Questions (Sincere, not Snarky) You'd Like Answered: Democrats Edition

But there’s never been a husband/wife team like the Clintons. I’m sure there was lots of wonky policy talk going on in the Clinton bedroom in the 1990s. Bill Clinton left office and Hillary Clinton was sworn in as a US Senator. Michelle Obama is a very intelligent woman, but I bet most of the bedroom conversation for the Obamas is probably sports or the arts, not political issues.

For recent presidents:

  1. Nixon resigned in disgrace. Made some money authoring foreign policy books.
  2. Ford. Accidental president, lost 76 election. His wife was probably better known post presidency for her alcohol work.
  3. Carter. Lost 80 election, devoted his time to Habitat for Humanity and international diplomacy. Left office quite unpopular.
  4. Reagan. Left office popular but hindered by Alzheimer’s. Would have a made a fortune in speaking had his health been better.
  5. George HW Bush. Lost 92 election, relatively unpopular at the time. Groomed his sons for political office, then spent his last healthy years doing humanitarian work, sometimes in conjunction with Bill Clinton.
  6. Bill Clinton- see above
  7. George W Bush. Left office extremely unpopular. Has stayed out of the public eye except for his artwork. So unpopular in his own party that he hasn’t been at his own party’s convention.

Some reality check here. Context.

Trump has gotten $1.5 million per speech. Yes, $1.5 million! Trump.

Geithner and Bernake, both now former heads of their departments and not expected to return, both make as much per speech as Clinton does.

G.W. Bush, despite his as noted having left an extremely unpopular president and with very little influence in his party, makes nearly as much per speech as Clinton does. In just a few years has made over $15 million doing it.

Condeleeza Rice, Gore, dang even Palin, have gotten over $100K per speech.

What future favors are being bought of G.W. Bush, of Palin, Rice, Gore, and the absurdly valued Trump?

It’s just the going rate for sharing their “intellectual property” (even if “intellectual” may be a stretch in some cases).

Sanders: Was your dad a wiseguy? If not, why does he look so shady in all three photos *you *selected for this otherwise embarrassingly hagiographic video?

Hillary would be stupid to defend her speech making in the way you describe. For one it would mean more publicity to an issue she doesn’t want to deal with. Secondly, it would be admitting that speeches are a legitimate issue, and lastly because what she said obviously has stuff that is embarrassing to her about it. The most effective politicians make every group they are in front of believe they are one of them. Hillary is such a cold person that she can’t do it through emoting she has to do it through words and those words would obviously contradict the image she is now trying to portray.

On the speeches:
3. Hillary’s fees are in line with what other former secretaries of state and people of similar stature have received. No other candidate has ever been attacked as corrupt for giving a paid speech. Further, no other speaker in history has been both a former First Lady of a very popular president and a former Secretary of State for another popular president — not mention also having been a two-term senator from NY (first female to hold that position), not to mention having also come closer than any woman in U.S. history to obtaining a major party’s nomination for the presidency and being a recognized leader for women’s rights. Somehow — despite decades of examples of former elected officials accepting speaking fees — it is now nefarious for people to be willing to pay to hear her speak, and corrupt for her to accept a fee when out of office? This is a new standard apparently invented by Sanders only for Hillary Clinton.

