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Why People Hate Hillary... and other democratic women politicians of a certain age.

Liberty's picture

Remember when there was a burst of hope when a woman ascended to the Speakership of the House, and Hillary was the front runner? Remember when Barbara Boxer was beloved of progressives, before endorsing the Connecticut for McCain party candidate? Remember when Jackie Speier was the valiant survivor of a shooting incident that took the life of her employer and mentor Congressman Ryan?

You know why the public sours on Democratic Women politicians? Because the have a sense of entitlement, and they turn on the people who support them. Hillary is suffering not just because of her own sins, or the sexism of present contemporary society, a fact I get presented with every single day, but because of the arrogance of her cohort, the pure sense that the argument is over because of a kind of ownership built up by relationships. They can't open their mouths without telling everyone that they do not care what other people think, that the girl's tree house is closed and that anyone else will be clawed instantly for even looking at the rope.

That's why the "B" word and even the "C" word so easily cross people's lips, because everyone recalls back to the cheerleaders and class presidents of high school days.

Your high school was like mine. There were, the popular girls, and then there were the most popular girls. No one liked the most popular girls. But there they were, on every committee, at every organization, voting themselves into some order of President, Vice-President, Secretary and Treasurer, and running the class over diet soda and lettuce in the cafeteria. They had a few not very attractive hangers on who did the things they didn't have the ability to do, like make posters.

None of them could draw.

This closed club insularity is what immediately sets people on edge, because it is a disease that spreads to their followers. It is an illness that is seen in a hatred of ideas, and in then their eagerness to betray once in power. Nancy Pelosi has betrayed us. Barbara Boxer has betrayed us, and Hillary Clinton has betrayed us. There's no reason to believe that Jackie Speier won't either.

This is because the secret to the most popular girls, what Sex in the City called "the ladies who lunch," is that when they suffer a reverse, they toss their friends aside, in order to appease whoever dealt them a blow. They are always willing to be in compromising positions over people who don't want to compromise.

Let's take Hillary, she didn't need to vote for Iraq to be Senator from New York as long as she wanted to be. From a person who coined the term Vast Right Wing Conspiracy, she has voted it a trillion dollars to spend. It only takes one trillion, not more, to make something vast.

Now let's move on to Barbara Boxer. Barbara Boxer did not need to take sides in Connecticut's Democratic Primary, but she did, voting for the war monger who has now betrayed his party on key issues, and most importantly, the coming Presidential election. Why did she do it? Because they are friends. She owed him.

The next person in order is Nancy Pelosi. My god! That day! You can't imagine what it was like to see it and hear it. It was a bubbling bursting moment, like waking up and actually finding a pony in the stable. Now where are we? Has the House been what we had wanted, or even anything we wanted? No, over and over again Nancy has proven that her high heels, are so round as to be useful as coasters for moving heavy pieces of furniture.

It doesn't take long to see a pattern: a string of politicians who present as being strong women, independent minded, thoughtful and forthright, who have two traits. One is knee pads sewn into their skirts suits. The other is a royal and officious nature with anyone who gets in the way of their clique. They don't listen to anyone, and they can't be trusted, because there is a very small circle of real friends, and a very large circle of people who are just useful, but can be tossed aside if it is necessary to make up with someone who is more useful.

You can tell me I don't know what it was like to have to make it in a man's world in their time. True. But I can tell you that they are very busy making it impossible for me to make in this world, and they are as proud of it as any man at doing so.

One reason why Barak Obama has gained both young men and young women, is because the Jackie Hilboxalosi types have not been there for us, but have, at each turn of the way, voted for the status quo. You know, the war. The war that Hillary supports, the war that Joe Lieberman supports, the war that Tom Lantos, who endorsed Jackie Speier, supports. The war that Nancy Pelosi has voted to fund without time tables.

We've had enough of politicians who owe their place to a warmonger. We've had enough of queens who claw. Because they kick down only so they can claw up.

Jackie Speier is the next in line to inherit this mantle. Ideas? No, we don't need ideas. Having run lots of campaigns is what is important. Debate? None of that, we are the ladies who lunch. The people who've been there since 10th grade, telling you they are sooooo sorry, but the football captain's girlfriend has replaced you on the decoration's committee... but you can still do all the work.

