Part 2—Clinton creates a script: Live and direct from Little Rock, Gene Lyons wrote a column last week about those Confederate statues.
We'd say his column is well worth reading. The column starts like this:
"If your precious 'Southern heritage' includes swastikas, you may as well quit reading right here. But odds are astronomically high that it doesn't."
We'd say the column is well worth reading. For various reasons, we wondered what sorts of comments it would draw.
Did we even have to ask? It drew some familiar old script.
Amazingly but not amazingly, one dull-witted reader of Lyons' column quickly began discussing pathetic Al Gore. This reader was armed with tired old script, live and direct from the two-year war which sent George Bush to the White House.
In the main, this two-year war was waged by the mainstream press, not by the right-wing machine. It was largely staged by the East Coast Irish Catholic mafia which seemed to be marching, in large degree, to the tune of Jack Welch, at the time the benevolent CEO in charge on NBC News.
That war was waged by Matthews, by Dowd, by Williams; by (Margaret) Carlson, Russert and Kelly, though also by Connolly and Seelye—by good mainstream names like those. In fact, this idiot war was conducted almost entirely through script, including such script points as these:
Scripted claims from long ago:Al Gore grew up in a fancy hotel? When they wanted to flirt with open lying, they even said he grew up at the Ritz!
Al Gore said he invented the Internet!
Al Gore grew up in a fancy hotel!
But through those scripts, and through many others, the destructive war against Gore was waged. It's the war which sent George W. Bush to the White House, and thus sent the U.S. to Iraq.
People are dead all over the world because those fine old names conducted that two-year war by peddling those stupid sad scripts.
Everyone from Drum on down has agreed to pretend that this never occurred, and therefore that it bore no connection to what happened in last year's campaign. But as we've told you for many years, stupid sad script never dies.
Dumb silly scripts gets lodged in ours heads, and we humans do love to recite! For that reason, the comment thread to Lyons' column quickly featured the claims we've posted—silly sad claims from long ago, about someone who hadn't even been mentioned in Lyons' column.
Simply put, script never dies, no matter how silly or bogus! And now, Hillary Clinton has decided to create another such pleasing script.
Sad! More and more and more and more, our liberal tribe has reacted to the pimping of script by denatured auteurs by deciding that we should adopt the same pleasing practice. We embellish, misstate and disappear facts in the pursuit of our partisan ends. In this way, we tell the world that we lack the skill which would let us prevail in a real public discussion.
We create our own silly scripts, which must involve matters of gender and race. That's what Hillary Clinton has done in the matter which was described in this week's Sunday Review.
Let's give credit where due! According to Nexis, the New York Times had not reported Clinton's claim in its news reporting. We'll assume this means that editors (correctly) felt that her claim, however pleasing, is rather hard to sustain.
No such silence invaded the suburbs at this week's Sunday Review. The Review turned things over to Jill Filipovic, a reliable peddler of rank tribal script. Here's her start, headline included:
FILIPOVIC (8/27/17): Donald Was a Creep. Too Bad Hillary Couldn’t Say It.As noted, Filipovic is a reliable peddler of script. In this passage, she accurately quoted what Clinton says in the part of her book she chose to release on Morning Joe. (On Morning Joe! Sad.)
You’re walking down the street and there’s a man trailing uncomfortably close behind you. A co-worker stands a little too intimately in your personal space. There’s a stranger breathing down your neck on the subway. Each time, you do a quick mental arithmetic: Do I ignore it? Move away quickly, but without causing a scene? Say something? Yell?
“This is not O.K., I thought,” Hillary Clinton writes in her forthcoming memoir, “What Happened,” in a passage to which too many women can relate. “It was the second presidential debate, and Donald Trump was looming behind me. Two days before, the world heard him brag about groping women. Now we were on a small stage and no matter where I walked, he followed me closely, staring at me, making faces. It was incredibly uncomfortable. He was literally breathing down my neck. My skin crawled.”
In excerpts from the book, which were released by “Morning Joe” on Wednesday, Mrs. Clinton revealed that in that moment, she asked herself: What do you do? “Do you stay calm, keep smiling and carry on as if he weren’t repeatedly invading your space?” she writes. “Or do you turn, look him in the eye, and say loudly and clearly: ‘Back up, you creep, get away from me! I know you love to intimidate women, but you can’t intimidate me, so back up.’ ”
Filipovic quotes Clinton correctly. The New York Times includes a photo from that second Trump-Clinton debate, a photo which may, on the surface, seem to support Clinton's pleasing claim. But her pleasing claim is quite hard to sustain, if you're willing to take the time to rewatch that second debate.
Don't get us wrong! Candidate Trump engaged in a great deal of obnoxious behavior at that second debate, at which he included old sex accusers of Bill Clinton as his honored guests.
As is his wont, he made a long string of inaccurate statements. Some of these statements were baldly ridiculous, a point we'll review tomorrow.
He interrupted Clinton again and again, even after he'd been asked again and again to stop. In his most disordered moment, he decided to offer this pledge:
CANDIDATE TRUMP (10/9/16): I’ll tell you what. I didn’t think I’d say this, but I’m going to say it, and I hate to say it. But if I win, I am going to instruct my attorney general to get a special prosecutor to look into your situation, because there has never been so many lies, so much deception. There has never been anything like it, and we’re going to have a special prosecutor.Poor Trump! He hadn't planned to say it, and he hated having to say it. But he was going to have a special prosecutor examine her many crimes!
When I speak, I go out and speak, the people of this country are furious. In my opinion, the people that have been long-term workers at the FBI are furious. There has never been anything like this, where e-mails—and you get a subpoena, you get a subpoena, and after getting the subpoena, you delete 33,000 e-mails, and then you acid wash them or bleach them, as you would say, very expensive process.
So we’re going to get a special prosecutor, and we’re going to look into it, because you know what? People have been—their lives have been destroyed for doing one-fifth of what you’ve done. And it’s a disgrace. And honestly, you ought to be ashamed of yourself.
("Everything he just said is absolutely false, but I’m not surprised," Clinton quickly replied.)
Candidate Trump behaved quite badly at that second debate. He made many ridiculous claims; he interrupted freely. He even promised to create a type of third-world prosecutorial state.
Candidate Trump did many things that night, but here's something he didn't do. He didn't follow Candidate Clinton closely, staring at her, making faces, no matter where she walked on the candidates' rather small stage.
He didn't literally breathe down her neck, thereby making her skin crawl. In truth, it would be a large stretch to say that he "breathed down her neck" at all.
Candidate Trump did many things that night. We liberals are being scripted to pretend that he behaved in one of the novelized ways we most enjoy discussing.
Our script premiered on Morning Joe! That said, few parts of this picture aren't embarrassing and wrong.
Tomorrow, we'll offer the tale of the tape, reviewing what Trump really did. That said, the facts will almost surely play no role in what follows from this.
Increasingly, our dying culture runs on silly, peculiar tribal script. This constitutes a major part of our nation's downward spiral.
It's as we've told you for many years. Increasingly, our dying discourse is silly script all the way down.
Tomorrow: The tale of the tape
The tale of the tape: To watch C-Span's tape of the second debate, you can just click here.
Warning! It runs ninety minutes!
The photo in the New York Times shows Clinton answering Question 5, at roughly minute 26. As you will see if you choose to watch, Trump is standing by his table and chair. It's where he's supposed to be.