David Brooks wonders why people don’t like Hillary, spends a bunch of words blaming it on her being a workaholic, and never once broaches the subject that he, the Republicans, and the New York fucking Times have been lying about her for three decades.
I think that might have something to do with it, personally. The fact that her negatives aren’t higher despite the multi-decade attack should be consider a testament to the woman.
Friends don’t let friends read David Brooks.
There really was a vast right wing conspiracy attacking the Clintons.
It has grown and metastasized.
David Brock wrote a fascinating book about his time as a leader in that conspiracy.
I don’t give a rat’s ass about likeability. I care about competence. I wouldn’t hire Trump to flip burgers. But he’s richer than I am and bangs/rapes supermodels, so what the hell do I know.
Ah, but David Brooks gets paid vast sums of money and given moderate fame for his lack of self-awareness. If he were to think about his life choices, he’d wind up losing his fame, salary, and access to power. So he doesn’t worry his pea brain about it.
Remember once upon a time when John Cole instinctually hated Hillary with every fiber of his being?
This is how winning hearts and minds works.
What is it about so-called “progressives” that they think so little of the average American voter that whenever the voters disagree with them, it must be because voters are brain-washed by the media, fooled by corporations, “voting against their own self-interest” or just need to “read this position paper and you will see why you are wrong”?
Maybe the answer is simpler than that. Maybe its because Hillary Clinton lacks charisma, is not particularly likable, comes across as someone who calculates every utterance in advance, and at the end of the day, isn’t someone voters want to spend the next four years with. She’s the striving yuppie in the Beemer, the Tracy Flick in Election, the Doctor Frasier Crane in Cheers before the boys in the bar loosened him up.
That her polling has gotten wobbly when her opponent is a complete Neanderthal buffoon, toxically racist & misogynistic, and quite possibly composed of raw sewage allowed to ferment, might be what Jim Rockford would have called a clue.
Does anyone wonder why people don’t like David Brooks? Does David Brooks wonder that? Because he fucking should.
I don’t think she’s cool either. But I think she’ll make a kick ass President and that’s why I’m voting for her.
The last time we elected (allegedly) the guy you want to have a beer with, we got 2 land wars in the Middle East in the deal.
She works too hard! She doesn’t play golf! She’d be a horrible president!
@goblue72: Oh, so you mean she’s a girl who tries hard. Total buzzkill to everyone, amirite?
The initial premise was a conversation I had with a Trump supporter a few days ago – it’s easy to understand why so many people dislike Trump (he is consistenly provocative and insulting), but I have yet to have someone explain to me why they hate Hillary Clinton so much. Not asking them to tell me how much they hate her, but *why*. I never get any answer other than innuendo and general dislike over the words “Hillary Clinton”. Leave it to Brooks to delve into a “do you want to drink a beer with her” convo, which drives me as nuts now (Trump doesn’t drink, Clinton has gotten loaded with people on the other side of the aisle) as it did during Bush-Kerry/Gore (still amazed how many people said they wanted to drink a beer with a recovering alcoholic)
can only imagine the damage that might result in Brooks becoming self-aware… maybe his head would explode… and I would be alright with that.
Brooks may not have Trump bucks but is wealthy enough to surround himself with people to coo and tell him it’s all going to be alright. The bubble cannot fail, it can only be failed.
@Ultraviolet Thunder: I want to have a beer with President Obama. Always have. With Hilary, though, I don’t want to have a beer. I want to have a nice bottle of some big red-maybe a cab or a syrah, and talk about policy and governing philosophy, and how to survive people saying nasty crap about you because they fear your power. Because I would learn a shit-ton.
@goblue72: Next could you bitch about Boomers? That one is my favorite.
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I know, right? Bernie supporters are so weird that way.
Gamergaters don’t like Hillary.
“the Doctor Frasier Crane in Cheers before the boys in the bar loosened him up”
I submit that HRC has, indeed, done just that, and it’s a big reason she’s handled Bernie with relative ease. The 2008 version struggles just as much as she did against Obama. I have great confidence the current version will set the Trumpster on fire.
@Ultraviolet Thunder: How many cool presidents have there been since the invention of modern media? Maybe four? Obama, Bill Clinton, Kennedy, and Teddy Roosevelt. Put Reagan in there if you like. Bush is a different category to me–maybe “disarming” rather than cool–but, fine, throw him in the mix.
George HW Bush wasn’t cool.
Ford, Nixon, Johnson, Eisenhower, Truman, FDR, Hoover, Harding, Coolidge, Wilson, Taft?
Also-did you notice that Brooks managed to get through a whole column discussing what “people” look for in “people” who seek power and influence, without ever considering that woman-people may be more constrained than, you know, “people”, in how they acceptably display competence and ambition by totally warped social expectations.
David Brooks did not mention the word “woman”. He also didn’t mention “Iraq” or “Benghazi” or “Wall Street”. He just imagined that we know what Donald Trump likes to do (other than, presumably bully the shit out of people).
@goblue72: I still don’t understand why you’re even here. Shouldn’t you be over at PurityAboveAll.org?
And yet when Bernie Sanders (or as you call him, “God”) lost the primary it was incontrovertible proof that Democrats are scum. Go figure!
@Keith P.: I basically blew up at someone at work recently who was spouting the “evil Hillary” bullshit. I cornered him and demanded that he tell me point blank what exactly she had done which was so “evil”. He sputtered and blustered but all he could ever manage was to touch on some decades old Republican smears and talking points (plus Benghazi!!1!). i just laughed in his face.
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@Keith P.: I asked somebody (not a BernieBro but her son is and she seems to listen to him mostly) the other day why they didn’t like her and they said she couldn’t be trusted. I asked why she couldn’t be trusted and they said…
…bosnia sniper fire!