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Sima's picture
Submitted by Sima on

All I can say is, just substitute some famous men's names in there where you got all the women's names, and change women for men, and girls for boys, and you can say EXACTLY the same thing about men, and craploads of Democratic politicians (and even more Republican ones), including, eventually when he gets a record, your man, Obama.

I assume this is in reaction to the comments about Lessig. So let's talk about the merits of that. Lessig offers, what? I mean he's a great guy, been really good to the netizens and Open Source (which is one thing I really care about) and all of that. What's he gonna do as a CA representative? Care to share his platform with us?

As for Speier, I've read a bit about her and she seems a true progressive. So how would Lessig be better? Maybe the voters should decide? Let's get Lessig out there campaigning before we decide the Speier should roll over and take yet another one for the team.

Stellaaa's picture
Submitted by Stellaaa on

This makes absolutely no sense. Obama voted exactly with the status quo each chance he had. His one and only objection to the war was an opinion. Not a vote.

You diminish three women that have given years of public service to some high school culture war. So, if we want to got to high school, what about all the has beens Kerry, Kennedy etc, thinking they can pass on the popular boy award to Obama?

When was the last time Obama stood up like Boxer has against the war and for the environment, and not only in speeches to his fans.

Submitted by scoff on

An op-ed by Nickolas Kristof, printed in the NY Times last week, lays out the argument that women have a better record of governance than men.

When Women Rule

Women have the right tools in their belt to achieve the cooperation that is needed get things done.

"[W]omen, compared with men, tend to excel in consensus-building and certain other skills useful in leadership."

Prejudice and bigotry stand in their way.

"... in democracies in the television age, female leaders also have to navigate public prejudices."

Be sure to read the conclusion reached by voters in India where the law requires a third of village council members are women.

Submitted by lambert on

... canard that everybody has to sing in unison with lambert!

I don't think there's any question that the Village is sick, sick, sick. I don't know what it is that way, and liberty gives a new twist on the "high school" theme that's been in the blogosphere for a long time.

What to do about it, I don't know. The Village seems to reconstitute itself with admirable celerity, witness "The Boys on the Blogs" this time around.

Choice of evils, choice of evils.

As far, though, as Obama not supporting the status quo. My litmus test was FISA. If our distinguished professor of constitutional law was really different, was really a game-changer, he could have used his oratorical skills to save the Fourth Amendment. He didn't. Obama is, as Axelrod explains, about marketing leadership. That is not the same, as FISA shows, as actually leading. The "change" message has the depth of the books on leadership you can find in an airport bookstore, right next to the books on how to make money on real estate. Yes, the books are arranged that way for a reason. And where Obama doesn't support the status quo, he's going to make things worse: Social Security, and no universal health care.

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

Submitted by Paul_Lukasiak on

...on so many levels I don't know where to start.

but I think that if there is one sentence that shows the absurdity of this kind of thinking its this one...

But I can tell you that they are very busy making it impossible for me to make in this world, and they are as proud of it as any man at doing so.

Female politicians acting like all politicians do are "making it impossible for [you] to make it in this world?" Seriously? You can't get a job or a promotion because all the people who make the decisions are disappointed in the performance of Pelosi and Boxer, and think all women are like that? Seriously?

Angel Of Mercy's picture
Submitted by Angel Of Mercy on

It may not be entirely wrong, either...although it DOES ignore the non-stop efforts by right-wing hatchetmen to denigrate and and demonize anyone by the name of Clinton for the last fifteen years or so. Evidence for extending it to ALL Democratic women is somewhat slim, though...

"Tomorrow, you're all going to wake up in a Brave New World, a world where the Constitution gets trampled by an army of terrorist clones created in a stem cell research laboratory, run by homosexual doctors who sterilize their instruments over burning American flags."

Liberty's picture
Submitted by Liberty on

and shake my head.

What I read here is that people don't read, that they have a manichean world view, that I am either with Hillary or with Obama.

But mostly what I read from a group of older people is that I'm supposed to cave in just because they are older and/or male. Which is, really, what I am charging these older Democratic women politicians with: caving on the war in clear ways because of their need to be able to get along with powerful men and maintain their cliquey relationships.

