ICYMI, here it is. Judy Woodruff is always very confrontational with Hillary, but Hillary goes in knowing that and stands her ground. After a rough start where Woodruff tried to blame Hillary, Bill, and Loretta Lynch for Comey being in charge of the email investigation (he was the FBI Director – who else would have been in charge?), Hillary hit back and unblocked the potential log jam. It’s one of those interviews where you start out going GAAAH!

Am I on a campaign? You bet your britches I am! Am I talking a lot about foreign national trolls co-opting Hillary spaces on social media? Yup! Is this a Sisyphean effort? I hope not. Much as I feel affection for Don Quixote, I hope I am not jousting at windmills.

In her chapter on Trolls, Bots, Fake News, and Real Russians, Hillary outlines how she sees outside interference in our electoral politics and the 2016 election.

There is, from what I can glean, a difference between the pro-Trump Russian trolls Hillary analyzes and the “pro-Hillary” Eastern European trolls I have sniffed out. It is cultural and relates to familiarity with American electoral demographics. Trump’s Russian trolls, from Hillary’s point of view, must have had informational support from within our borders and probably within our citizenry. There was cultural and regional sophistication in their messages to targeted audiences.

The trolls impersonating Hillary supporters are still seeking and developing that kind of cultural resource. They are doing this by soliciting friends large-scale on Facebook.  “If you are for Hillary, friend me!” “If you agree with this post, friend me!” “FRIEND ME!”

Many have done so without noticing that these personalities neglect to make public their location (not here) or other personal information that most Facebook friends routinely make public. They are shadowy. Some list questionable background information. “Personal Assistant, Hillary for America.” In Poland? (Well she doesn’t say that is where she is, but that is very likely where she is.) Personal assistant to whom? Is there anyone else here – and I know you all worked hard on the campaign – who would list yourself as a personal assistant? Seriously? It tests one’s limits of credulity if you know what I mean.

What jumps out at me is that those who have accepted these friend invitations tend to be those I never met until 2015 -2016. My  old guard of Hillary friends from 2008 have not succumbed. They are savvy, vigilant, and not easily fooled. You know who you are. Hillary’s tough veterans. It’s the newbies who either didn’t bother in 2008 and 2012 or were Obama voters who knew next to nothing about Hillary going in and still don’t really know her now who succumb. But that is a big group!

Posts from these entities – and I am not that certain they are real people as opposed to “personalities” developed for social media – tend to vary. The personalities tend to be female, and the posts sometimes abound with hero worship and girl crushiness with which most of us can identify, no matter our age, in our personal journeys with Hillary.

Other posts, however, are stylized. Most importantly, perhaps, the language differs. The English is more polished. They tend to be rants on current events. Typically, the information is about 90-95% verifiable, but there is a statement buried in there somewhere, e.g. Trump has “brought us to the verge of civil war,” or “We Hillary voters have been forgotten.”

Both first person pronouns are inappropriate since the person posting this is not part of “us” on the verge of civil war nor “we” Hillary voters. The writer is a foreign national who neither lives nor can vote here, a person impersonating an American and not honest enough to apprise Facebook friends of that crucial personal fact. She doesn’t live here, and we are hardly on the verge of a civil war. The system is at work. Americans have faith in the system even though it screwed us in the election. It’s cultural. Americans have faith in the system even in the worst of times.

If you come from what Helen Mirren refers to as a dark Slavic (or Magyar or post-Soviet) mind set (she is half Russian in case your didn’t know), you might not understand or appreciate that within a single generation, American immigrants are the most optimistic people on earth.

It is hard to know to know what the agenda is with these people.

Experts in foreign policy and Russian politics, as Hillary points out in her book, have put forth a theory that the Russian pro-Trump trolls probably had American assistance in formulating the targeted messages they spread on the social nets leading up to Election Day 2016.

Some Republicans have said, I believe sincerely, that we must uncover exactly what influence Russia exerted over the 2016 election because “next time it could be us.” Right. We all should be concerned.

