What does it mean to be “Ready for Hillary”?
Prior to the release of Hillary Clinton’s announcement video, “Getting Started,” that answer has largely been a vague feeling that Hillary would make a great president because she’s a woman who has held three important job titles and she has traveled a lot. It turns out it means even less than that.
What case does “Getting Started” make for Hillary 2016? We can start with legendary tomatoes, a phrase which no doubt raised interest for the former President Bill Clinton, until he found out the video would about actual tomatoes and they would be “legendary” only in the grower’s neighborhood. Which is basically like saying, “Hey, this lady grows a lot of tomatoes!”
It’s also a subtle way of suggesting that Hillary is in touch with us. She knows we’re gardening, so she knows us!
What it says about the kind of president Hillary Clinton would be? Nothing.
Next we get the adorable mom who is moving in order to place her child in a decent school. She’s unaware that Republican candidates would favor her choosing the school best for her child without forcing her to uproot and move.
“Getting Started” points to her presumably to show that women will support Hillary even if it’s against their self-interest. It practically dares the media to point this out. The only thing this story should tell voters is that they should look to Republicans for education reform.
In a nod to Hispanics, we next see two hermanos. They are seeking to create a business together, blissfully unaware that Hillary’s preferred policies have raised their barriers to entry.
Then Hillary finds the one person in the United States who’s been out of work over the last five years by choice, a single mom who shows the camera she’s nervous about going back to work. Joining the parade of people going about their business and doing fine is a loving, gorgeous, young African-American couple expecting a baby boy, a college student applying for jobs, two young gay men announcing plans to tie the knot, and a child who will soon don a fish costume for a school play.
A woman facing retirement says, “retirement means reinventing yourself in many ways,” which may be the closest thing to a campaign slogan you’ll hear in this video.
As for what each of their spring plans has to do with a President Hillary agenda? We get nothing.
It’s a replay of the Obama campaign of 2008 in which he sought to be the blank slate on which voters could cast their dreams. Now Hillary wants to be that blank slate.
Of course, it’s all meant to say, “Don’t think of me as another Clinton or the second oldest president ever elected, I represent perpetual rebirth!” It’s also meant to keep you thinking about something other than her record.
Next, we’re treated to an everyday couple who are finishing home renovations but proclaim “most importantly, we just want to teach our dog to quit eating the trash.” Immediately, one wonders if a trash-eating dog might come in handy in a Clinton office, but I suppose a shredder or magnet is all one needs these days.
You can call this the Checkers moment in “Getting Started.” Hillary isn’t some cold, calculating, self-absorbed politician. She loves dogs, and to prove it, there’s one in her video.
“Getting Started” is more than half over when she arrives, just after the vignette of a hard-working American who’s started work with a traditional, fifth generation, family company (which presumably hasn’t refused to provide abortion coverage or crossed an Obama/Clinton line on what a good family company is).
First, the back of her head appears as she speaks to a Yankees fan, then she’s pictured sitting at a table nodding as a senior citizen speaks (but watch closely and you’ll see even when he’s turned his head, she robotically maintains her gaze where he used to be facing). And finally, a minute and 34 seconds in, standing in front of a house with rich, green foliage and a white arbor, Hillary directly informs us she’s “getting ready to do something too,” which is run for president.
Still no word on what makes her ready for that job. In 2008, she asserted that she, not Obama was ready for a 3 a.m. phone call as Commander-in-Chief. Events would prove that neither was ready and Benghazi would show that Hillary wasn’t even ready for a 3 p.m. phone call.
As the film shows a young, possibly Hispanic woman walking down a street with the white cross of a church’s reader-board in the background, Hillary tells us the “deck is stacked in favor of those at the top.”
Who stacked it and why “they” let her get to the top is left unsaid, but she concludes that “everyday Americans need a champion, and I want to be that champion. So that you can do more than just get by. You can get ahead—and stay ahead. Because when families are strong, America is strong.”
To summarize: Americans should vote for Hillary Clinton to be their champion because she wants to be that champion.
It’s the argument of ego. Her final sentences about getting ahead and strong families were designed to sound good and mean nothing. They don’t connect to anything preceding it.
And as she tells us about her campaign tour to “earn our vote” she takes another page from Obama 2008 and declares it’s “our time” — essentially, we are the ones we were waiting for.
It’s easy to dismiss as vacuous, but so was “Yes we can!” and look where that brought us. Her launch video made perhaps the best case that can be made for electing her president and it should frighten Democrats, because the case it made was, like Seinfeld, a show about nothing.