May 31st, 2008

Hillary: whining about sexism “Just Like a Woman”

Has Hillary been the victim of sexism in her quest to become President?

How’s this for an equivocal answer: Yes and no.

I think the major phenomenon of which she’s been the “victim” is the strangeness of the primary season rules for the Democrats: the disenfranchisement of Florida and Michigan voters due to those states’ defiance in moving up their primaries; the many caucus states that Obama was able to finesse by appealing to an elite group of voters; the end of winner-take-all primaries; and the disproportionate allocation of delegates in some states that ended up with the surpassingly strange phenomenon of Hillary winning the vote there and Obama getting more delegates nevertheless.

Hillary has also been the “victim” of the antipathy of the press. Is that because she’s a woman? My gut feeling (and I might even say my women’s intuition, if I were so inclined) is that (a) this is mostly because she’s not the new kid on the block (ageism); and (b) in the liberal pantheon of grievances to be redressed, race trumps gender every time (reverse racism).

There’s no question that there are people who hate Hillary for sexist reasons, and they are not above promulgating sexist ads and arguments. For that matter, there’s no question that there are people who hate Obama for racist reasons, and who are not above promulgating racist ads and arguments.

So duh, so what else is new? Whether the two “isms” are equal is anyone’s guess, but my guess is that they might be, and that so far at least Hillary’s gender and Obama’s race have probably worked for each of them more than they’ve worked against them. Hillary’s strength among women Democrats, especially working class ones, and Obama’s among African-Americans of both sexes, are indicators of this effect.

Another way in which sexism appears to have come into play in Hillary’s campaign is the press coverage, especially during the last month or so when calls for her to quit have become almost overwhelming. I’m not at all sure a man in the same position would be asked to give up at this point in a race so unusually close. But even if he were, I’m almost positive that the tone of the requests would be very different.

Case in point: the headline of an Eleanor Clift piece in this week’s Newsweek: “Hillary, You Didn’t Win. Now Don’t Whine.”

Whine. Now there’s an interesting word:

1. To utter a plaintive, high-pitched, protracted sound, as in pain, fear, supplication, or complaint.
2. To complain or protest in a childish fashion.

The term is commonly used to refer to women and children, and when it’s applied to men it’s usually meant to indicate they’re wimps (wimps=a combination of a woman and a child).

You’ll discover that “whine” has been applied to both Obama and to his wife Michelle, but as far as I can see it’s only been used in that way by the Right (just Google “obama whine” and you’ll see what I mean). For Newsweek to apply it to Hillary at this point does seem sexist, although I’m not sure Clift herself gave her piece its title (from the newspaper writing I’ve done I’ve learned that these are often bestowed by the editors, not the writer).

If Hillary is whining (and I most definitely do not think she is), she’s got a lot to whine about. Today’s the day on which the Michigan/Florida controversy might be resolved by the Democratic powers that be, and I doubt their decision will to her advantage. I cannot recall another primary campaign that has been so extraordinarily close and in which one of the contenders—still winning states by margins as large as 35 percentage points—has been treated as a wimpy sore loser before the game is even over.

When I first read that Newsweek headline, I thought immediately of the lyrics of the Bob Dylan song “Just Like a Woman.” Those Democrats who agree that Hillary’s a spoilsport whiner might want to sing this new version:

Hill’ry feels plenty pain
Today as she stands inside the rain
Ev’rybody knows
That Hill’ry’s got new clothes
But lately I see the pantsuits that she chose
Have wilted along with her curls.
She takes just like a woman, yes, she does
She campaigns just like a woman, yes, she does
And she aches just like a woman
But she whines just like a little girl.

King Obama, he’s my friend
Yes, I believe I’ll praise him again
Nobody has to guess
That Hillary can’t be blessed
Till she finally sees that she’s like all the rest
With her spunk, her placards and her pearls.
She takes just like a woman, yes, she does
She campaigns just like a woman, yes, she does
And she aches just like a woman
But she whines just like a little girl.

She was winning from the first
Opponents dying there of thirst
Then Obama came in here
And Bush’s long-time curse hurts
But what’s worse
Is this pain in here
She can’t stay in here
Ain’t it clear that–

Hill’ry, you just can’t fit
Yes, I believe it’s time for you to quit
When Dems meet you again
Introduced as friends
They won’t let on that they knew you when
They were hungry and it was your world.
Ah, you fake just like a woman, yes, you do
You campaign just like a woman, yes, you do
Then you ache just like a woman
But you whine just like a little girl.

33 Responses to “Hillary: whining about sexism “Just Like a Woman””

  1. Vince P Says:

    Neo: very good comments. What I am really enjouy about the primary is how the Democrats has the one side calling the other sexist and the other side calling the other racist and neither denying that their party apparently consists of a lot of sexists and racists.

