The progressive media everywhere today is praising the Dem forerunner as "Presidential", "calm", with Politico devoting it's article - "Clinton seizes opportunity after crisis" - to how her behaviour demonstrates her effectiveness as a potential CIC.
The hostage-taking itself offered a rare, if small, genuine drama in a campaign season governed by strict schedules and scripted stump speeches.
And as soon as it ended, Clinton took full advantage of the opportunity she had unexpectedly been handed.
In her New Hampshire press conference, she stood before a column of police in green and tan uniforms. She talked of meeting with hostages. She mentioned that she spoke to the state’s governor about eight minutes after the incident began.
The scene was one of a woman in charge.
“It looked and sounded presidential,” said Larry Sabato, director of the University of Virginia Center for Politics. “This was an instance of the White House experience of this campaign. They knew how to handle this.”
That the crisis was outside Clinton's control gave it a rare quality in this era of hyper-controlled politicking, Sabato added.
“What’s most important about it is that it’s not contrived,” he said. “It’s a real event and that distinguishes it from 99 percent of what happens in the campaign season.”
The misplaced sappy adoration continues in Glen Johnson's AP News blurb, Analysis: Clinton Calm in Hostage Crisis.
The aides said Clinton immediately canceled her trip and began working the phones. She later told reporters she had New Hampshire Gov. John Lynch, a fellow Democrat, on the phone in eight minutes.
Over the ensuing five hours, as a state trooper negotiated with the suspect and hostages were released one-by-one, Clinton continued to call up and down the law enforcement food chain, from local to county to state to federal officials.
"I knew I was bugging a lot of these people, it felt like on a minute-by-minute basis, trying to make sure that I knew everything that was going on so I was in a position to tell the families, to tell my campaign and to be available to do anything that they asked of me," the New York senator said.
At the same time, the woman striving to move from former first lady to the first female president was eager to convey that she knew the traditional lines of command and control in a crisis, even if the events inside the storefront on North Main Street were far short of a world calamity.
"They were the professionals, they were in charge of this situation, whatever they asked me or my campaign to do is what we would do," Clinton said.
Good gawd... the woman was hounding these guys while trying to work?? "Are we there yet? Are we there yet??" Somehow I think that most leadership has the patience to wait for progress reports thru the proper channels. But then, with constant calls, I'm quite sure this would be "reported"... portraying Clinton as the all-caring candidate and not the meddling nudge.
So what did Clinton do to deserve all this heaped praise? She worried, she hounded incessantly, cancelled appearances, then showed up to look Presidential with prepared statements. Wow... I'm impressed.
And what of the true centerpiece of the story... the victims and the hostage taker? Well nothing comes out from the victims. Silence.
Per the ABC local affiliate, WABC, Leeland Eisenberg, the purported suicide bomber/hostage taker was a 47 yr old in the area with a reputation of being "mentally unstable", media say. Yet this "unstable" man had the cogency to call CNN three times during the crisis to make his point... that he needed psychiatric health care and had no money.
CNN described Eisenberg as "well-spoken, articulate and impassioned about his cause" but increasingly agitated. His third phone call was laced with profanities, CNN said.
Evidently, this "mentally unstable" man had another political statement earlier this year.
Eisenberg made local headlines in March when he held a news conference on the steps of Rochester City Hall to complain about a police policy of placing fliers in unlocked cars warning motorists to lock their doors.
"This is nothing more than a gimmick to get around the Constitution and go around in the middle of the night upon unsuspecting citizens in their own yard and search their vehicles," Eisenberg said.
Hummm... this actually sounds like a legitimate political beef, and gives the appearance that perhaps Mr. Eisenberg is a somewhat savvy local activist. There are more than a few of us, not considered unstable, that would consider unauthorized entry into our vehicles as highly intrusive, and outside the bounds of the police.
Eisenberg was in the midst of a divorce, with the wife citing "irreconcilable differences and complained that he suffered from "severe alcohol and drug abuse, several verbal abuse and threats." Or maybe she just didn't want to be married to a political activist, eh?
From a Guardian article, Eisenberg was well liked by his neighbors in the mobile home park, and they found it hard to believe he was capable of of wanting to hurt anyone, let alone walking around with a bomb strapped to his chest. Eisenberg's suicide "bomb" pack was flares. He kept his rental neat and tidy, gardened and improved landscaping. In the wake of it, the neighbors are standing behind him, taping a note to his door saying ``Please respect our privacy. We will not be available for comment at this time.''
With all the neighbor praise, something else bothers me. According to a USA Today article, there was a Leeland Eisenberg with the same birthdate recently released from jail.
Diane Wiffin, a spokeswoman for the Massachusetts Department of Correction, said a Leeland E. Eisenberg with the same 1961 birth date as the suspect was released from the state prison in Concord, Mass., in March 2005 when he completed his sentence. She would not give details about the nature of his offense or length of his sentence.
Perhaps this lawsuit may shed more light on Mr. Eisenberg. If the same Eisenberg, as an inmate, he was wheeling and dealing with a lawyer on the outside, turning beaucoup bucks. Taking just one paragraph out of Count 3's factual findings, Mr. Eisenberg was no dummy...
36. On October 1, 1998, the Respondent mailed a copy of a contract to Eisenberg at MCI Concord, which was an agreement between Eisenberg and George Sowyrda, who was also an inmate there (Ex. 15). The contract provided that Sowyrda would transfer $9,000 to Eisenberg, who would “invest said sum or sums annually, in stocks, bonds and other instruments & means common to investments otherwise, for the mutual and equal benefit of both parties to this contract”; after Sowyrda recouped his initial investment, he and Eisenberg would share any net profits equally (Ex. 15).
Would you hand $9K to a "mentally unstable" inmate to invest in stocks and bonds? I dunno, but I think that Eisenberg's contacts and history need further exploration, and he shouldn't be casually written off as a crazy. Crazy like a fox with a big check coming perhaps?
Then consider Eisenberg's contacts here... If the Isaiah Shalom is the same, he is an MIT grad, retired as a lawyer in 2002 (just before this lawsuit was finalized), and an avid bridge master. Odd bedfellow for a crazy domestic terrorist as Eisenberg is made out to be, don't you think?
Now my question is, where are all the country's famous conspiracy types? You know, the Rosie watchers who believe the gov't was behind 911? There's certainly enough suspicious fodder here to set their imaginations a'fire. Even I am having a hard time swallowing all these misplaced headlines and praise without being suspicious.
We have a candidate who's losing ground to her opponent, Barack Obama. How convenient to have such a timely crisis from an activist - with a history of collecting big cash and obviously no aversion to being in jail - armed with flares, highlighting her health care program, that dominates the news headlines and comes out with a happily-ever-after ending? Then, the media ignores the hostage victims PLUS the hostage taker, and highlights Ms. Clinton's hand wringing and well planted speech as the headline. Huh?
Planned? Or do conspiracy theorists only come forth for the GOP?