I know the exact litany of her offenses that avowed lefties will cite. I don’t know what the righties cite. I guess Benghazi is the new one. My guess is that they remember her portrayal as a diesel-powered feminist ballbuster in 1992 (“baking cookies and standing by my man” days) and haven’t really ever gotten over it.
I like my presidents competent. While I am tickled that Obama is charming and charismatic, he’s got that competence thing down first.
I don’t have any delusions that my president has to be my best friend, or be willing to have a beer with me, or be my dream date.
And it’s just a cold hard fact that neither Trump nor Sanders passes the competency test. End of story.
Interestingly enough, I don’t see Hillary as any of these things. Says a lot about you, though.
I think it’s a bit weird for us to be talking about “liking” someone we don’t actually know and never will meet or speak with. I mean, I “like” Obama, in that he seems like the kind of person who would be likable. But really, who gives a fuck what I like? He’s a damn good president. Hillary Clinton will probably be a good president. Trump will not because he is incompetent, stupid, and sociopathic. I imagine I wouldn’t like him, but that is entirely beside the point. And David Brooks. Pretty sure I wouldn’t like him either, but glad I’ll never have to meet him to test it.
@Omnes Omnibus: Boomers do indeed suck in their obliviousness, self-centeredness, and selfishness, but that’s besides the point.
None of the above was about whether Clinton is a good person or not, or anything else. Its about likability – and I really don’t care if anyone is butthurt over it, but the fact remains that likability IS relevant in elections.
This is not some wonkiest about who is the smartest person in the room or the “most competent”. Its a fucking political campaign. And shit like “shares my values”, “is likable”, “is trustworthy”, and all that other squishy, messy stuff is indeed part of how voters make their decisions.
You can either call voters morons or you can figure out how to win.
@Mike J: Is it true that she doesn’t play golf? If so, that’s reason enough to vote for her, as far as I’m concerned.
Rob in CT
Ken Starr appreciates your support.
Who was allegedly a very mean drunk, to boot.
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@Mike J: Remember, the primary is all about
ethics in game journalismgetting the money out of politics!
@Brachiator: Competency may be all about how YOU make your decision. But its not how all voters make their decisions. Part of it – sure. But not all of it.
like you, I am shocked at this revelation.
@goblue72: Just what do you think you’re accomplishing at this point? Serious question.
I guess this is the establishment GOP’s suggestion for a personal attack on HRC, rather than Trump trying stale reruns of Bill’s sexytime and the Vince Foster Murder Mystery of the Millennium.
Trump don’t care. He has the best, most terrific, top people on both, and they will find some really astonishing new stuff. What they will find, I will tell you, you will NOT believe!
I’m not worried about either one.
Establishment GOP: “Hillary, now please tell us about what you see as your biggest weakness for this job?”
HRC “Well, I have to say, I just care and work too much sometimes! I just can’t get my mind off my job and I work too hard. Fortunately, I have a hobby I just love, which is memorizing federal regulations. I highlight the parts I like best with sparkly sharpies.
I figure HRC has a hobby, probably either knitting comforters and shawls, or playing all night games of risk on rye, neat.
“comes across as someone who calculates every utterance in advance,”Yes, that is what public figures do. Especially those who have three decades of evidence that a our overlord-worshipping media scibes will twist those words to prove that she killed someone or lied or, I dunno, is a whore or Wall Street or doesn’t sufficiently hate fracking.
@Rob in CT:
I’m gonna go with brain damage. Anoxia from having one’s head shoved firmly up one’s own ass has to be one of the more common ways purity ponies attain it.
Melania was never a supermodel. Let’s not malign Christy Turlington, Cindy Crawford, and Gisele Bündchen.
St. Bernard’s followers will be here to concern troll about HRC’s approval ratings in 3..2..1..
@goblue72: Tracy Flick was probably a goddamn good class president.
Her mettle enduring the Benghazi-Benghazi-Benghazi marathon demonstrated cool resolve I never realized she had. I would have given anything for her to whip out the iphone and play Candy Crush all afternoon.
@CONGRATULATIONS!: Making a wonderful target for mockery and derision. But otherwise, yeah accomplishments are somewhat lacking.
I would have paid cash money to have been able to drink one or fifty beers with George W. Bush during his presidency. Would have blackmailed that fucker right out of office.
says the supporter of the primary loser. lol
@Major Major Major Major: have started the pushback against that corrupt bs on facebook as well…
1) ask them to name what she has been charged with….
you get crickets
2) then they say, well, with all this speculation there has to be something….
to that I parry with, well, you would think that after 30+ years that somebody would have found something wouldn’t they or is it more of a matter of smearing someone because you can?
I can empathize with VDE about the media here because I’d be willing to bet that the decision makers in all of the major media outlets (including the NYT) have been men that allow this decades long snipe hunt to continue.
Gin & Tonic
@goblue72: So what’s your prescription? We should nominate the candidate who got fewer votes than she did?
@schrodinger’s cat: NR did its hit and run thing the thread below. Imagine it can always be stirred to do another timeless rendition of “OMG favorability!!1!” for posterity though.
Johnny Gentle (famous crooner)
Besides all that, nothing she could ever say or do would change the underlying fact that practically all republicans and many independents hate being told what to do by a woman–especially a Democratic woman. That’s demonstrated in any manner of format, from complaints about female “ambition” to their “shrill” voices to jokes about ball-busting.
