Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A Breathtakingly Stalinist Revision

I'll admit it, I watched Senator Clinton's speech last night with a quiet alarm, but on a second rewatching, she did as much as she could do to tell while still allowing for another victory lap. And yet, the fact that so much of it sounded like the same speech that obviously didn't heal the divide on the Saturday after the last primary still set off a few bells.

The HillaryIs44ers are exhibiting a depressingly predictable state of denial, posting today a transcript of last night's speech that was scrubbed clean of any pro-Obama reference (which, if you'll remember, was supposed to be the entire point of the appearance), then lovingly wrapped in the usual blather that Clinton is the savior of the party, and topped with a heartbreakingly delusional fantasy that somehow, in some way, the party will finally snap to its senses and anoint glorious, marvelous Senator Clinton the true successor to the throne. These are the people that Pat Buchanan was talking about when he said that Hillary doesn't have supporters, Hillary has followers. And no, I refuse to believe for even a moment that the typical 44er resembles in the slightest the average Clinton supporter at the height of the campaign. The 44ers are the Hardcases, operating under a paranoid, inflexible siege mentality that makes Sean Hannity weep tears of joy. At some point, they're just going to have to let go.

Doom will hate me for this (he can't get behind either major party candidate), but from the full transcript, here are a few key points that your friends at the Ministry Of Truth decided not to stress. Remember, I'm breaking your delusions out of hope for a saner future.
I want you to ask yourselves: Were you in this campaign just for me? Or were you in it for that young Marine and others like him? Were you in it for that mom struggling with cancer while raising her kids? Were you in it for that boy and his mom surviving on the minimum wage? Were you in it for all the people in this country who feel invisible?

We need leaders once again who can tap into that special blend of American confidence and optimism that has enabled generations before us to meet our toughest challenges. Leaders who can help us show ourselves and the world that with our ingenuity, creativity, and innovative spirit, there are no limits to what is possible in America.

This won't be easy. Progress never is. But it will be impossible if we don't fight to put a Democrat in the White House.


We are Americans. We're not big on quitting.

But remember, before we can keep going, we have to get going by electing Barack Obama president.

We don't have a moment to lose or a vote to spare.

Nothing less than the fate of our nation and the future of our children hang in the balance.
This is a warning: if you believe in Clinton so bloody much that you'd throw everything she believed in under the bus--and yes, that includes the Democratic Party as an organization--just to prove a point about Obama, then vote for McCain and see what happens to all of your favorite causes. People get the flag mixed up with what the flag stands for, get wound up about the symbols of democracy to the detriment of democracy itself. So once again, here's the point that you so blithely ignored: Are you in it for Clinton, or Clinton's ideals? Because if you're only in it for the former, if it's Hillary or nothing, if it's Hillary Über Alles, and you can still talk endlessly about the Obama "cult of personality" without a drop of irony or self-recognition, then you deserve to be taken as seriously as the jackass who chanted "9/11 was an inside job" through a bullhorn during last night's Hardball.

I don't deny the power of a true believer, but sometimes you have to make allowances for a Plan B, and if you're so far gone that you can't figure out how to make do with what the fates have handed you, then this isn't about you anymore. The discussion has moved past you, and if you want to shake your fists at the cloud of dust in the distance as the circus parade leaves you behind, that's your choice. It's not too late to turn back from this monomania, to heal your wounds and start planning for HillaryIs45 (somebody got a head start on that point, I see). But if you don't, remember that I didn't marginalize you. The media didn't marginalize you. You did this to yourselves through your words and your works after the rest of the world moved on.

(Edit @ 6:58pm: After Hillary halted the delegate count and handed the keys to the kingdom over to Obama, went over its quota. Here's the Google mirror, if you have to see the *snip* job for yourself.)

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