Hillary Clinton

Don’t Let Hillary Clinton Off the Hook for Her Foreign Policy Mistakes Because of Donald Trump

Her finger on the trigger isn't safer.

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Hillary Clinton remains an unrepentant hawk, but insists her track record of supporting American military intervention abroad is less likely to lead to conflict than what Donald Trump says on Twitter.

That is the argument Clinton advanced Thursday in what was billed as a major foreign policy address but more frequently devolved into a critique of Trump's social media habits.

"Imagine him deciding whether to send your spouses or children into battle," Clinton said. "Imagine if he had not just his Twitter account at his disposal when he's angry, but America's entire arsenal."

It's a good line, and Trump does often make statements that are counterproductive or inflammatory. But we don't have to imagine Clinton sending our spouses or children into battle, under circumstances that advanced neither our vital national interests nor our security. She has already done so multiple times and should not be let off the hook because of Trump's tweets.

While a senator from New York, Clinton voted to authorize the Iraq war, a decision her primary opponent rightly calls a "blunder" indicative of "bad judgment." Thousands of brave Americans died and trillions in taxpayer dollars were spent in a conflict that lasted longer than U.S. involvement in World War II in order to disarm Saddam Hussein of weapons he did not have.

Afterward the type of Islamic radicals who attacked America on 9/11 had more power in the region, not less. The Islamic republic of Iran had more power, not less. Iraq could only be held together by troops deployed not to keep foreign nationals from killing Americans, but to keep foreign nationals from killing each other.

Clinton, like most Americans, now concedes that the Iraq war was a mistake. But she did not turn against it until after this was already apparent to most of her party and vast swathes of the general public.

It was a mistake Clinton eagerly repeated as secretary of state, when she was one of the main proponents within the Obama administration of regime change in Libya. "We came, we saw, he died," she said of ousted dictator Muammar Qaddafi.

Unfortunately, Qaddafi was not alone. Since the military intervention in Libya, the country has descended into chaos and teemed with violence. In addition to the four Americans who were brutally murdered in Benghazi, many innocent Libyans have died.

Even President Barack Obama, Clinton's boss and the man who ultimately signed off on the Libya mission, admits "now it's kind of a mess."

Such a mess, in fact, that some national security experts have taken to calling Libya "Woodstock" for jihadists. It seems the only lesson Clinton learned from Iraq was to avoid politically unpopular "boots on the ground." But destabilizing countries by overthrowing even evil dictators often unleashes even worst forces, as ISIS runs wild in Libya just as it did in Iraq beforehand.

If politicians like Clinton failed to put Iraq back together again, they did not even try in Libya. Nor did Obama and Clinton even bother to seek congressional authorization for this intervention.

Undeterred, Clinton has pushed for greater U.S. military involvement in Syria, where regime change could once again empower the forces of jihadism and terror. She ridiculed Trump not only for his more outlandish foreign policy pronouncements but also his appreciation of the limits of what we can accomplish through war and the need to turn away from intervention toward self-protection.

"Take out the Iran deal stuff," Commentary editor John Podhoretz wrote of Clinton's anti-Trump foreign policy remarks, "and it's a Rubio speech." That's Marco Rubio, the hawkish Florida senator who railed against "isolationism" in the Republican Party while unsuccessfully seeking its presidential nomination.

Trump is maddening to those of us who favor greater restraint in the use of military force. He balances every sensible thing he says about foreign policy with something indefensible; he undermines salient criticisms of Clinton's conduct in Iraq and Libya by exaggerating his own prescience on these topics.

And when Trump could repeat some of these reasonable criticisms in response to Clinton's speech, he instead tweets about her teleprompter reading skills.

But from Kosovo under President Bill Clinton to the civil war in Syria today, Clinton has been a consistent voice for military adventurism, ignoring consequences and costs. As she warns us against letting her Republican opponent's "finger anywhere near the nuclear button," let's not forget how itchy her own trigger finger has been for going on two decades.

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193 responses to “Don’t Let Hillary Clinton Off the Hook for Her Foreign Policy Mistakes Because of Donald Trump

  1. “Imagine him deciding whether to send your spouses or children into battle,” Clinton said. “Imagine if he had not just his Twitter account at his disposal when he’s angry, but America’s entire arsenal.”

    Yeah, too bad GOP primary voters chose this moment to stick it to the establishment. Not that I expect Hillary to ever really have her comeuppance beyond not being president, but Trump makes her look to many to be the lesser of evils here.

    1. Hillary has attack record of ideological stupidity, stupid military inventions, volcanic personal rages, spousal abuse, and is currently sleeping with someone with personal and blood ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, and I’m supposed to fear Trump more because of his tweets?

      As a real estate developer, I suspect that if Trump were really the dangerous sort, he’d have had someone whacked by now, and we’d know it.

      I’m surprised that many people here don’t have a better grasp of Trump. He is indeed a bombastic showman, a negotiator who makes outrageous first offers. But he’s clearly a pragmatist. He wants to win. I would argue that pragmatists are less dangerous than deluded ideologues.

      1. And he is the only one telling the correct lies about guns

        1. *hands Mr Lizard a plump cricket with a cherry on top*

      2. I personally see Trump as a toothless blowhard. Yes, he is short-tempered, but I truly believe his bark is worse than his bite. From my experience, the ones who talk the most shit are the first to turn tail and run. It’s the quiet ones that you really need to worry about.

          1. Well said.

          2. Now we know what happened to the other American Heroes.

      3. personal and blood ties to the Muslim Brotherhood

        The Muslim Brotherhood is one of the few Islamic organizations on earth that isn’t involved in terrorism*, and is rejected by virtually every single other islamic-nationalist group because of its recognition of the validity of democratic processes and participation in elections.

