U.S. Politics/Hillary


QUESTION: What are Hillary's faults other than charging too much for speeches and using her private e-mail?


I'll be glad to help with your question.

Here are some of the common criticisms of Hillary Clinton:

1) That she presents herself as a feminist, and yet tolerates the repeated marital misconduct of her husband, as well as his sometimes inappropriate behavior toward women, especially subordinate ones.

2) That she repeatedly and unabashedly lies. Recently, for example, she lied when she said that she never sent or received email that was marked classified. She lied when she said that the FBI Director described her remarks to the public as being "truthful." She lied about saying that she had once landed "under fire" in the Balkans.

3) That she is too secretive. For example, she has refused to release the speeches that she gave to Goldman Sachs and other financial houses. During the 1990s, she prevented the release of records from her law firm, which hindered the Whitewater investigation. The deletion of certain emails prior to them being transferred to the FBI was also considered suspicious. Additionally, she has not convened a press conference in nearly 250 days, preferring the less unpredictable, less risky format of one-on-one interviews.

4) She is generally misleading. Clinton is often criticized for answering questions not plainly, but hyper-cautiously and legalistically. Or, by answering them disingenuously. For example, her response to Fox New's Chris Wallace last week about her emails was both factually incorrect, but also described as very legalistic (splitting hairs, etc.). And, even though every political observer took for granted that Clinton would run for president again in 2016, until close to the time that she announced her candidacy, she told everyone that she was "undecided." One's credibility is not enhanced when one states something that absolutely everyone - so to speak - knows is false.

5)She is essentially unprincipled, and will say or do anything to win the presidency. What does Hillary Clinton really believe? Some people think it's hard to say. Factually, she initially supported the TPP (proposed trade agreement), but is now opposed to it. She initially espoused centrist rhetoric, but now uses language very similar to that used with great success by Bernie Sanders. Clinton claims to care for African Americans, but hasn't advocated their issues when holding actual power. And, when First Lady, supported policies and language that are now considered offensive and counterproductive.

6) Hillary Clinton never accepts responsibility and never apologizes. Clinton's first responses to Congress and the press regarding the 2012 attacks in Benghazi were defensive and defiant. In that inquiry, about the deaths of Americans including our ambassador, she angrily asked "What does it matter now?" Clinton has never given the impression that, as Secretary of State, she is ultimately responsible for the affairs and conduct of that department. Regarding her email controversy, she has apologized for using a private server, but only after months of avoiding doing so. She has not apologized for her mishandling of classified material, which the FBI Director has described as "negligent" and "extremely careless."

So, Jim, these are some of the criticisms cited by Clinton's opponents and even conceded by some of her supporters. To the extent that one agrees that Clinton suffers from these flaws, these defects - generally speaking - are not uniquely Clinton's but shared by plenty of politicians.

I hope that this is helpful!

- Marc

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: So largely selfishness character flaws? Another person I asked the question to gave me links to sites that claimed she arranged assassinations and other very unethical things that seemed very biased.

Hi Jim,

I would encourage you to disregard accusations that Hillary Clinton conspired to kill anyone. Presumably the particular theory you're referencing was about her close friend Vince Foster. The notion that the Clinton's somehow arranged his death to prevent him from disclosing information about the Clinton's financial dealings has never been credible.

Plenty of people disagree with Hillary Clinton's political views, but opposing views do not constitute flaws. Plenty of people have a problem with the tone of Clinton's voice - literally the sound of her voice and her speaking style. But that doesn't constitute a flaw. Plenty of people think that she is too ambitious. But that doesn't constitute a flaw. Hillary Clinton's disapproval ratings are very high - millions of Americans dislike her. But do they dislike her because of actual flaws, or for other reasons that are more rooted in personal bias, sexism, or something similar?

In responding to your question, I decided to list and explain the behaviors of Hillary Clinton that are commonly criticized - behaviors that observers widely agree constitute flaws in a political candidate. Put another way, "flaws" is a very broad term: some people could consider Clinton's sex as a flaw; that is, she's not a man. So, what are some traits - and behaviors based on those traits - that most fair people - friends and foes of Hillary Clinton would concede are flaws, generally speaking? Answering that question was my approach in responding to you.

Sincere people may respectfully disagree about many aspects of Hillary Clinton. But few can deny that her political life has suffered due to the characteristics and behavior that I have described.

I hope this helps to clarify, Jim!


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Marc Aperio


I'll be glad to answer any question related to US politics, regarding domestic or international issues.


I've studied US history and politics for nearly 20 years. I'm currently also volunteering in the American, European, and Medieval history categories.

My newest book is called (REAL QUICK) HISTORY (https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MYOKUZT) I've also written: WE NEED TO TALK: 27 DIALOGUES ON RACE IN AMERICA is available in the Amazon Kindle store. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B01E69CUUI AMERICAN REVOLUTION 2016: RATIONALE AND AIMS FOR RADICAL CHANGE http://www.amazon.com/American-Revolution-2016-Rationale-Radical-ebook/dp/B00MI9H9VE

BA History (High Honors)

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