Even the New York Times cannot quite like Hillary Clinton

Hillary is proclaimed from the centre of the Democratic Party as the next President. Maybe she will be. After Obama, even Al Gore night be an improvement – and I know that is a stretch for me and for you, dear readers.

Yet the article on her in the New York Times  this weekend makes clear that she has a powerful temper (who of that rank does not?) that she uses to preclude discussion of necessary policy alternatives. The use of the leader’s bad temper to prevent discussion of policy alternatives is the great sin in politics. Always remind yourself of Talleyrand’s dictum: “Worse than a crime, it was a mistake” as your guide to understanding the political point of view.

I do not mind her loyalty to Bill; he is a swine but he is my kind of swine: self indulgent, and consequently ill-disciplined, but he brought welfare reform (stopping the subsidies to black illegitimate births) and balanced the budget. Broadly he left the United States a better place (pace those who have rational objections).

I do not mind if she goes both ways sexually, either, as long as she gets along with the other sex in politics. She first also not be the wife of a President to be gay; recall Elanor Roosevelt’s affair with the journalist Lorena Hickock.

My objection to Hillary is that she is not the emollient centrist she is being portrayed as, but rather an imperious leftist who cannot tolerate political argument, even from within her own party and her own staff. This is not a good sign. At a time when the United States desperately needs a centrist reformer, able to get along with the other side, we may find in Hillary a leader with all the instincts of Louis XIV: rigid, bigoted, imperious, and prone to catastrophic wars.