Sunday, June 8, 2008

Et Tu, MoDo?

Watch Out, Meryl Streep!
She’s a Master Thespian.
By MAUREEN DOWD
Published: June 8, 2008

Maureen Dowd comes not to praise the Clinton campaign, but to bury it.

…through humiliation and pain, she has shown herself to be a skilled survivor. She said she embraces the old saying, “Fake it till you make it.”
With Hillary singing her swan song, the Movies With Maureen® is no longer Elizabeth and Essex like it was back in March, but Norma Rae:
…as a presidential candidate, she morphed from Queen Elizabeth I to Norma Rae, as Newsweek put it.
Let’s put the Newsweek quote into context.
While Clinton veered between playing Queen Elizabeth I and Norma Rae, Obama and his team chugged along with a superior 50-state campaign strategy, racking up the delegates.
There is a bigger metaphor here. Queen Elizabeth was reluctant monarch who went on to rule her country during one of its greatest eras. Norma Rae was a hardscrabble working woman who organized her coworkers in a seemingly hopeless struggle. Hillary in the course of the campaign had gone from the heir apparent to the the scrappy underdog only without the strings-swelling happy ending.

To belabor the Royalty Metaphor®, Hillary is about to be marginalized as the leader of a constituency that the Democratic Party needs rather than becoming its standard bearer.
She will help Obama be king, if he lets her be queen of the women.

…she started her presidential campaign wearing an off-putting ermine robe of entitlement and presumption.
And the "ermine robe of entitlement" leads us to this week's Alliteration Alerts®:
After the roiling rollout of the Clinton administration, a sad and unnerved Hillary sought answers from self-help gurus like Jean Houston.

She still doesn’t believe Obama can win, but she knows she can move ahead only as a beguiler, not a begrudger.

Or maybe Hillary’s grit and gall allowed them to easily envision her cuffing generals and dictators.
But Maureen keeps her eye on the big picture and surmises:
I don’t believe Hillary’s campaign will cause a backlash. As long as her Denver Liberation Army doesn’t cause Obama to lose, it may well be good for women.
And while the DLA RudeName® conjures images of strident, comfortable shoe-wearing Clintonistas marching on the convention, Dowd manages a few more wisps of faint praise:
Hillary thrillingly proved herself the best debater and the toughest candidate while being shorter and having the higher voice.

She didn’t lose because she was a woman. She didn’t lose because America isn’t ready for a woman as president. She lost because of her own — and her husband’s and Mark Penn’s — fatal missteps.
And with that less than elegant oratory, the last nail is hammered into the coffin of the courageous but outfought Clinton campaign. Now it's Hillary's turn to see if she can win awards in the supporting roles because her supporters really like her.

1 comment:

Grace Nearing said...

She didn’t lose because she was a woman. She didn’t lose because America isn’t ready for a woman as president. She lost because of her own — and her husband’s and Mark Penn’s — fatal missteps.

First off, Clinton lost only because she was actually in the contest, and by god she didn't lose by much. Second, some of this "fatal missteps" nonsense will no doubt be thoroughly debunked by two or three key post-election books.

As the media were faux-stunned to learn following the 2000 election, Al Gore never said he invented the internet, nor did he say that Love Story was based on him and Tipper, nor did he say that he had discovered and/or decontaminated the Love Canal toxic dump site singlehandedly. (See the excellent Daily Howler blog for some serious debunkings of these tales.) Of course, Dowd missed out on some of this fun since she was too busy writing fantasy op/ed columns in which Gore talked to his bald spot.

So don't be surprised in spring or summer 2009 when articles and books start appearing showing how fabricated the media narrative was that Bill Clinton was grumping and stomping about like an angry ogre during his wife's campaign and that Hillary had taken to draping herself in ermine and chanting, "I am entitled. I am sooooo entitled."

The only element of surprise here is who the authors will be and which books will make it to the bookstores first.