The What Happened Book Club

image of Hillary Clinton's book 'What Happened' sitting on my dining room table, with my Hillary action figure standing on top of the book, her arms raised over her head

This is the thirteenth installment of the What Happened Book Club, where we are doing a chapter a week.

That pace will hopefully allow people who need time to procure the book a better chance to catch up, and let us deal with the book in manageable pieces: I figured we will have a lot to talk about, and one thread for the entire book would quickly get overwhelming.

So! Let us continue our discussion with Chapter Thirteen: Those Damn Emails.

* * *

This chapter was so obligatory and unfun that even Hillary Clinton herself recommended skipping it. Which I very nearly did.

I will confess I laughed out loud at her opening paragraphs:
Imagine you're a kid sitting in a history class thirty years from now learning about the 2016 presidential election, which brought to power the least experienced, least knowledgeable, least competent President our country has ever had. Something must have gone horribly wrong, you think. Then you hear that one issue dominated press coverage and public debate in that race more than any other. "Climate change?" you ask. "Health care?"

"No," your teacher responds. "Emails."

Emails, she explains, were a primitive form of electronic communication that used to be all the rage. And the dumb decision by one presidential candidate to use a personal email account at the office — as many senior government officials had done in the past (and continued to do) — got more coverage than any other issue in the whole race. In fact, if you had turned on a network newscast in 2016, you were three times more likely to hear about those emails than about all the real issues combined.
I don't even know what I can say about this chapter and its subject that I haven't already said a dozen times, so I will simply make this observation and then we can all just head to comments to scream, commiserate, and pass around a virtual bottle of gin: If it hadn't been HER EMAILS, it would've been something else.

One of the biggest lies that is told by the political press about the 2016 election, which naturally gets told in defense of their own shitty coverage, is: Hillary Clinton's emails wouldn't have been a story if only she hadn't— AND I'M GONNA STOP YA RIGHT THERE BECAUSE THIS IS BULLSHIT AND I CAN'T LISTEN TO IT ANYMORE.

The truth is that if it hadn't been her decision to use a private server, it would have been something else. Something equally as insignificant spuriously elevated to the level of CRITICAL ISSUE by an identical use of ceaseless repetition.

There was always going to be some manufactured scandal used to compete with the relentless exposure of foibles, flaws, failures, and outright fuckery of her Republican opponent.

And then the same press bitterly complains that she hasn't sufficiently apologized.

Yeah, well, neither have they. And, unlike Hillary Clinton, they actually have something for which to fucking apologize.

Shakesville is run as a safe space. First-time commenters: Please read Shakesville's Commenting Policy and Feminism 101 Section before commenting. We also do lots of in-thread moderation, so we ask that everyone read the entirety of any thread before commenting, to ensure compliance with any in-thread moderation. Thank you.

blog comments powered by Disqus