Ezra Klein describes what’s wrong with politics but, of course, doesn’t realise

Clinton has her faults, but her strengths would have been on display here: a deep understanding of the federal government, a belief that it is the president’s job to solve national problems, an unparalleled enthusiasm for convening experts and synthesizing their knowledge into policy, an unusual enthusiasm for the details of interagency collaboration, a relentless focus on operational details.

President Clinton would be able to tell you where every vaccine in development stood, how fast tests were coming back in all 384 metropolitan areas, what PPE stocks looked like in every midsize city in the country. We would not be free of the coronavirus, but unlike under this administration, we would have a plan, and competent people running it, and we would’ve had it in place for months and months by now.

But that is not the world we live in. In this world, the unqualified reality TV star who won 3 million fewer votes captured the White House and botched the pandemic.

Idiot gets elected, not the competent one.

Moreover, Biden lacks some of Clinton’s virtues: her policy sharpness, her attention to detail, her polymathic hunger for information, her obvious delight in the details of governance. The difference between them was on display in April when she endorsed him. There’s nothing wrong with Biden’s performance, but Clinton is by far the more knowledgeable and precise in her discussion of Covid-19.

In that way, Biden neutralizes some of the more high-minded critiques of Clinton. What he has that she didn’t is fuzzier: a reputation for likability, for relatability. Clinton was beloved by her staff, by those who met her or worked with her, but the person they described was rarely the person the public saw. Biden’s warmth shines through on the trail. There’s no “you’re likable enough” burns in his background.

This time around it’s between the likeable idiot and the incompetent idiot.

The entire method of selection fails in – in Ezra’s own view that is – getting someone even vaguely competent into office. Yet Ezra is convinced that whoever does get elected should ever much more power over us and the way we lead our lives.

Ezra’s telling us that the incompetents should have more power. Hunh?

31 thoughts on “Ezra Klein describes what’s wrong with politics but, of course, doesn’t realise”

  1. The thing he’s describing here, Hillary Clinton the super-competent technocrat, does not actually exist.

    She’s only handled a few important projects in her life – healthcare reform in the 90s, the Libya operation as SecState, the Presidential campaigns in 2008 and 2016 – and she fucked them all up.

  2. Dennis, Phobic Of Whatever Today's Stupidity Happens To Be

    Clinton has her faults, but her strengths would have been on display here: a deep understanding of the federal government, a belief that it is the president’s job to solve national problems, an unparalleled enthusiasm for convening experts and synthesizing their knowledge into policy, an unusual enthusiasm for the details of interagency collaboration, a relentless focus on operational details.

    Actually, there is no evidence to support any of the above.

    Hillary Clinton was tasked with developing some sort of “Obamacare” during her husband’s presidency and she botched it so badly, and garnered so much opposition, that Bill Clinton ended up tabling the attempt rather than taking it to Congress. Her time at State was no less awful, highlighted by the Benghazi disaster and subsequent attempted cover-up.

    As a presidential candidate, she managed to mismanaged her first run to the extent that an obscure first-term senator managed to secure the Democrat nomination and the presidency. Even worse was her second run, where she needed the DNC to cheat Bernie Sanders out of the nomination, and then, incredibly, ran a presidential campaign that virtually ignored the Midwest battleground states vital to any presidential victory. In the process she not only ignored the warnings of her husband, but also refused to visit Wisconsin ONCE during the campaign (Trump ended up winning Wisconsin).

    Hillary Clinton couldn’t find her ass with two hands and mirror on the best day of her life, and Ezra Klein is a DNC whore with a pen.

  3. Dennis, Pointing Out The Obvious

    It is interesting to note that the Democrats have so little in the way of positive (and popular) policy positions that they’ve decided to go after Trump over his COVID response, which simply isn’t going to be a winner with anyone outside of the pathological hatred of Trump crowd.

  4. Dennis, Bullshit Detector

    Biden’s warmth shines through on the trail.

    Really? Evidently using the term “lying dog faced pony soldier” is a term of endearment.

    Who knew?

  5. The thing he’s describing here, Hillary Clinton the super-competent technocrat, does not actually exist

    Yarp x 1000

    Hilldawg appears to be absolutely incompetent at anything that doesn’t involve enriching herself or deflecting blame for her lifetime of fuckups.

    Partly this is because she’s just not very good and has been overpromoted on account of vagina, but mostly it’s because technocracy has always been bullshit, the self-promotion of the credentialed class over people of actual ability.