Republicans are at least somewhat okay with their own female politicians because (a.) they’re permissive (“Do whatever you want! Don’t let the government or the poors tell you what to do!”), (b.) they hate all the right people, and (c.) they mimic all the macho male stereotypes to appeal to their atavistic electorate (see: Palin, Ernist, Fiore, etc.).
But being a Democrat by definition means you believe in conscientiousness, care for others and actual personal responsibility so you don’t fuck things up for everyone else. In other words, Dems may at times have to tell a red-blooded male they can’t do something. So that makes Hillary into the “annoying nag of a wife” who won’t let a guy watch football all Sunday long.
Whether it’s Elizabeth Warren, Amy Klobuchar, Kamala Harris or any other dream-unicorn of a female Democratic candidate, republicans, many independents and even some Democrats will end up reviling her before too long no matter what she does.
I’m thinking that Bobo is gearing up to talk himself into voting for Trump on the basis of he’s better at showing us his humanity.
@Brachiator: “The things I hate about Hillary Clinton are that she makes me not like her, and that I have to not like her, and this is a real problem for her.”
Most of the crap that people associate with Hillary is made up, but it’s been piling on since the ’90s. Digby said it well:
@Ex Libris: I met George H.W. Bush once (he was RNC chairman) and he was very nice and I liked him a lot – it was at a college commencement and I spoke to him for a few minutes. I would never vote for him though. I also “met” Gerald Ford once in the sense that I asked him a question at a semi-town hall – he was making an effort to seem friendly and he seemed likable enough – I didn’t vote for him either (in my first voting election). And I shook Obama’s hand at an Illinois Senate campaign event once – he seemed pretty likable too. And I did vote for him. So, one out of the three times that I’ve met Presidents (or future Presidents) and “liked” them, I actually voted for them.
He-Man Hillary Haterz Club strikes again.
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@CONGRATULATIONS!: @piratedan: An acquaintance on Facebook said that Kos’ “11 reasons bernie lost fair and square” piece was full of lies and also why did i need to go around talking about ‘an eventuality’ (never mind that he’s the kind of person who’s been posting “bernie will be the nominee” stuff until like last week…)
him: “False: no eventually[sic] bears repeating, period.”
me: “You should let Jeff Weaver know they lost then so he can stop wasting everybody’s time on the teevee”
him: “Second falsehood: people care about others wasting time enough to waste their own time talking about it”
me: “Evidence to the contrary, attached [screenshot of his previous comment]”
and then I unsubscribed from my own thread. So who knows what these people are trying to accomplish.
I know, right? Heaven forbid we have a hard-working, smart president to follow the last hard-working, smart president.
I love how Brooks couches all of his concerns into the big finish: “people, don’t forget to nurture your hobbies and community and yadda yadda yadda…” Oh THANK YOU David, that was so touching the way you subtly smeared HRC the whole way through and tried to make her an object lesson for hardworking careerists. Jerk.
@FlipYrWhig: Anything that pre-dates the modern television era of Presidential campaigning isn’t relevant. You could once upon a time run your campaign entirely from your front porch.
Starting from the JFK-Nixon race, you had:
LBJ (inherited Presidency and then ran as incumbent)
Nixon (way not cool, but neither was his opponent, who was nominated in the ’68 Dem convention dumpster fire)
Ford (lost when he had to actually run)
Carter (looked good compared to Ford)
Regan (he had charisma, as much as the left refuses to see it)
Bush (ran as Reagan’s 3rd term, his opponent was Dukakis)
Clinton (had charisma, beat Bush)
Bush (had charisma, as much as the left refuses to see it)
Obama (had charisma)
Are we applying this “spend the next four years with” test across the board now? Can you even _begin_ to imagine what four consecutive years of Bernie Sanders’s sour mug would be like?
Dammit, you made me look at Brooks’ worthless article. He says,
Hell, Obama goes on vacation and plays some golf, and the Republican jackals start screaming that the shiftless Negro be vacationing all the time, cain’t never be doing no presidenting work. Shit, if Obama smiles at a White House guest, these fools will write 10,000 words about how he lacks serious purpose and is dragging down America.
What does Hillary Clinton do for fun? Not sure, but hopefully it does not involve reading tiresome drivel like this Brooks nonsense.
, and never once broaches the subject that he, the Republicans, and the New York fucking Times have been lying about her for three decades
@maryQ: I’m actually good with having a beer with Hillary, although I think I’ve seen her having a shot of something or other at least twice. Not sure I can keep up with that, but I’d be willing to try.
@goblue72: Oh, so winning gives you charisma, apparently. I guess I should change my mind: it’s a very useful concept and not at all reverse-engineered from the results.
90% of them are fabrications and exaggerations manufactured by that vast right wing conspiracy she decried way back when.
Most hard core Bernie bros are too young to watch as Richard Melon Scaif’s little propaganda investment began to dominate our airwaves in 1992. They have no idea where the toxic hate is coming from and they don’t want to hear about it. When you tell them that the Karl Rove’s of the right wing media mchine are playing both sides of the HRC/Bernie schism…they block you out and call you asshole.
And yes, I’ve been called asshole and scumbag by HRC supporters as well as Bernie Bros for trying to explain the above in detail. There are some serious scumbags who are happily plying both sides with bullshit.
Emma P. Eel
Most of the crap that people associate with her is made up, but it’s been piling on since the ’90s. Digby said it well:
@Jeffro: The bottle of red and long talks is a girl thing. Beer and shots are just what we do when we want to convince guys that we are badass.
@Johnny Gentle (famous crooner): Kamala Harris is an empty suit – I’ve seen her career up close for quite awhile and there’s nothing there. Amy Klobuchar is Minnesota nice but kind of dull. Liz Warren is a magnet and she’d burn up the national campaign trail.
