Conservatives Love Hillary Clinton

Since life isn't fair and God finds humor in our feeble attempts at self-governance, Hillary Clinton continues to haunt public life, like a jilted ex-girlfriend stalking all your usual hangouts.

The only reason, as I see it, why Clinton is still sought after for insight is purely sadistic: a not insubstantial number of us enjoy watching a loser's reaction to events he can't control.  Hillary shamelessly indulges these rubberneckers, going as far as to write a grievance missive that shot up to the top of the New York Times best-seller list.

With a knack for ill timing, Hillary and her slick-styled lecherous husband are embarking on a six-month speaking tour, which will hit all her major support areas in deep blue metropolises, while leaving out the many purple-state cities that cost her the presidency.  Wisconsin is conspicuously absent from the list.

(Perhaps Hillary is secretly lactose-intolerant and will bust out in hives if she visits America's Dairyland.  Nothing else I see explains her assiduous avoidance of the state.)

Just before the tour gets underway, Hillary granted an interview with CBS correspondent Tony Dokoupil.  Fresh off the Kavanaugh hearings, where the world's greatest deliberative body deliberated on whether or not a distinguished appeals court judge was a dope-peddling gang rapist in his beery youth, the former secretary of state dared to tread into the dangerous territory of sexual misconduct, defending her husband's licentious history.  Unlike in Bosnia, she really encountered enemy fire on the #MeToo battlefield.

Dokoupil wasted little time in addressing the matter, asking a phlegmatic Clinton, "In retrospect, do you think Bill should've resigned in the wake of the Monica Lewinsky scandal?"

"Absolutely not," Hillary replied without missing a beat.  Dokoupil pressed further: "There are people who look at the incidents of the '90s and they say, 'A president of the United States cannot have a consensual relationship with an intern.  The power imbalance is too great.'"

That's when Hillary ditched the intersectionality feminism she appropriated for her 2016 campaign and went right to hard politics, coldly pointing out, "[She] was an adult."  The implication was that since Lewinsky was a few years on the other side of what we consider "legal age," she was responsible for her actions.  In other words, she consented.

In that moment, we caught a glimpse of the Hillary of old, the first lady the media loved to torment.  At the very mention of her husband's affair, her street-fighting instincts kicked in.  Notice the length of time it took for Hillary to parry the rhetorical jab by invoking Lewinsky's legal status: half a breath, maybe less.  Her retort was locked and loaded, and she didn't hesitate to pull the trigger.  Maybe she could have beaten Donald Trump had her more naturally ruthless side been allowed to show during the campaign other than at that fateful night at the swank LGBT gala in Manhattan.

Say what you will about the cult of intersectionality, but at least its disciples have a nuanced view of power dynamics.  Hillary, on the other hand, holds the dominant view of sexual ethics, which revolves around choice and assent.

Consent is the watchword of our modern sexual ethos.  All sexual acts are now judged by their consensual nature.  Liberals, progressives, libertarians, and even some conservatives see sex strictly through the lens of explicit approval.  The only outliers are the intersectionality left and religiously traditional conservatives.

When Hillary cites Monica Lewinsky's age, she's echoing a shared sentiment when it comes to sex: if they're both consenting adults, who cares?  Respect the sacral privacy of the bedroom!

Viewing intimate intercourse as just another transaction not at all different from buying groceries robs sex of its larger, inherent meaning.  The teleological nature of sex – its sublime purpose, its emotional dimension, its divine designation – is lost in its commoditization, which is the effect of relying solely on consent as a moral barometer.

"Sexuality is not simply a matter of something that I have, as though my body is another possession just like my wallet or my car," writes theology professor Angela Franks.  The irony of the focus on consent is that it arguably helped give cover to Harvey Weinstein, the Hollywood mogul cum feminist boogeyman.  Weinstein has argued that all of his trysts were consensual and that plenty of his paramours were trading their sexual currency for a shot at fame.  Picture the situation: a young actress is being ogled and fondled by the debauched Weinstein.  She gives in to his advances, if only to better her career.  Isn't that consensual?

By Hillary's and many others' standard, Weinstein taking advantage of aspiring starlets is perfectly permissible.  After all, they consented!  (Weinstein has yet to be found guilty of rape.)

The advocates of a consent-only approach to sex probably don't want their beliefs used to support predators like Weinstein, or even Bill Clinton.  But they're left with little choice: such a parochial view of sex limits the scope of passing judgment on anything other than explicit affirmation.

Is it too conspiratorial to think those in power, like the Clintons, prefer it that way?

Image: Nathania Johnson via Wikimedia Commons.

