Yesterday, the State Department released thousands of pages of official emails written to and by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who is currently running for president.
One of the following is an intentional joke. The other? An unintentional joke. Each is simultaneously funny and deeply disturbing. You be the judge of which is which.
— Nick Gillespie (@nickgillespie) July 1, 2015
This latest batch of emails, from a few months in 2009, shows a secretary who, among other things, struggled to use a fax machine. They also show a significant amount of interaction with such compromised figures as Sidney Blumenthal and also that some people (such as Obama admin figure David Axelrod) who have said they didn't know anything about Clinton's private server set-up clearly did.
Business Insider has a roundup of the "funniest" emails. Among them, an entreaty to do a puff piece in Parade whose author, the journalist Leslie Gelb, guarantees the secretary's handler that Clinton "will like it."
If no man is a hero to his valet, no former Secretary of State can be a hero to a nation that reads through her emails. Whether this batch does real damage to Hillary Clinton—as opposed to simply (and rightly) embarrassing the hell out of her—remains to be seen.
But for the rest of us, these things are required reading. Whether you're for another Clinton presidency or dead-set against that, the emails are worth sorting through. They detail the pettiness and closed-door stupidity, banality, and general lack of contact with reality that characterize day-to-day politics at the very highest level. And they show that among people whose power is global in reach, the grasp of reality is quite limited.