Its not about the gender. Most male candidates for office are about as interesting as a cardboard box when they hit the national spotlight. Martin O’Malley could have run against a ficus and the ficus probably would have won.
Don’t forget – he threw over 200 years’ worth of presidential dignity and tradition down the well by using a selfie stick, too.
I think we have another Trump ratfucker in our midst, ladies and gentlemen. This one’s changed its tune a little often to be anything else.
ETA: odd, isn’t it, how there’s just no Democrat out there good enough to win anything!
As I recall, David Brooks got dumped and divorced by the woman whose family had all the money. And he lives in a McMansion, which maybe he didn’t even keep?
I understand he breaks down in print every so often, musing about mortality and the fragility of the madding crowd or some such nonsense. He always writes like someone without a friend in the world, and I for one am not surprised.
I have never read him on purpose, and I hope I never will!
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@goblue72: We can agree about Harris. Bleh.
@goblue72: Aren’t you “the left”? And how did the decidedly not cool LBJ win? And Gerald Ford, despite inheriting the job, lose? And how did the incumbent George H.W. Bush lose? I’m not following your consistency here.
Hillary Clinton reminds me of my eldest sister who btw I have issues with. But,of all the kids in my family the one I would trust with a difficult complicated task is my eldest sister. She has worked her ass off to get to where she’s gotten to. She’s never done anything to embarrass my parents,quite the opposite really. She’s put up with a bunch of discrimination along the way. She just doesn’t not give up. That is the way I see Hillary and,yeah,i will proudly vote for her in November.
How’s Trump’s likeability rating? Here, I’ve Googled that for you.
But, please, tell us again that Trump’s likeability is totally irrelevant to the election but Hillary’s is absolutely vital and what everyone will be voting on.
Don’t forget that one has to shoehorn in the “Teh Left refuses to see what was obvious to me and all other non-Lefties (even though I pretend to be a Lefty, but unlike all you assholes I’m not arrogant)”
More or less
What is a hater’s response to Jill Abramson’s claim that, after her years of professional, well-funded investigation, she says that Hillary is fundamentally honest and trustworthy? Why should we not believe that conclusion?
agreed. HRC has withstood more lies and slander than even a pol should have to – it is definitely a tribute to her that the $millions working relentlessly to destroy her for so lone haven’t yet been able to – remarkable.
He’s channeling Maureen Dowd!!!
Hey, I’m proudly voting for her this afternoon! In a non-binding primary, but it means that by the end of the year I will have voted for her four times.
Because he ran against the charismatic guy who was/is married to an unlikable harpy who drives a Beemer and mumble mumble.
I don’t think that either of us speaks for the mass of voters. And I also note that a lot of my views runs counter to a lot of Balloon Juice consensus. And I thank the gods for that.
However, in 2008, I think a critical mass of voters looked at Sarah Palin and decided that she was an incompetent nincompoop who did not remotely belong within a heartbeat of the presidency. And she was only running for VP, not the top position.
@SFAW: Yeah, that was a real tell! It seems like goblue, while pretending to be from “the left,” perhaps mistakenly took a shot at “the left.”
@FlipYrWhig: I didn;t say they all had charisma. But JFK, Reagan, Clinton, Bush II and Obama all did.
LBJ, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Bush I – not really. But that didn’t kill them in the context of their opponents and other factors. LBJ was an incumbent who ran against a complete lunatic in Goldwater. Nixon ran against the Democratic Party setting itself on fire. Carter got to run agains Ford. And then as payback, Bush I got to run against Dukakis (if only Gary Hart could have kept it in his pants)
Hillary doesn’t have it despite what her fans what to see. But she’s running against a baboon. I still expect her to win, but that doesn’t mean Brooks is wrong about her likeabilty.
the Conster, la Citoyenne
Remember that video of the little girl crying because she wasn’t ready for a new president yet? We would all look and sound like her, except because he wasn’t leaving yet.
Hey, remember when it was 16 years ago and the pundits said all the same shit about Al Gore (stiff, not comfortable in his skin, tries to hard, eager to please)? And then when it was 12 years ago and they said all the same shit about John Kerry? And then when it was 8 years ago and they said all the same shit about Hillary Clinton? It’s almost like they say it a lot.
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Whatever happened to Tammy Baldwin?
I am bored with having this same debate for the nth time.
@goblue72: I don’t know why a steady, slightly boring candidate running against a lunatic or a party setting itself on fire would have any bearing on the 2016 election.
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Pro Publica has a new study out about racial bias in the COMPAS recidivism forecasts.
I don’t drink beer, so that is not the test for me. I would ask do I want you at a BBQ?
Eating good food and talking about whatever.
I think POTUS and FLOTUS would be great.
I think Hillary is a brunch invite, and no matter what you bring up, she’ll have something intelligent to say.
Good enough for me.
@Mnemosyne: Nowhere did I say Trump was more likable. Please, go find where I said that. I will wait here for your non-reply.
Meanwhile, as you go chase straw men – I think Trump is a turd – as I noted above in my raw sewage fermented comment. And its part of why I think Clinton will win. However, she should be running away with it against a candidate like Trump. He’s like Barry Goldwater but crazier. She’s lucky the GOP nomination turned into such a complete shitshow. Very good possibility she’d be taking on water right now if the GOP had nominated anyone halfway competent.
It’s not so much personal. We just have a far better choice in Bernie.
@FlipYrWhig: All those candidates lost. Against opponents who were more personable.
Oh, come on! Stop exaggerating! This hasn’t devolved into a “Bernie Sux” TBogg-unit-worthy thread.
Except for Gore and Kerry.