    I think the media is definately sexist though. MSNBC commentator after MSNBC commentator have made any number of comparasions between Hillary and monsters for example.. some have sauid someone should take her in the back of a room and essentialy kill her.

    They wouldn’t be treating a male candidate like that.

    Part of what the Left does when it engages in warfare against someone is tht they mock the essential qualities of the person they seeking to destroy.. and that’s what they’re doing to Hillary Rotten Clinton, her Thighness

  2. Tatterdemalian Says:

    Ed Harken: All right, everyone, just relax! She’s not going to take anyone’s air time!
    Brick Tamland: I read somewhere their periods attract bears. Bears can smell the menstruation.
    Brian Fantana: Well, that’s just great. You hear that, Ed? Bears. Now you’re putting the whole station in jeopardy.

    - Quote from Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, on allowing women in the news media industry

  3. Vanderleun Says:

    May Bob Dylan forgive you. I know Hillary won’t.

  4. Americaneocon Says:

    That’s some cool posting, Neo!!

    Racism, sexism…? Can we get this darned Democratic nomination process over?!!

  5. Deekaman Says:

    As much as I hate the thought of it, I’m feeling a little sympathetic toward Hillary. She is the victim of her own machinations. Using “throw-away surrogates” to bash your opponent is right out of the Clinton playbook. Obama is using it almost perfectly. The whole Democrat primary has been a fascinating dance and your post here has really brought its’ essence.

  6. Perfected democrat Says:

    “What I am really enjoy about the primary is how the Democrats has the one side calling the other sexist and the other side calling the other racist and neither denying that their party apparently consists of a lot of sexists and racists.”

    Cool lyrics, and excellent observation Vince! The dims really, really do deserve themselves… How about a lyric contest for their newest song: “Obi be lookin for a new church in the mornin…”

  7. Daniel Stark Says:

    I thought the media and people in general have been pretty sexist throughout this campaign. I’ve had guys tell me they would never vote for a woman (for President was the emphasis, I don’t know how far their sexism goes). So it’s out there.

  8. Perfected democrat Says:

    I think most of us would truly love to be able to vote for a woman or some “person of color”, but of course we’re not dimocrats. As though Hillary’s problem was being a woman (her problem is she’s, a Clinton); And Obi’s problem isn’t that he’s black, or half black, it’s that he’s half-as.ed, and looking for a new church for Sunday morning.

  9. Perfected democrat Says:

    The lord works her plays in wonderous ways; It can’t be a coincidence that the party mascot of the dimocrits is? Clue: Stubborn like an ….. and hopefully, the dumbed down American public won’t confuse that with, tenacity.

  10. Nolanimrod Says:

    WAY TO GO, NEO! Not bad. Better stay away from “Lay, lady. Lay.” Although I’d like to see your effort on “I Ain’t Goin to Work on Hillry’s Farm No Mo.”

  11. Gringo Says:

    These days I confine TV watching to sporting events and the occasional PBS show. The Democratic Convention in Denver is going to furnish prime-time entertainment. Turn on the tube and pass the popcorn!

    Re “racist” versus “sexist,” while some like “Pot calling the kettle black,” I go for “Chaos calls disorder entropic.”

  12. Vince P Says:

    I love when one faction of the Dems attacks the other faction, the victim yelps “OMG, they’re doing the Republican Hate Machine’s job for them”

    Dems are the funniest when they act like they’re not the most hateful group in teh country

  13. strcpy Says:

    “As much as I hate the thought of it, I’m feeling a little sympathetic toward Hillary. She is the victim of her own machinations.”

    I can’t feel sorry for her for exactly that same reason – she is the victim of the very same thing she helped create. Not only with the throw away surrogates but with the whole race/gender identity wars.

    The Dem’s in general are feeling that – they created a system wherein “minority” status (I use quotes because minority means a protected class, not the smaller group as you can be a minority with over 50% of the population on your side) trumps everything. They now have not a war between two candidates but a war as to which minority is more deserving of a minority status. Not only that but the rank and file people see it that way too – in large part because that is how their political structure has been formed over the last 40+ years.

    Had they actually pushed for individualist candidacy Hillary would be our next president, as is I rather expect Obama to give Mondale and Dukakis a run for their money. For me, I dislike both intensely so I find it highly amusing – but sorry for either one? Nope not at all – this is they system they created and talk about being superior. Live within it like you want the rest of us too. Unfortunately it will not cause them to re-examine their ideas in the slightest.