        (*Arab leaders hate them and label them terrorists because they’re the most potent political opposition to the status quo in places like Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, UAE, etc. – where gazillionaire monarchies think ‘majority rule’ is an insane and existentially-threatening concept)

        Basically, the only scary thing about them is that they’re “muslim”.

        Talking about them as though they’re supposed to be super-scary means either the speaker is ignorant, or is preying on the ignorance of others.

        http://archive.is/JdIX

        1. Are they the super-scariest of Islamist organizations? No, not by a long shot.

          Are they Islamist, meaning that they follow the Koran and believe it is the destiny of Islam to rule the entire Earth as a theocratic dictatorship under sharia law? Yes.

          What’s “moderate” about that? There is no such thing as a “moderate totalitarian.”

          1. I’m just pointing out to you that citing the “muslim brotherhood” as though people are supposed to think they’re a scary terrorist organization make you look stupid to anyone who has even a passing knowledge of the history of the middle east.

            I’m aware that may not dissuade you.

            1. I know more than a little about Islamic history. Yes, the MB aren’t the worst of the worst, but they are still anti-libertarian theocrats, so screw ’em.

        2. Basically, the only scary thing about them is that they’re “muslim”.

          If you think Muslim = Islamist then sure, but then that is quite a scary thing indeed. The Muslim Brotherhood seeks less violent means to a nonetheless violent end. The best-case outcome of them getting and holding power is present-day Turkey. The more likely outcome is closer to Pakistan or Iran.

          1. Which is not to necessarily endorse that particular point of PapayaSF’s critique of Hillary. Huma Abedin being Chief of Staff is a scary proposition in its own right.

          2. Nothing you just said has anything to do with my point.

            They’re a political organization. Being a political organization doesn’t make them ‘good’ any more than the Nazi Party was ‘good’.

            But being a political organization means one shouldn’t be shocked and surprised when *other* politicians have ‘connections’ to them (IOW = “They talk”). Being a political organization means they talk to people about their crazy shit rather than blow themselves up.

            My point has nothing to do with whatever value you place on Political Islamism; it has to do with the fact that there’s nothing surprising or suspicious about politicians having ‘relationships’ with people in other political organizations, no matter how unsavory. Its how politics functions.

            1. It is however a foreign political organization with an illiberal agenda. I have no idea if Clinton is sleeping with Abedin and I have no reason to believe Clinton has sympathies with the Brotherhood, but not all political organizations are created equal. Similarly, it would be more concerning (although hardly surprising) if one of Bernie Sanders’s closest advisors was a member of the Fourth International than if that same person was a UNICEF Ambassador.

              1. It occurs to me that the metric “foreign + illiberal” covers a wide swath of organizations. My point is better summed up as “not all political organizations are created equal”.

              2. not all political organizations are created equal.

                When someone claims they are, you be sure to point that out.

                Just be aware that remarks like the above read almost identical to Salon saying that “”all Libertarians have “Ties” to the John Birch Society””

                IOW = its a comment by stupid people, intended to sway the views of other stupid people. It has little effect on anyone else, and just undermines the credibility of the people speaking.

                1. WTF man? You are not usually this sophistic. I gave specific examples. If you think my point is inapplicable, then explain why. But “politicians be politicking” doesn’t address the criticism.

                  1. yes it does. My point has nothing to do with defending the merits (or lack) of the Brotherhood.

                    It is however a foreign political organization with an illiberal agenda

                    Yes, and everyone involved in Middle Eastern politics, whether themselves illiberal or not, is going to have “Ties” to them. because they’re a huge organization and everyone talks to them.

                    Pretending that associations are ‘scary’ and ‘suspicious’ is bullshit. It implies that mere relationships amount to an endorsement or suggesting any shared agenda.

                    it would be more concerning (although hardly surprising) if one of Bernie Sanders’s closest advisors was a member of the Fourth International

                    Exactly my own point = It would be more-concerning because it would be at least one order of magnitude different from ‘mere association’.

                    Membership in a unsavory organization is obviously different than ‘association’ with an unsavory organization.

                    People can/have/do routinely accuse libertarians of “Tolerating” intolerant groups, and suggest that tolerance is a form of passive endorsement.

                    If someone had ‘blood ties’ to Al Qaeda, it might be worth noting. ‘blood ties’ to a very-large and diverse islamist political organization is basically just know-nothing demonization, no different than people who suggest that every Jew is in the pocket of Israel, or every Catholic is secretly controlled by the Pope.

        3. The Muslim Brotherhood is one of the few Islamic organizations on earth that isn’t involved in terrorism*

          International terrorism? Maybe/probably not, but the world of Islamist violence is quite incestuous, so I wonder how much they are the “political wing”, like the IRA used to pretend they weren’t involved in terrorism either, it was those other Irish nationalists.

          As with so much in this world, I have little confidence in my ability to discern the facts beneath the sedimentary layers of self-serving narratives.

      4. As a real estate developer, I suspect that if Trump were really the dangerous sort, he’d have had someone whacked by now, and we’d know it.

        Trump hasn’t murdered anyone that we know of, so he’s not the dangerous sort. Got it.

        1. Obama didn’t murder anyone either, until he got into the White House.

    2. yes, it’s much better to hide behind proxies when you accuse people of terrible things (e.g. Republicans just want to kill brown people and let old people die in the streets). that shows a much better temperament.

