'Clinton Should Be Proud of Her Wall Street Speeches'

"Show me the money!" (AP Photo/John Locher)

If you were to develop a Sliding Scale of Obsequiousness (patent pending), it might look something like this:

• Needlessly helpful

• Fawning sycophant

• Enabler

• Happy victim


And if you were to smoosh all four together, you’d get John MacIntosh and his recent opinion column for CNN.

Let’s go through the Sliding Scale of Obsequiousness in order.

• Needlessly Helpful

Hillary Clinton has never been short of excuses, but MacIntosh has provided her with some whoppers. Here’s one:

It’s just show business. Every brand-name entertainer over 45 — singers, athletes, writers and politicians — cashes in one way or another because they have time on their hands yet still appeal to the well-heeled baby boomers who attend conferences, throw expensive parties and shell out for Vegas shows. The Wall Street firms who signed you up weren’t thinking about how they could increase their power and influence — they have K Street and “senior adviser” sinecures for that — they just thought you’d provide some good old-fashioned entertainment. (To tell you the truth, I would have preferred Keith Richards to your husband at that meeting in 2002, but I was not involved in the event planning, and he probably would have been too expensive anyway.)

“Everybody does it! And, really, aren’t you just as entertaining as Keith Richards?”


I think maybe we’ve already slipped into the next category, but there’s so much to choose from, let’s give it its own section.

• Fawning Sycophant

Your earnings reflect admirable commercial instincts. Americans appreciate a candidate with business acumen. Your speech-related earnings reflect your appreciation for the market and your belief in capitalism. Not to have taken millions in low-hanging speaking fees from easy marks would have been positively un-American. Even socialists should appreciate the extra joy — remember “Ocean’s Eleven” — that you got taking money from people whom you may not particularly like. Appearances to the contrary notwithstanding, you weren’t fraternizing with the enemy — you were picking his pocket!

You really ought to appreciate MacIntosh’s probity in equating Clinton with a pickpocket and a socialist (but I repeat myself), even if it was merely a happy accident. On the other hand, when Wall Street guys try to pass themselves off as “easy marks,” all I can tell you is “Check for your wallet.”


• Enabler

You were just leaning in. While Bill was out making millions giving his speeches, were you supposed to stay back in Chappaqua knitting booties by the fire? What type of message would that send to hardworking women? And tell people that after your two terms as president, you plan to return to the speech circuit and command the same level of inflation-adjusted fees that male presidents have earned before you.


Just as Hillary enabled Bill’s sexual dalliances (and perhaps even a sexual assault or two) by attacking his paramours (or even victims) as crazy or liars or crazy liars, MacIntosh enables Hillary as she sells herself as a champion of women’s causes.

• Happy Victim

You brought joy to others. Remind people that your audience was mostly those nameless professionals who huddle forgotten in the bottom 90% of the top 1%. The little people on the outside who, noses pressed to the glass, would otherwise never have had the chance to feel like insiders by shaking your hand and exchanging a few bon mots. Not rich enough to be courted as donors, not numerous enough to matter as voters, not powerful enough to be sought after for their influence, they are truly the unremarked forgotten of our political system. You should be proud to have a brought an hour or two of joy into their lives.

If you were also to develop a Sliding Scale of Internet Punditry, you’d start at the top of the scale perhaps with Mark Steyn, and at the bottom end you’d have Twitter Valley Girl.

That last bit has reduced me to Twitter Valley Girl.

It’s not enough to compare Herself to Keith Richards or to praise Her “belief in capitalism.” Enabling Hillary’s pretensions isn’t going too far. But telling Hillary she should be proud to have so selflessly “brought an hour or two of joy” into the lives of the “forgotten” little people at “the bottom 90%” of global equity firms…



I can’t even.

I literally can’t even.

MacIntosh must be putting us on.

He has to be putting us on.

He is putting us on. Isn’t he?

Well, isn’t he?


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