Peggy Noonan doesn't like Hillary Clinton's public persona, as we've seen it on Clinton's book tour. In fact, Peggy Noonan doesn't like the whole damn lot of modern Democratic politicians! Why are they so phony?
Here's Noonan on Hillary:
It is Mrs. Clinton's habit to fake identification with people who've had real struggles by claiming she's had them too. All humans have struggles, but hers were not material. She came from a solidly suburban upper-middle-class home, glided into elite schools, became a lawyer, married a politician who quickly rose, enjoyed all the many perks of a governor's mansion and then the White House, and then all the perks of a senator, secretary of state and former first lady. She's been driven in limousines and official cars almost all her adult life. For more than a quarter-century she has seen America through tinted windows.And Democrats in general?
... She sees a disjunction between her acquisitive streak and her party's demonization of acquisitive streaks, and so she claims she was broke, at the mercy of forces, an orphan in the storm, instead of an operator of considerable hunger and skill.
[In her book, Clinton] proudly quotes a speech she gave in 2008. "You will always find me on the front lines of democracy -- fighting for the future.""Fake identification with people who've had real struggles"? Seeing oneself and one's drama as the "ego-fllled center" of our politics? That reminds me of a speech -- a speech delivered not by a Democrat, but by a Republican, and not recently, but in 1988. It was a speech either written or co-written by Peggy Noonan, depending on whom you ask.
Ladies and gentleman, that is the authentic sound of 2016. Shoot me now.
Why do Democratic politicians talk like this about themselves, putting themselves and their drama at the ego-filled center, instead of policy ideas, larger meanings, the actual state of the country? In this she is just like Barack Obama.
It was George H.W. Bush's '88 convention speech, and Noonan put into into everything she now says she hates.
Here's the jes'-folks pose:
My parents were prosperous; their children were lucky. But there were lessons we had to learn about life.... I learned a few things about life in a place called Texas.Let me repeat that last bit:
We moved to west Texas 40 years ago. The war was over, and we wanted to get out and make it on our own. Those were exciting days. Lived in a little shotgun house, one room for the three of us. Worked in the oil business, started my own.
In time we had six children. Moved from the shotgun to a duplex apartment to a house. Lived the dream - high school football on Friday night, Little League, neighborhood barbecue.
People don't see their experience as symbolic of an era - but of course we were. So was everyone else who was taking a chance and pushing into unknown territory with kids and a dog and a car. But the big thing I learned is the satisfaction of creating jobs, which meant creating opportunity, which meant happy families, who in turn could do more to help others and enhance their own lives. I learned that the good done by a single good job can be felt in ways you can't imagine.
I may not be the most eloquent, but I learned early that eloquence won't draw oil from the ground. I may sometimes be a little awkward, but there's nothing self-conscious in my love of country. I am a quiet man - but I hear the quiet people others don't. The ones who raise the family, pay the taxes, meet the mortgage. I hear them and I am moved, and their concerns are mine.
The ones who raise the family, pay the taxes, meet the mortgage. I hear them and I am moved, and their concerns are mine.George H.W. Bush said that. And Peggy Noonan chides Hillary Clinton for pretending to be ordinary.
Oh, and self-aggrandizement? Thinking you're the living embodiment of America's political life? Let's go back to the Bush speech:
I know that what it all comes down to, this election - what it all comes down to, after all the shouting and the cheers - is the man at the desk.Why does Peggy Noonan hate what speechwriters like Peggy Noonan have done to modern political rhetoric?
My friends, I am that man.
I say it without boast or bravado, I've fought for my country, I've served, I've built - and I will go from the hills to the hollows, from the cities to the suburbs to the loneliest town on the quietest street to take our message of hope and growth for every American to every American.
I will keep America moving forward, always forward - for a better America, for an endless enduring dream and a thousand points of light.
That is my mission. And I will complete it.