This new conflation of speaking fees while out of public office with corruption while in public office is analytically false while superficially appealing, rendering it all the more slippery and scurrilous. Sanders insinuates that because Clinton gave talks at Goldman, she must be doing their bidding. A look at the list of the speeches Clinton gave and received money for reveals that the overwhelming majority were for women’s rights groups and unions. But Sanders focuses solely on the three Goldman Sachs speeches. He notably ignores that a speech she gave in 2014 at the Goldman 10,000 Women dinner argued forcefully for equal pay for women and gender parity. Her use of that platform to push the same progressive agenda she has been at the forefront of for decades is conveniently absent from Sanders’ screeds against her. This speech, while unpaid, gives the lie to his accusation that speaking to Goldman employees equates to corruption or that her policy positions are dictated by Goldman…But even if it did not, the argument, reduced to its essence, is that the very act of receiving a speaker fee is itself a form of corruption — at least, if the speech is given by Hillary Clinton, and given to a group Sanders does not like. This is intellectually dishonest. He’s certainly not attacking her speeches to women’s rights groups, or questioning her motives there, because he can’t. So he selectively focuses on a bank that symbolizes greed in the public’s mind and attacks her receipt of the fee as “evidence” she will not support the very regulation she has proposed. What Sanders’ selectivity shows, however, is that his focus on her speaking fees is a campaign tactic adopted to push the false corruption narrative, allowing him to deflect criticism of his own blunderbuss “break up the banks” platform by painting Hillary’s arguably superior alternative platform as the product of corruption rather than legitimate disagreement.*

No, he just lets and encourages his Bernie-Bros to do so.

Then there are the BernieBros — the men, usually white guys, who troll women who dare either question Sanders in any way or to comment in a pro-Hillary way on every site they can find. Sanders actually has spent over $16 million on Revolution Messaging, a company that trains interns to go onto sites and generate trolling posts. The examples on Twitter, Facebook and other social media of sexist memes, the use of the B- and C-words to describe Hillary and women who support her, or who dare suggest Sanders might have a flaw, have been documented, although only partially. Then of course there’s the Hillaryhate, which is fostered and exploited in many ways. Many articles have been written, so I won’t here, about the BernieBros’ repulsive online trolling behavior, and on why the claim of “oh I don’t have a problem with women, I’d vote for Warren” actually demonstrates sexist bias.

It is noteworthy that you, as one of most conservative GOP posters, also focus on many of the same anti-Clinton attacks.

No one reports “net worth” but the Bushes are comparable to the Clintons.

The Kennedys are by far the richest presidential family ever, then (adjusted for inflation) Geo Washington,Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt and Andrew Jackson.

So, your statement is false.

He don’t look pretty but he don’t look shady.

This seems to be solely a criticism of having given paid speeches. In which case, why would the content of those speeches matter at all? Why is Sanders asking her to disclose that?

Usually when people make these kinds of hyper-vague predictions, they do so in a way that they can make some sort of argument that they were right regardless of what actually happens. So, congratulations, I guess, on making a hyper-vague prediction which is guaranteed to be wrong. I assure you the Obamas will command some fraction of the money that the Clintons do after he leaves offcie.

Utter nonsense. The Clintons have double the Bushes’ wealth. Roughly estimated — all political families may have more, may have less — at $130 million to the combined Bush $60 million. Mrs. Clinton may have $30 million: Bill much more ( however like most couples they are a fine team sharing equally ). Nor have they done anything illegal to acquire this sum.
However, a major reason why establishment Democrats want Hillary and hate Sanders is how rich she is: like the Republicans they ascribe virtue to wealth in itself. Fawning on the richest kid in school never did harm, and just maybe, some of the child’s luck will rub off on those who suck up most.
Washington was the richest, and owned the most land, plus he made a great deal as president — which compensated for his not making much as general — but it wasn’t noticeable as he lived quietly and meanly; unlike Jefferson who was next richest, but wasted his wealth greedily: however, unlike the next the Kennedies they both had many slaves, which were as much a form of wealth as acres of land.