  6. Firstly, is the President supposed to micro-manage PPE stocks, and presumably everything else, in every city? If so the rest of the federal, state and city administrations should be redundant.
    Secondly has the President the power to do so? State governors have emphatically said no.
    And as previous commentators have pointed out if Hillary is an all knowing polymath then there is surprisingly little evidence. As to popularity with staff I have heard other versions.
    As to Biden I do not in the least underestimate his ability to f*** things up, to paraphrase Obama back before senility struck.
    Today we are amazed when Joe manages to read out a speech written by others with only minor mistakes. That should be taken for granted in any politician.
    But Mr. Klein shows extreme devotion to his tribe.

  7. Pat: That and the complaining about “3 million votes short” just demonstrates that the Democats just don’t believe in a Federal State. The US Prez is president of the Federation of States, not the people, specifically stated in the Constitution, specifically *not* a popular demagogue.
    The Dems think the US should be a single unitary state, everything controlled from one centre. They appear to loath federalism and locally-made decisions.

  8. Bloke in North Dorset

    Clinton was beloved by her staff, by those who met her or worked with her,

    That’s what happens when you only hire and meet sycophants.

  9. “Hilldawg appears to be absolutely incompetent at anything that doesn’t involve enriching herself or deflecting blame for her lifetime of fuckups.”

    She hasn’t even been competent at doing those things either, its just that the State apparatus is stuffed with people who have given her get out of jail cards (literally) when she’s f*cked up that too. Any right leaning politician who operated something like the Clinton Foundation would have every arm of government breathing down its neck 24/7/365.

  10. Jgh
    Should Trump win the popular vote but Biden win the electoral college their enthusiasm for Federalism will know no bounds. As it does when Trump even considers treading on Democrat governors toes. They believe only in power.

  11. Jim – tbf, she made hundreds of millions of dollars out of a career in public service (lol), still isn’t in prison, and has troupes of mewling quims such as Ezra Klein still giving her a tongue bath in print.

    Not bad work for a woman who couldn’t even get Bill Clinton to fuck her.

    But she didn’t invent the swamp ecosystem, she just evolved in it, much like mud snakes. The only profound thing I’ve ever heard Michael Gove say is that people are tired of “experts”. They’re not tired of expertise, they’re rightly wary of credentialed cretins Greshaming out actual knowledge, good experience and wise judgement.

    Hilldawg is the ultimate studycunt, the Khaleesi of the Karens. That’s she’s actually an extremely stupid cow who wouldn’t survive a fortnight outside the historically unprecedented and very temporary bubble of comfort and security white Christian men created in the Western world after centuries of struggle isn’t really the point, she’s almost perfectly adapted to the environment she found herself in.

  12. Popular with her staff?

    Her protection detail referred to her helicopter as “Broomstick One”.

    Both she and Biden are career criminals –nothing else.

  13. ‘Dennis, Pointing Out The Obvious’. I’d agree. Someone who shits their pants over COVID would vote Democrat anyway. The attitudes just naturally go together.

  14. ‘President Clinton would be able to tell you where every vaccine in development stood, how fast tests were coming back in all 384 metropolitan areas, what PPE stocks looked like in every midsize city in the country.’

    Exactly right, Pat. This reminds me of Lyndon Johnson micromanaging the Vietnam War. “They don’t bomb an outhouse unless I approve it!”

    Trump, having executive experience, is comfortable delegating. A skill the Mandarin Hilldebeest doesn’t have. Klein brags about her flaw.

  15. Dennis
    August 23, 2020 at 2:16 pm

    Excellent analysis. I assume Klein thinks his readers will believe whatever he tells them to believe.

    But it’s odd so much ink on Hillary. She’s gone. It’s like remainers telling everyone how much better it would be if you stayed in the EU. It’s over. Get over it.

  16. Jim said:
    “Any right leaning politician who operated something like the Clinton Foundation would have every arm of government breathing down its neck 24/7/365.”

    Like Bannon. One of the many disappointments of Trump is that he missed the perfect opportunity to arrest Clinton at the same time for the same thing and watch the Dems squirm as they tried to say that one was different.

  17. a belief that it is the president’s job to solve national problems,

    That’s the reason the country has been turning into a shithole – because people keep thinking the ‘Top Men’ will save us instead of getting off their arses and saving themselves. Clinton’s belief that its the president’s job to solve national problems is quite possibly the worst national problem we have.

    As for the rest – it based on this idea of Clinton as the all-knowing technocrat that she was *never, ever, ever, ever* shown to be.

    ‘What, like with a cloth?’ A person who can’t even get the rules for handling classified information straight is going to wrangle a hundred dozen different departments and their political infighting?

