outlet of hope for these lost souls – a fabricated hope no doubt, but hope nonetheless – gift wrapped in rage.

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  2. Greg Gerritt

    Until the Democrats get rid of super delegates and actually stand for the needs of most Americans they are toast. they had the lousy candidate they deserved. The only candidate in the race who made her entire party proud was Green Party candidate Jill Stein.

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  3. An alternate autopsy of the Clinton campaign

    […] Jacobs says he comes not to praise Hillary Clinton’s candidacy, but to mourn it. With due respect to […]

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