Editorial of The New York Sun | June 2, 2016
Let us start this editorial by saying that the Sun is not among the Clinton haters. Our editor twice endorsed — and voted for — Bill Clinton for president. We opposed the constitutional bona fides of the independent prosecutor that pursued Clinton until the House launched its impeachment. We admire the right quadrant of the Democratic Party. We are aware that even President George W. Bush has been privately telling friends that come the decision on whether to launch that raid that finally found Osama bin Laden, Hillary Clinton showed more grit than President Obama.
With that said, Secretary Clinton’s speech at San Diego rang hollow to us almost beginning to end. It is easy to lampoon Donald Trump, and she did a right lively job of it. His record is full of contradictions, after all, his style is so much less refined than that of our greatest presidents, his policies are still in formation, and his eccentricities are larger than life. But who is Ms. Clinton, veteran of the Russian “reset,” to lecture Mr. Trump on how to deal with President Putin? What standing does Mrs. Clinton have to lecture Mr. Trump on making friendly overtures to our enemies?
“I don’t understand Donald’s bizarre fascination with dictators and strong men who have no love for America,” Mrs. Clinton said. She was speaking but weeks after the leader of her own party, President Obama, returned from Cuba, where he embraced the Castro brothers, and then, after stopping in Argentina to lecture the citizens of a country just turning back to capitalism that the arguments about communism don’t matter, went to Vietnam for to lift an arms embargo. Plus, too, she doubled down on the articles of appeasement with the Iranian ayatollahs.
Mrs. Clinton claimed to believe that we have a “moral obligation” to defend Israel (and surely we do). She neglected to address the fact that both halves of Israel’s leadership in the Knesset — the Likud prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, and the opposition leader, Isaac Herzog of the Zionist Union — bitterly opposed the Iran appeasement. She insisted the agreement “should block every path for Iran to get a nuclear weapon,” but failed to address any of the doubts on that head or the fact that majorities of both houses of Congress were against it. Not to mention the inversion of constitutional procedures.
The Democratic candidate had next to nothing to say about Europe, where President Obama has just committed one of this biggest blunders — going to Britain and warning that, if Britons voted for independence from the EU, their country would go to the back of the queue on a trade deal with America. Nothing Mr. Trump ever said came as close to insulting an ally as that demarche. Mrs. Clinton flatly mis-stated Mr. Trump’s warnings on Mexicans coming into America and on the temporarily suspending Muslim immigration until we can get a handle on the terrorist situation.
Most shocking to us — though we’re in a minority on this head — was the shallowness of Mrs. Clinton’s jibes at Mr. Trump in respect of monetary affairs. It is true that Mr. Trump speculated about defaulting on America’s debt. But Mrs. Clinton is oblivious — Mr. Trump no so much — to the fact that America has already defaulted, allowing the what passes for its dollar to collapse to under a 1,2ooth of an ounce of gold (at last check) from the 265th of an ounce of gold it was valued at when President George W. Bush acceded to the presidency and a 35th of an ounce at which it was pegged under Bretton Woods.
It is ridiculous for Mrs. Clinton to posture about debt without addressing that fact. Mr. Trump has been imperfect in the way he has talked about Communist China’s manipulation of its currency, but he’s been closer to the mark than any Democrat. Being able to act confidently and strategically in this sphere will be as important as any of the other sections in which Mrs. Clinton attacked Mr. Trump — and she just didn’t lay a glove on him here. Not that she didn’t give him something to work on, while Mrs. Clinton sees whether she can get the Californians to back her instead of the socialist senator, Bernie Sanders.