The Clinton Way

Mystery Machine

The New York Times previews Peter Schweitzer’s Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich and is forced to admit that the book is “potentially more unsettling” than previous Clinton exposés. From Amy Chozick’s writeup:

The book, a copy of which was obtained by The New York Times, asserts that foreign entities who made payments to the Clinton Foundation and to Mr. Clinton through high speaking fees received favors from Mrs. Clinton’s State Department in return.

“We will see a pattern of financial transactions involving the Clintons that occurred contemporaneous with favorable U.S. policy decisions benefiting those providing the funds,” Mr. Schweizer writes.

His examples include a free-trade agreement in Colombia that benefited a major foundation donor’s natural resource investments in the South American nation, development projects in the aftermath of the Haitian earthquake in 2010, and more than $1 million in payments to Mr. Clinton by a Canadian bank and major shareholder in the Keystone XL oil pipeline around the time the project was being debated in the State Department.

In the long lead up to Mrs. Clinton’s campaign announcement, aides proved adept in swatting down critical books as conservative propaganda, including Edward Klein’s “Blood Feud,” about tensions between the Clintons and the Obamas, and Daniel Halper’s “Clinton Inc.: The Audacious Rebuilding of a Political Machine.”

But “Clinton Cash” is potentially more unsettling, both because of its focused reporting and because major news organizations including The Times, The Washington Post and Fox News have exclusive agreements with the author to pursue the story lines found in the book.


Part of the Clintons’ genius is a variation on the “Big Lie.” Tell a lie big enough, and no one will believe you could possibly be lying. The Clintons, with varying degrees of success, hide behind a sort of “audacity of corruption.” Nobody, people seem to figure, could possibly be that corrupt and still hold public office.

When busted, their four-part Crisis Amelioration Process usually works wonders:

• Deny, deny, deny

• Smear the accuser

• Admit, finally, to some technical violation

• Declare that everything is out in the open now, and that we “move forward” past all this

Technically there’s also a fifth part, which is after a long enough spell to insist that “that’s all in the past now.” We’ll watch this process play itself out again over the coming weeks. Will it work? My guess, based purely on 20-plus years of Clinton watching is that of course it will work. The best hope for the Right is to have a new one of these books or scandals coming out every two or three months from now until November, 2016, and hope that the American people have a nasty case of Clinton Fatigue long before Election Day.

I should add that after deleting 32,000 public emails located on an unsecured private server while under subpoena, Hillary Clinton belongs in jail rather than on the campaign trail.