As for the quality of comments, I have to say that they are so low as to not even being worth replying to. "You are so wrong" is, in fact, proof that I am right. The demand for balance tells me that the commenters must adore the MSM, because that's how the MSM works: say something negative about one side, and the requirement is to balance it.

Since the commenters clearly don't want to read anything that doesn't fit in their age-ist world view, I'm to going to repeat the salient point, one that differeniates Hilboxalosi, since Obama obsession is rampant here, from Obama.

That is that these women make a pretense of fighting the old boys club, and throw that away the moment they need the help of a man from the other side, and they do so with a sense of entitlement from their tenure.

Which is why Jackie Speier's supporters have convinced me that she's one of the same, because here is a politician running for a safe seat, who is making electability the argument. This is a politician whose followers are so threatened by the draft movement of a wonky intellectual professor, that they have to come down hard. The royal we about how this district belongs to hers is so fundamentally undemocratic as to be absurd. No politician is entitled to an office in a Democracy.

Having just seen a stiff dose of the age-ism and sexism that I'm complaining about, the attitude that a mere "you are so wrong!" is enough to send the younger person down to his or her knees, I can only say that the more obnoxiously shallow and insulting the commenters here are, the more it is going to persuade people of my generation that there is something essentially warped and incoherent about the older generation.

basement angel's picture
Submitted by basement angel on

any sense of entitlement from any of these women. I've worked for Barbara Boxer and she's one of the hardest working people I've ever met. She has boundless energy, has read every book in the world and has a very well-defined moral code that she is aggressive about. I know people who have worked for clinton and I've seen the campaign she's run - there's no sense of entitlement there. No one who campaigns as hard as Clinton does, nor has the kind of progressive accomplishments to her name that she does, thinks she's entitled to anything. If you want to make this charge of entitlement stick, you're going to have to prove that they do not represent their constituents and that they behave with less entitlement than Obama. Show us the evidence that Obama has moved more aggressively to support African American causes and has been successful at doing so, than these women have moved to support issues important to women. You didn't do that either. So, to sum up, you didn't demonstrate the entitlement and you demonstrate superior equivalent action on obama's part. You made a charge without substantiating it, and used Obama as the pole without validating that. There's not really much of substance in your article - just a lot of misogynistic, ill-informed anger.

You also reveal how little you understand about the legislative process. 13% of the senate is female. The numbers in the house are only slightly higher. Women need to work with men to get their laws passed, and a significant minority of those men are actively opposed to you getting ahead. That is a fact.

Lastly, as to Clinton's pro-war vote, it might make you seem less demented if you demonstrated some global awareness about the vote and her reasons for it - which she spelled out quite clearly (though I doubt you have read her floor speech). At the time of the authorization, Hans Blix (since I doubt you know who he is or his significance, he was head of the UN weapon inspections team - the good guys, iow) was asking for the military authorization to pass because he felt it was the only way he could get Hussein to allow unfettered inspections, and without unfettered inspection, Bush was going to go to war. There were a lot of people in the progressive foreign policy community who were hopeful that we could get inspections finished and derail Bush's plan from there. In addition, elections were coming up in 2 weeks, and we already knew that Republicans were going to take the Senate. Bush's authorization was going to pass now with a demand for UN involvement, or in two months with no such demand. Now, being young and not terribly well-informed, you may discount that. But we're talking talking about people's lives here and elected officials have a moral responsibility to find ways to minimize the chance of war and that's what Clinton did. Bush failed to live up to the terms of the authorization - that's on him.

You don't have to support Hillary. But you shouldn't engage in such childish, ill-informed tantrums. What you have demonstrated in your post is that cannot think and you do not read.

You might want to rethink your misogynist rhetoric. You sound like a lot like Phyllis Schafley.

vastleft's picture
Submitted by vastleft on

Match the lofty heights of your sexist/ageist pop psychology.

My Obama comment didn't presuppose that you are an Obama supporter. I was just wondering if you wanted to go for the trifecta and include racism.

Submitted by Paul_Lukasiak on

Sexism is thinking that women behave differently from men.

Politicians like Pelosi and Boxer behaved just like male politicians do when they get into a position of power.