One thing the pro-Hillary trolls seem not to understand is that only on the extreme fringes of the political spectrum do Americans think the opposition party is the devil. Their posts reflect this misunderstanding. Democrats do nor think all Republicans are evil. Republicans do not think all Democrats are evil. We recognize some degree of common ground and applaud those on the other side of the aisle who voice these shared values. This is lost on the pro-Hillary Eastern European trolls. They are so resistant to this concept that I doubt that they will ever find American informants equal to those the Russians developed in 2015 and 2016. Most American Democrats, and I believe we are the target, do not swing that way.

That is not to say that we should blow them off as insignificant. They are not, and something is up there. They are doing what they do ostensibly under Hillary’s banner, so we should be concerned. I have gone after a few trying to use logic.

Forget that. They are combative. They slap back.

I have a background in applied linguistics.  When I see a statement like “I love the Broadway,” my antennae go up. The Broadway is a theatre. I saw Evita there several times in the early 80s. Hamilton is playing there now. The referenced show was actually at the Vivian Beaumont at Lincoln Center. The post was written as if the author had been at the performance: “You should have seen….” It was partially a linguistic clue and partially cultural. When I mentioned that Lincoln Center is not actually considered “Broadway” I was immediately slapped back and told to “grab a map of Manhattan” so I could see that “the Broadway is a road in Manhattan.” A clever troll would have looked at my profile and noticed that some of my grad studies were at 120th and Broadway (Columbia Teachers College). Instead, she just attacked. Very combative. And why?

And so on and so on and scooby dooby doo.

I have found a handful of these Eastern European trolls. As I find them, they block me on Facebook. My concerns are these:

They post

1. under a Hillary banner,

2.  erroneous, untrue, and some inflammatory comments,

3.  what seem to be some manufactured posts provided by unknown sources.

That last is the most unsettling. The language of those is markedly different. The English more polished, and those are the posts with one little item that is alarmist, incendiary, dangerous. It is those little items that their American friends pick up, posterize, and spread on Facebook. I cannot help but think – exactly as planned.

To what end? That remains to be seen.

As for me. I have fought too long and hard for Hillary Clinton to let foreign nationals gain another foothold in this country – especially in her name. I intend to keep going.

P.S. Being called a Bernie supporter and then a Trump supporter by these trolls did nothing to endear me to whatever their cause. My history is in the archives here. But it is not about me. It is about how Hillary is portrayed. I no longer trust people who will not say where they live. Screw that!

I will not be silenced on this matter. Keep going? You bet your boots I will!



Wow! How did I miss this one? I didn’t know she was scheduled to be on and would certainly have been there given the fury she expressed in her book regarding Lauer’s “moderation” of the Commander-in-Chief Forum.

I do not normally watch this show anymore since I didn’t like how they ganged up on Ann Curry. If, like me, you missed this appearance, here it is.

Nathan Congleton/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images


I don’t know why I am always blown away by how much information Hillary Clinton can pack into a few minutes, but I am. Hillary was on for 55 minutes. She had spoken uninterrupted and said so much at the beginning that I thought she had used up half the show. Then I looked at the clock.  She had been speaking for only 14 minutes.

Rachel noted, at the end, that Hillary made some very strong comments regarding Facebook, Fake Americans, and the influence they held over our election. This is, as Rachel notes, a national security issue.  I keep saying, it does not really matter which side a Fake American pretends to be on. A Fake American “Hillary supporter” is just as capable of impugning Hillary and/or other Democrats and Americans in general with untrue or alarmist statements as a Fake American on the right.

During the 2015-2016 election cycle, I applied a bit less scrutiny than normal in accepting Facebook friends. My intention was an expansion of an audience for Hillary’s words, plans, and voter base and to drum up donations. I succeeded in doubling the number of Facebook friends tied to Hillary from the post-2008 number.

In the aftermath, I discovered that I had indeed accepted friend requests from some questionable entities who were less than forthcoming vis-à-vis their nationality/citizenship and location. My bad! I intend to be more assiduous in vetting friends in the future and to do my small part in depriving duplicitous and noxious trolls a platform on my news feeds for their fictional news. If there is a single divergence between these folks and the woman they claim to love and hold as a role model, it is on the role of honesty and transparency in trust.

During the campaign, there were detractors who questioned Hillary’s honesty. She is among the most painfully honest people in the public eye. So it is ironic that these impostors resist transparency. That can only raise questions about their trustworthiness.

