According to the latest Gallup Poll, Hillary Clinton is the most admired women in America, and she has been for 17 of the last 18 years. This will be used to help create the Hillary Is An Unstoppable Juggernaut narrative that is just getting underway and will soon become unendurable. The same process that brought us Regular Guy George W. and Saddam’s weapons of mass destruction is now going to sell us Hillary Clinton, Unbeatable Titan of 2016, and maybe even The Most Beloved Women in America Since Eleanor Roosevelt!
It’s just another bullshit media narrative. Once the meme machine shifts in gear it can con you into believing anything. It can convince you that goose eggs are caviar and grape soda is wine if powerful people want it that way, but it would still be bullshit. Hillary Clinton and the Beltway claque can delude themselves all they want about her inevitability and her appeal, the fact is it won’t matter when the campaign starts in earnest. She’s popular right now because nobody has seen her lately. She occasionally makes pronouncements about Important Events, but apart from that she’s largely been out of the public eye. Well, everybody loves their mother-in-law when she’s back home in Olathe, but during a two week’s visit at Christmas her virtues quickly fade.
Will Hillary Clinton still be the most admired women in America six months deep into the campaign? Will wall-to- wall coverage of her robotically calculating, condescending, transparently cynical politicking still warm the hearts of Americans? It won’t, and half the country will view her just like they viewed Ann Romney: an arrogant and entitled aristocrat who thinks the little people smell.
Meanwhile, another bullshit narrative will come barreling down the road and catch Team Clinton utterly flat-footed, just like in 2008. They will discover, too late, that “Vote For Hillary — It’s Her Turn!” is neither an appealing nor an effective campaign strategy. And once the Chris Matthews-Maureen Dowd set grab hold of this new bullshit narrative, Hillary will be in deep, deep trouble. That bullshit narrative might look something like this: Jeb Bush, A New Kind of Conservative, Nobly Fighting to Redeem His Family’s Name.
From then on, it will be Nurse Ratched Hillary (Is she too old to be president? Does she have health problems she’s not disclosing?) versus the Smart Bush, who’s wife is Hispanic and who ain’t his big brother’s kind of conservative. Come home, normal Americans, it’s safe to vote Republican again.
But what about all of Jeb’s shady business deals? Well, what about them? Poppy and Dubya’s shady business deals didn’t harm them at all. In the TV cartoon of American presidential elections, those kinds of details are dead air. No producer in his right mind would let such boring filler on the show unless he wanted to wind up mopping floors the rest of his life.
Besides, crooked financial dealings are a basic prerequisite for the job. The alarming absence of such deals on Obama’s resume meant he had to work doubleplus hard to convince Wall Street he was safe (and he succeeded).
If Jeb’s crimes and misdemeanors ever threatened to become a real issue, all he’d have to do is hunker down and stonewall for a news cycle or two. It wouldn’t be long before the media found more important things to cover. Sooner or later Hillary would get caught eating a hot dog with a knife and fork, or distending her pinky when sipping a beer, or committing some other dainty upper class faux pas while mixing it up with the folks somewhere, and the media would be off and running.
After that, Jeb’s chicanery will be as ancient as Watergate, and any mention of it will be met with the withering groans and eye-rolls of the Beltway Masturbation Brigade: “Ohhh, that’s soooo five minutes ago! Get over it. Get a life. Get hip and move on!” They will already have chosen Bush and built their narratives, and anything that contradicts them will be dismissed out of hand.
But what about the base? Bush can’t win the base! I think he can. Just put a right-winger from a swing state on the ticket and let him roam the swamps and prairies of Red State America, tossing clay and raw pig intestines to the crowds. They’ll come around. When he goes too far he can just claim that his words were taken out of context. The entire right wing noise machine will leap to his defense and the mainstream media, terrified of being accused of liberal bias, will sheepishly concede the point. Meanwhile, Jebby can go on playing Mr. Nice Guy in more civilized venues.
Believe me, the prospect of a Hillary Clinton presidency will bring the NASCAR Jacobins out on election day, especially after Rush Limbaugh sends word down from his Palm Beach mansion that Jeb’s okay, which, after playing hard to get for awhile, he most assuredly will (although the Bush camp might have to procure a few underage Dominican hookers in order to, ahem, nail down the old boy’s endorsement. Winning ain’t cheap).
In the battle of the bullshit media narratives, Noble Son will beat Inevitable Queen Hillary, regardless of what the polls say right now. But Hillary and her complacent, high-paid flacks will go on believing their own hype. They’ll seek out every poll result and focus group that reinforces the notion of Hillary’s invincibility, conclude she has it sown up, and then play prevent defense and lose.