By failing to behave differently from men (and thus negating the sexist stereotype) Pelosi and Boxer have made it harder for women to overcome sexist stereotypes.

Davidson's picture
Submitted by Davidson on

Yes, women (and girls!) are to blame for our anti-female bigotry! So true.

P.S. Those b- and c-words are slurs by the way (think: "kike" or "spic") since gender is the deciding factor and, thus, target of attack; they're not merely "foul" or "vulgar" language that happens to be aimed at women who (remarkably) always seem to deserve it, but pejoratives of bigoted intolerance and hate.

Misogyny is bigotry. Period. Although our society insists on singling out misogyny from other bigotries--racism, antisemitism, homophobia, etc.--for language of trivialization or rationalization (e.g., misogyny is instead referred to as mere rudeness, such as "disrespect," or frank sexual banter, as if involving sexuality cancels the effect).

Why? Because we still live in world that refuses to admit that women and girls are...human beings (i.e. entitled to basic rights and liberties which dehumanization and demonization--bigotry--brutally denies them). Your post is yet another reminder of how ferocious, ugly, and overwhelmingly accepted anti-female hate is.

Just comparing how we cover hate crimes involving race/religion/sexual orientation versus gender is one tell. The former is treated seriously, while the latter is sensationalized (e.g., TV news coverage of the kidnapping, raping, and murdering of young women) or openly celebrated (e.g., every misogynistic serial killer from Jack the Ripper to Ted Bundy).

However, the Amish shooting in 2006 stands out as the clearest example: the worst part was not the fact girls were singled-out for gender-based slaughter but that we, as a society, refused to call it the blatantly obvious hate crime it was. There was no mention of misogyny--at all. Again, using sexuality as a medium to express hate doesn't cancel the effect nor justify the intent as "evolutionary" (see: homophobia; gay bashing). When we allow violent hate to descend upon children without even so much as naming it, let alone combat it, one realizes how truly accepted this evil is.

Apologies to others for the long post. I've been thinking about misogyny a lot during this disgusting primary season, especially after reading the great posts here on the matter, and it's just getting to me.

OxyCon's picture
Submitted by OxyCon on

I really, really love how the disciples of "Hope" and "Change" are crapping all over the only two Democrats that have ever given their party and country some hope and change in the past 40 years.
This is why I always say that the only "change" I have ever seen Barack Obama accomplish in his entire life is to turn thousands of formerly rational people into a bunch of Clinton haters.
Now, thanks to Obama, not only does the right wing and the entire Repub party hate the Clintons, but now over half of the Liberal blogosphere hates them even more.
You could even say that after 7 disastrous years of Bush being in office, the Repubs are even beginning to come to respect the good that the Clintons accomplished while in office, while at the same time way too many Lefties are going insanely out of their minds because "that bitch Hillary" is standing in the way of "the chosen one".

Stellaaa's picture
Submitted by Stellaaa on

why he had to destroy her in order to succeed? I guess Rovian tactics work.

Stellaaa's picture
Submitted by Stellaaa on

I am a woman of " a certain age" in my 50's. I still don't get what your beef is and why you need to hate women in public service. Why do you reduce them down to some incident and not look at all the work and contributions? People in public office build alliances. That is how laws get passed. They have to have cordial working relationships. Why do you think it's caving in? Being polite is not caving. The fights happen where most often you don't see them.

cenobite's picture
Submitted by cenobite on

Can you see a difference between my two senators, Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein? They're both older, female and Democrats, after all.

Submitted by lambert on

... because that licenses Hillary hatred, which has the additional beneficial result of "firing up" Republicans to cross party lines in open primaries and choose our candidate for us.

See?

[x] Any (D) in the general. [ ] Any mullah-sucking billionaire-teabagging torture-loving pus-encrusted spawn of Cthulhu, bless his (R) heart.

Stellaaa's picture
Submitted by Stellaaa on

and hatred sells.

cenobite's picture
Submitted by cenobite on

I agree with you, they're different.

I think anyone could see that two Boxers in congress would be better than two Feinsteins in congress for anything having to do with left or progressive issues.

She's not perfect, but I don't need perfect to have a preference.

I was originally an Edwards supporter, but I find that Clinton is preferable to Obama, and either of them would be much better than McCain.

