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Clinton e-mails: What Happened Here?
Can Hillary Clinton be Trusted?
Hillary Clinton is currently running for the highest office in the land -- the United States Presidency. As she does, she is quick to point out so-called attacks made by Bernie Sanders that are not attacks; quick to point out so-called negative ads made by Bernie Sanders that are not negative ads... all the while, this is a woman that has been in the center of more controversies than most mob bosses. So the question remains: can Hillary Clinton be trusted with anything?
Scandal Du Jour
The Bill-and-Hillary Clinton political powerhouse is no stranger to scandal. The dozens of scandals that are purely Bill Clinton are not (directly) relevant to the discussion; I will leave those out of this discussion. But the fact that Hillary Clinton has been the primary party to many scandals (the media names for these scandals almost always have the word 'gate' in them; my apologies)...
- 1978 – 1998 Whitewater — As a partner in a shady real-estate firm, Hillary Clinton allegedly commit fraud. Although neither she nor her husband were charged and jailed for fraud, her senior partners at Whitewater (James and Susan McDougal), Governor Clinton's successor (Governor Jim Tucker), and even the municipal judges who worked with the firm (David Hale and Eugene Fitzhugh) all were. Somehow, the Clintons were seen as completely innocent in their company's dealings.
- 1993 Travelgate — Hillary Clinton (indirectly) fired seven employees of the United States Travel Office; those people were then replaced with friends from Arkansas. Records were lost or destroyed or misfiled. The NYT describes the environment at the White House as one in which fear dictated nobody dare question Mrs. Clinton.
- 1993 The Man Who Knew Too Much — Hillary Clinton's long time friend, Vince Foster commit suicide. He was central to the Whitewater and Travelgate scandals. The circumstances of his suicide are highly suspect.
- 1994 Commodities Trading Savant — for only $1000 (presumably, since this is all that was in her bank account at the time), Mrs. Clinton managed to purchase 10 cattle-futures contracts (which, at the time, cost $12,000 each). In less than one day, her profits were over $6,000. After 10 months, she had made profits totaling more than $100,000. Robert L. Bone, the man who allowed those trades to go through, was suspended for three years and had to pay the largest fine in exchange history in relation to the Clinton trades. She, however, was deemed involved with the illegality of the trades and cited research through the Wall Street Journal for her amazing trade results.
- 1996 Chinagate — Hillary Clinton sold seats on Department Trade missions to China. This amid charges that the White House was accepting bribes from China. This one was dropped in the media when the Monica Lewenski story broke.
- 1996 The Drug Dealer Donor — Jorge Cobrera, a convicted Miami cocaine trafficker, was invited to the White House and was allowed to meet with President and Mrs. Clinton without Secret Service (or anyone else) present at the meeting. The official explanation was that it was out of respect for the drug dealer's rather large campaign contributions.
- 2001 Lootergate — When they were leaving the White House, Hilalry Clinton ordered several pieces of furniture to be removed from the White House and delivered to her new home in Chappaqua, N.Y.. With some presure place on her, she ordered the furniture returned.
- 2008 The Ponzi / Pyramid Presidential Donor — Norman Yung Yuen Hso, a man convicted of running Ponzi and pyramid schemes, was found to have given an undisclosed amount as a donation to Hillary's Presidential campaign. His final conviction (after this scandal broke) sentencing included these words: "[he was] manipulating the political process in a way that strikes at the very core of our democracy."
- 2013 Benghazi — I have nothing to add to this. This word speaks for itself.
- etc., etc., and so on.
The Clinton Witch-Hunt Du Jour
The list above represents a smattering — a tiny sample set — of the controversies, scandals, and shady dealings involving Mrs. Clinton. The question that needs to be asked is this: how many of the scandals involving Mrs. Clinton are legitimate complaints, and how many are illegitimate complaints — just so much smoke with no fire?
The answer is that I have no freaking idea. And neither does anyone else not named Bill Clinton or Hillary Clinton
The difference between me and a whole slew of other blogs, reports, and Hub Pages out there is that I do not pretend to know. I do know, for example, that the right-wing of the Republican Party has been trying to pin something (be that insider trading, Benghazi, or leaked secrets from a private e-mail server) on Hillary Clinton for years. Up to this point, they have found absolutely nothing that can prove anything illegal.
- Whitewater? Lots of things seem off here. Nothing that anyone can get to stick to the Clintons.
- Private Meetings with Cocaine Traffickers? This happened. It seems unusual that the meeting took place with someone like this, with no witnesses or even Presidential protection. But is it illegal? Did something illegal take place prior to, within, or as a result of this meeting? No idea.
- Chinagate? Bribery at the White House? Sure. I firmly believe that this took place. But the question (as it relates to this article) is 'did Hillary do anything illegal?' It does not appear that they have found anything that firmly states that she did.
- Was something done that was criminal when it comes to Benghazi? Maybe. Maybe not. But thus far, nothing sticks.
Did Hillary Clinton do anything illegal in any of these scandals? I cannot say for sure. I can say this:
If nobody can find a shred of evidence that proves Hillary Clinton did something illegal when she paid 0.83% of the cost for ten cattle futures — her first ever foray into commodities trading — and further more when she turned a profit of 9900% in less than one year... I think it is safe to say that nobody is going to find anything that will stick to her when it comes to any of the scandals she is associated with.
Smoke or Fire?
The Latest: e-mail Scandal
Do a search for "clinton email" (with the quotes, to ensure that you are not getting irrelevant results) on Google. As of the initial writing of this hub, that search turned up some 2,000,000 results. Some 15% of those results were from the last few hours. This is insanity. Granted, as of today (as I update this hub on 14 April 2016), the number of results has dropped to about a half-million, but this is not going to go away anytime soon.
Did Hillary Clinton do anything illegal when it came to using a private e-mail address and server? By the timing of the law that prohibited such things, no. The law that would prevent such things went into effect after she left office.
Did Hillary Clinton do anything against policy when it came to using a private e-mail address and server? Yes. Even memoranda send by her suggests she was aware of the policy and directed those that worked for her to use government e-mail.
Is this a meaningful investigation or a witch-hunt? That appears to depend upon which side of the political fence you stand. In the end, I think most current investigations into Mrs. Clinton are conducted for a two-fold purpose:
- Republicans are afraid of her — as the presumptive nominee for President, the Republican Party (especially the far right elements of it) want to smear Mrs. Clinton any way they can. Each time an opportunity like this one presents itself... they will leap on it.
- Given her history, some will take what-ever they can get — in the end it was the IRS that got Al Capone. After a lengthy investigation, they could get nothing on the murderous gangster... but tax law managed to stick and lock the man up. I think some people look at Hillary and they see someone that can do just about anything. And if nothing else works, they will take anything they can get that will work.
Can She be Trusted?
I do not believe that Hillary Clinton can be trusted. I think she would sink a knife into her best-friend's back if she thought it would give her a two-point bump in some poll somewhere. And I believe that if she were caught with the knife in her hand, she would spin the situation to the point to where the best friend's family would owe her money for Defamation of Character.
That said: I will vote for her long before I will vote for Donald Trump or Ted Cruz. She may be a dishonest snake-in-the-grass, but she is far less dangerous to the future of my beloved nation that either of those two idiots.