    3. WHYCOME YOGI BARE ASS FAIL?

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  2. Even President Barack Obama, Clinton’s boss and the man who ultimately signed off on the Libya mission, admits “now it’s kind of a mess.”

    Yet still refuses to admit that the intervention in Libya was a mistake. Obama only says the failure to plan for the aftermath was a mistake. Sounds like Bush/Cheney regarding Iraq.

    Also, fuck Trump. He’s a bombaholic and would have done the Libya intervention just as Obama/Clinton did.

    1. Trump was for the Libya intervention before he was against it, just as with the Iraq war. Mostly, he was against “not doing it right”, i.e., not being successful, but of course that’s Monday morning quarterbacking and revisionist history.

      Trump and Hillary both are pathological liars and megalomaniacs, but Trump is a sociopath who has only ripped off and scammed and fucked over anybody stupid enough to do business with him – Hillary is a psychopath responsible for getting people killed and then she’s spit on their corpses. You’re a fool if you think “issues” matter a damn bit in this election, it’s all about who has the balls to tell the biggest, boldest, most-barefaced lies and poor old Trump isn’t even in the same league as Hillary.

    2. Sounds like Bush/Cheney regarding Iraq.

      Dumber, IMO. Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld had an exit strategy that was full of shit. Despite that fact having essentially catapulted him into the White House, Obumbles *still* didn’t even think *that* far ahead.

  3. Serious question: Has there been any U.S. military action abroad that Hillary has opposed at the time since she has been in public service? *Public service* I know. Made me laugh typing it.

    1. Fuck, no. Bombing the shit out of Bosnia gave her a war-boner that never droops.

      1. She’s gonna have a hard time rallying the troops to, “Once more unto the breach!”. I’d rather lose to the French than do that.

        1. Indeed. No one will go near that breach.

          1. Webb Hubbell did. That man is an inspiration.

  4. “Imagine him deciding whether to send your spouses or children into battle,” Clinton said. “Imagine if he had not just his Twitter account at his disposal when he’s angry, but America’s entire arsenal.”

    Can’t right now. I’m too busy imaging your date with a chipper.

    1. We don’t have to actually imagine Hillary getting people killed. Unfortunately for her she has a public record.

  5. But we don’t have to imagine Clinton sending our spouses or children into battle, under circumstances that advanced neither our vital national interests nor our security.

    There’s nothing unusual about that. Every president since Carter has used military force unnecessarily.

    What is unusual about the Bush/Obama/Clinton regime is that, not only did they recklessly and promiscuously use military force, they lied about the casus belli, directly or indirectly aided enemies of the US, and wrecked havoc that made things even worse than the doing nothing. Clinton calls refers to such military action as “smart power at its best.”

    1. OTOH, Trump says he’s “the most militaristic candidate ever”. People in the military — both men and women — prefer Trump 2:1 over Hillary.

      1. People in the military — both men and women — prefer Trump 2:1 over Hillary.

        I wonder why?

  6. WHYCUM THEIR NO CLINTON ARTICLES… huh? What? Oh…

    1. Hilarious! Because that’s the objection, and not that there are six Trump articles for every Clinton article!

      1. Maybe that’s because Clinton is old news, while this Trump character just entered the political fray about 5 mins ago… perhaps?

        1. old fake news

        2. There’s an unprecedented FBI criminal investigation of a major party’s candidate. Jesus Titty Fucking Christ. There should be multiple articles written everyday about her. Instead there’s one thrown in the mix of ten articles about things Trump possibly might do. Do you not see the fucking difference? Are you people so fucking obsessed with the man and hate him to the point where you can’t see how insane this is? I’m not a Trump supporter, but 90% of shit written about him is crap and shouldn’t constitute as news. It’s outright lies, half truths, blatenly taking things out of context and conjecture. Meanwhile Hillary is the actual vile human being that you wish Trump to be and…crickets.

          1. There has been a remarkable dearth of H & R articles about the Clinton Foundation and the ongoing FBI investigations and civil/FOIA suits.

            I was out for a few days. Did H & R post on the 75 years that the State Department demands for producing her emails that did show up on State servers?

    2. This is probably that “libertarian case for Hillary” article we keep hearing about.

      1. No, that was Chapman’s “Because Trump is Worse” article from last week.

        1. Chapman = Reason!!!

          1. No. nor is sheldon richman or Shikha= Reason. Still, they choose to publish their retarded shit…which is *notable* and worthy of criticism.

            You keep repeating that line that “the part is not the whole” as though its some kind of instant editorial exculpation. who are you convincing? yourself?

            1. I agree that certain individual writers suck. But why can’t we just stick to that criticism, hmm?

              1. Because you keep throwing out the above straw-man anytime someone does? ^^^

                1. Bullshit. I strongly dislike Dalmia and Chapman. If people simply said they sucked, then I’d whole-heartedly agree. That’s not what happens. People instead bitch that there are too many Trump articles and not enough Hillary ones. Those are two separate issues, and I take exception with the latter, not the former.

                  1. You don’t seem to have any point other than you want to bitch about other people’s bitching and pretend its somehow morally superior for some reason which is apparent to no one.

                    1. Brilliant analysis.

                      You are right, though. I’m bitching about the bitching. Nothing about moral superiority (there’s nothing “moral” about this). I really am just bitching about the bitching.

                  2. People instead bitch that there are too many Trump articles and not enough Hillary ones. Those are two separate issues, and I take exception with the latter, not the former.

                    How? Not even Common Core math would justify your conclusion. Each day brings a new parade of Donnie’s horribleness and all the evil things he might, maybe, perhaps someday do. Meanwhile, we have a woman who embodies everything that is wrong with govt and cronyism, and who has the singular capacity to become a worse human being when given more power.

