TPM's Josh Marshall has a good read today on what he calls the "Vince Fosterization" of all things related to the Clintons. Here's an appetizer:
... As with most things Clinton, there's enough to get everyone interested and virtually never enough for there to be any real there there. If there were less of the former or more of the latter, the story would have a clearer, more satisfying conclusion. With the Clintons, the inevitable gap between their pursuers' hopes and the mundane reality, the expectations and inevitable disappointment is the beautiful face that sets sail to a thousand ships of nonsense, wishful thinking and right-wing media rube fleecing.
Part of what is endless and exhausting about the Clintons is that they really do always push it right to the line. We've seen it enough times to know they're generally smart enough and careful enough not to go over it. Indeed, one of the paradoxical benefits of the endless and frenetic investigations of the Clintons in the '90s is that these probes stand as an unintentional proof that there's no real goods there to find. One of the countless committee investigations and special counsel inquiries would have found it. But, as I said, they push it right up to the line.
Yet it's never enough for the Clintons' perennial critics to be satisfied with potential conflicts of interest or arguably unseemly behavior. It's got to be more. It always has to be more. There have to be high crimes, dead people, corrupt schemes. And if they don't materialize, they need to be made up. Both because there is an organized partisan apparatus aimed at perpetuating them and because there is a right-wing audience that requires a constant diet of hyperventilating outrage from which to find nourishment. Why else do we have 'Benghazi', the President's birth certificate, the Muslim Brotherhood's infiltration of the White House and so much more? And if you think that's bad, you should have seen the '90s. (our emphasis)We saw the 90's, lived through it, suffered through it. It was every bit as exhausting as Marshall says, with constant efforts by Republicans (who saw the Reagan years fast disappearing in their rear view mirror) to bludgeon Bill Clinton, capped by an impeachment trial which was not about anything related to governance, but for lying about a b.j. All the while, the corporate "mainstream media" was happily letting itself be led around by its nose ring by those media-fleecing Republicans. The whole spectacle of undercutting a twice-elected President over fever-brain conspiracies and a dubious impeachment should have kept Republicans out of government at the national level for a generation or more (and would have if the Supreme Court didn't award the Presidency to Dumbya). It also disabused many of us of the notion that the corporate media were honest brokers when it came to the Clintons or politics in general.
What Marshall refers to the "right-wing media rube fleecing" continues unabated today (witness the digital media anti-Hillary ratf**king and deals cut by the New York Effing Times and the
Meanwhile, the hundreds of Adelsons and Kochs in plutocrat land plowing untraceable millions into right-wing coffers, and Jebbie's solicitation of "no more than $1 million, please" from Republican fat cats, is so yesterday's news to these bloodhounds. Nothing to see here, move along! But on the other hand, as Marshall notes, critics of the Clintons (and they staff and run both the Times and the Bezos Bugle) are never going to be satisfied in their quest for scandal, because there must be more there! It feeds their obsession to have Hillary Clinton respond to their questions, as if they were honest brokers for the public's right to know. *
We hope she continues to take questions -- from average Americans, not the corporate "mainstream media."
*BONUS: Charles Pierce extends and amplifies the point (with ups for slapping the Bezos Bugle's horse race tout rube Chris Cillizza upside the head).
BONUS II: This is how Hillary recently responded to a "Will you answer my important loaded Fox 'News" question?" More please.