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Ed Driscoll

Hillary, Chelsea, and America’s Ruling Class

June 26th, 2014 - 12:48 pm

In “Our Ruling Class,” Richard Fernandez explores how wealth and power have warped the worldviews of grandees such as John Kerry and his spot-on Thurston Howell impersonation, and now Chelsea Clinton. Regarding the latter figure, Richard writes:

…I read about Chelsea Clinton, who recently told Fast Company in an interview how she gritted her teeth and took on lucrative gigs before deciding to join her family’s philanthropic foundation because, “I was curious if I could care about (money) on some fundamental level, and I couldn’t.”  She decided making money bored her after all and decided to pursue her true Clinton calling, which was telling people what to do.

In Chelsea the Clintons had finally become true aristocrats, finally left their Little Rock roots. Chelsea had joined that elite group which has had money for so long it bores them. She, as the British well knew of the upper classes, finally accepted her duty to rule, shouldered the burden and paid the sad price for a life cursed with luxury and privilege.

To real aristocrats, position is simply the way things have always been. In the movie The Aviator, the Howard Hughes character sits down to dinner with Old Money, and his hosts don’t even know where their money came from.

Ludlow: Then how did you make all that money?

Mrs. Hepburn: We don’t care about money here, Mr. Hughes.

Howard: That’s because you have it.

Mrs. Hepburn: Would you repeat that?

Howard: You don’t care about money because you have it. And you’ve always had it. My father was dirt poor when I was born…. I care about money, because I know what it takes out of a man to make it.

It is always rude to inquire where money comes from. Among real royalty it should simply be there. The recompense for the burden of aristocracy is privilege. Aristocrats must do their duty from grace; now could we please get out of the way?

That style worked for Franklin and Eleanor, and John and Jacqueline, but after Kennedy’s death, the Boomers, ironically aping his assassin’s Marxist worldview, began their all-out assault on wealth and privilege, even as they acquired mammoth amounts of wealth and privilege of their own. (See also: Al Gore and the Drawbridge Effect.) Thus Hillary is forced to speak from a sort of double-track position, tut-tutting the same wealth that’s necessary for a presidential bid. And Chelsea’s recent remarks, quoted above by Richard, haven’t helped these early days of her mother’s second go-around for the White House.

Nor does Hillary have much to show for her tenure at State, as Russia advances into Crimea, ISIS into Iraq, and the world actually looks far more unstable now than it did at at the end of 2008. (Fancy that.) And  regrets? Well, at least according to Ed Klein and the London Daily Mail, Hillary has more than a few regarding that period of her life:

Klein describes Clinton’s Obama-bashing session as having taken place last May – two months after she vacated her position on Obama’s cabinet – at French restaurant Le Jardin du Roi, near the Clinton’s home in Chappaqua, New York.

‘ “Obama has turned into a joke,” she said sharply,’ according to Klein.

‘ “The IRS targeting the Tea Party, the Justice Department’s seizure of AP phone records and James Rosen’s emails — all these scandals. Obama’s allowed his hatred for his enemies to screw him the way Nixon did,” ‘ Clinton reportedly told her pals.

‘She went on to explain that Bill was a natural leader and great executive, unlike Obama, who was in her words “incompetent and feckless,” ‘ Klein writes.

At another point in the conversation Hillary is quoted as having said of Obama, ‘you can’t trust the motherf***er.

” ‘Obama has treated Bill and me incredibly shabbily. And we’re angry,’ ” Clinton continued.

Clinton allegedly told her friends that she and Bill promised Obama they would help him him get reelected in 2012 if he helped Hillary get elected in 2016.

‘He agreed to the arrangement but then he reneged on the deal. His word isn’t worth sh*t,’ Hillary said.

‘The bad blood between us is just too much to overcome.’

But that bad blood was awfully transparent during the slugfest between the two candidates in 2007 and 2008, particularly in the Obama campaign and its surrogates in the media accusing Bill and Hillary of racism. So why accept a job offer to serve in the Obama administration?

What if Hillary hadn’t chosen to become secretary of State under Obama, and used that period to speak out on the excesses of his administration?(What if Spartacus had a Piper Cub?) She had to know that however zany the Beatlemania-level of Peak Hopenchange, it wasn’t sustainable, and that his administration would ultimately follow the arc of the vast majority of presidential terms in office: a sweet honeymoon followed by a long and bitter hangover. She could have been speaking out on his mistakes and errors, and reminding voters that a more experienced person was waiting in the wings in 2012 or 2016. (I know, I know, but after all, this is how she presented herself in 2008.)

Comments are closed.

Top Rated Comments   
I am a thrill seeker. I sincerely hope that the Democrats nominate Pocahontas Warren as their presidential candidate for 2016. I crave the excitement of the circus atmosphere that would follow as we probe the depths of the moronic mentality of the American electorate. Hopefully she would chose from among Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, or Al Sharpton as her running mate for added frosting on the cake.

If Pocahontas were to be elected then the only question for me would be regarding the difficulty of New Zealand citizenship.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
Driscoll and others should never confuse having money with having "class".
Ol' Joe Kennedy was the classic example of the Gatsby impersonator, the nouveau arriviste striver who made a bundle of money starting with his bootlegging of alcohol during Prohibition.
Franklin Roosevelt, Hudson Valley N.Y. landed "old money", appointed Ol' Joe to be head of the Securities and Exchange Commission because, as he said, "It takes one to know one", meaning - crooks.
Later Franklin Roosevelt appointed the red haired Irishman to be his ambassador at the august Court of St.James because he [Roosevelt] thought it amusing to have an Irishman as his Ambassador to Britain.