                    Since one of these two is the likely next president, that’s a tough reality to overlook.

                    1. I’ve noted this elsewhere, but I’d argue that Hillary’s evils are almost boring at this point (I don’t need it explained to me why she’s a nightmare from a libertarian … or any… perspective).

                      I would be fine with more Hillary-bashing articles like this one. I just wouldn’t read them because I already get that side of it (hence my point about why people are wasting their time reading Trump articles and getting all worked up over the number, when they can be ignored).

                    2. I’d argue that Hillary’s evils are almost boring at this point

                      if taking actions that get people killed is boring, then okay. People aren’t “wasting their time reading Trump” pieces; they are damn near besieged by them and have been for some time. When 8 articles go up and 5 are about something people should fear about Trump, blaming people for noticing seems a bit foolish .

                    3. THEY MADE ME READ TEH ARTICULS!

                    4. You think everyone else should ‘ignore’ the huge swath of Trump articles that have dominated Reason coverage for the past year…

                      (because sharing opinions is *so gauche*)

                      …yet you can’t bring yourself to hit the “block/mute” button when you see comments that rub you the wrong way?

                    5. There’s a block/mute button!!?!?

                    6. Is there anyone who reads Reason, other than PB and the commie, who doesn’t already know how terrible Hillary is?

                      The focus on Trump being a shitbag is completely appropriate.

                    7. Not according to the pissed off people replying to my (initially fairly innocuous… I must have his a nerve) post.

                    8. I must have his a nerve) post.

                      *you* must have hit a nerve…. when you replied to my innocuous point about Chapman with a hysterical accusation?

                    9. C’mon G. That one was mostly tongue-in-cheek. I know you know I know you know that Reason isn’t monolithic. I was busting balls.

                      And many people threw vitriol at my initial post.

                    10. many

                      I should say, “a couple”

                    11. Jesus Christ. Who the fuck cares?

                    12. Is there anyone who reads Reason, other than PB and the commie, who doesn’t already know how terrible Hillary is?

                      I imagine Reason would like to expand its readership beyond what it is at the moment. And a new reader would understandably, if incorrectly, assume that Reason is de facto endorsing Hillary by way of simply counting up the hit pieces.

                    13. Then that person is, in fact, an idiot.

                    14. It’s like going to a vegan website, seeing 30 articles about how eating beef is bad, then assuming that they must be totally ok with eating chicken.

                    15. Is there a writer on Reason who has NOT written a hit piece on Trump?

                      Suderman cranks one out pretty much every day, and he’s a Managing Editor. even Ronald Bailey got in on the act.

                      Here’s someone who is cognizant of the problem and even cites Reason by name:

                      http://www.realclearpolitics.c…..think.html

                    16. Reason cannot convince anyone of anything in this presidential election. They lost their credibility when the majority of the writers backed Obama in 2008. Well guess what? The Republicans were punished and punished hard, in face we all were. And this is the election we get. This rag has nothing substantial to say on the matter.

                      Reason is best when it focuses on graft and corruption on the smaller scale. The general overreach of government into the personal lives of real people is the bread and butter. On elections the writers just fall flat on their faces.

                      I like it here and this place has helped me develop a cohesive political consciousness. However I am not a child and no longer accept anything at face value,

                    17. On elections the writers just fall flat on their faces.

                      Totally fair. I’m guessing that has a lot to do with the fact that there are no good choices.

                    18. That’s because elections are stupid, horrible things.

                      the majority of the writers backed Obama in 2008

                      I don’t think that is actually what happened.

                    19. I don’t think that is actually what happened.

                      Let’s hop back into The Wayback:

                      Breaking Down the Reason Staff’s Vote Disclosures From 2012, 2008, and 2004

                      Matt Welch|Oct. 25, 2012 9:22 am

                    20. I wish I’d found that one instead of digging through the whole thing from 2008.

                      Nope 3/18 is not anywhere near a majority.

                      Let’s criticize the hell out of these people when they get something wrong, but it’s best not to just make shit up.

                    21. They lost their credibility when the majority of the writers backed Obama in 2008.

                      Let’s hop back into The Wayback:

                      Ooooooo! Facts hurt the narrative.

                      3/18=majority

                    22. the majority of the writers backed Obama in 2008

                      OK, I found the article from 2008: https://reason.com/archives/200…..r-vote/16.

                      Of the people in that piece who were actually employed by Reason or the Reason foundation, three said they would vote for Obama (one of whom was Weigel), 6 for Barr, 8 not voting or didn’t answer and one for McCain.

                      So people really need to stop repeating this BS because it is just not true.

                    23. Is there a writer on Reason who has NOT written a hit piece on Trump?

                      I would certainly hope not.

                    24. Because the most important thing is to ape DC’s epistemic closure. That’s original.

                    25. Then that person is, in fact, an idiot.

                      No argument from me.

                      It’s like going to a vegan website, seeing 30 articles about how eating beef is bad, then assuming that they must be totally ok with eating chicken.

                      Again, I agree. But there are bound to be many idiotic persons who visit this website.

                    26. Again, I agree. But there are bound to be many idiotic persons who visit this website.

                      As is evident by the number of idiots, commenting here, who will be voting for Trump.

    3. Wow! One whole article! You really showed those of us who have been critical of Reason’s coverage. We now have no room to complain.

      1. As long as you can admit that.

        1. Don’t you worry little guy, there will be 20 fresh Trump articles for you to beat off to before the week is over.

          1. I think FH was being tongue-in-cheek there.

            1. If so, I apologize. And will add, well done.

            2. I will also point out that this is the 7th piece by Antle posted here since 2006; Shikha Dalmia has written that many anti-Trump pieces since March.