This is not real difficult to figure out. Clinton’s “unfavorability” rating is somewhere over 50 and less than 60 percent. Let’s call it 55. Forty-five of that 55 percent are Republicans who dislike her because she’s the putative Democratic nominee, period. If Sheriff Andy Taylor of Mayberry was a real person and the Democratic nominee, he’d have a 45 percent unfavorable rating. The other 10 percent are probably half men who just can’t stomach the idea of a woman President, and half as yet unable to get over it Sanders voters.
What Clinton is really like (and I have no idea what that really is) has nothing to do with it. Otherwise, she wouldn’t have had such sterling favorable ratings as Sec. of State.
Post hoc ergo propter hoc, of course
@FlipYrWhig: As I stated above, I think because of the context of her opponent, I expect her to win. But that doesn’t make Brooks wrong about Clinton’s likability or the role it plays in making it harder for her to run away with it. Win – yes. Crush? Maybe not so much. And the Democrats really need to crush this election.
@goblue72: You’re arguing zero sum and two different things. To those who voted for him, Goldwater had loads of charisma. But not to others. Similarly, Carter, in 1976, had charisma, but not so much in 1980. And liking someone is not the same thing as saying they have charisma. George H.W. Bush, as I said and as I experienced, was very likable, but was not as charismatic as others.
Many Hillary supporters both like her and feel she’s got charisma. Others disagree. It’s not an either or thing, like pregnancy. It’s up to individual tastes. Your argument is gibberish. And are you, or are you not, part of “the left?” If so, then at least some leftists think Reagan and W were charismatic.
Iowa Old Lady
Samantha Bee on the Democratic primary. You’re welcome.
@Brachiator: you forget W. I think Obama ran a phenomenal campaign but,sheet,whoever won the Dem primary was going to win the GE. There was basically no realistic way a GOPr was going to win after Dumbya.
Gin & Tonic
@LanceThruster: Why has the “far better choice” gotten far fewer votes?
so your stunning insight is just this:
everyone who’s been president since TV either had charisma, or won because the other guy didn’t. And if you don’t think the winners had charisma you’re in denial.
you’re a clown.
@SFAW: By all measures, George W. Bush was a personable, likable candidate. That certain partisan Democrats fail – and failed at the time – to see that, didn’t make him less personable. It just made partisan Democrats blind and foolhardy. (those same Democrats are the ones who also refused to see that Reagan oozed charisma) And Al Gore was fucking cardboard.
Same thing in 2004 – John Kerry was – and remains – a pompous windbag. He was my Senator for many years and I got to see him up close, face-to-face, in person. He did not improve with proximity. The times I saw him with Ted, it was even worse, as then there was context for just how much an out-of-touch windbag he was.
Barack Obama has charisma. That is undeniable. And Clinton – esp in 2008, had far far less.
@lethargytartare: And, s/he’s not a leftist, or if s/he is, s/he’s an enlightened leftist, unlike all the others.
@goblue72: This whole thing is more than a little absurd anyway, but “personable” and “charismatic” aren’t the same thing, and on top of that, Hillary Clinton is by all reports _extremely personable_ in a setting where being personable is called for, like a small group. So the problem, such as it is, is that Hillary Clinton doesn’t _come off as_ “personable” on public occasions. But of course Bernie Sanders is a grouch, Donald Trump is a bullying narcissist, and Ted Cruz both literally and figurative exudes an oily substance, and that’s your top four. I’d probably say Trump would be the most entertaining one to be around, but I wouldn’t call that either “personable” or “likeable.” So maybe who’s “personable” is beside the point and something that pundits like to kick around because the actual reasons why people support candidates are too hard for them to process.
You keep saying that it’s VITALLY IMPORTANT TO THE ELECTION that Hillary’s likeability ratings are not high. Since you acknowledge that Trump’s are even lower, why do you persist in claiming that Hillary’s likeability ratings have any significance whatsoever? They’re a non-issue.
And, gee, I can’t imagine why polls are consistently showing that about 15 percent of Democratic voters prefer another candidate to Hillary. It’s almost like the primary is still going on or something. Like maybe a major state — the state in which you claim to live — hasn’t even held its primary yet.
Nah, that couldn’t be it. It must be because Hillary is an inherently flawed candidate, not that she still has a primary opponent and Trump doesn’t.
@goblue72: So, are you a partisan Democrat? In addition to being a leftist?
OT but maybe not quite: just saw a clip of Jake Tapper – the Tapmeister, of all people – going nuts on Trump for attempting to smear HRC with the Vince Foster case. He noted all of the multiple investigations that found nothing sinister, criminal, or even sketchy about Foster’s sad ending, then laid down the law, as in “This is not a pro-Clinton position, Mr. Trump: it’s pro-truth”
I mean, when the GOP nominee has lost Jake. Tapper. …
Btw Tapper’s reciting of multiple investigations, instigated by GOP loons, that found nothing in the Foster case…no reason not to have surrogates pound that home and move on to the next example (Benghazi anyone?) There’s a theme there that the Clinton campaign can pick up and run with all the way to November. It practically writes itself.
Yeah, this trope–as much as the left refuses to see it–can go DIAF. Before translation it read, “Who I really loved on my teevee.”
oh, I get it – Charisma is CRITICAL. except when the bore won, and then it wasn’t.
you probably still believe that nonsense about Nixon winning the debate on the radio.
@Brachiator: The Democrats could have run a bowl of Jello salad and they still would have won in 2008. Bush completely destroyed the GOP’s chances in 2008. No President in the modern era has managed to wage two disastrous wars AND bring on the first depression since 1929, at the same time. Its like if Hoover was waging the Vietnam War at the same time.
