If we take Rove’s interview on Fox News the day after the Page Six item as the best explanation of his view, his basic points are unassailable — the state of Clinton’s health will play into her decision whether or not to run, she will have to be completely open about the 2012 episode and all of this will be filtered through the fact that she will be 69 if elected and 77 if she serves two terms.So if we completely ignore the part where everything Karl Rove said was an outright lie—she was not in the hospital "30 days," she was not wearing sunglasses meant for "people who have traumatic brain injury" and prominent liar-for-cash Karl Rove either had to know both of those things himself or gets his news primarily from the voices in his own head—then Karl Rove's intended point is "unassailable" because Hillary Clinton is old. And it is the job of the professional damager of American discourse to studiously ignore the part where everything Karl Rove or some other titanic hack said was an outright lie, because that is how these things work. Let's ignore the part where he was promoting an outright lie; it feels like something that could be true, and so fellow professional liar Rich Lowry kicks the conspiracy can forward, just a little bit, in the supposedly serious pages of Politico.
Much more, but below the fold...
Even if you take at face value everything we’ve heard about Clinton’s condition in December 2012, it was frighteningly serious. The clot, according to The Washington Post, “can cause permanent brain damage, coma or death if not detected and treated in time.”Two possibilities, then: All of the facts as we know them are right and Karl Rove has no leg to stand on in his visions of 30-day hospital stays and brain-injury sunglasses, or there is a secret conspiracy, craftily aided by Hillary Clinton in her own perfectly lucid and agile public appearances, and demonstrable liar Karl Rove might be right secretly. Rich Lowry just wants to know. Can Hillary Clinton find her brain's birth certificate? Is it, you know, in the proper font?
News accounts say it was caught early, and Clinton is performing as ably as ever. But politicians have a long history of lying through their teeth about their health [...]
What follows is several paragraphs pointing out that politicians are often attacked for being too old, followed by the final ascent to the top of Bullshit Mountain for the ceremonial planting of the flag:
Hillary can potentially trump all this with openness about her medical records, and with an energetic and future-oriented campaign, should she run. [...]And this is how it works, chapter and verse. The professional liar pipes up with a bald-faced lie. Though it is quickly and easily disproven, other professional liars pipe up to say that if we ignore the fact that the liar is lying, the liar raises a good point. The liars take to the op-ed pages to note that the liar is just asking the question, and now the question is out there. And they will make damn sure the question is out there for as long as it takes to get a flock of morons and dunderheads to believe that there is a conspiracy to not answer the question, even though "the question" was a lie to begin with and no less a lie through each of the various iterations meant to sanitize it enough for the public to forget that the whole thing was a fiction from the start.
But Rove is right: Hillary will have to deal with these questions.
This is how Whitewater worked. This is how cattle futures worked. This is how the worst human shitstains in America turned "Vince Foster" into a talking point. This is how stupid people came to believe that Barack Obama was secretly a Muslim. This is why the first non-white president had to publicly release his birth certificate, and why there is no "birth certificate" that will ever be considered, by a certain crowd that includes actual American congressional representatives, authentic enough to put "the questions" to rest. This is how it works.
Is is, of course, propaganda. It is intended as propaganda, it is invented as propaganda, it is promoted as propaganda. Karl Rove did not care whether Hillary Clinton was in the hospital for a few days or a month; he did not care whether Hillary Clinton was wearing sunglasses meant for "brain injury" or the same sunglasses she has been photographed wearing dozens of times before or since. Rich Lowry does not care that Karl Rove was lying about both those things, and is eager to write a column suggesting that the question has been raised as to whether Rove's provably false statements are somehow true anyway. The nice mainstream news outlet is happy to publish Rich Lowry raising the question, because being a nice mainstream news outlet means studiously avoiding critiques as to whether what you are publishing is in fact fraudulent, because it is naturally newsworthy that professional liars are asking the questions (in our own outlet) and now the questions are out there (in the self-same outlet).
We continue to be a nation that deals out no punishment for being a professional liar. On the contrary, we treat them very well, better than those that do not lie, in fact, because the liars are always sure to generate all-important buzz, and we give them columns and op-eds, and write columns and op-eds about them, and there is literally nothing they can say that is so provably false as to finally discredit them as peddlers of falsehoods. There can be no such thing as an informed populace if those that would inform them steadfastly insist that lying to them is just as good; the press is not truly free if it has been captured as a tool of propagandists, and willingly submits itself to the same.
This is how it works, and this is why we are now a nation that sees the ghosts of conspiracy in every corner. This is why there is a Bundy ranch standoff, and why Benghazi! will get more hearings than all other attacks on American diplomatic outposts combined, and why climate change will continue to be disputed even as large parts of Antarctica cave off into the rising seas. This is why we fought a war in Iraq, and why those that peddled it have faced no professional repercussions. Because we continue to treat truth and ideologically laced falsehood with exactly equal merit, as if they are two equally worthy opponents for our attention and our respect, and govern ourselves with notions taken just as liberally from the falsehoods as from the facts.