And Jackie Speier is better qualified for the US congress than Larry Lessig -- and I hope she beats him like a gong.

BDBlue's picture
Submitted by BDBlue on

At first I wasn't going to answer your post because I honestly am not sure how to respond to someone who thinks high school stereotypes and Sex in the City can provide some deep meaningful basis for analyzing three of the more impressive women in the country. Then I remembered that sexism should be battled all the time and on every front. It should even be fought on behalf of women we don't particularly like (although I like all of the particular women you cited).

What really strikes me about your post is its own sense of entitlement and a lack of gratitude. It seems like your main beef with these women is that they don't agree with you politically. Well, okay, but what on earth does that have to do with their sex? Women are allowed to hold different political positions are they not? And instead of acknowledging you have a political disagrement with these women, you have to denigrate their service not only to this country, but to you.

And if they haven't made the world a perfect and fair place for you, too fucking bad. They don't owe that to you. They don't actually owe anything to you. And, yet, these women seek to make your life better anyway. Unless, of course, you don't like having access to Plan B? Or you'd like to go back to the days when women and children were treated as chattel by family courts? Or wish that Reagan had successfully gutted the Legal Services Corp., which provides legal services to the poor, which includes a disproportionate number of women? Or think advocating that women be treated equally around the world as the human beings they are is a bad thing for women? These are all instances of one woman trying to make the world a better place for all women, and by extension all people. And perhaps someday when you pull your head out of your ass, you can make up for this awful post by sending Hillary Clinton a thank you for these things.

As for the issue of their entitlement? Yes, how dare Hillary Clinton or Jackie Speier think that just because they are more qualified for the offices they are running for than their male competition that they should actually get those jobs. And don't kid yourself, if the positions were reversed, if Hillary Clinton had Barack Obama's resume, she'd be seen as completely unqualified to be challenging the more experienced candidates for Commander in Chief. The only reason "experience" doesn't matter this time around and has been re-cast as "entitlement" is because it's the woman who has it. And thank you for helping to validate that, it's always so much better when the patriarchy can get women to be their mouthpieces.

But since these women have clearly failed you by not making your world perfect and just, a failure I notice you don't hold any men accountable for, I ask what you intend to do to make the world a better place for women? You won't have to fight for the right to go to law school or medical school or handle the daily insults and slights that go with being among only a handful of women there, that's already been done for you. You won't have to fight for legislation that outlaws sex discrimination at work, that's already been done for you. You won't have to figure out how to be the first female Supreme Court Justice, or the first Speaker of the House, or the first astronaut, or the first woman to win a presidential primary, that's already been done for you. You won't have to fight to for the right to vote or get basic reproductive rights, that's already been done for you.

So you get to start out much further along the road of life than the women you so easily dismiss as having let you down, but other than voting for the candidate who uses sexist dogwhistles and holding successful women to a higher standard than you hold men, you don't advocate for doing anything to build on the gifts these women have given you. If you accomplish one-tenth of the things any one of these women have, you'll have done a lot. Maybe even enough to make up for embracing and helping spread through comments like this the double standard that has been applied to women to keep them in their place for generations. Or maybe, someday when you're up for that promotion and get passed over for the younger, less qualified guy, you'll understand that you yourself had advocated for that very outcome - that when the woman isn't perfect, the man gets the job. And so while you should be sending thank you notes to Hillary, even if you don't vote for her, men should be sending thank you notes to you.

BDBlue's picture
Submitted by BDBlue on

Well, I'll certainly be sending her a few bucks. I don't think she needs it, but I read about her and she sounds like she would make a fantastic and effective member of Congress. And we need more of those of either sex.

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

for their assistance in getting Jackie Speier some well-deserved recognition.

And for the record, as clearly expressed elsewhere, no one is suggesting that Speier should be anointed or that Lessig or anyone else should not run for public office. We need more progressive, intelligent people in government, no question. But since we have a proven progressive with demonstrated legislative skill and established public record available for CA-12, doesn’t it make more sense for other progressives to make their effort in another district, against Republicans or conservative Democrats?

The key word in the “More and Better” concept is the one that never gets capitalized; “and.” While both “More” and “Better” are good, it is “More AND Better” that brings the power of change.

