Thursday, January 10, 2008

"Ding-dong, the witch is dead! Which old witch? The Clinton witch!"

Unexpectedly Orange may turn political for the next eleven months. (The entry title above comes from a line in a piece by one Rebecca Traister, writer of my favorite explanation of the Hillary win in New Hampshire, published on

Excerpt: "So no, I have not been a Hillary Clinton supporter. But the torrent of ill-disguised hatred and resentment unleashed toward a briefly weakened Clinton this week shook that breezy naiveté right out of me, and made me feel something that all the hectoring from feminist elders could not: guilt for not having stood up for Hillary. "

The naiveté she's referring to is the careless assurance she felt that many more suitable female presidential candidates will present themselves in step with the males in the years to come, that she has no worry about Hillary being a one-time wonder and, thus, no responsibility to feel allegiance to her as the first Democratic female presidential candidate.


I read a narrative accounting of the happenings on election night at one caucus locale in Iowa. It turns out that if a candidate's station does not fill up with enough caucus supporters to reach the percentage quota, then the votes don't count and are up for grabs, or, horsetrading. One Hillary campaign leader began her call for votes, championing all that is righteous and twinkling about her candidate, with: "She's a woman." The horses looked up from the fray of bids being shouted at them and walked away from the Hillary camp.

Is that all you've got? Apparently so, that night. But she regrouped in New Hampshire by calling Obama out for referencing King and Kennedy, saying in effect that he's no King or Kennedy. She brought fight for five days, and humility, which we saw, in contrast to the hammer coming down on her by those who decide our elections--the press. It was over. And, surprisingly, I felt sorry that it was. I can't say that I felt guilt like Rebecca Traister, but I definitely felt sympathy and a wish that it wasn't yet over, so quickly with one night's outcome deciding a presidency.

For Rebecca, her urge to stand up for Hil would have led her to vote for her, if only for one night. I can't say the same. But I'm glad that the women in New Hampshire rallied in a stand against the tsunamis created by pollsters and pundits. I get swept up in them sometimes. I depend on them to deliver my winner, at least I did on Tuesday. He came in 2 points behind instead. But Hillary's display of true joy at her win seemed to also be a display of joyous surprise that voters still have the power to defy. How fun.

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