The Kennedy wealth might be slightly overstated, old Joe was no more likely to underestimate his value than Trump; and really, the only president they produced did not control or own the family wealth, and didn’t spend much of it after leaving the presidency,

Note this Vanity Fair article which lists the top 10 donors to both parties for this election, and allowing for the fact they are presumably buying spending income rather than capital ( being much richer than the Clintons ), realise the Clintons could outspend the entire amount, and still have enough over for a daughter’s wedding.
In total, the Top 10 billionaires on the list have spent a combined $114.3 million on super-PACs, or about 20 percent of the total $607 million raised since 2015, according to The Washington Post. Below, a snapshot of some of the most powerful men (they are almost entirely men) in America:

[li]Tom Steyer (leans Democratic) — $17 million[/li][li]The Wilks family (leans Republican) — $15.3 million[/li][li]Maurice “Hank” Greenberg (leans Republican) — $15 million[/li][li]Robert Mercer (leans Republican) — $14.6 million[/li][li]Toby Neugebauer (leans Republican) — $10.1 million[/li][li]Paul Singer (leans Republican) — $9.9 million[/li][li]Ronald Cameron (leans Republican) — $8.6 million[/li][li]Kenneth C. Griffin (leans Republican) — $8.3 million[/li][li]George Soros (leans Democratic) — $8 million[/li][li]Elizabeth and Richard Uihlein (leans Republican) — $7.5 million[/li][/ol]

In the immortal words of Craig Roberts, “…let us wonder aloud where a poor boy who became governor of Arkansas and president of the United States got such a fortune that he can blow $3,000,000 on a wedding.”

That would have been difficult considering that he was sort of…well, dead.

I have seen estimates of the Clintons as low as $80MM, and the Bushes as high as $90mm. True, generally the estimates put the Clintons higher. Generally the figures I have seen put the Clintons @ $100MM, and the Bushes @ $80mm.

So, hardly “Utter nonsense.”

You list seems to skip over Charles and David Koch, @ $100Billion. who are* strongly* Republican.

Not to mention Sheldon Adelson, Foster Friess, …

I couldn’t disagree more (about all of this). Pointing out how easily cynical people can use courteous introductory remarks as “proof” of being friendly toward any particular audience, is doing the opposite of “admitting that speeches are a legitimate issue.” As a bonus, it would highlight how ludicrous is the accusation that such speeches contain content “embarrassing” to Clinton.

She took their money and she told them what she thinks. If she began with anything along the lines of ‘thanks for inviting me; I’m sure you here all work very hard at what you do and you certainly make a major contribution to the economy of this city’, that would be purely standard, conventional politeness. It utterly fails to be “proof” of corruption.

For some reason this strikes me as hilarious. I’m trying to picture whichever candidate you happen to fancy, winning your approval by doing his “emoting” without words …

Excellent point: logic is not on the Sanders side. (In keeping with the thread theme, this would be a great question to ask Sanders: if ‘being paid to give a speech’ is the real issue, then why would you care about transcripts?

… For all those who say it is, somehow, intrinsically wrong to accept money for a speech: How much money would the Bête Noire Organization of your choice have to pay you for giving a speech, before you would become their puppet?

Because I would guess that emotionally healthy people do not become the puppets of those who hire them to give a speech, no matter how much they are paid to do so. Cash the check and tell them what you think; that’s it.

That Vanity Fair bit points out the Kochs are mainly sitting out the 2016 dance.

I think Trump has spooked them, and they don’t want to pour away dollars trying to defeat him. However, their main puppets have already lost their nominations, which means they have no time to groom other substitutes this year.

That list [ ultimately from Forbes ? it’s now gone down ] , only lists the TOP 10 Donors. I have no doubt there are thousands of minimillionaires buying politicians.

This inclines me towards Hillary a fraction, since I abhor sentimentalism. On the other hand it offers new opportunities for politicians to advance their message without words, through Kabuki Theatre or Hand Shadows.

I had been picturing Mime, but I like your ideas better. :smiley:

Marcel Marceaux, Mime Party candidate…

Dangit, I should read everything before replying.

Well, clearly, great minds think alike. ^_~

It’d make for a much quieter legislative process. :smiley:

Really, all these comments about puppets, and the Kochs’ puppets, reminds me I have a standing invitation to visit the fine old Shalebridge Cradle, childhood home of the Koch brothers, where they hang out and weave their dreams of another tomorrow.