There is an old joke that seems to shed uncanny light on the core reason for Senator Clinton’s floundering candidacy. But first let’s review her campaign.

Hillary believes in change. She has changed campaign strategies as often as she has changed her hairstyle. She keeps changing her message. She keeps changing her image. When told she needed to show her softer side, within days she shed a tear or two. She gets tough, then tender, then tough again. In the Austin debate, except for the probably ghostwritten (plagiarized?) xerox remark, she tried jolting the jalopy into yet another gear–graciousness–the most surprising change of all.

Consider the mini-dramas we’ve seen in recent weeks. Hillary failed even to acknowledge her defeats during her non-concession speeches and neglected to congratulate her opponent. Incredibly, she tried to label herself as an underdog who is anti-establishment. (An underdog, for all five of you in America who don’t know it, is someone who goes up against a strong candidate at the BEGINNING of a campaign, not someone who blows an initial 20-plus point lead against the real underdog.)

Her obsessive jealousy of Obama’s electrifying speaking skills is not just unpresidential, it makes her look silly and her own oratory seem even more shrill. She has an excuse for every one of her many losses. “That was expected.” “There were Blacks in that state.” “There were not enough Hispanics.” “Obama appeals to more people there, so he had a natural advantage.” “He had more time to campaign and a better organization.”

Et cetera. Now she has changed her podium placard to look almost identical to his, except hers says “Solutions” instead of “Change.”

It is a spectacle that at first was surprising, then became sad, and now is moving through the terminal stages of being downright ludicrous. A former First Lady who expected to hopscotch her way back to the White House began with one of the most impressive political machines ever seen. But even with the help of her co-president, the machine has run like it had sawdust in the gas tank.

In short, as her presidential quest has stalled we have seen her display, in adversity, the very traits we suspected she had all along, the same qualities that made her so disagreeable during the “35 years of experience” before this campaign began. She has now begun sounding desperate, jealous, reactive, peevish, and petty.

This brings to mind a joke that has been around for nearly as long as Hillary herself. And like Hillary, it can now be retooled to fit the current situation.

A marginally successful dog food company, with a limited sales area, decided to upgrade and go national with their product. They called in some old and trusted operatives, hired some high priced new executives with extensive connections and professional savvy, and obtained substantial financial backing from capital investors. They recruited a former president of their company to help them.

They consulted with seasoned veterinarians and canine nutritionists to come up with healthier ingredients based upon the latest research. They found a better looking dog and hired the finest photographer in the nation to take thousands of pictures of him until they had exactly the right look for the eye-catching package images created by their talented new commercial artist and graphics designer. They employed sophisticated marketing consultants and advertised extensively in a carefully constructed ad campaign that made shrewd use of all appropriate media.

After just six months, sales of this state-of-the-art dog food had plummeted, and the company was consulting bankruptcy lawyers. The CEO called together a conference, a cross-section of employees from top executives to middle managers to frontline salespersons.

The CEO paced agitatedly before his team, ranting and thundering his frustrations. “What in the world has happened?!” he demanded. “We have the most experienced team ever assembled in this industry. Our dog food has the finest ingredients, the finest packaging, the finest advertising, the best distribution outlets, the most knowledgeable consultants, and the most formidable capital support anyone could ask. We have all worked tirelessly for six months. And what do we get for our efforts?! Bankruptcy!!! Someone, ANYONE in this room, please tell me why our product is not selling!!!”

A skinny kid fresh out of school raised one timid finger, paused, and quietly said . . . “Dogs won’t eat it.”

Be Sociable, Share!