              DISCLAIMER: TRUMP IS AN ASSHOLE FOR WHOM I WILL NOT BE VOTING. HE IS AS WOODCHIPPER WORTHY AS ANY CAREER POLITICIAN.

              1. I simply don’t understand this.

                If you don’t like the Trump articles, don’t read them.

                If you’re concerned that Reason is somehow pulling for Hillary (because there are a lot of Trump articles?) that seems wildly unfounded.

                If you just want to bitch about something, you’re an unbelievable pain in the ass and I wish you’d go away.

                1. Reason journalists are suppose to be above the rest media. They’re suppose to be skeptical and level headed. And yet they are acting just like the rest of the media, obsessed with Trump to the point of psychosis. The man could fart on stage and they would write an extensive piece analyzing the fart and trying to determine if the sulfuric smell was an indication of his racism. Meanwhile there’s an extensive FBI criminal investigation on Hillary and…crickets. Most of the articles on Trump shouldn’t constitute as news. And yet Reason can’t help but join in on the stupidity.

                  1. Then kindly go the fuck away. Or shut the fuck up. We all get it, Reason’s coverage is not up to your standards. *yawn*

                    1. No, I think I’ll keep complaining. The quality of a publication I’ve been loyally following for atleast 7 years now is falling to shit. And is becoming indistinguishable from the rest of the media. I’m sure dipshits like you are fine with that. But I’m not.

                    2. No, you’re right. I have no problem with the many articles about Trump, because I agree with most of them. In part, I appreciate the Trump coverage because I have many conservative friends and family members, and the articles provide me with excellent fodder for debate and to hone my arguments. On the other hand, I already know the (million) reasons to despise Hillary.

                      Perhaps our experiences are simply different, which is why I appreciate the articles and you don’t. Which would be fine, but to come here and constantly see the whining about the volume of articles, when they are easily avoided just seems so pathetic to me.

                    3. No, I think I’ll keep complaining. The quality of a publication I’ve been loyally following for atleast 7 years now is falling to shit. And is becoming indistinguishable from the rest of the media. I’m sure dipshits like you are fine with that. But I’m not.

                      Please post more here Banjos* I missed reading your posts

                    4. C- trolling.

                      You need new material. The best trolls pivot much more easily than you champ.

                      Telling other people on an open blog to shut the fuck up is some good gamma rage though.

              2. Has the quality of the commentariat diminished to the point of people feeling inclined to put up disclaimers? Are we now so afraid of receiving half assed strawman arguments that we feel compelled to fight them off with disclaimers? That’s sad.

                1. The quality of the commentariat has diminished to constant bitching about every time something bad about Trump is pointed out (Dalmia aside – she’s horrible)

                  1. The quality of the commentariat has diminished to constant bitching about every time something bad about Trump is pointed out

                    put the goalposts down, because that’s not what the bitching is about. This is hardly a Trumpkin hot house but it’s not difficult to notice the vast discrepancy in articles about the two principles.

                    1. Again, I ask: so what?

                2. *Fallen commenters scrolls on projector*

                  Rollo
                  Bo Cara, Esq.
                  Tulpa
                  Joe
                  Tony
                  Palin’s BP
                  Dunphy

                3. Has the quality of the commentariat diminished to the point of people feeling inclined to put up disclaimers?

                  Yes.

                  THE COMMENTARIAT HAVE ALWAYS BEEN ASSHOLES THOUGH AND POINTING THAT OUT IS IN NOW WAY AN ENDORSEMENT OF ANY PARTICULAR PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE, NOR IS IT INTENDED TO IMPLY THAT THE COMMENT SECTION IS INFESTED WITH MOUTH BREATHERS AND TRUMPTARDS

                  1. A disclaimer is like a trigger warning, only it tries defuse the effect rather than prevent it. Unfortunately they are generally needed for nuanced arguments that tread too close to popular lefty or righty views.

            3. You’re a great American, RP Jr.

          2. Don’t you worry little guy, there will be 20 fresh Trump articles for you to beat off to before the week is over.

            Relax, Banjos. I don’t think anyone is clamoring for more Trump articles. Some people are just more willing to skip over them without complaining.

            Are they overdoing Trump coverage? Yes, of course. But they don’t seem to be changing that based on the many months of bitching from the comments, so it’s probably time to ignore it or find a new magazine/blog to read.

            1. ^This.

      2. Keep tilting at those damn windmills…

  7. “Imagine him deciding whether to send your spouses or children into battle,” Clinton said. “Imagine if he had not just his Twitter account at his disposal when he’s angry, but America’s entire arsenal.”

    I guess Clit can cite Benghazi as an example of when she didn’t send any troops into battle.

    1. Yeah of all the weird times to decide to not intervene. IIRC, there were F-16s that were able to scramble. Not sure if there were any ground forces that could’ve arrived on time. And I’m not sure if the F-16s could’ve done much as it was night and it would’ve been difficult to target the jihadis. But buzz the compound a few times. At least give them something else to think about.

      1. That was a total clusterfuck that I don’t quite understand. Was the decision this? “Better to let them die than try to rescue them, possibly lose more people, and expose the fact that we are running Libyan arms to Syrian rebels?”

        1. I think expose the fact that we are running Libyan arms to Syrian rebels pretty much nails it. Hence all the bizarre “It was a YouTube video” bullshit. The reports (which may have been totally wrong) led me to believe that it wouldn’t really require a ‘large scale operation,’ as far as US involvement goes.

