Hearing The Hearings

Much can and has been said about the hearings over the past two days. It makes one wonder at the value of Congressional hearings. Ms. Clinton did little other than build a fire wall for the President and at the same time cleanse herself of guilt regarding Benghazi. Some reports, absent multiple sources, have it that the Senate Committee and Hill’s folks agreed on questions in advance.

Mrs. Clinton did in person what she has done in her absence, stonewall: ‘hey I ordered a review, what more do you want!” Predictably, Secretary Clinton and Democrats in the Senate attempted to blame Republicans for funding shortfalls despite any number of items in more secure diplomatic settings (London and Paris) that are essentially meaningless when compared to the four lives lost.

The Secretary did highlight a valid point, the absence of financial transfer authority to move money around within her budget. Constraints are intended to blunt the ability of a Secretary to override the will of the Congressional funding authorities. There should be space in the middle to allow for emergency funding changes.

However, that said, there was space for the Secretary to do any number of things she did not do: go the President for emergency authorizations by way of an Executive Order; after all he loves those things. Go to Congress for temporary authorization to transfer funds or, just make a quiet deal with the appropriate Committee leadership and get it done citing national security. If you choose to judge The Secretary on what she could have done as opposed to what she did do, she is guilty of an abysmal leadership failure. Mrs. Clinton is a fabulous bureaucrat; she’s a sad example of a leader who holds lives in her hands.

Senator Kerry calls for ‘Economic Patriotism’ during his confirmation hearing; he who hid his boat in Newport to avoid taxes. He, whose $200 million fortune, resides in a ‘family trust’. The singular reason for a family trust is to avoid taxes.

The hearings of the past two days demonstrate a number of things. If you expect actual questions, don’t hold your breath, speeches by members dominate the proceedings. It you expect answers to real questions you will be sadly disappointed. If you expect a majority of the committee members to actually prepare and do their homework, I have a bridge for sale.

If you expect Republicans to actually get organized for a hearing, oh say along the lines of splitting up questions so that there is a recognizable flow and logic to them, well, have a seat; not happening. Republicans, with some notable exceptions, still appear to be wandering around with a flashlight attempting to find their own asses.