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

Thanks for speaking up for Barbara Boxer from personal experience. She is truly a good and decent person and we are blessed to have her in government.

It is a common argument that everyone in political office is automatically tainted and unworthy of trust or even a modicum of simple decent respect, and that is not true. (If true it rather defeats the purpose of running anyone decent, they'll just get corrupted anyway; better then to elect professional crooks.)

Boxer is a prize, and I for one am greatly appreciative of her hard work and what she does for California and the country.

basement angel's picture
Submitted by basement angel on

and I've worked a lot of campaigns. My experience is that most pols work very hard at not being corrupted, even accidently, and are about as rigorous as they can be. Cynicism about elected officials doesn't serve the public good. It just makes it less likely that good people will run.

sane unaffiliated voter's picture
Submitted by sane unaffiliat... on

That one is easy. Claire McCaskill. She is throwing her support for the best candidate and is not bowing to the pressure of going for the woman candidate, but the better candidate. She is also the anti-Hilary. Refreshingly honest and not afraid to answer direct questions. Really was impressed with her appearance on Bill Maher's show last week.

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

Been fooled before but this was a good one; all that tautology was actually deeply ironic! Way to stay in character.

sane unaffiliated voter's picture
Submitted by sane unaffiliat... on

Tautology??? Do you have an irrational fear of the words repetitious or redundant?? Your 7th grade English teacher would be proud. Or maybe you are just using the word knowing that some people might have no idea what the hell it means so you can feel superior to another person? If that is what makes you happy then congrats. Not exactly part of my every day vocabulary. You will have to forgive me. I'm simple. I might not have known what tautology meant, but I know when somebody refuses to answer a question and I know that it is a copout not admitting a mistake on voting for the authorization of war. John Edwards was at least honorable enough to own up to it. Her slogan should be "Ready to be wrong on day one".

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

Per Project Vote Smart:

Official Title of Legislation: S 2248: An original bill to amend the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978, to modernize and streamline the provisions of that Act, and for other purposes.

Project Vote Smart's Synopsis: Vote to pass a bill that expands the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, including allowing electronic surveillance of foreigners outside the U.S. without a court order and granting immunity to electronic communication surveillance providers.

Senator Claire McCaskill voted YES

Surely, a paragon of good judgment; Obama must be proud to have her support. Thanks for pointing out the company he keeps.

sane unaffiliated voter's picture
Submitted by sane unaffiliat... on

You might not agree with McCaskill, but at least she stands up for what she believes in.

You cannot get a straight answer out of Clinton about NAFTA. When the media felt the economy was going well, she was talking about how great NAFTA was and was taking credit for it. Now that things are bad, she is totally against it. I would say she is bipolar, but it really seems to correlate with how things are going at a particular time. If the economy rebounds in a couple of years I am sure she will be talking about how great it is again. That trade agreement sold out the working people of this country. It has done long-term damage to whole industries in this country.

It certainly is a bigger issue then the critiques of Obama's health care plan's deficiencies. Who cares if she helped shift your job overseas! She will make sure you have healthcare when you are collecting your unemployment check. What a champion for the middle and lower class! Give Ross Perot his props. He predicted its effects in 1992 and he has been proven right with one exception. He said the jobs would go to Mexico. Instead they have gone to Asia.

bringiton's picture
Submitted by bringiton on

Clinton has thoroughly explained her AUMF vote and the reasoning behind it; a lot of people came to the same conclusion. If you can’t accept her reasoning, well, then that is that. NAFTA has been a mixed bag, on balance more bad than good but not entirely without benefit. Trade patterns are changing and dealing with them will be a process of fits and starts. Clinton is flawed, but so am I.

Obama on the other hand is all but a cipher, with such a thin record of governance that I really can not know for certain what he is capable of beyond charismatic public speaking.

Their healthcare policies are of little interest to me. On a scale of 1-10, his is a 2.0 and hers is a 2.2. My support for Hillary is based on my willingness to accept that all human beings are flawed and what I perceive as her greater ability to deal with the complexity of governance at the federal level. Hillary will get me half a loaf. All Obama is offering me is the hope of getting half a loaf.

That being said I'll support either of them over McCain whose buddies will steal the loaf, the bakery, the granary and the field.