          The other side of this is that the ‘diplomatic mission’ over there had been asking for more security (moar Marines plz) for months on end and Clinton basically told them to shove it. That looks really bad in retrospect, but what difference, at this point, does it make?

          1. Of course, there were probably some other diplomatic issues with sending forces into Libya/Libyan airspace. I’m not clear on what agreements we had with them, if any. But, worst case scenario, we shoot down some Mig-21s and get the fuck out of Libya for good.

          2. I think expose the fact that we are running Libyan arms to Syrian rebels pretty much nails it. Hence all the bizarre “It was a YouTube video” bullshit.

            That and during Chocolate Nixon’s 2012 re-election campaign they had been crowing about how Libya was such a great success. So they had to blame it on a spontaneous protest over some stupid youtube video in order to preserve the false narrative that Libya wasn’t a total shitshow.

      2. Where were these F-16s?

        Who are they going to shoot at?

        But buzz the compound a few times. At least give them something else to think about.

        And get shot down adding a couple $50M aircraft and two dead pilots to the total dead. Great idea.

        Benghazi was about the cover-up, not the lack of action.

        1. Italy. This guy does an interesting job summing it up. There was some debate about whether this would’ve worked. I sincerely doubt the planes would’ve been shot down. It’s still worth a try. We shouldn’t ever just leave our folks behind to die in some shithole. That’s not exactly good for morale.

          I never said it wasn’t mostly about the coverup. But the fact that a bunch of Americans died, very possibly, was about the lack of action. And it was on Clinton’s watch. That’s why it was an issue here.

          1. That article’s timeline is a pipe-dream.

            Fog of war. In the early stages, you have NO idea what’s accurate and credible. You go off half-cocked, without a plan, your going to make the situation far worse.

            There are no alert birds at Aviano. Even if there were they’d be loaded out with A-A ordnance. To call in pilots and support crew would take hours. It’ll take another hour to ready the jets.

            468 miles from NAS Sigonella to Benghazi meaning it’s got about 30 minutes of playtime, no SEAD, no tanker support and absolutely no idea who or where the good guys and bad guys are. Libya has formidable air defenses, more than capable of taking out an unsupported Viper. Not to mention, who is he going to shoot at in the dark? This scenario has the potential of quickly becoming an unmitigated clusterfuck.

            No, a rescue mission, at that point would have been foolhardy. I completely agree with the decision not to attempt it. I’d have made the same.

            1. 1) We had just conducted an airwar against Libya prior to Benghazi. I’m pretty sure we waxed their air defenses prior to doing air strikes on Gadaffi’s tanks and such.

              2) We had drones in the air, IIRC.

              3) We sent reinforcements on a civilian aircraft from Tripoli.

              This suggests we weren’t too worried about local air defenses.

              I agree that it might not have been feasible, if only because we like to have all our ducks in a row before doing anything, but air defenses probably were not the reason. More likely is distance.

          2. I’m still not sure what the F16s could have accomplished. That guy seems to think that a low flyover would have done it, but I don’t know if I buy that.
            I’m no expert on the capabilities of F16s, but I can’t imagine they could have used weapons without endangering the people they were trying to protect even more.

            1. Yeah, I stated that earlier. And I’m certainly no tactician. There does seem to be some debate among real tacticians whether something could’ve been done. I suspect that nothing was done more to cover political asses than because it was unfeasible.

      3. Not sure if there were any ground forces that could’ve arrived on time.

        My recollection is that there were spooky gunships and a rapid reaction force in, I believe, Italy, that could have gotten there within hours. Now, whether that would have been too late was not known at the time, but the great thing about gunships and airborne rapid reaction forces is that if its too late when they arrive, they just go home.

        To not even try is the crime.

  8. This sorta touches how I feel about Trump and Hillary. I have the luxury of living in California, where Hillary is bound to win, so my vote is even more worthless than elsewhere. But if the polls were really close, I might vote for Trump over Hillary simply because I know what to expect from Hillary, and Trump doesn’t have the stick-to-it to be worse.

    Every time I see Volokh or other blogs whine about #neverTrump, I wonder how they can imagine voting for Hillary with a straight face. Trump is certainly ignorant about the Constitution and proud of it, but Hillary is a professional at the task and knows where all the skeletons are. Congress could laugh off Trump and ignore him because he will contradict himself 7 ways from Sunday every day of the week. I don’t want either one in charge of anything, but I’d choose the guy with no attention span vs the gal with too much any day.

    1. Yeah. Which is worse, ignorance of the constitution or utter contempt for it? For Hillary, it’s personal (Citizens United litmus test and whatnot). I find that a bit more terrifying.

  9. Except the reasonable stuff Trump says (“get the fuck out of the middle east”) is actually feasible.
    The unreasonable stuff (“deport 12 million Mexicans”) isn’t.

    1. Who know who else was going to get us out of the Middle East?

      1. Well, certainly not Marco Polo

      2. Barack Obama?

    2. It’s also interesting that he got all Jimmy Carter on North Korea, and for the first time in 60 years the North Korean government has an optimistic view of American foreign policy.

  10. Imagine if he had not just his Twitter account at his disposal when he’s angry, but America’s entire arsenal.

    As much as I don’t like the DTs, I could at least imagine the possibility that he’d take out his frustrations via Twitter:

    Isis losers behead schoolgirls. Don’t go after real men. Pathetic!
    North Korea lauches short range missle. Can’t even make cars. Losers.

    1. I would trade Twitter shaming for not-so-covert war any day of the week.

  11. “Women have always been the primary victims of war. Women lose their husbands, their fathers, their sons in combat.”