As a general rule, those folks with true "class" come from the moneyed families we never read about. The Clintons have no class. They're merely crass.

There are other examples, but the whole Kennedy clan along with these three Clintons are the best contemporary examples of the nouveau riche trying to make a big splash, Hollywood "style".
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
If you assume what liberals were telling each other 22 years ago was true -- that Bill might be a New Democrat but Hillary was firmly in their corner -- then even with her more pragmatic stances mimicking her husband's since 1995, you'd assume Hillary wasn't going to go full-bore on what Obama was doing because any concerns she had were more style over substance. That is,it wasn't so much the policies Obama wanted, it was the fact he was not up to handling the job of turning those ideas into working reality.

If you take away disagreement over policy and make it only into a disagreement over execution, there's no way Hillary's going around the country telling people it's not the plans that are bad, it's that the first African-American president is too incompetent to carry them out. She's really stuck just sniping around the edges through surrogates, and trying to figure out the best way to run as Bill's third term, and not Obama's, in 2016 while fending off the Liz Warren faction of the party.
36 weeks ago
36 weeks ago Link To Comment
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All Comments   (41)
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I'm a bit confused. Presenting a movie quote with an Ed Klein quote suggests his is as much fiction too. On a prior book of Klein's: "James Geraghty wrote, “Folks, there are plenty of arguments against Hillary Clinton, her policies, her views, her proposals, and her philosophies. This stuff ain’t it. Nobody on the right, left, or center ought to stoop to this level.” So somebody feel free to jump in and explain why Klein isn't a hack?
34 weeks ago
34 weeks ago Link To Comment
"So why accept a job offer to serve in the Obama administration?"

It was an easy choice. The One called her up, and made her an offer:

"I'll make you SecState, and you get to ride the tide of my election as the First Black President. You get the foreign policy credentials you currently lack - credentials that no Republican candidate is going to have. You get to stay in the public eye and keep your popularity high. You'll have a lock on the 2016 nomination. I'll support you, and you'll win the election. In other words, I'm handing the Oval Office to you on a silver platter in 2016. All you have to do is play nice. Be a team player, support your new President, be a loyal cabinet member, and continue to support me after my first term."

He had her in a box. She'd have been stark raving mad to turn down that offer.

35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
Elizabeth Warren? What in hell has she ever done besides squeak a victory into the Senate? Yes, I know, Obama had as much going for him, but are we really that stupid as to even entertain her for "first woman president"? Do they really think there are as many men who feel "male guilt" as there were people who voted for Obama out of "white guilt"? I could go on, but I find the entire idea simply too ludicrous. I just hope I don't have to eat my words.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
Hil is far from a shoe-in as prez. All repubs have to do is stop running WWII relics and otherwise unelectable troglodytes.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
Same was true for Obama. Any DECENT conservative would have buried him.

35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
The presidency is Hillary Clinton's if she wants it. She will be sold, easily, as an identity candidate to women. That alone should win her the presidency. But when you combine that with the certainty that all non-whites NEVER give more than 40%, tops, of their vote to Republicans, she CANNOT LOSE. Yes, blacks will not turn out for her as they did for their identity candidate but those that do vote will vote 90% plus for the Democrat, as they always do.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
Chelsea's ambivalence with the money she had been paid?

She didn't actually *make* money, in the self-esteem affirming sense of working hard for something, creating something with objective value, and delivering it.

She was *paid* money by organizations eager to have access to her parents. She was, in effect, selling her parents, not something of her own making.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
Hillary's biggest obstacle is her own past. Going back to her behavior on the Watergate panel. The Dems have made past actions - no matter how far back - relevant to present character.
Her wealth probably will not be as big an issue as her health. Remember all the Dem "concern" about Cheney, Reagan, etc? Their questions and "concerns" will not apply to Hillary. Anyone running for President either has big money or is connected to it, so all candidates are at least partially under the gun on money issues.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
"had to know that questions about her age and wealth would pop up somewhere"

Actually, I don't think she did know. At least, she did not expect it so soon, and not from the MSM lapdogs. And the questions were really softballs, but she was expecting a coronation. Oops.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
About the alternate history of Hillary not joining O's cabinet...

Can you imagine if she'd stayed in the Senate?

My God, the woman would be the Empress of Capitol Hill now. Her bitter PUMA army would be fighting Holder, Michelle, and Jarrett tooth and nail. She would have more power and prestige than Harry Reid. Nothing would happen without her permission. She would be a constant threat to Obama's power. She would eclipse Joe Biden like the shadow of the Sears Tower falling over a housefly. With a single equivocating glance, she could cast mortal doubt over any one of Obama's impeachable offenses.

And all this time, she could remain clear of the underside of his bus and detached from his scandals.

Man, did that woman miscalculate. Her quitting the Senate to work for him is proof right there that the Clintons' political acumen (Bill went along with all this, need I say?) is faaaaar from perfect.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
"She would have more power and prestige than Harry Reid. Nothing would happen without her permission."

Nope. She'd just be seen as a bitter old hag, fighting Obama because he beat her, not out of principle.

Such a course of action would have finished her politically.

And she doesn't have what it takes to go up against a politician like Harry Reid. She's really not very bright. He'd have her tied in knots so fast she wouldn't know what hit her.

35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
Bad blood between Clintons and Obamas?

No sh*t Sherlock!

Anyone with half a brain could have assumed that back in 2008 during the nomination run-up. And that would be the same half-brain that would have told folks that Obama was a fraud and worse.
35 weeks ago
35 weeks ago Link To Comment
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