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Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Bill Whittle got it wrong about Hillary Clinton

... slightly. And anyway, that's not the point.
He analyses a series of lies by Mrs Clinton relating to her off-site storage of classified information on not one, but many insecure devices, and then quotes the law:
"... the simple admission that she did not turn in all of her work-related documents – for whatever reason -- was an open admission that she was in violation of U.S. Code, Title 18, Part I, Chapter 101, Section 2071, Paragraph a: which in fact is a felony. And of course, if you’re running for President, a felony looks bad on the resume."
Here is the paragraph to which he refers:
"(a) Whoever willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, or destroys, or attempts to do so, or, with intent to do so takes and carries away any record, proceeding, map, book, paper, document, or other thing, filed or deposited with any clerk or officer of any court of the United States, or in any public office, or with any judicial or public officer of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both."
But that crack about a résumé is wide of the mark. What Mr Whittle should have quoted is the next paragraph (emphasis mine):
"(b) Whoever, having the custody of any such record, proceeding, map, book, document, paper, or other thing, willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, falsifies, or destroys the same, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both; and shall forfeit his office and be disqualified from holding any office under the United States. As used in this subsection, the term “office” does not include the office held by any person as a retired officer of the Armed Forces of the United States."
So, if this is proved against Mrs Clinton, no application is needed or wanted.
I'm not American and if I were I should have a hard time choosing between Mrs Clinton and Mr Trump, for different reasons. However, in my view Trump is a symptom and Clinton part of the malaise. The USA and the UK, as well as other Western countries, are in a systemic crisis foreseen long ago by the late Sir James Goldsmith:
The theatre of the Presidential candidates' debate may make good emo-TV, but the underlying issue of untrammelled "free trade" and its socio-economic effects has its own narrative, irrespective of the Godzilla-versus-x franchise. It seems from reports of last night's set-to that Mrs Clinton is for it and Mr Trump, like President Coolidge's preacher re sin, is "agin' it".
It's still possible, of course, that the egregious Mr Trump could win the national vote and lose the Presidency, thanks to the workings of the Electoral College - he wouldn't be the first.
Time for the real democracy that you and I love so much. Perhaps, if we little Brits could have a referendum on EU membership, Americans  could have one on TPP, TiSA and all the rest? After all, the EU is just a scale model of globalism. And then, like us, you could have the fun of watching whoever takes the leadership try to get out of the plebiscite's result - or be thwarted and subverted in attempts to honour it.
I was getting ready to go down the Ecuadorian Embassy behind Harrod's and ask for asylum - move over, Julian Assange - but June 23rd took me by surprise. In Churchill's words after Alamein: "We have victory - a remarkable and definite victory. A bright gleam has caught the helmets of our soldiers."
Cling on to hope, and remember it's not about them, it's about you.


A K Haart said...

"in my view Trump is a symptom and Clinton part of the malaise"

I agree. To some it may look like an odd comparison, but one could say the same about May and Corbyn. Neither has the key to more relevant politics, both flounder around in outdated rhetoric.

James Higham said...

So, essentially, Whittle did not get it wrong - just made slight emphasis differences.

Sackerson said...

JH: quoted the wrong law. Besides, isn't it trivial? I don't suppose this is the sort of case for which this law was framed.

Much more important there - as here in the UK - is how the system of representation usually fails to give a voice to the victims of systemic economic malfunctions. Where is there room for a vote against globalization?

And then, where is the public education necessary to allow meaningful participation in democracy? I'm reminded of the quote from that genius Douglas Adams:

"... he no more knows his destiny than a tea-leaf knows the history of the East India Company."