    — Hillary Clinton

    1. Can you imagine if Sarah Palin had said something like that?

    2. If you’re dead you not a victim, duh.

  12. Is it just me or did anyone else notice how quickly the media forgot about Bernie Sanders?

    1. About who?

      1. I’ve already forgotten what we were talking about.

    2. Thank God. I’m tired of hearing warmed over commie bullshit.

      1. I’m going to enjoy looking at all the cars with faded Bernie stickers.

        1. Whoever wins in November, we’ll be looking at Bernie and Trump bumperstickers for years and years.*

          *(I shouldn’t make fun of people who signal their politics with outdated bumperstickers since I’d probably sport a McAfee one myself)

          1. I’m a member of the apathy party. They don’t bother to print stickers.

      2. If you hate Bern victims as much as I do, you got to experience some of the finest schadenfreude seeing them whine about how donating their entire paycheck to Bernie was not in fact a sound investment for paying off their college debt.

        Seriously, these people are so unimaginably bad with their money it’s no surprise they fawn over the candidate who promises to take away any concept of financial responsibility. It’s like a self-selected group of the failures of society who blame others for their inability to defer gratification, and think justice means other people paying for their mistakes. They deserve all the punishment they get.

        1. What kind of fucking idiot thinks that donating money to any political candidate is worth their while (unless, of course, they can donate enough to get access and have some use for that access)?

      3. Sorry, but that’s the only kind of commie bullshit there is.

  13. Just heard Lou Reed on the radio. Is he still dead?

    1. *checks under floorboards*

      Yup.

  14. “Imagine if he had not just his Twitter account at his disposal when he’s angry, but America’s entire arsenal.”

    Because; fuck you free speech.

    1. “Imagine if he had not just his Twitter account at his disposal when he’s angry, but America’s entire arsenal. I mean, come on. Look what I did in Libya and I was just a fucking secretary.”

    2. Well, that probably is the sickest burn that Hillary has put on Trump.

      But its still some weak, weak shit.

  15. “It was a mistake Clinton eagerly repeated as secretary of state, when she was one of the main proponents within the Obama administration of regime change in Libya. “We came, we saw, he died,” she said of ousted dictator Muammar Qaddafi.”

    If the mistake in Iraq was sending “our spouses or children into battle” troops, then the mistake was not repeated in Libya.

    Regardless of whether you think we should have sent troops, if a thing is what it is and not something else, then not sending troops to Libya is not the same as sending troops to Iraq.

    Sending troops to Iraq was a big mistake. It cost us trillions in taxes and thousands of American casualties, and that isn’t even talking about the strategic losses or the suffering of Iraqi civilians.

    Not sending troops to Libya was not a mistake. Not sending troops cost us nothing in taxes, and there were no American casualties.

    See the difference?

    1. See the difference?

      Smart power at its best?

      1. I suspect you’re being facetious, but maybe there’s a point you’re trying to make, too?

        One of them doesn’t cost us trillions in taxes, thousands of American casualties, and leave us stuck in a quagmire we can’t pull out of for at least 15 years. Can you guess which one?

        Hint: I suspect we’ll be out of Japan before we’re out of Iraq.

  16. I despise Hillary Clinton. My working rule of thumb:

    Trump > Hillary

    Trump < Pile of ShitTherefore Hillary < Trump < Pile of ShitBut there's so much to go after Hillary for, there's no need to make shit up. Doing so just plays into her hands.She was a warmonger for Iraq. She's more of a neocon than George W. Bush ever was.She's a crook. She accepted money from foreign governments while she was the Secretary of State, and all reports are that she continues to accept money from Saudi Arabia.And that doesn't even mention what she did with Madison Guarantee and setting up the Whitewater deal at Rose.You want to go after Hillary?She gave an inequality speech the other day while wearing a $12,000 jacket.http://tinyurl.com/zzuul3b

    You can hardly spit in any direction without hitting on something Hillary did that is legitimately awful. How is that people seem to zero in the things that aren’t awful at all?

    P.S. Swing voters don’t give a shit about Hillary’s email.

    1. They would care if a politician-any politician – got indicted. No matter the charge, even if it’s crap like with Rick Perry, an indictment = something shady, and the voter won’t necessarily go into the icky details.

      An ambitious prosecutor could persuade a grand jury to indict a politician for eating a ham sandwich, and the story will be “so and so indicted.”

      1. They would care if she were indicted. They’d care so much that the Republicans were bullying her for something they don’t really understand, that they’d vote her into the White House for it.

        Meanwhile, if there were anyone who would indict the Democrat nominee in the Obama administration, they’re smart enough not to indict the person who may be their next boss. Meanwhile, Obama will have almost two whole months after the election in November–regardless of who wins–to pardon Hillary on the way out the door.

      2. I see two cognitive biases at work here:

        1) The bias that hidden things are dishonest.

        Hillary accepts donations from foreign countries while Secretary of State in broad daylight, and people tend to assume that’s okay–because it was in broad daylight. Send a secret email ordering a Christmas gift for Chelsea, and everybody assumes it must be sinister–just because it’s secret.

        2) The bias that everyone else feels the way we feel.

        It’s a conceit really. This is how creationists operate, too. They imagine that if the scientists were truly honest, they’d see the scientific evidence for creationism everywhere, and the biblical story would be vindicated.

        People on the right have the conceit that if only the truth were exposed, everyone would reject Hillary. And that hidden truth might be in those emails. I guess the realization that a significant portion of the American people might want her anyway is just to awful to consider.

        Meanwhile, there is far more damning truth right out in the open! And people just walk right past it like it’s not even there.

