The Breakfast Table

Hillary, We Hardly Know Ya

Well, I have to concede we are post-impeachment, but I’m not sure we’re post-Monica, which, since we’re definitely not pre-Monica, must mean we’re Monica. (And since Linda Tripp is us, so by extension is she.) But I want to urge you to live in the moment and cease, as so many people in my high school yearbook put it, lookin’ back on the road rushing under your wheels.

If we’re talking about the Hillary hype, I think it’s, you know, hype, and I don’t have that much to add except to say that in and of itself it demonstrates that the assumption of her strategic incompetence is a narrative convention that is not always, or even usually, borne out by circumstance. You know what I’m saying? She seems to me to be doing just fine, and to have succeeded much more often than she’s failed in the course of her career, even if, like Patrick Ewing, she has never won a championship at the highest professional level.

If we’re talking about the Hillary substance, I don’t think I could responsibly say that I know what that is. (What are or is Eloi? What?) I read that article she wrote on children’s rights back in the day, that there was all the fuss and bother over whether she was advocating that 11-year-olds be allowed to divorce their parents for making them take the garbage out, which she clearly wasn’t. It was very reasonable, actually. But that’s the only primary knowledge I have of her; the coverage of her that I’ve seen has always been so agenda-driven, one way or the other, and so riven with sexist imagery, I don’t know that I trust it. I remember one profile, I think in TheNew Yorker, that described her as choosing to sit in a thronelike wing-chair. I mean, how thronelike could it have been, was it ermine-trimmed or something?

That she’s a power-crazed, opportunistic profiteer I would take on faith as having been proved by the mere fact of her running for the Senate, if she were to, but that applies to all candidates. That she stood by her big, fat, horny husband doesn’t to me carry any more political weight than her husband’s bigness, fatness, or horniness, which is to say, none. That she stood by her big, fat, horny, death-penalty-exercising, welfare-abolishing, bomb-dropping husband for whom I have nothing but contempt as little better than a murderer is another story. I guess I could only hope that she is such a power-crazed, opportunistic profiteer that she secretly doesn’t really like these policies and would not pursue them if given her own, um, head. I’m just glad we got rid of D’Amato, although I kind of miss Penny. Was that her name? Someone should do a book on first wives of the Republican party, just to include her.

Feminism is not irrelevant, goddammit. I didn’t read Wendy Shalit’s book, but from seeing her on TV I kind of thought that her allure comes from the fact that she’s a total hottie who espouses virginal reserve. But about the feminism thing I could go on and on.