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Posts Tagged ‘Paul Farmer’

CONGO-DEMOCRATIC/CLINTON-OUTBURSTGiven the pitiful coverage Hillary’s trip to Africa is receiving from the MSM, bloggers are on the alert for updates from the Dipnote Travel Diary blog, tweets from Dipnote, and from americagov on Twitter, entries on the State Department Facebook site, and tweets from Shaun Tandon, AFP Correspondent traveling with Hillary (who has been told several times, just by me, that he should appreciate how lucky he is). Yesterday and Sunday were particularly “slow news days” from this African journey. Hillary was in Angola on Sunday, and very little news came out except for some rather disconcerting tweets from Shaun about the amount of camo and ammo he was seeing on the street. Don’t get me wrong, I am glad the soldiers were there protecting our Homegirl, but just how dangerous WAS Angola? Perhaps very. Hillary has insisted on visiting some places she had been advised not to.

Yesterday morning, I knew that Hillary was already out of Angola and on the ground in The DRC. I was hoping that would be a more open visit than the rather shrouded operation in Angola. At some point in the day, Shaun tweeted about Hillary’s now famous but brief (and mild) “outburst” at a mistranslated question from a student at a Town Hall in Kinshasa, DRC. Well, knowing that the very expensive traveling press presence was being represented here only when Hillary danced (so far), I was pretty sure that she would be on the news again last night for her short rant since that, too, was “girly” behavior, and if there’s any message we are getting about how the press likes to portray our Homegirl SOS, it centers around her girliness. Her broken “ladybones,” her dainty dancing, and, now, her temper display (the old “everybody’s ex-wife” meme).

What I did NOT expect to see, and was not covered on the evening news, was the Facebook link to this story by Nicholas Kristof (NYT): Update on Paul Farmer and USAID saying that Paul Farmer would not be heading up USAID. Dr. Farmer, long a practicing physician in rural Haiti, was Hillary’s candidate for the position of Director.

There was not a word about that on the TV news last night, but there was plenty of Hillary erupting. To tell the truth, I have been the object of many explosions so much worse from men: boyfriends, an ex-husband, a former boss and from men who worked for me, that if Hillary wanted to “explode” like that at me on a daily basis and it would relieve some stress, I would gladly volunteer.

Now I am sure that the White House decision had a lot to do with any “touchiness” she displayed yesterday. But there was more to the story, and I am sure that Hillary knew it all. Late this afternoon, at about the same time I saw Kristof’s story yesterday, this story came through on Facebook from the U.N. News Centre: Haiti: UN envoy Bill Clinton appoints prominent US doctor as deputy. Yup! That would be the one and the same Dr. Paul Farmer.

So while today’s NY Post dwelt on the past in looking for reasons why Hillary might have been a bit raw yesterday, they missed the real story which happened in the present right under their noses. The White House subjected Hillary’s candidate to a vetting so frustrating that she mentioned her exasperation when she spoke to the Council on Foreign Relations in mid-July. Hillary, and Bill for that matter, are not strangers to this super-vetting process. USAID operates under the Department of State and also has a heavy presence in Haiti (as I know from having lived there a good long time). Whether Bill’s offer was on the table prior to the White House decision, I do not pretend to know, but I am sure Hillary knew that if the White house said no, Bill planned to bring Farmer aboard with him in the country Farmer knows so well. All three probably conferred about this.

So Hillary’s little display yesterday probably had a lot less to do with the past and with Bill than with the White House super-vetters who lost her the Director she wanted and handed him off to Bill as she knew would happen.

Neither was the “outburst” about Bill “overshadowing” her with his rescue trip to North Korea which she negotiated. If his shadow (there’s that word again, thank you NY Post) bothered her at all it would have been for the Breaking News that Bill stole Paul Farmer from Hillary (he did not). But, of course, like Kristof’s story last night, that story is flying under the radar of the TV news tonight.

Was Hillary a little beaten and wary yesterday? Yes! After many months of trying to fill that position with the best man she could find for the job, the White House smashed her, while she was in the middle of an extended trip on another continent, leaving Bill to pick up Farmer’s option for his (Bill’s) one dollar a year job as U.N. Envoy to Haiti (the envoy position another gift from the White House super-vetters who keep on giving). Since Bill must curtail his work with his Foundation, well, a guy’s got to do SOMETHING!

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