        1. It’s a conceit really. This is how creationists operate, too. They imagine that if the scientists were truly honest, they’d see the scientific evidence for creationism everywhere, and the biblical story would be vindicated.

          To be fair, it’s also a conceit to assume that we evolutionists don’t fall prey to the same inclinations.

          1. Yeah, it’s a cognitive bias that everyone is susceptible to–I just used creationists as an example.

            They make such great examples!

        2. Send a secret email ordering a Christmas gift for Chelsea, and everybody assumes it must be sinister–just because it’s secret

          I wonder sometimes whether this isn’t part of the Clinton mode of operation. It would be politically brilliant, really – commit all your crimes right out in the open in front of everybody. Like “The Purloined Letter” – hidden in plain sight where no one would think to look.

          OTOH, hide your kitten pictures and your facebook posts on a secret private server behind a big black door with a skull and crossbones saying “KEEP OUT! DON’T LOOK IN HERE!”

          Then, when people naturally kick that door down wondering what awful things are in there, only to find kitten pictures and facebook posts you say “see – look how these people persecute me and always think the worst of me. Now if you’ll excuse me, there’s a baby over there who needs his candy taken away.”

    2. Trump > Hillary

      Trump < Pile of Shit

      *squints* when did they start allowing greater than?

    3. She gave an inequality speech the other day while wearing a $12,000 jacket.

      How is that people seem to zero in the things that aren’t awful at all?

      P.S. Swing voters don’t give a shit about Hillary’s email.

      It would be interesting (and by interesting I mean further proof that the average person in this country is a mouth breathing low forehead who should hurry up and die in a fire already) if the thing that ends up cratering her presidential campaign* is wearing a $12,000 suit while bloviating about inequality.

      *Not that I think anything will crater her campaign at this point, unfortunately she’s probably an inevitability. Like severe diarrhea after drinking the water in Tijuana.

      1. At least it’s a real issue, and I think it is indicative of something true: Hillary Clinton is an elitist hypocrite.

        I heard she hasn’t driven a car since she became the First Lady, too. Talk about a limousine liberal!

        1. I just find it rather pathetic – and an indictment of the average person’s intelligence – that apparently, diverting her emails to a personal server in a deliberate effort to avoid transparency laws, resulting in a deliberate spill of classified data onto unsecured networks (espionage), and the blatant peddling of influence for cash from foreign governments as SoS gets a big fat yawn, but being an elitist hypocrite is somehow beyond the pale.

          Newsflash people: any politician who bloviates about “income inequality” is an elitist hypocrite.

          1. You can’t dictate terms to the market; the market dictates terms to you.

            I don’t just take whatever my architect gives me to develop. I have my broker come in (who is going to be selling these building and knows what sells and why in that market) and go over the preliminary plans with the architect.

            Wal*Mart doesn’t just put whatever it wants on its shelves and call their customers stupid if they don’t buy it.. They stock their shelves with what they know their customers want to buy.

            If people aren’t buying “A”, but they’re buying “B”, then by all means, let’s give the people what they want. They’ll be right to think we don’t understand or respect them if we keep trying to force them to buy “A”, when they don’t want “A”.

    4. “Trump > Hillary

      Trump < Pile of ShitTherefore Hillary < Trump < Pile of Shit"That's gold. I may have to start using this. Thanks.

  17. He balances every sensible thing he says about foreign policy with something indefensible, he undermines salient criticisms of Clinton’s conduct in Iraq and Libya by exaggerating his own prescience on these topics.

    And when Trump could repeat some of these reasonable criticisms in response to Clinton’s speech, he instead tweets about her teleprompter reading skills.

    Your problem is you are looking at Trump like you look at other political candidates; ones who have policy ideas, ideologies, and strategies.

    1. How idealistic. I’d say what other political candidates typically have is consultants coaching them on what voters want to hear, plus of course secret commitments to important backers which determine what they will actually do.

      I’m no Trump believer, but I’ve seen enough presidential elections followed by subsequent presidencies to find these contrasts pointless.

  18. What a fucking joke. The real question is has any modern president not sent troops (or bombers, drones, members of some other agency, etc…) to kill people whenever he was angry?

  19. I like Trump and I like Clinton. I wish they could just get along and we can stop all this mean name calling. Can’t they just agree to share the presidency and then leave me the fuck alone?

  20. This is what has infuriated me the most about this election, and has damn near driven me to full blown anarchism. This complete hypocrisy coming from the left. Almost everything the Clinton camp has attacked Trump over, over the things he will probably do as POTUS, Cankles has done herself. If you seriously believe that Hillary is a savior, or at the very least a much better person than the Donald, then your a damn fool.

    Just to be clear, I hate Trump and will continue to call him out for his BS–as well as the junk the right spews out–and will not be voting for him. Trump supporters and those that lean right can be just as hypocritical, but unlike Clinton, Trump has never held office, nor imposed such destructive actions and policies.

    Great article.

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    Trump won’t blow up the world, he loves building & creating skyscrapers, golf courses, etc. with his name on them. I watched a video of him at a rally where he actually went in to the finer details of the marble he uses, etc. People who build things like Trump are not the type that destroy, but Hellary, with her proxy wars…

    On another note, I love how Trump threw Fat-Boy, Kim Jong-un a piece of rotten candy & he gobbled it right up like the rat scum he is. I could imagine Trump double talking him into finishing that 3,000 room spaceship hotel that’s been 30 years in the making, then in a feat only Trump could pull off traps the entire leadership inside, meanwhile a Doppelganger is shown riding off on a Unicorn on state run TV….

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