Hillary Clinton, former first lady, former senator, former secretary of state, and a once and perhaps future presidential candidate was in Great Britain hawking a new book that she produced with her daughter Chelsea. The book, entitled “The Book of Gutsy Women: Favorite Stories of Courage and Resilience,” recounts the lives of such women like Harriet Tubman, Rachel Carson, and Malala Yousafzai.
However, while being interviewed on BBC radio, the host mentioned one woman with courage and resilience who was conspicuous by her absence from the book. Her name is Margaret Thatcher, the first woman prime minister of Great Britain whose policies reversed the steady decline of that island kingdom, removing many of the vestiges of socialism. And one should not forget the Falklands War in which she proved to Argentina that the old British lion still had claws and teeth.
Ms. Clinton, according to Fox News, was pleased to disagree.
“She doesn’t fit the other part of the definition in our opinion, which really is knocking down other barriers for others and trying to make a positive difference,’ Clinton responded, saying Thatcher’s record was mixed. She went on to say she thought Thatcher was ‘strong’ and ‘clever to mold herself to be more acceptable in terms of everything from hairstyle and speaking style to clothing style. But on the criterion, we were really looking at: ‘OK what were the positive differences, the changes this person made that really opened the doors to more? That wasn’t really that apparent,’ she said. Clinton’s harsh assessment raised quite a few eyebrows on both sides of the Atlantic. Niles Gardner, a former Thatcher aide put the matter bluntly, “It’s astonishing that she would be omitted from a book on this subject, and it says a huge amount about liberal bias and liberal intolerance.”
Commentator Jonah Goldberg added, “Translation: One of the gutsiest politicians, male or female, of last 50 years doesn’t qualify as a woman and/or gutsy because she didn’t check ideological boxes Clinton thinks are more important.”
Others ascribed the omission to more than a bit of jealousy on Hillary’s part. Thatcher, unlike Clinton, succeeded in climbing the greasy pole of politics in her country. She is controversial to this day, especially in her many battles with British trade unions, but Thatcher still is ranked among the greatest British prime ministers in history.
Speaking of the greasy pole of politics, Hillary Clinton hinted at another go at the presidency of the United States. Fox News reported her as saying, “I, as I say, never, never, never say never. I will certainly tell you, I’m under enormous pressure from many, many, many people to think about it.”
One can only speculate what the late Ms. Thatcher would have had to say about this kind of coy teasing when it comes to politics. Jonah Goldberg asked on Twitter, “How many of them are Republicans?” The question was not rhetorical.
The National Review, for example, took up the theme of “Run, Hillary, run!” The article noted that if she were to jump in the race, Clinton would likely win the nomination. She is younger than most of the frontrunners like Biden or Bernie and President Trump as well. She has great fundraising skills and, let’s face it, many liberals imagine that Trump stole the election from her and that she ought to be, by right, president of the United States now.
On the other hand, the National Review reminds us that, “Clinton’s career is a 30-year excursion into corruption and soulless political triangulations.” That is putting the matter mildly, Just as many people who think she should be president think Hillary Clinton should be in jail.
That assessment brings us back to Margaret Thatcher, Most historians note that Thatcher had convictions that she was not afraid of expressing, whether she thought they were popular or not. She just happened to live at a time when the majority of Britons found those convictions to be appealing, living at a time when Great Britain seemed to be falling apart. She plowed through the morass of politics with her force of will. She was neither coy nor self-dealing, unlike Hillary. It also helped that her husband was not a creepy sexual predator.
In short, Hillary might learn a thing or two from Margaret Thatcher if she hopes to snatch any future in politics in the time she has left.