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Wednesday, April 12, 2017

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

Hillary Clinton has emerged from the woods determining that her election loss is everyone’s fault but her own. But even more surprising was that Donald Trump colluding with the Russians was suddenly no longer the main culprit; no, now it was hatred of women that fueled her loss. But this was no ordinary misogyny, it was the fault of women in particular who apparently hate other women. Or something.

In fact, if there’s a misogynist in this story, it’s Hillary Clinton.


Mrs. Clinton spoke about her forthcoming book to The New York Times’ Nicholas Kristof at the Women in the World Summit in New York, in which she will explain it was misogyny, the FBI’s James B. Comey, WikiLeaks and Russia that did her in.

In other words, a book of fiction blaming everyone except herself.

Mr. Kristof dutifully asked her about the impact misogyny had on the election, handing her the plate she required to indirectly riff on how those who did not vote for her are bad, mean people.

“I’m currently writing a book where I spend a lot of time wrestling with this,” she noted. “As you might guess, I’ve thought about it more than once. I don’t know that there is one answer. It is fair to say that certainly misogyny played a role. That just has to be admitted.”

At one point Mr. Kristof directly asks Mrs. Clinton who she blames for her loss. Her simple answer confirms a mindset that has removed herself entirely from the equation, while placing everyone else at the fulcrum: “How much time do you have?”

The fact of the matter is this: The people who didn’t vote for Hillary Clinton like women just fine, but they didn’t like one in particular — her. It was her patronizing sanctimony that repulsed people, yes, including women, during a campaign now returning as a charged-up revenge tour.

Mrs. Clinton holds herself up as a lesson for girls and women in the damage misogyny can do. And she’s right, but the perpetrators are not the women who voted their conscience last year.

The ultimate in misogyny is stripping women of their agency, of their self-worth. By excusing her self-inflicted failure on the deeds of others, Mrs. Clinton is telling women nothing they do matters; their choices are irrelevant; their own decisions are meaningless. In Hillary’s world, women are at the mercy of the environment, like a piece of driftwood in the sea.

And yet this woman, victimized by so much, still insists she coulda, woulda, shoulda, been president.

Are women impacted by the actions of others? Of course we are. Our lives are more complex and the issues we face at home and in the workplace must be continually challenged. Women who succeed recognize that it is our choices that make the difference on both what we offer and what we overcome.

Instead, Mrs. Clinton relies on old feminist tropes, unable to face her own failures. She took for granted her base of support. She presumed she was owed the votes of a certain type of person and then felt comfortable ignoring them. She ran a campaign of vengeance and entitlement, while promoting an agenda that would further the economic destruction of the country and ignored our increasingly perilous national security.

Hillary Clinton lost because she’s Hillary Clinton. She lost because she never set foot in Wisconsin. She lost because she lied. She lost because of her horrible judgment and a resentment of, well, everyone.

She lost because she ran a campaign where she was the one who was to be elevated and lauded, when that is usually reserved for the American electorate.

She made herself the point, when the point was the United States. She lost because, like most politicians, she viewed the American people as obstacles to overcome, not people to get to know.

As Hillary was rolling out her revenge tour last week, there was another woman emerging as the breakout star of the Trump administration. Nimrata Randhawa (also known as Nikki Haley), our ambassador to the United Nations. Mrs. Haley was schooling the world body and U.N. Security Council specifically about the horrors of the Syrian chemical weapons attack on opponents of President Bashar Assad’s regime.

Mrs. Haley, a former governor of South Carolina with no international diplomatic experience, was viewed suspiciously when first named to the post. Critics, including this columnist, were concerned about her lack of a resume on the serious issues besetting the world. How could someone, with no background at all in international politics and diplomacy, handle the pit that is the U.N.?

Those concerns no longer exist after her virtuoso handling of an international crisis, replete with chemical weapons, mass murder, terrorist groups, Russia and Iran. Mrs. Haley was an iron fist in a velvet glove. She did not bend, she controlled the environment, and led.

We can all presume there is an overwhelming amount of misogyny at the U.N. Mrs. Haley is likely dealing with it every day, and yet everyone at the U.N. now knows who is in charge. And it’s not the boys from Syria, Russia or Iran.

If we’re looking for role models for women, the best choice is to look to women who find their power inside, own their choices and forge onward, not to those who insult us all by insisting we’re all victims, at the perpetual mercy of others.

• Tammy Bruce, author and Fox News contributor, is a radio talk show host.


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