One of the things I’ve learned during this election cycle is that people who actually know Clinton – her colleagues in the Senate, her subordinates in the State Department, and President Obama himself – do really like her. She is far more likeable than the media narrative around her. Furthermore, her public speeches this campaign have been warm and positive. It’s like people are parroting what they have heard about Clinton, without ever looking at the real person.
@FlipYrWhig: Maybe that’s not the best illustration, as those first two lost…
Jim, Foolish Literalist
Hamster and Armstrong have folded their bloggy tents, and I think Matt Stoller is working for Alan Grayson. Maybe GoBlow will start his own fucking blog, and take dollared and NR with him as front pagers.
@FlipYrWhig: Apparently, “likeable,” “personable,” and “charismatic” are not separate words with different meanings, they are inter-changeable synonyms which can be used whenever and however one wants to fit one’s arguments.
@Brachiator: Good grief, thank god I didn’t read that. I saw her on Colbert, I think, and she said she and Bill like to binge watch tv, love Madame Secretary, and celebrated her birthday with Chelsea, SIL, and granddaughter. Sounds pretty normal to me, and finding that out does not require the pedigree of someone who works at the NYTimes.
@LanceThruster: Yes because an aging socialist with wild hair and a habit of waving his index figure at you and yelling at you is the epitome of charisma and charm.
Charisma? I’m not seeing it in any of the lot we have on offer. But, whatever. Some of the analysis about past events seems like it’s a fancy word for “we can’t explain what happened here”, especially as whatever it is is so personally variable, rather like the taste of cilantro.
The GOP’s real beef against the Clintons from the get-go is that after Reagan won the Presidency in 1980, the GOP increasingly believed that no democrat should or could ever legitimately hold that office again – and democratic presidencies interrupt their fond dream of somehow dismantling all the allegedly destructive progressive accomplishments of government from the New Deal onward.
If anyone could answer this zen koan, BTW, they’d be rich. However to those of you denying that ‘likeability’ is a thing — you shouldn’t. It’s not enough to lose an election on its own (although in Al Gore’s case it’s hard to argue that wasn’t the only reason) but it matters. My go-to on this is Providence’s own Buddy Cianci. They loved him up here. Long after it came to light that he was as crooked as can be, people loved him. He was as charming a public presence as can be, and there were plenty of people who didn’t like his politics. Every area has one. Whether or not your candidate possess it is basically ‘beauty in the eye of the beholder’ though. I’d argue Hillary doesn’t, BTW — but Bernie isn’t the counterexample, Obama is. Whatever people are saying about HRC now in terms of intelligence, progressive platform, skill, etc. could have been said back in 2008. Yet she lost to a political unknown. Why?
This. The He-Man Hillary Haterz Club doesn’t want to admit it, but their irrational Hillary hate is more akin to the people who don’t like Obama because Reasons.
And folks who are not prepared for the massive wave of irrational misogynist shit coming our way didn’t learn a fucking thing in the last 8 years.
and they’re all synonyms for “won the election” in this strange tautological universe.
Jim, Foolish Literalist
only if you count the votes that don’t count.
he kicked her ass on the ground and ran a better campaign. Just like she’s doing to Bernie.
J.A.F. Rusty Shackleford
I’ve always thought that Hillary Clinton is the real life Lisa Simpson. Hillary is the person who always did her homework and seemed to be involved in everything, whether it’s student government, prom committee or yearbook. If she played a sport in high school it was probably something like badminton.
No, that, that’s not it.
@lethargytartare: Exactly. And issues, like immigration reform, women’s liberty, employee free choice, energy conservation, openings to Cuba, nuclear deals with Iran, marriage equality, voting rights, minimum wage, financial regulation, disability rights, employment non-discrimination rights, union rights etc… are all subservient to the tautology.
Well then, Hillary is winning the primaries – therefore, she is likable and has charisma and is personable. And if she wins the election, the same thing. Bernie, by losing the primaries, is none of the above.
Check out Driftglass’s take on the Brooks’ latest effort. Yes, it is all about projection for Mr. Brooks. Why the NY Times still keeps him on is just beyond me. Sad. Very sad.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist: Don’t forget poland, the votes that should have been cast, if only X, Y, and Z.
Anyone else enjoying the NYT thing on Team R discussions of how to alter their primary system? Possibly restricting the ability of non-party members to vote, ditching Nevada as an early state because of issues, re-organizing early states, et cetera.
Because the “political unknown” ran a better campaign. His campaign counted every delegate in every state and got enough of them to win. They convinced more people to vote for Obama than for his opponents. Outwit, outplay, outlast.
This isn’t a mystery. It’s been written about a million times then and now. But people keep acting like that primary and general election was won on “charisma” or “likeability” when it was won on numbers and GOTV. Obama’s charisma was the cherry on top, not the driving force. He’s charismatic AND he knew his shit.
I like Hillary a lot. She’s very smart and is always well prepared. She would be a great president.
@Gin & Tonic:
“…So what’s your prescription? We should nominate the candidate who got fewer votes than she did?…”
But, but, but, they didn’t count the caucus votes. Because caucuses are so well attended and Democratic. Except when they’re primaries and closed to Paulite libertarians.
@negative 1: But did they lose because of a deficit in “likeability” and “charisma”? I don’t think so. Gore essentially won, and Kerry was running against a War President [tm]. And, anyway, I remember some of the early stories about Kerry, like from when he was doing the BCCI investigation, that depicted him as a guitar-playing war hero turned protest icon with the most luxurious hair in Washington. That sounds like a charismatic guy. But he has sort of an annoying speech pattern, and that was enough to build a whole story about how he was unlikeable and lacking in charisma, to the point where windsurfing became an obviously laughable thing. Windsurfing! That was never funny before!
