Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Hillary Clinton's Problem

Hillary Clinton has been getting ripped because she admits she "misspoke" about a trip to the Balkans. She said there was no greeting ceremony at the airport, and that they ran for fear of sniper fire. The tape, however, shows a greeting ceremony at the airport.

You know what's scary? I think she believed what she said. I don't think she was lying.

Now, you might think that you would never make such a mistake. I know I wouldn't. But Hillary Clinton did. She must have been lying, right?

I don't think so. I have a hypothesis as to why she believed what she said when she said it.

Hillary Clinton accepts the premise that in politics appearance is reality. She watched her husband operate successfully under that premise for eight long years. Bill Clinton is a man who can say with a straight face that it depends on what the meaning of is is. White House operatives would hit the media with their spin, and come the next polls, if 51% of the American people bought the spin, then it became reality to the Clintons' enablers in the MSM.

When a politician accepts the premise that in politics appearance is reality, it can be dangerous to his mind. The words he says do not necessarily have to stay connected to reality. Just think of how this false premise could wreak havoc with a person's epistemology. Over time a person would become less sharp and more vague in his thinking. He would not examine his words against reality but against the standard of political pragmatism. Do his words help his poll numbers that afternoon? Then they become reality.

So, as in the time she said she was named after Edmund Hillary (although it turns out she was born before Mt. Everest was conquered), I think Clinton believed what she said about her trip to Bosnia when she said it because she did not think it necessary to examine her words against reality.

Remember this the next time you hear Democrats praise Senator Clinton's intelligence. Clinton's epistemological premises have, I believe, made her stupid and inept. Only a reality-based epistemology helps one function in reality.

No, I don't trust Hillary Clinton to handle any 3am phone calls well at all.


Anonymous said...

No, I don't think it's possible to honestly believe in your own dishonesty. Isn't that what you're saying, though?


Myrhaf said...

I'm saying Hillary Clinton doesn't see the need to examine her words closely. If her thinking is sloppy enough because of her premises, then she could believe what she is saying.

NS, I think your reaction is the reaction of an honest, reality-oriented person who cannot conceive how sloppy a dishonest, pragmatist politician's thinking can be.

I will admit that this is just a hypothesis and I could be wrong.

Anonymous said...

Interesting hypothesis Myrhaf. I don't know if anyone can ever really believe their lies but they can damage their epistemological and moral foundations so much that they don't care if they are lying. And of course the entire welfare state depends on lies for its survival, so politicians can easily get away with lying.

OT, but have you heard about Geert Wilders new movie on Islam? Here is a video interview with him. He is very anti-Islam but within the conservative anti-immigration framework. I was wondering your opinion on this.


John Kim

Grant said...

I agree 100%. This woman is off her rocker.

I've experienced her exhibit this behavior in regards to concepts aswell. Of course, it's true that the concepts she advocates are wrong, but given their relative sophistication above concrete events, I was always tempted to give her the benefit of the doubt that she sincerely, completely believed in them.

That is, until I read an editorial piece she wrote for the Wall Street Journal a few years ago. In it, she explains how, at root, the entire crises created by the Bush Administration's foray into Iraq could be solved if the West were simply to distribute Iraq's oil wealth equally among all it's citizens.

In the letter to the Editor I wrote in response, I pointed out that what most struck me about her proposal was how pathetically superficial it was. She came off sounding like a laid-off auto worker or a loud mouth soccer mom - not a United States Senator. It was such a simplistic, infantile proposal that, considering the fact that she must have known that she was writing for a sophisticaed audience, I knew then and there that she had a few screws loose.

Evidently, she so believed in herself, and in the ability of her words to change the nature of external reality, that she thought she could persuade the readers of the nation's leading financial daily with the same banter she would use during an appearance on Oprah.

Myrhaf said...

Let me make a few more concessions. First, instead of using the technical word "hypothesis," I should have said that I'm speculating about what went on in Clinton's mind.

Second, is there dishonesty involved in Clinton's "misspeaking"? Yes, in her evasion. Evasion functioned to keep her from focusing on what really happened. Thus she was able to believe her new version as she said it.

Now she is in a bad situation because people think it was a bald-faced lie, when it was, I believe, more a matter of sloppy thinking.

Dismuke said...

While I am quite sure she is aware that she was telling a lie now that she has been caught, I do agree that, in her mind, she was not lying when she was telling it.

In her mind she was not lying any more than you, Myrhaf, would be lying if you were playing the part of a socialist character in a play and had to give a speech on the virtues of egalitarianism. Clearly you would not be lying because the context is that of make-believe and the words you speak would have no connection with your knowledge of the facts of reality.

In Hillaryland, reality is essentially nothing more than some sort of open-ended play with a script that can be modified at will by the lead actors. For someone with such a mindset, the ONLY reality that matters is how the audience at hand will react - and if the reaction is what one hopes for, then THAT is what is metaphysically important. It never occurs to such people that they are lying in the way that it occurs to you or I if we were to tell a lie.

If you or I tell a lie, we are aware of the fact that we are evading/rewriting a fact of reality. In Hillaryland, facts of reality have no metaphysical importance - thus what they evade is not facts of reality but rather the fact that they are simply making stuff up. They don't evade facts - they evade the fact that they are liars. And because their evasion of the fact that they are liars is so thoroughly ingrained in both Clintons, when they tell a lie, it never occurs to them that they are lying. And I have no doubt that when they get caught telling a lie, they simply dismiss it exposure as little more than dirty tricks on the part of their enemies.

Dismuke said...

3 am phone call?

Here is what will happen two words into such a 3 am phone call:

"What the f***? Who the hell do you think you are waking me up in the middle of the f****** night like this you stupid piece of s*** piss ant? You'll be damn lucky if I don't fire your worthless f****** ass because of this. F*** you! Don't you DARE ever let this happen again or I'll make sure the contents of your FBI file are splashed across every f****** tv screen in this god forsaken country - and you know that I know what's in there."