Thursday, April 23, 2015

GOP Spin: Walker's $1 sweaters vs Clinton's charity donations and speaking fees!

I'm fascinated by the intense right wing criticism over Hillary and Bill Clinton's lucrative speaking fees (free market?).

It's not like republicans didn't just try to elect a one percenter as president.

The Week's Paul Waldman picked up on this absurdity, examining Scott Walker's incessant rambling about cheap clothes at Kohl's, writing:
Scott Walker loves Kohl's. I mean loves Kohl's. Can't stop talking about the deals he gets there. He bragged so much about the time he used coupons and discounts to get a sweater at Kohl's for $1, Politifact did an analysis of the claim (verdict: "True").

Scott Walker isn't some high-falutin' elitist in fancy clothes — he's just like you, a regular fella who gets you and what you go through.
So forget about Walker's corporate handouts and overreaching tax cuts devastating the state's general revenues. Draconian spending cuts, overwhelmingly opposed by Wisconsinites, will always make supply side look like its working. Walker's just like any one of us who's future is guaranteed, as either president or a million dollar Koch Industry lobbyist. Not bad for a career politician with no technical training whatsoever. 

It's Hillary's "spread the wealth," help the poor, get the money out of politics message that makes her a nasty 1 percent elitist: 
Republicans are planning to paint Hillary Clinton as a representative of the 1 percent, with her high-flying lifestyle and lucrative speaking gigs estranging her from ordinary folks. If you put the argument explicitly — "It would be bad to have a president who has too much money" — it sounds ridiculous, particularly coming from Republicans who simultaneously argue that the pursuit of profit is almost a divine calling and wealth a sign of virtue.
This is not a Hillary endorsement, even though I'm encouraged by her move to the "left." I also think her charity is an easy area to create controversy. Despite the full and transparent disclosure of the charities donors, this same openness has helped foster the current controversy (which is why dark money is always preferred-it won't be used against you). In a nutshell:
Although the foundation is a 501(c)(3) public charity and not required to reveal its donors, the Clinton Foundation has done so, revealing information about the size of their donations in ranges on its website, including these foreign governments: Money, even in philanthropy, is not a purely philanthropic endeavor. It buys access, which goes both ways. 

Truth be told, the messy charity involvements of John McCain, Rick Santorum, and even Newt Gingrich never figured into their presidential campaigns ... Unlike the small but compromised fundraising of these other politicians’ charities, the Clinton Foundation is big, with a quarter-billion in assets, a track record of having raised $2 billion, and influence with power brokers around the world. It is where difference of size really is difference of kind when it comes to the potential significance of the Clinton Foundation questions.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Walker did the same "I'm like you" schtick when he ran for Governor saying I drive and old Saturn and take my lunch to work in a brown paper bag. Now he's talking about his clothes. He's nothing but a ham sammich eating, old car driving, cheap clothes wearing phony who has NO idea what it is like to be an everyman.