When you grin and call out to your supporters, like at the Emily’s List anniversary gala, “Don’t you someday want to see a woman president of the United States of America?” the answer is: Yes, it would be thrilling.
But therein lies the rub.
What is the trade-off that will be exacted by the Chappaqua Republic for that yearned-for moment? When the Rogue State of Bill began demonizing Monica Lewinsky as a troubled stalker, you knew you could count on the complicity of feminists and Democratic women in Congress. Bill’s female cabinet members and feminist supporters had no choice but to accept the unappetizing quid pro quo: The Clintons would give women progressive public policies as long as the women didn’t assail Bill for his regressive private behavior with women.So she publicly admitted what conservatives have pointed out over the years: Feminists backed a misogynist. They cashed in whatever principles they had by supporting a horndog who after his heart attack apparently has to go to Underage Island.
But they sold at fire-sale prices. Miss Dowd wrote: "The Clintons would give women progressive public policies as long as the women didn’t assail Bill for his regressive private behavior with women."
What are those progressive policies that Mister Clinton gave women?
Let's see, he supported the Defense of Marriage Act which allowed states to ignore gay marriages from other states. And Don't Ask, Don't Tell became law thanks to Bill Clinton and his Democratic majorities in both houses of Congress. That was a priority for him, because it came in his first two years as president, the only time he controlled Congress.
Those, I maintain, are not "progressive public policies." They are as regressive as trying to force a cute clerk on her knees to service the governor after she is brought in by state police.
But Maureen Dowd on Sunday remains angry at Hillary, not Bill:
You exploit our better angels and our desire for a finer country and our fear of the anarchists and haters in Congress.
Because you assume that if it’s good for the Clintons, it’s good for the world, you’re always tangling up government policy with your own needs, desires, deceptions, marital bargains and gremlins.
Instead of raising us up by behaving like exemplary, sterling people, you bring us down to your own level, a place of blurred lines and fungible ethics and sleazy associates. Your family’s foundation gobbles tens of millions from Saudi Arabia and other repressive regimes, whose unspoken message is: “We’re going to give you money to go improve the world. Now leave us alone to go persecute women.”
That’s an uncomfortable echo of a Clintonian trade-off, which goes: “We’re going to give you the first woman president who will improve the country. Now leave us alone to break any rules we please.”
Bill, your pathology is more human and interesting. It’s almost like you need to create messes to see if your extraordinary political gifts can get you out of them. It’s a fatherless boy’s “How Much Do You Love Me?” syndrome. Do you love me enough to let me get away with this?Dowd is saying that what she would do for him, she will not do for her. That feeling appears to be the thought of a sizable portion of the Clintonian base. Miss Dowd believes it encompasses all of America.
He's Elvis; she's the girl with the backstage pass. They adore him, scorn her, although they usually are polite to her face.
Miss Dowd's scorn is on the woman who ordinarily would be considered the victim of her husband's philandering. However, everyone knows Hillary made the very same trade-off that Dowd and the other girls made by trading her dignity for power. They can hate Hillary till the cows come home, but they are Hillary as well, standing by their man even as they mock Tammy Wynette.
And therein lies the problem of the original generation of baby boom feminists. They are amoral. Women's rights boil down to abortion. Bill Clinton may have lacked "progressive public policies" but he gave them the one thing they wanted: abortion. And really, he did not give them anything. All Bill Clinton promised to do was to keep abortion safe, legal and rare.
However, there was no genuine threat to abortion then and there is none now. Still, feminists keep telling themselves that abortion is in jeopardy. It is because they won the battle on abortion in a sneak attack in 1973; they never really got to fight the war they wanted. And so they pretend year-in and year-out that they must fight.
And Bill Clinton exploited that insecurity about their hollow victory in Roe vs. Wade. And so in the name of feminism, they let him get away with behavior that was condemned by the least feminist of women in America.
The Dowd Crowd is all about abortion. That's sad. Just as the slave owner chains himself to the slave, the aborter kills a little of her soul with her baby, which explains the hollowness of Dowd's column, and her Pulitzer she won defending Bill Clinton. Some 18 years after Matt Drudge made Monica Lewinky a household name, Clinton supporters may finally be coming to grips with what they did to themselves and yes, America.