Activist Monday: Hillary Finally Gets It
Posted September 14, 2015on:
Goooooood Monday everyone! And a good one it is in HillaryLand, as Our Girl both gets good news, and finally “gets it” with regard to those d*mned emails everyone has been so exercised about.
First, the good news: Hillary didn’t do anything wrong. No surprises there. She’s been at this too long to make a stupid mistake. Still, it’s nice to see that at least SOME of the media is covering the story factually.
Clinton asserts that she had the right under government rules to decide which emails were private and to delete them. This week’s filing puts the Justice Department’s approval on Clinton’s claim.
“There is no question that former Secretary Clinton had authority to delete personal emails without agency supervision — she appropriately could have done so even if she were working on a government server,” attorneys from the Justice Department’s civil division wrote.
Judicial Watch had requested a court order from the judge to ensure that Clinton’s emails were being preserved. But the Justice Department said there was no need for such an order given that Clinton had the right to delete personal emails and that those messages are not subject to the public records law.
The government said Judicial Watch had presented no evidence to suggest Clinton had mistakenly or intentionally deleted government records instead of personal emails, and said “government agencies are not required to take steps to recover deleted material based on unfounded speculation that responsive information had been deleted.”
So yeah, “Judicial Watch,” a standard pack of right-wing attack dogs rabid with hatred of all creatures labeled with a “D,” is completely full of sh*t.
That’s the “good news” part. Now, here’s the part where Hillary gets it. FINALLY.
A day after again declining to apologize for her use of a private e-mail system while she was secretary of state, Hillary Rodham Clinton told an interviewer Tuesday that the arrangement was a mistake and that she is “sorry” for it.
“As I look back at it now, even though it was allowed, I should have used two accounts. That was a mistake. I’m sorry about that. I take responsibility,” Clinton said in an interview with ABC News.
As I continue at my first “big girl” job and learn more and more about leadership, I think something I’m realizing more and more is that people expect leaders not only to be accountable, but responsible as well. While it’s more than clear that nothing Hillary did was technically wrong, those of us in the private sector are always taught that personal and business email accounts really should not be mixed. Too many problems can result from this type of mixture, including unintentional leaks of confidential or restricted data resulting in millions of dollars in damage. If this is true for a lower-to-mid-level manager at a tech firm such as yours truly, imagine how much more true it should be for someone in a very high position of responsibility in the government, dealing with classified materials and making critical national security decisions on a daily basis.
Hillary should have acknowledged this on Day 1, because in general, We the People want our leaders to be capable of learning and growth. (NOTE: This generalization does not apply to supporters of George W. “I can’t think of any mistakes I’ve made” Bush, Dick “Waterboarding is a no-brainer” Cheney, or Donald “Our political leaders are all stupid” Trump.) Ahem. In any case, we wish our leaders could be perfect, but know that they can’t be; so the least they can do is acknowledge their mistakes, show that they won’t do it again, and become better people because of their trials and tribulations. That’s the great American success story writ large, isn’t it? Rising high, falling low, then rising again?
When I first started leading teams and projects, with very little training or experience in the matter, I thought, “If I want to be respected and I want people to do what I tell them to, I’d better be strong, forceful, and flawless.” Welp…that wasn’t the way to go. I soon learned, both from coaching and from experience, that a touch of humility – perhaps more than a touch – goes a lot farther with people you’re leading and managing than attempting to show how a-mah-zing you are does. It was tough and painful to lose my addiction to my idea of leadership as a granite-like and impenetrable projection of perfection, but I did, and have flourished both personally and professionally as a result.
Hillary’s initial stance on the email issue amounted to somewhat of a defensive crouch, which I can completely understand because – let’s face it – she was being attacked by yet another group of nutjobs intent on bringing her down over something that seemed minor to her at the time. It’s been 20 years of this, so, “Same Sh*t, Different Day,” she must have thought. However, her handling of the “scandal” showed that she didn’t understand that the perception of what she had done was far more important than the reality; and for perception’s sake, she needed to show her humanity and frailty in order for people to forgive her transgressions, legal or otherwise. While both men and women are expected to know when to take responsibility and accountability for their mistakes, I believe this is especially true of Hillary, whose character is constantly under attack for being arrogant and entitled (both of which accusations are completely false, but whatevah).
I think Our Girl has done what she needs to do in order to make this go away. I just hope she understands that the next time she makes a mistake (which she will), she should accept responsibility and move on. It’s what real leaders do, even when it hurts.
This is an open thread.
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