Friday, March 4, 2016

Rhetorical Momentum by Steve Sailer

Last week, Hillary Clinton tweeted a line from her South Carolina primary victory speech:
“Instead of building walls, we need to be tearing down barriers. We need to show that we really are all in this together.” —Hillary in SC
Because the Democratic front-runner was clearly referring to Donald Trump’s proposed border wall, the literal interpretation would be that she was demanding the tearing down of the rather meager defenses currently dividing the United States from Latin America.
And that raises the question of who exactly are the “we” Hillary says “are all in this together.” Does Hillary’s “we” refer to Americans…or to anybody who shows up at those hateful border barriers?
Now, you might say that Hillary is an aged and cynical politician, and that whatever her speechifying, she wouldn’t actually do anything so stupid as to give encouragement to a flash mob from south of the border.
But you would have been tempted to say the same thing a year ago about the chancellor of Germany. Angela Merkel is just like Hillary, if Hillary were younger, smarter (Dr. Merkel has a doctorate in physical chemistry), more experienced (Merkel has been leader of her party for sixteen years and prime minister for ten), soberer, and self-made rather than running on her politically talented husband’s coattails.
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