  18. Agammamon is exactly correct. All the news about her during her time in the limelight that I read said she was an arrogant, heavy drinking b1tch who was rude & dismissive to everyone privately, including the Secret Service assigned to protect her.

  19. Steve,

    “The only profound thing I’ve ever heard Michael Gove say is that people are tired of “experts”. They’re not tired of expertise, they’re rightly wary of credentialed cretins Greshaming out actual knowledge, good experience and wise judgement.”

    Gove had a fully qualified thing about something like “experts with credentials who are frequently proven to be wrong”.

    I remember looking at the treasury trade models which assume that trade gravity was uniform and explaining to people that that’s just wrong. It worked for the era of basic materials like tea from India or olive oil from India, but when you’re exporting £500 brogues and the CG work on Marvel movies, the shipping cost is an irrelevant chunk of the cost. It was plain, barefaced, wrong in an era when we mostly export things with lots of value added.

  20. So Much For Subtlety

    Ezra Klein is the little fat dork at school who goes home to his mother crying “Why do they hate me?” because the other children pick on him. His mother can’t say it is because he is a pathetic excuse for a human being and so tells him it is because they are jealous as he is so smart.

    Fast forward a few decades and he writes this. It is not about Hilary. It is about Klein. Hilary is not on top of detail – but Klein thinks he is. It is his schtick and what Vox claims is so special about them. Klein imagines a world in which politics is not about being a nice guy and having friends – basically the same hierarchy of male value since we were monkeys – but about expert policy knowledge. Hilary is his projected fantasy

    In the end he is still dreaming of a world where the fat little creep in Middle School would be popular.

  21. So Much For Subtlety

    Dennis, Pointing Out The Obvious August 23, 2020 at 2:19 pm – “It is interesting to note that the Democrats have so little in the way of positive (and popular) policy positions that they’ve decided to go after Trump over his COVID response, which simply isn’t going to be a winner with anyone outside of the pathological hatred of Trump crowd.2

    I am not sure about whether it is going to be a winner or not. A lot of people are shitting themselves over Co-chan. But what is interesting is that it is *retrospective*. The Democrats will attack Trump whatever he does as can be seen by the fact that they are attacking him *now* for doing things they attacked him for doing *before*. Travel bans? They used to think they were racist and attacked Trump for imposing them. Now they are attacking him for not imposing them fast enough.

    However what is interesting is that they are not attacking him for being impeached. The Russia coup attempt seems to have vanished by dew in the morning sun.

  22. PPE – Whut? VP Biden & Obama sold the Gov stockpile

    Hellary Clinton is one of Biden’s puppet masters

    Joe Biden’s job is to soothe your fears about what the left will do to the country if they take power

    Uncannily Accurate Prediction:
    Katie Hopkins rips the Democratic National Convention

    Katie Hopkins on Obamas trickery at the DNC: ‘Vote for the memory of me”

    Obama encouraged the racial divide in USA. The professional organizer wants the black community to always vote Democrat

    Did you say Obama the illusionist or Dellusionist? Michael Obama said George Floyd was a lawabiding citizen killed by police – Whut?

    Clintons, Blair, Obamas, Trudeau – snake oil sellers who wreak destruction

  23. @Dennis
    Spot on

    “Benghazi” – Yep, her insulting ‘what does it matter’
    Good recount: 13 Hours ( https://www.imdb.com/title/tt4172430/ ) on PirateBay etc

    “she not only ignored the warnings of her husband” – to the extent he withdrew from campaign

    She’d be a dictator like Sturgeon forever covering up her incompetence
    – Sturgeon The Tyrant of Bute House

    @Dennis (2}
    Yep, Dems devoid of policies

    Dems are all anti-Trump message: don’t buy Trump. But what are Dems selling? Remind anyone of Remoaners?
    Cadburys: Mars is evil, don’t buy it. Instead, buy err, em, dunno, but not Mars

    @RichardT August 23, 2020 at 7:16 pm
    Absolutely. A huge error

    @tex et al
    Re “Clinton was beloved by her staff,” – A lie

    +1 Same as harridan Meghan Marbles

  24. “However what is interesting is that they are not attacking him for being impeached. The Russia coup attempt seems to have vanished by dew in the morning sun.”

    Well because they were up to their necks in conspiracy and sedition, and the only question now seems to be whether Barr has the balls to pursue it.

  25. The Gove quote is: “I think the people in this country have had enough of experts from organisations with acronyms saying they know what is best and getting it consistently wrong.”

    It’s from 1:02 to 1:15 here.

  26. Whatever crimes Bannon may have committed must be extremely small beer in comparison to the Clinton Foundation. But no federal prosecutors or state DAs going after the latter. A mistry innit.

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