what’s moxie and gumption got to do with hillary’s health?

Es­ti­mated reading time is 4 min­utes.

USUALLY, I’M A STICKLER FOR DETAILS: when I make a written ar­gu­ment, I tend to craft enough it­ty­bitty points that I can’t be ac­cused of missing the de­tails. But with this ed­i­to­rial, I’m not even going to waste time looking up a date. (There’s some moxie for you!) Be­cause we all know this: two weeks ago, Hillary Clinton was caught on camera stumbling—collapsing would not be an in­ac­cu­rate term—into a waiting lim­ou­sine leaving a 9/11 event. 1

I first heard about it when I re­ceived an email from a rightwinged friend. Others fol­lowed. I won’t re­peat the com­ments, but they went be­yond exultation—I might de­scribe them as ejaculatory.

“Come, come now,” you might say. “That’s tacky.”

And I might agree, but it does get my less-than-subtle point across.


Hillary Bernie caricature h

Moxie? Hillary’s health? Huh?

The gist of these emails and the mil­lions of equally ex­ul­tant ex­cla­ma­tions em­a­nating from the rightwingnut bl­o­gos­phere was some­thing along the lines of, “See! I told you—she’s lying again!! She’s not fit to be Pres­i­dent of the United States!!!”

Their glee was re­volting: while I will smirk if any of the ap­par­ently end­less ac­cu­sa­tions of un­fair business/play against Donald Trump ac­tu­ally re­ceives a wee bit ‘o media scrutiny and un­does the man, I have not had a single thought wishing him ill-health or a well-timed accident.

Alas, it turned out that the righties had been cor­rect: Hillary had been lying about her health.

She had been di­ag­nosed with pneu­monia and de­hy­dra­tion. 2

Every rightwingnut blogger and talk-show host that creamed their jeans two weeks ago knows the truth about the pneumonia.

Nonethe­less, she’d gotten out of bed, woozy and weak, and at­tended a cer­e­mony com­mem­o­rating the thou­sands of Amer­i­cans mur­dered on Sep­tember 11, 2001. Many of whom were her con­stituents, as she was the United States Sen­ator for most New Yorkers that day.

In other words, she was there for them in 2016 as she had been there for them in 2001.

Through good health and bad.

And now we all know that that is so: be­cause every rightwingnut blogger and talk-show host that creamed their jeans two weeks ago knows the truth about the pneu­monia as well as you and I!


Moxie: cartoon of Hillary Clinton by Bob Englehart.

Car­toon by Bob En­gle­hart for Cagle Cartoon.

By golly, she’s got gumption!

So help me here: I just cel­e­brated my 65th birthday and, well, this ol’ grey beard ain’t what he used to be—nor is his memory. I don’t re­call hearing any of those jean-creamers any­thing like, “I guess I have egg all over my face.” 3

Or an, “Oops! Guess I got that one wrong.”

And not one of my emailing bud­dies sent a second one saying, “I de­spise her pol­i­tics, but she’s made out of the right kind of stuff.”

Hell’s Belles, even a simple,“By golly, she’s got gump­tion!” seemed ap­pro­priate. 4

Un­for­tu­nately, I know not to ex­pect any ac­knowl­edge­ment that the former First Lady showed a lot of de­ter­mi­na­tion and courage and good ol’ fash­ioned Amer­ican moxie. 5

And I cer­tainly don’t ex­pect any of those crass ar­se­w­hole rightwingnut blog­gers to ac­knowl­edge being in­cor­rect let alone ad­mit­ting to being a crass arsewhole.

Alas, that’s the stuff that many of the folks on the other side of the chasm are made of . . .


Hillary Bernie caricature b

Let ’em win and walk away

I started writing this piece last night after I re­ceived an email from my daughter. In it, she asked this ques­tion: “Dad, what do you do when you find your­self in a re­ally stupid ar­gu­ment over some­thing to­tally ridicu­lous, and even when you show them the facts, they still think you’re wrong?”

Ba­si­cally, I told her to let them be right be­cause they’re not in­ter­ested in being cor­rect. (That is, let them ‘win’ and then walk away.)

Serendip­i­tously, I woke up this morning around four and as I was sip­ping my mug of coffee, I re­ceived to­day’s Al­terNet newsletter. Lo and be­hold, there was an ar­ticle ti­tled “I Wrote That I De­spised Hillary Clinton. Today, I Want to Pub­licly Take It Back” by “former Bernie Bro” Isaac Saul. Here is a rel­e­vant para­graph from Saul:

“Just months be­fore 9/11, Hillary Clinton be­came a US sen­ator in New York. She served for eight years in the city and was a key ar­chi­tect of the $21 bil­lion fed­eral aid bill that helped re­build the city after her term started with the worst tragedy New York had ever seen.

Clinton has the sup­port of so many 9/11 first re­spon­ders and sur­vivors be­cause they re­member her work for them as a senator.

But per­haps what she is most re­mem­bered for is fighting for the health bill that served first re­spon­ders in the first 48 hours after the attack.

While Donald Trump bragged about his building now being the tallest in New York City, Clinton was fighting the En­vi­ron­mental Pro­tec­tion Agency to admit the air wasn’t safe to breathe.

That’s why Clinton has the sup­port of so many 9/11 first re­spon­ders and sur­vivors: they re­member her work as a sen­ator of New York.

But guess what? Google ‘Clinton health bill 9/11’ and you’ll find nothing but re­sults about her nearly fainting out­side a 9/11 memo­rial ser­vice, one she at­tended while di­ag­nosed with pneumonia.”

If you’re a Hillary-hater, you’ve got to read the rest.

But, of course, only if you’ve got gump­tion . . .


Hillary Bernie caricature 1000

FEATURED IMAGE: The image at the top of this page is a bril­liant car­i­ca­ture of Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton by Katarzyna ‘Kate’ Oleska. The artist ac­cu­rately and justly ob­serves, “It’s hard to not no­tice that Hillary has been copying Sanders since she re­alised how pow­erful some of his state­ments are.” To me, it brings to mind an­other artist’s ob­ser­va­tion: Good artists copy—great artists steal.



1   I am also a com­pul­sive over-writer and this is being posted as a first draft. Well, al­most a first draft.

2   Un­less, of course, Hillary’s physi­cian is part of a vast left­wing con­spiracy and is lying about Mrs Clin­ton’s di­ag­nosis. (Yeah yeah yeah, that’s out there, too.)

3   “Ol’ grey beard” adapted from “ol’ grey mare.” Look it up.

4   “Gump­tion.” Look it up.

5   “Moxie.” Look it up.

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Came here from a Google search and I’m trying to re­member what (at least semi-well-known) novel had a pas­sage de­scribing a woman who had moxie and gump­tion. Also in this novel, a man was in a car ac­ci­dent. A child, hearing that the man “had an ac­ci­dent,” thought that the man had wet his pants.

Does any­body know what the hell I’m going on about?

Hillary, you’ve got spunk. I hate spunk. -- Lou Grant