Friday, March 02, 2007

No transparency from Senator Clinton

Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton
Originally uploaded by NOLSW.
I was surprised to learn that Senator Clinton wrote a senior thesis while a student at Wellesley. I was even more surprised that it's been hidden away. Bill Dedman of MSNBC has read it, however:
The senior thesis of Hillary D. Rodham, Wellesley College class of 1969, has been speculated about, spun, analyzed, debated, criticized and defended. But rarely has it been read, because for the eight years of Bill Clinton’s presidency it was locked away.

As forbidden fruit, the writings of a 21-year-old college senior, examining the tactics of radical community organizer Saul D. Alinsky, have gained mythic status among her critics — a “Rosetta Stone,” in the words of one, that would allow readers to decode the thinking of the former first lady and 2008 presidential candidate.

Despite the fervent interest in the thesis, few realize that it is no longer kept under lock and key. As found, it is available to anyone who visits the archive room of the prestigious women’s college outside Boston. With Clinton’s opponents in the 2008 presidential race looking for the next “Swift Boat” attack ad, and the senator herself trying to cast off her liberal image, Clinton's 92-page thesis is certain to be read and reread by opposition researchers and reporters visiting the campus.
But, unless the senator from New York let's it out onto the net, you and I aren't likely to get a chance to read it.

Why she doesn't just scan the whole thing and put it on the net, I don't understand. She was 21 when she wrote it... I'm sure her ideas and values have shifted since then.

Her advisor agrees.
The notion that a 21-year-old idealist somehow remains a 21-year-old idealist their whole life — she's not a radical at all. I think she's very mainstream. She's a pragmatist. She's a much more thoughtful, cautious, careful, pragmatic person — she's been burned so often.
Concur. I'm the same person I was at 21, but I'm also very much not the same person. I'd have to say that's the case with everyone I know. Every experience tempers us; every experience changes us. For Senator Clinton, that's nearly 40 years of experiences... and that's a lot of change.

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