The last few days have offered vivid illustrations of why Hillary Clinton could decide not to run for president — and why, in the end, I believe she will.
Example No. 1 is the ludicrous debate over whether Clinton, in the latest People magazine cover, was leaning on a walker.
To buy this scenario would require you to believe that People is implicated in a grand conspiracy to keep Clinton’s enervated physical state from American voters. And that People’s editors and Team Clinton are dumb enough, having hatched this scheme, to have her photographed with the walker cropped out, except not entirely. Rather than simply shooting Clinton seated on, say, the patio chair that she was actually holding in the photo.
The fact that the phantom walker was even a topic of public debate says everything about the wacko media environment that uniquely surrounds Clinton.
“PHOTO: IS CLINTON HOLDING A WALKER?” the Drudge Report tweeted. Right, not saying she is. Just askin’.
The Washington Free Beacon chimed in with a semiotic analysis of the People cover. “The cover looks innocent enough, but a close analytical reading reveals what can only be interpreted as a deliberate effort to call attention to the former secretary of state and Goldman Sachs affiliate’s advanced age,” editor Andrew Stiles wrote, noting the proximity of the word “grandmother” to Clinton’s hands on “what a layperson might reasonably assume to be an old person’s walker.”
People’s subsequent denial — accompanied by a photo that showed Clinton walking on her own — only served to further inflame the Free Beacon. The photo “is also inexplicably grainy, out of focus, and devoid of color — unlikely to satisfy skeptics,” Stiles wrote. “What’s REALLY going on here?”
I think we know. This is Clinton Derangement Syndrome on steroids, reminiscent of the Hillary-murdered-Vince-Foster delusions two decades earlier. It is worth paying attention to only because of the role this phenomenon may play in Clinton’s decision-making on a presidential run.