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2016 Postmortem

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(32,640 posts)
Wed Sep 14, 2016, 07:26 AM Sep 2016

Garrison Keillor on Hillary powering through illness [View all]

From his Facebook page:

I saw Hillary once working a rope line for more than an hour, a Secret Service man holding her firmly by the hips as she leaned over the rope and reached into the mass of arms and hands reaching out to her. She had learned the art of encountering the crowd and making it look personal. It was not glamorous work, more like picking fruit, and it took the sort of discipline your mother instills in you: those people waited to see you so by gosh you can treat them right.

So it’s no surprise she pushed herself to the point of collapse the other day. What’s odd is the perspective, expressed in several stories, that her determination to keep going reveals a “lack of transparency” ---- that she should’ve announced she had pneumonia and gone home and crawled into bed.

I’ve never gone fishing with her, which is how you really get to know someone, but I did sit next to her at dinner once, one of those stiff dinners that is nobody’s idea of a wild good time, the conversation tends to be stilted, everybody’s beat, you worry about spilling soup down your shirtfront. She being First Lady led the way and she being a Wellesley girl, the way led upward. We talked about my infant daughter and schools and about Justice Blackmun, and I said how inspiring it was to sit and watch the Court in session, and she laughed and said, “I don’t think it’d be a good idea for me to show up in a courtroom where a member of my family might be a defendant.” A succinct and witty retort. And she turned and bestowed her attention on Speaker Dennis Hastert, who was sitting to her right. She focused on him and even made him chuckle a few times. I was impressed by her smarts, even more by her discipline.

I don’t have that discipline. Most people don’t. Politics didn’t appeal to me back in my youth, the rhetoric (“Ask not what your country can do for you”) was so wooden compared to “so we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past,” so I walked dark rainy streets imagining the great novel I wouldn’t write and was still trying to be cool and indifferent well into my thirties, when other people were making a difference in the world.

Hillary didn’t have a prolonged adolescence and fiction was not her ambition. She doesn’t do dreaminess. What some people see as a relentless quest for power strikes me as the good habits of a serious Methodist. Be steady. Don’t give up. It’s not about you. Work for the night is coming.

The woman who does not conceal her own intelligence is a fine American tradition, going back to Anne Bradstreet and Harriet Beecher Stowe and my ancestor Prudence Crandall, but none has been subjected to the steady hectoring that Mrs. Clinton has. She is the first major-party nominee to be pictured in prison stripes by the opposition. She is the first cabinet officer ever to be held personally responsible for her own email server, something ordinarily delegated to anonymous nerds in I.T. The fact that terrorists attacked an American compound in Libya under cover of darkness when Secretary Clinton presumably got some sleep has been held against her, as if she personally was in command of the defense of the compound, a walkie-talkie in her hand, calling in air strikes.

Extremism has poked its head into the mainstream, aided by the Internet. Back in the day, you occasionally saw cranks on a street corner handing out mimeographed handbills arguing that FDR was responsible for Pearl Harbor, but you saw their bad haircuts, the bitterness in their eyes, and you turned away. Now they’re in your computer, whispering that the economy is on the verge of collapse and for a few bucks they’ll tell you how to protect your savings. But lacking clear evidence, we proceed forward. We don’t operate on the basis of lurid conjecture.

Someday historians will get this right and look back at the steady pitter-pat of scandals that turned out to be nothing, nada, zero and ixnay and will conclude that, almost a century after women’s suffrage, almost 50 years after Richard Nixon signed Title IX into law, a woman was required to run for office wearing concrete shoes. Check back fifty years from now and if I’m wrong, go ahead and dance on my grave.

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TY ~ KNR Lucinda Sep 2016 #1
Great treestar Sep 2016 #2
I love Garrison's writing, homegrown Democrat. betsuni Sep 2016 #3
Preach it, brother. planetc Sep 2016 #4
TY so much for this Hekate Sep 2016 #5
Excellent! Nitram Sep 2016 #6
Kicked, Recced, Shared on Facebook, and Tweeted. eom MohRokTah Sep 2016 #7
kick kentuck Sep 2016 #8
My Prairie Home Companion for many years.. mountain grammy Sep 2016 #9
I miss Prairie Home Companion so much. redstatebluegirl Sep 2016 #10
Love this lillypaddle Sep 2016 #11
she is a WOMAN--a smart, competent, dedicated, non-subservient WOMAN, and not a puke, to boot. niyad Sep 2016 #21
Bingo. nt awoke_in_2003 Sep 2016 #33
I enjoy writing Sophiegirl Sep 2016 #12
K&R n/t lupinella Sep 2016 #13
K & R SunSeeker Sep 2016 #14
True judge of character. Bless his heart. Garrison Keillor is the real heartland. Laser102 Sep 2016 #15
K&R!!! 2naSalit Sep 2016 #16
The Keillor Piece evillemike2009 Sep 2016 #17
I am sooooo stealing "non-troversy", if you don't mind. niyad Sep 2016 #34
k&r bigtree Sep 2016 #18
Perfect Mr Maru Sep 2016 #19
Oh Garrison jcgoldie Sep 2016 #20
k and r for the truth niyad Sep 2016 #22
K&R! NastyRiffraff Sep 2016 #23
I'd love to hear him say this on air... Farmgirl1961 Sep 2016 #24
Odd perspective some have that determination to keep going reveals a “lack of transparency” Festivito Sep 2016 #25
If she went to bed-DAMNED Marthe48 Sep 2016 #30
Work becomes BAD. Rest becomes BAD. Silly. But, ignore, no! Answer, like Garrison does here. Festivito Sep 2016 #32
The perspective of one fascinating person about another fascinating person. Purely fantastic!!! tonyt53 Sep 2016 #26
He needs to read it in that melodic baritone voice of his. Tommy_Carcetti Sep 2016 #27
Oh my.... Liberal Jesus Freak Sep 2016 #28
I recommend his Writer's Almanac daily podcast. Basic LA Sep 2016 #29
that is a superb piece of writing renate Sep 2016 #31
I'm glad to hear MULTIPLE voices describing how outrageously sexist spooky3 Sep 2016 #35
Love Garrison! burrowowl Sep 2016 #36
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