It’s not entirely obvious that there’s a moral equivalency between the manner in which the Clintons earned money and the way the Trumps are doing so. This isn’t stopping people from asserting that the two are the same – actually, that the Trumps are worse for of course they are. The latest screecher on this point being Jill Abramson:
I’m feeling nostalgic for Hillary’s Goldman Sachs speaking fees. Remember when we got our ethical knickers in a twist over Clinton’s $225,000 (£170,000) Wall Street speeches? Those worries seem positively quaint when compared with what’s happening now. At least Bill and Hillary put off their offensive buckraking until after they had left public office. The Trump family shows no such restraint. Why wait? Donald, Ivanka and Jared are getting theirs while serving in the White House. And, as with much scandalous behaviour in Washington these days, they insist their behaviour is perfectly acceptable.
There’s then a listing of how much the Trumps are making. From businesses they built over the years before they entered politics. Businesses which continue of course. This is outrageous because of course it is:
Here is a modest proposal: Ivanka and Jared should consider contributing a portion of their gains from sweetheart real estate deals and Chinese favours to help restore funds for the few programmes that still contribute to the health and welfare of Americans in need.
I believe that the US tax system still applies even to the Golden Family, thus they are doing so, aren’t they?
It was only two years ago that we were fretting over the Clinton Foundation taking foreign money, Hillary’s paid speeches, and that private email server. Looking back, it seems like a golden period.
You see what is being done here? The claim is that making money out of being or having been (quite how much influence was being bought is up for discussion) a politician – no one would have given the Clinton’s 5 cents if they hadn’t held office – is morally and practically the same as building a business which makes you money before and while you’re a politician.
It’s an interesting concept, isn’t it? I’m really pretty certain that Obama’s book royalties rose as a result of his being elected to the Presidency. Is that like Trump or Clinton? And did the same people make the same moral equivalence?
Yes, obviously, this is an entirely confected outrage. The only interesting thing about it all is the manner it shows the outrage among the bien pensants over Trump winning in the first place. They’ve spent decades laughing at him, his self-publicity, taste or lack of it, bombast. Then he vaults those gatekeepers into the Oval Office. Stings a bit, doesn’t it?