At any rate that wasn’t what determined that election.
This is not even an interesting hypothetical. Do you have an alternate universe handy in which we can run the 2008 election with different candidates?
But this is not relevant to my point. There were Republicans, as well as on-the-fence Democrats who looked at Palin and decided that she was a fool, and that they could not vote for McCain as a result.
“They say I’m a Francophile but at least they know I know where France is!”
Good article, on topic as well.
A month ago, Hillary Clinton had a big lead in national and battleground state polls. Today, she has a modest lead at best. A few surveys even show Donald Trump ahead.
What happened? Mr. Trump has made gains in unifying his party’s base, while Mrs. Clinton has not done the same with hers. If anything, her problem with Bernie Sanders’s voters has gotten a bit worse.
There has been weakening in her support among Mr. Sanders’s supporters over the last month or so. In April, Mrs. Clinton held between 71 and 82 percent of Mr. Sanders’s supporters; today it’s between 55 and 72 percent.
Exactly what’s driving the shift is hard to say. What’s clear is that Mrs. Clinton’s challenge isn’t totally superficial. Just 20 percent of Mr. Sanders’s supporters have a favorable view of her in the most recent New York Times/CBS News survey, while 47 percent have an unfavorable one.
@Jim, Foolish Literalist:
“…Maybe GoBlow will start his own fucking blog, and take dollared and NR with him as front pagers…”
It’s easy enough to get a domain for cheap, pay $300 a year for an out of the box and easy to use platform with hosting and unlimited bandwidth, and proceed to fill it with content that people will want to read. Or not. Yeah, okay, that last part is kind of a sticking point.
Is this not in fact true? (Just asking: I don’t know. I’ve heard “viewers preferred JFK but listeners preferred Tricky Dick” but never delved deeply into it).
@goblue72: How about this: We call you a fucking moron & win without your pathetic vote.
Some years ago, I knew a guy who was a member of the Village Press Corps. Fairly smart guy, drank a lot, lived on cheeseburgers. I asked him why they all hated the Clintons so much– he just shrugged. It’s the way the world works, son.
And yeah, exactly how Brooks manages to ignore 25 years of right-wing propaganda is a mystery.
Major Major Major Major
@Michael Bersin: Hell, just pony up the willingness to be somethingsomething.wordpress.com and you can post things nobody reads for free!
@Gimlet: IMHO Sanders supporters are acting out because they know they’re being asked to give up, and they know it’s the right thing to do to say that they have favorable views of her and support her, but they don’t feel like it yet. (Judging by my Facebook friends who lean Bernie, they’ve gotten nastier and more dug in ever since it’s been clear that he won’t win.) In time they’ll probably keep their unfavorable views of her but switch to supporting her.
And it doesn’t help things that the Sanders campaign has been egging them on and making them feel like it’s been stolen from them (“rigged,” etc.) rather than that they lost in a fair fight, which has been happening for about the same timeframe as the trend you cite.
This. Also a very big component of their Obama Derangement Syndrome.
@goblue72: Fuck off & die, shithead. In the interest of time, you may omit the fucking off.
You see what you want to see.
Most Democrats at the time knew he appeared to be far more personable (in public) than Gore, who most, on both sides of the aisle, regarded as a stiff (in public).
Being a “guy you want to have a beer with” does not make one charismatic. Outside of that, and outside of Gore and Kerry winning, your thesis is almost interesting.
Trump has sewn up the GOP nomination. Hillary is still working it.
This stuff is mildly interesting, but not strongly predictive. Let’s see where things stand after both conventions.
@goblue72: OK, all the wailing and gnashing of teeth I lived through in 2008 was just a hallucination.
Well, you don’t expect him to indict himself, do you?
@Chris: I suppose not. It’s possible that he’s steeling himself for the tribulation of actually voting for HRC.
Perfectly said. Me too.
Now, now, be careful not to alienate him — his vote is absolutely crucial to ensuring that Hillary ….
Ah, fuck it, he’s not even worth a half-hearted attempt at a joke.
@Chris: I haven’t been able to find any link, but, sometime in the last decade, the Times ran a piece saying that whole “Nixon triumphed on radio/JFK on TV” thing was based on one flimsy poll from a non-reputable source, and that in any case the number of people who, even by then, were listening to the debate on radio was a very small subset of the electorate.
@Tracy Ratcliff: If McCain had won, the reason would be because he was very charismatic, down to earth, with a great sense of humor, especially compared to that aloof, snooty Barack Obama who never really connected with everyday people.
Old white Republican men hate her too. Funny that. What are the odds those young, male Dems will one day be old white rightwingers.
@FlipYrWhig: Basically, saying they won’t gets them attention and into the news (omni)cycle — the search for personal viral clicks and the eternal 15 minutes of fame is fairly universal.
ETA: Other’s can personally justify it as cannily tactical — trying to weedle more leverage at the convention. Honestly, until the convention is past, a good chunk of everything is positioning and chaos (added onto the quotidian chaos).
Don’t forget “uppity.”
@SFAW: And too much of a celebrity!
Grumpy Code Monkey
The modern media really, genuinely want Trump to win the election, and not for the page clicks. These people need (not want, need) a Big Swinging White Dick daddy figure to make them feel safe in a world of transgendered bathrooms. Never mind that a Trump administration would send us headlong into Third World status, he’s loud, he swaggers, he’s white, he has a dick (size does not matter, not for this), he’s exactly what they want.
Yeah, Hillary will hit Trump, hard, with deadly aim and substantial ammo. And CNN and FOX and all the rest will ignore it, will not air it, discuss it, or otherwise let it come within a mile of tarnishing Trump’s image. They will control the debate, and they will do their goddamnedest to make sure that the odds are ever in Trump’s favor.
