Monday, April 21, 2008

Did Hillary Admit That She Lied About The Bosnia Sniper-Fire Incident?

I missed this when she said it during the debate, but when I heard excerpts the next day, it hit me.
Frank James at The Swamp caught it before I did. The money quote:
"On a couple of occasions in the last weeks I just said some things that weren't in keeping with what I knew to be the case and what I had written about in my book. And, you know, I'm embarrassed by it."
But, if I say that p, and p is "not in keeping" with something else, q, that I know to be the case, then...well, there are only to possibilities:

1. I am lying.

2. I fail to recognize the incompatibility (i.e. the fact that p and q are "not in keeping" with each other)

James incorrectly seems to think that 1 is the only possibility. 1 may be the most likely possibility. But it isn't the only one. What Clinton might be saying is roughly this:

Jeez, as soon as this was pointed out to me I realized that it couldn't have been like I said it was, because I knew that x, y, and z were true...and if they were, true, then what I said about Bosnia couldn't have been I should have realized that I was mis-remembering. What I said wasn't even consistent with other things I knew to be the case.

But, since we know she's not above lies and distortions, I don't see any reason to give her the benefit of the doubt here. She may not be admitted that she was lying, but what she said is certainly "in keeping with" an admission of lying.


Blogger lovable liberal said...

I think it's the "couple of occasions" thing that cinches it as a lie. It's easy to get carried away in a story and mix up what might have been a real fear with reality. Once. Normal people then correct themselves or at least they're chagrined enough to avoid repeating the falsehood.

Of course, politicians are not normal people, especially those who have played the game for long enough to be running seriously for President. It would be interesting to see what would happen to a politician who actually tried modesty at that level, who would say, "I voted for that," instead of "I passed that law."

Instead, politicians are constantly stretching like the résumé puffers they are. They're trying to sidle right up to the line of fiction and even lean over - but without visibly stepping on it. Joe Lieberman will vote against a judicial nomination when he could have actually thwarted it by voting against cloture, and then he'll describe his votes differently to different audiences.

CEOs do this, too. We live in an age of the most unbelievable hype, yet it's only clear cases such as Hillary's that evoke the skepticism we really should show all the time. (Yes, I'm sure Obama puffs, too, as well as McCain.)

I offer this as explanation, not excuse.

11:13 PM  
Blogger Tom Van Dyke said...

I listened to the debate and it rocked me when I heard it. I took it as "I said something I knew to be untrue."

I don't know what's in her heart or in her mind. I thought she should have pleaded confusion, and false memory over the years, that snipers were a fear and she misremembered it, a certifiable psychological phenomenon.

She seemed to say that she knowingly exaggerated (charitably put). I was shocked.

Nominee for Honest Politician of the Year, altho that won't accrue to her credit.

12:03 AM  

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