  14. Ymarsakar Says:

    It is always interesting to know that the Democrat’s belief in “majority rules” is only trumped by the fact that they believe they can control the majority, either through the 1% elites or through bribes.

    Perhaps hillary thought she could buy the voters against Obama’s super delegate harvesting. In this case, the Democrats have met smack against their own brand of self-constructed aristocracy. You can’t beat aristocracy, Hillary, when you yourself helped create them.

    http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com/2008/05/16/hillarys-downfall/

    That video of hillary describing how Obama beat her, in the Bunker, is extremely funny and apt given Neo’s post.

  15. Ymarsakar Says:

    Unfortunately it will not cause them to re-examine their ideas in the slightest.

    Probably because in the end, somebody in the Democrat party is still going to win and force the rest of us to pay for their mistakes. With that kind of life ahead of them, why would they need to re-examine their ideas?

    When your loan from the bank is not getting any interest, why do you ever need to repay it?

  16. ad Says:

    I cannot recall another primary campaign that has been so extraordinarily close and in which one of the contenders—still winning states by margins as large as 35 percentage points—has been treated as a wimpy sore loser before the game is even over.

    It does not matter how well she is doing right now: it only matters whether she can plausibly win the nomination. I gather the betting markets give her a near-zero chance.

    For some time she has been giving the Democrats a long, ugly, distracting fight that will damage the chances of the Democratic candidate for the Presidency, in exchange for nothing much. Naturally, they would like this problem to go away.

    The reason they say they want her to shut up and die, is because they want her to. And they want her to, because it is in the interests of the Party as a whole that she do this.

    This would be true whatever her sex, race or [insert identity group here]. I don’t know how they would have phrased it if she had belonged to a different group. But they would still have said it.

    It is natural to hate those who hurt you, especially if they are supposed to be on your side. The Party is not supposed to be loyal to a candidate in a primary election – but the candidate is supposed to be loyal to the Party at all times.

  17. neo-neocon Says:

    ad: But isn’t it in the interests of the party to win the Presidency? And if Obama is the weaker candidate and Hillary a stronger one (the point she’s trying to make), wouldn’t it be in their interests to listen to her?

    The party has chosen unity over victory, at least as the statistics present themselves at this point. The superdelegates—the last remnants of the smoke-filled room—are going to make this choice, as well.

    Of course, Obama could win the Presidency—it’s still early in the game. But I have no doubt that at this point he is the weaker candidate for the general election. That is Hillary’s point, and it’s a good one.

  18. Stan Says:

    I just love the viciousness with which they fight. They love to describe the GOP and conservatives as “haters” and “mean-spirited”. Well take a look at them now. And not even in the convoluted, looking glass world of liberalism is there any way for them to try to blame the GOP as having started it.

    The Democrats — self-described as hate-filled, mean-spirited, vicious racists and sexists.

  19. ad Says:

    But isn’t it in the interests of the party to win the Presidency? And if Obama is the weaker candidate and Hillary a stronger one (the point she’s trying to make), wouldn’t it be in their interests to listen to her?

    A few months ago she was considered to be the stronger candidate for the Democratic primary. People were speaking of her victory as being certain. This gives me – and presumably the superdelegates – some scepticism about such claims about the presidential election.

    On the other hand, if the superdelegates overrule the elected delegates, the first black presidential candidate to have a reasonable shot at the White House, will have been stopped by a few powerful white men in favour of the wife of one of their number.

    That is going to look just appalling.

    The people involved might never be forgiven.

    To say nothing of its effects on the presidential election.

    They would not be wise to run such risks unless Clinton was obviously the superior candidate by far. As her position has fallen during the race from certain to win the elected delegates, to failed to to win the elected delegates, and as no candidate could be more certain to get the Republican vote out in the Presidential election, she can not be considered obviously superior.

  20. Occam's Beard Says:

    This whole situation puts me in mind of the Arthur Conan Doyle story, The Speckled Band.

    (Plot spoiler to follow!). Holmes uses his stick to whack a Russell’s viper that the villain has trained to slither down a fake bell pull to attack the victim. The snake, angered by the blows, slithers back up the bell pull to attack the villain who set the snake on its intended victim.

    The Dems better hope there’s an anti-venom, because the snake of identity politics and racial/sexual division has slithered right back into their laps.

  21. Ymarsakar Says:

    Link

    Speaking of sexism…

  22. gcotharn Says:

    If Dems appease black voters this time: aren’t Dems then setting themselves up to be blackmailed during every future race which includes an attractive black candidate? Aren’t Dems striking a bargain which soon enough will bring the Dem and black voter alliance toppling down? Aren’t Dems handing this election to McCain, plus setting up conditions to soon throw black voters up for grabs anyway?
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    The opportunity, for Repubs, is to say this:

    We refuse to seek black voters. We seek conservative voters. If you believe in more opportunity and less government, we want your vote.

