Hillary Clinton was reportedly doxxed this weekend when the Washington Free Beacon posted a private conversation between her and some donors recorded in February. Predictably, hyper-partisans from the extreme left and extreme right went ape over Hillary’s remarks about Millennial supporters of her primary opponent Bernie Sanders (emphasis mine):
There’s just a deep desire to believe that we can have free college, free healthcare, that what we’ve done hasn’t gone far enough, and that we just need to, you know, go as far as, you know, Scandinavia, whatever that means, and half the people don’t know what that means, but it’s something that they deeply feel. So as a friend of mine said the other day, I am occupying from the center-left to the center-right…
Some are new to politics completely. They’re children of the Great Recession. And they are living in their parents’ basement. They feel they got their education and the jobs that are available to them are not at all what they envisioned for themselves…
So that is a mindset that is really affecting their politics. And so if you’re feeling like you’re consigned to, you know, being a barista, or you know, some other job that doesn’t pay a lot, and doesn’t have some other ladder of opportunity attached to it, then the idea that maybe, just maybe, you could be part of a political revolution is pretty appealing.
One thing that struck me about Hillary’s remarks is how familiar they sounded. In my opinion, they seemed ripped from my columns!
Here’s me calling the Iowa Caucus way back on Feb. 1:
Sure, the Bernie Bros make effective attack dogs, but my gut tells me that when it’s time to vote, these basement-dwelling slobs won’t be able to get their moms to drive them to the caucus. These Millennial misogynists have probably squandered their car privileges on too many trips to Best Buy to stock up on Mountain Dew Code Reds and gaming headsets they use to scream slurs at women of color on Xbox.
Me again, May 6:
Guam was brutally occupied by the Japanese in World War II, and folks here have long memories. They are repulsed by Bernie, a candidate whose support base is made up of anime-loving, mom’s-basement-dwelling hikikomori who have nothing better to do than harass women and veteran journalists on Twitter all day while fantasizing about teaching English in Japan (as if anyone anywhere had anything to learn from the Bernie Bros).
Where have I heard that the Bernie supporters hate centrism before? Me on June 7:
Bernie supporters — who are all white male virgins who frequently live in their mom’s basements — are angry. They think the system is rigged against them. They complain about student loan debt which, frankly, is a blessing in disguise. They demand women, particularly superdelegates, give them attention and emotional labor. They yearn to destroy the Democratic Party, and not for a good reason like because they prefer No Labels-style compromise and bipartisanship.
Whining about student debt and feeling too good to work your way through college? That’s the whole premise of my column from March 30:
Fringe candidate Bernie Sanders apparently sees something wrong in working class kids having to work, even though “working” is clearly in their name. Not me. I know from experience that students prosper when they mix coursework with a healthy amount of labor.
In the late 80s and early 90s, I paid my own way through Wellesley by having a weekend job at a foreign firm. I was all of 18, and still I landed a job at a multinational company using grit and perseverance. At my interview with Mr. Ase, he eyed me through his aviator sunglasses and demanded, “Are you willing to sweat for me?” You bet your bottom dollar my answer was, “As much as you need, sir!”
It’s as clear as a subject line written by Sid Blumenthal that Hillary has been listening to the wisest pundits in the nation, from me, to Kevin Drum, to Jonathan Chait.
But I see my touch more than anyone else’s in Hillary’s goal here: the former First Lady is attempting a tactic known as “negging,” in which the pickup artist says true but hurtful things about their target in order to wear down their self-esteem and seek the artist’s approval. I employed negging to first court ex-Mrs. The Dig, and find it a great icebreaker to use before you win over a woman’s heart by making her pity you.
In this case, though, Hillary is the PUA, and Millennial voters are the single at the bar.
It remains to be seen if the Democratic nominee can close the deal with some kinoing, but as a veteran Clinton watcher, I expect Madame Secretary to walk home with some HB9s on their way to the voting booth.
Carl “The Dig” Diggler has covered national politics for 30 years and is the host of the Digcast, a weekly podcast on iTunes and Soundcloud. Got a question for the Dig? E-mail himat firstname.lastname@example.org or Tweet to @carl_diggler.