The Nudnik File

Nudnik - n. U.S. colloq. Esp. in Jewish usage: a pestering, nagging, or irritating person

Monday, April 18, 2005

              Hillary the Politician
For the past few years, all the talk about Hillary has been about how good of a politician she is. It has been clear to everyone that she is planning to run for President - the New York Senate seat was merely a stepping stone - and that all of her positions have reflected her preparations for the Presidential campaign. Jay Cost thinks that all of her well telegraphed moves actually reflect the fact that she is a horrible politician, not the genius everyone thinks she is.
The answer to this question boils down to obviousness. Hillary's movement is a big deal first and foremost because everybody notices her movement. Mr. Frist and others do not get noticed because, while one can identify their political movements through systematic evaluation of their voting records, their positioning is more subtle. But not Hillary's. There is nothing subtle about her strategic positioning. Not a thing. Everybody talks about Hillary's political calculations not because they are brilliant but because they are obvious, because everything about Hillary screams "political calculation." There is nothing organic to her politics; it all seems artificial.

This is the sign of a bad politician. All politicians do the same things. They all change their views. They all move with the political currents. They are all flexible and pragmatic. What differentiates the good politician from the bad one is that you never notice that the good one is pragmatic. A good politician is as smooth as a well-aged single-malt scotch. Hillary is a bad politician. She is like that bottom-shelf blended garbage that sells for $12 a handle.
He may be right that she is a bad politician, but come the Presidential race all this will be irrelevant. She will be the darling of the press who will continue to convince us that she is brilliant.
|| Nudnik 2:40 PM
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