    Repubs are ridiculous to chase black or brown votes. The black or brown voters who would consider voting Republican also would be turned off by Repub appeals to race – just as I, frankly, am turned off by either Repub or Dem appeals to race. Repubs might lose more votes than they gain through such appeals.

  23. neo-neocon Says:

    ad: Here’s a good statement of the argument for the superdelegates to support Hillary.

  24. Perfected democrat Says:

    Either way the dims have painted themselves in a corner, if the balance of the American public have not yet lost all their marbles. But numerically (unless I’m mistaken) this is the major political party in America. The choices presented are both very far left-wing candidates, this time, reflecting vividly the extent to which the American public have become europeanized and dumbed-down. The future seems ominous…

  25. Vince P Says:

    I was on Larry Johnson’s blog which seens to have a Left/Center Left audience and they’re all fiercely against Obama and said they would vote for McCain which surprised me.

    There is a lot of resistance to Obama in some Dem circles

  26. harry McHitlerburtonstein the COnservative Extremist Says:

    An interesting question for Obama:

    Can Puerto Ricans be considered to be bitter and clinging? Or is that just a white malady?

  27. Beverly Says:

    This gal has her own point of view on the Hilary controversy. She was kicked out of the DNC Rules Committee, apparently, and vented her spleen afterwards:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KACQuZVAE3s

  28. SteveH Says:

    The democrats are clearly the party that demands we judge people foremost on their gender and the color of their skin.

    MLK wouldn’t be pleased with this wayward bunch.

  29. Ymarsakar Says:

    Wait a minute, Beverley, that woman when she spoke the word “possible” reminded me of some other character in a movie.

    If only I could remember what. Oh yeah. It was Malcom’s Revenge, which was the last part of the trilogy of Kyrandia, a PC adventure game.

    PS. I was just about to post that link since I got it from Second Hand Conjecture.

    I posted a comment there about her.
    http://asecondhandconjecture.com/index.php/2008/05/31/harriet-and-the-spies/

  30. Artfldgr Says:

    Buzz this morning is that hitlery has remained in because of another video of a trinity speaker. this time obama’s wife using the term whitey….

    i will believe it when i see it, but the buzz and the search is really heating up and if it isnt in existence will be interesting.

  31. David M Says:

    The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the – Web Reconnaissance for 06/02/2008 A short recon of what’s out there that might draw your attention, updated throughout the day…so check back often.

  32. Artfldgr Says:

    still dont believe it till its confirmed..

    but they are now posting transcripts, but no video.

    i guess they are afraid of riots in the streets if things dont come out the way of mass desire

    partial transcript:

    Once again, the white man keeps us down, what’s up with Whitey, Why’d he attack Iraq, Why’d he let Katrina happen, Why’d he leave millions of children behind. This is the legacy the white man gives us.

    [fascism is a form of socialism, and black national socialism is not all that different than aryan national socialism... racism is not a part of fascism, but if the people promoting it have a racial agenda, that part comes out. it comes out from the need to control outcomes. so in fascist states those who do better are assumed to do so by cheating. so in europe it was the jews, in america its the white/christians, in indonesia and asia its the chinese (actually they are starting to get it here in the west too because they succeeed withotu needeing help)]

    if this comes out then what will be the comments as to sexism? that they put this up to smear obama through michelle?

    if you dont believe me, then look up fascist fist, and then realize waht the hand means when m obama puts it up!

    [the idea of the iron fist in the velvet glove]

  33. ad Says:

    ad: Here’s a good statement of the argument for the superdelegates to support Hillary.

    It is not an argument for the superdelegates to support Hillary.

    It is an argument for the superdelegates to support whoever they think is more likely to succeed in November.

    The Clinton campaign, like all campaigns, undoubtedly believes that their candidate is the one with the best shot in November.

    The Obama campaign, like all campaigns, undoubtedly believes that their candidate is the one with the best shot in November.

    So far as I know, there is no reason to believe that the superdelegates even think that they know which of these claims is right. You may have your own opinion, but it does not follow that the superdelegates have the same opinion.

    On the other hand, it is certain that overruling the elected delegates would cause all sorts of trouble now, in November, and for the foreseeable future.

    It is not wise to do something that will certainly harm the Party one way, simply because it will certainly hurt or help the Party in another.

    (I might add that the betting markets currently give Obama two chances in three of attaining the Presidency. It would not be easy for Hilary to be much more electable than that. Especially if there were any controversy about her nomination.)

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About Me

Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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