The fox knows many things, but the hedgehog knows one big thing.—Archilochus (7th-century BC)
Mark Penn might not be appearing before the cameras on Hillary's behalf nowadays, but bet that he is beavering away behind the scenes on his polling. And judging from Hillary's dogged [to mix an animal metaphor] performance on this morning's Today, it's obvious the pollster's turned up one big thing: Dem primary voters hate oil companies.
Meredith Vieira gamely tried to get Clinton onto other subjects during her interview. But no matter the question, the answer was almost invariably the same: I Hate Big Oil. Since the questions were irrelevant, let's dispense with them and simply count the ways in which Hillary expressed her wrath at those evil purveyors of oil.
View video here.
We need to have people who are willing to take on the vested interests like the oil companies. Senator Obama wants the consumers to pay the gas taxes this summer; I want the oil companies to pay it out of their excess profits.
I really believe that this difference of opinion over the gas tax is critical. Because I think you've got to have a leader willing to take on the oil companies, starting now. I know that Senator Obama doesn't agree with me. I know that Senator McCain is willing to lift the gas tax but not pay for it. I'm willing to figure out a way to get the gas tax paid this summer out of the record profits of the oil companies. That is the beginning of trying to stand up to the oil companies, which is something we need to do.
Throughout this campaign I have said we've got to take on the oil companies. They've been given so many tax breaks. I voted against Dick Cheney's energy bill in 2005 that gave them even more; my opponent voted for it.
Hillary finished in a frenzy of an anti-oil company-ism.
I think a lot of the people who answered that [a poll showing 70% think gas-tax holiday mainly politics], because I've heard a lot of the commentary, don't know that I want to make the oil companies pay the gas tax out of excess profits. But there's a larger question here. I think that if we don't begin to put together the political will to take on the oil companies, we're never going to deal with our long-term addiction on foreign oil. We are never going to begin to have home-grown fuels that can really compete. I'm
all in favor of bio-fuels—we've got to make the oil companies actually put the tanks in at their gas stations so people can get access to them. You know, there's a lot we have to do, so I'm both trying to give people immediate relief, but also give people the confidence that, once again, they would have a president who got up every day thinking about them and worrying about what was going on in their lives, and willing to take on these oil companies, not vote for them when Dick Cheney comes up with an energy bill to give them billions more in tax breaks, but vote against them as I did, and then begin to lay the groundwork to actually rein them in, make them part of the solution instead of a continuing problem that consumers and drivers and the rest of us have to deal with.
Hillary, hedgehog? Hell, Hillary makes the hedgehog look like a flighty ADD-afflicted teenager off his Ritalin. Will this kind of relentless, monomaniacal, I-would-say shameless sort of politics work against the foxy Barack Obama? Stay tuned.