Since life isn't fair and God finds humor in our feeble attempts at self-governance, Hillary Clinton continues to haunt public life, like a jilted ex-girlfriend stalking all your usual hangouts.

The only reason, as I see it, why Clinton is still sought after for insight is purely sadistic: a not insubstantial number of us enjoy watching a loser's reaction to events he can't control.  Hillary shamelessly indulges these rubberneckers, going as far as to write a grievance missive that shot up to the top of the New York Times best-seller list.

With a knack for ill timing, Hillary and her slick-styled lecherous husband are embarking on a six-month speaking tour, which will hit all her major support areas in deep blue metropolises, while leaving out the many purple-state cities that cost her the presidency.  Wisconsin is conspicuously absent from the list.

(Perhaps Hillary is secretly lactose-intolerant and will bust out in hives if she visits America's Dairyland.  Nothing else I see explains her assiduous avoidance of the state.)

Just before the tour gets underway, Hillary granted an interview with CBS correspondent Tony Dokoupil.  Fresh off the Kavanaugh hearings, where the world's greatest deliberative body deliberated on whether or not a distinguished appeals court judge was a dope-peddling gang rapist in his beery youth, the former secretary of state dared to tread into the dangerous territory of sexual misconduct, defending her husband's licentious history.  Unlike in Bosnia, she really encountered enemy fire on the #MeToo battlefield.

Dokoupil wasted little time in addressing the matter, asking a phlegmatic Clinton, "In retrospect, do you think Bill should've resigned in the wake of the Monica Lewinsky scandal?"

"Absolutely not," Hillary replied without missing a beat.  Dokoupil pressed further: "There are people who look at the incidents of the '90s and they say, 'A president of the United States cannot have a consensual relationship with an intern.  The power imbalance is too great.'"

That's when Hillary ditched the intersectionality feminism she appropriated for her 2016 campaign and went right to hard politics, coldly pointing out, "[She] was an adult."  The implication was that since Lewinsky was a few years on the other side of what we consider "legal age," she was responsible for her actions.  In other words, she consented.

In that moment, we caught a glimpse of the Hillary of old, the first lady the media loved to torment.  At the very mention of her husband's affair, her street-fighting instincts kicked in.  Notice the length of time it took for Hillary to parry the rhetorical jab by invoking Lewinsky's legal status: half a breath, maybe less.  Her retort was locked and loaded, and she didn't hesitate to pull the trigger.  Maybe she could have beaten Donald Trump had her more naturally ruthless side been allowed to show during the campaign other than at that fateful night at the swank LGBT gala in Manhattan.

Say what you will about the cult of intersectionality, but at least its disciples have a nuanced view of power dynamics.  Hillary, on the other hand, holds the dominant view of sexual ethics, which revolves around choice and assent.

Consent is the watchword of our modern sexual ethos.  All sexual acts are now judged by their consensual nature.  Liberals, progressives, libertarians, and even some conservatives see sex strictly through the lens of explicit approval.  The only outliers are the intersectionality left and religiously traditional conservatives.

When Hillary cites Monica Lewinsky's age, she's echoing a shared sentiment when it comes to sex: if they're both consenting adults, who cares?  Respect the sacral privacy of the bedroom!

Viewing intimate intercourse as just another transaction not at all different from buying groceries robs sex of its larger, inherent meaning.  The teleological nature of sex – its sublime purpose, its emotional dimension, its divine designation – is lost in its commoditization, which is the effect of relying solely on consent as a moral barometer.

"Sexuality is not simply a matter of something that I have, as though my body is another possession just like my wallet or my car," writes theology professor Angela Franks.  The irony of the focus on consent is that it arguably helped give cover to Harvey Weinstein, the Hollywood mogul cum feminist boogeyman.  Weinstein has argued that all of his trysts were consensual and that plenty of his paramours were trading their sexual currency for a shot at fame.  Picture the situation: a young actress is being ogled and fondled by the debauched Weinstein.  She gives in to his advances, if only to better her career.  Isn't that consensual?

By Hillary's and many others' standard, Weinstein taking advantage of aspiring starlets is perfectly permissible.  After all, they consented!  (Weinstein has yet to be found guilty of rape.)

The advocates of a consent-only approach to sex probably don't want their beliefs used to support predators like Weinstein, or even Bill Clinton.  But they're left with little choice: such a parochial view of sex limits the scope of passing judgment on anything other than explicit affirmation.

Is it too conspiratorial to think those in power, like the Clintons, prefer it that way?

Image: Nathania Johnson via Wikimedia Commons.