That said, I think we all can appreciate the honest foreign nationals who admire Hillary and provide truthful coverage of her initiatives.

This community here contributed impressively in many ways to Hillary’s campaign: phone banking, pounding the pavement and knocking on doors, registering voters, providing primary day information, and making donations.

Hillary has made it clear that she will not appear on another ballot, but she is not leaving the arena. We will all be here to boost her efforts going forward.

Here is the full interview in case you missed it. Probably tomorrow Rachel will have the complete one-on-one posted at her website. It will play again at midnight EDT.


Forgiveness v. Absolution

The more I read Hillary’s book, the less I feel inclined to provide context. Anyone can forgive. We should. But forgiveness is different from absolution.

What is forgiveness? What is absolution?  There is a difference.


Hillary Clinton says she does not forgive people who didn’t vote in the 2016 presidential election and now say they regret it.

In an interview with CNN Wednesday, the former Democratic candidate told Anderson Cooper that more than two dozen women apologized to her for not voting or otherwise helping to advance her campaign. Clinton appeared on Cooper’s show 360° to discuss her new memoir about her loss to Republican Donald Trump, titled What Happened.

“When it first started happening, it was so soon after the election,” Clinton told Cooper. “It was hard for me to comfort somebody who was coming to me and saying, ‘Oh, I wish I had done more,’ or, ‘I’m sorry I didn’t vote’ because I think this was one of the most consequential elections that we have faced in a long time.”

“So, no absolution,” Clinton added. “But I just hope people will take what happened this time seriously and be ready and willing to vote the next time.”

Read more >>>>

ICYMI Here is Hillary’s extensive interview with Anderson Cooper from Wednesday night. It could be my imagination, but it seemed to me that Hillary is more relaxed than ever. That alternate nostril breathing must really work!

In her memoir, What Happened, Hillary quotes these words by John Greenleaf Whittier.

“For of all sad words of tongue or pen, The saddest are these: “It might have been!”.

Hillary’s supporters need no reminder. We live with the consequences of an election gone wrong. All Americans do.

The words come from this poem which, itself, deserves a spotlight for its commentary.

Maud Muller (1856)

John Greenleaf Whittier (17 December 1807 – 7 September 1892) was an American Quaker poet and abolitionist

  • Maud Muller, on a summer’s day,
    Raked the meadows sweet with hay.
    Beneath her torn hat glowed the wealth
    Of simple beauty and rustic health.
  • So, closing his heart, the Judge rode on,
    And Maud was left in the field alone.
    But the lawyers smiled that afternoon,
    When he hummed in court an old love-tune.
  • He wedded a wife of richest dower,
    Who lived for fashion, as he for power.
    Yet oft, in his marble hearth’s bright glow,
    He watched a picture come and go:
    And sweet Maud Muller’s hazel eyes
    Looked out in their innocent surprise.
  • A manly form at her side she saw,
    And joy was duty and love was law.
    Then she took up her burden of life again,
    Saying only, “It might have been”.
  • Weary lawyers with endless tongues.
  • Alas for maiden, alas for Judge,
    For rich repiner and household drudge!
    God pity them both! and pity us all,
    Who vainly the dreams of youth recall;
    For of all sad words of tongue or pen,
    The saddest are these: “It might have been!”

Our “might have been” is front and center this week with the release of Hillary’s book and the ensuing book tour comprising TV appearances, press interviews, and appearances at book stores and public venues.

Here is a note on an upcoming interview in The New Yorker.


If Hillary Clinton Had Won: The New Yorker Cover

The New Yorker

The cover “The First,” by Malika Favre.

Over the past ten months, many Americans, regardless of how they voted, have contemplated what life would have looked like if Hillary Clinton had been elected President on November 8, 2016. In at least one respect, we can now share a definitive answer. Above is the cover “The First,” by Malika Favre, that The New Yorker would have published had Clinton defeated Donald Trump to become the first female Commander-in-Chief.

In next week’s issue, David Remnick speaks with Clinton about her new memoir, the campaign, her stinging loss, and its aftermath; their conversation touched on the former F.B.I. director James Comey, accusations of Russian interference, and the role of sexism in Trump’s victory.

Read more >>>>

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