Shortly after the 2008 election, on a different forum, I wrote the following:
It didn’t take a rocket surgeon to see that the next few years were going to be, uh, challenging for some people; I just didn’t realize how challenging, or for which people. I knew the unreconstructed racists on certain branches of my family tree were going to pitch a blue-lipped fit, but so did a bunch of so-called “progressives” and “liberals” who were all for racial equality, except when it came to actual power. The House, sure, Senate, okay, yeah. But the White House? Too goddamned far, dude.
The “respectable” pundit class on both sides of the political spectrum lost their fucking shit, but couldn’t admit to anyone (least of all themselves) that it was about race. For the righties it was “Obama’s a soshulist!”. for the emoprogs it was “Obama’s a crypto-Republican sellout!”
And now we have Hillary. And now we have the same goddamned problem, except instead of being about hue, it’s about being an innie instead of an outie. And again, they can’t admit to themselves that it’s about the naughty bits, so they have to make shit up about emails, or her “radical Leftist agenda” (btw, the Political Compass puts her solidly in the Right/Authoritarian quadrant), or shit like that.
We’re fucked, because the media are going to make sure Trump wins. Because he’s exactly what they want. Blitzer, Tapper, Brooks, all of them obviously agree with Trump that Messicans are rapists, Muslims need to be rounded up and detained or deported, that America will be treated fairly, etc.
villago delenda est, indeed.
Major Major Major Major
@Tom Q: I’ll have to keep an eye out for that.
Looking at all the candidates this year, without a doubt, the most “likable” one is Clinton. The most “personable” one is Clinton. None have any charisma.
And the fact is, I didn’t expect to like Clinton at the beginning. I saw her as competent and without a doubt the most qualified, but I had a built in bias against her because of 2008. The Clinton I have seen on the campaign has totally changed my image of her. She has an excellent sense of humor, is responsive to people, appears genuine when interacting with people.
Part of the problem is she, as are all others, is following in the footstep of Obama, who had all the traits being discussed.
When she really starts to get exposure, I have a feeling a lot of people will be changing their minds about her.
it’s largely been debunked by actual analysis:
There is quite simply no persuasive evidence to support the notion that television viewers and radio listeners decisively disagreed about the outcome of the first Kennedy-Nixon debate, which took place in Chicago on September 26, 1960.
A Ghost To Most
One can only hope that David Brooks ex-wife had a pre-nuptial contract that cut him out,and left him to survive on his grift. Perhaps that’s part of why he so weepy lately.
To all the folks jousting with GoBlowYourself, well done.
@Grumpy Code Monkey: So what do you suggest, should we hide under the bed or curl up and die?
Grumpy Code Monkey
I suggest we GOTV like a motherfucker, but we have to realize that we’re not just fighting the GOP, we’re fighting pretty much the entire media establishment as well. We’re going to be at a severe disadvantage.
And we have to start mentally preparing ourselves for the worst. Like many other people, I thought Trump would flame out long before Stupor Tuesday, and now that I better understand why he didn’t, I feel a lot less confident about this coming November. Obama’s election was a transformative event, and like all transformative events is spawning a backlash, and I worry that we underestimate the size and intensity of that backlash.
J R in WV
News is that Baylor U fired Ken Starr recently – and won’t answer questions about his job at all. There were a number of rapes on campus that apparently were not handled properly. Guess who?
Football team members…whocouldaknown amirite??
He’s probably filthy rich, we know about the filthy part, have to guess about the rich part. So it won’t hurt him as much as it should, but it’s still good news.
J R in WV
But where would the GOP find a Republican that was halfway competent? Where oh where could they be? How about, maybe, in the Deomcratic party?
You know, when Elizabeth Warren was running for Senate there was a period when she wasn’t doing great in the polls against Scott Brown, and there were a lot of complaints about how she lacked charisma and had a bloodless, professorial mien. No match for Scott Brown and his natural, pickup-truck bro appeal that had made mincemeat of Martha Coakley. And that Indian thing was killing her–if you’re explaining, you’re losing. Anyway, she beat his ass in the end and now she’s some unstoppable superstar.
@Xboxershorts: “And yes, I’ve been called asshole and scumbag by HRC supporters as well as Bernie Bros for trying to explain the above in detail. There are some serious scumbags who are happily plying both sides with bullshit.”
Rove is less important than we thought. The hidden villain all along — the Phantom Menace, if you will — has been Roger Stone. He engineered a win for Reagan in 1980 (something that no-one thought possible at the time) and he is probably going to put his buddy Donald Trump in office this year.
I don’t see much evidence of Stone manipulating the HRC crowd right now. The Clinton supporters have been unusually tolerant of the BernieBros until quite recently, until we finally got sick of being called “shills for Killary.” Enough was enough.
But the forces of darkness did manipulate both sides in 2008. Many of the PUMA sites were on the level — The Confluence, Taylor Marsh, my own humble contribution — but others were GOP ratf*cking operations, particularly No Quarter and HillBuzz. It’s easy to tell which ones were fakes: They are anti-Hillary NOW.
I know that some may feel that my own hot-headed take-no-prisoners approach to the BernieBullies will play right into the hands of Stone and his minions. But what alternative is there? For months, I played nice. I praised Bernie Sanders and wrote about Hillary’s flaws. The end result, I felt, would be unity. Instead, we got a Cult of Personality coalescing around a bitter and not-too-bright old man who, if nominated, would lead the party to a 50-state loss.
In the future, whenever we face one of these ginned-up movements, we just cannot play nice.