An open letter to Hillary Clinton…. (More)

Dear Hillary Clinton,

Please pick a fight with the New York Times. Seriously. Perhaps start by saying this to their lead inquisitor, Amy Chozick, at a press conference:

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Hi Amy! Umm, where’s your nose ring? Oh, I assumed you must have one, because your head snaps around anytime Donald Trump, Reince Priebus, and especially the folks at Judicial Watch twitch their fingers.

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After the collective gasp settles into a long, uncomfortable silence, look her in the eye and add:

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Your bosses will probably endorse me in this election. I won’t care, and neither should anyone else, because the New York Times has long since slid into the cesspool of fawning insiderism and rumor-peddling.

Maybe it started in 1992, when your paper breathlessly stovepiped an unproven, oppo-research-planted rumor about my involvement in the Whitewater land deal. Your bosses should have learned their lesson when seven years of investigations found absolutely no evidence that my husband or I did anything illegal. Indeed the investigations showed we were swindled by the con men who were running that fraud.

Since then, your paper has stovepiped the Bush administrations lies about Iraq and, starting last spring, the accusations of corruption published in a right-wing hit-book about the Clinton Foundation. You wrote that smear piece, Amy, and only at the bottom of the article did you admit that I was not involved in reviewing the Russian uranium deal that you so breathlessly hyped in the lead. Since then, that book has been thoroughly debunked by numerous fact-checkers.

Yet you and your newspaper continue to act as if one of the world’s most efficient and effective charities is somehow shady. Here’s what your public editor wrote this past weekend:

In the case of the Clinton Foundation, The Times started with a legitimate issue: did the former secretary of state give improper access to foreign countries that donated tens of millions of dollars to her family foundation? That’s a question voters deserve to have answered. In fact, reporting by The Times and others has turned up so many potential conflicts that the foundation decided to stop accepting foreign government funding if Clinton becomes president.

Nice use of weasel words there: “potential conflicts.” The truth is that you struck out, again, so badly that you finally tried to smear my husband’s attempt to get diplomatic passports for two men who went with him to rescue American journalists being held hostage in North Korea. And the State Department didn’t even issue those diplomatic passports.

So now you’ve moved on to demanding full access to my medical records, yet again driven by right wing conspiracy theories. Yes, I’m being treated for pneumonia. I’m still campaigning – even with pneumonia – and it will be up to voters to decide whether I look healthy enough to serve them in the White House.

But I’m not going to give you my lab reports or let you follow me into the exam room when I meet with my doctor. And no, I’m not going to authorize my doctor to turn over her treatment notes, despite your former editor’s call for “radical transparency,” even as she admits “the media will never be satisfied, no matter what or how much she releases.”

And that’s the point. You, Amy, and your bosses at the Times are convinced I’m corrupt. Nothing will change that. Bill and I could turn over our credit card statements and bank records and medical records and let you go through our laundry and let you and other reporters take shifts watching us sleep …

… and when you found nothing damning, you’d fall back on Conspiracy Theory 101 and say it’s awfully suspicious that you found nothing damning. That’s why the Dallas Morning News called you “political hyenas.”

You write, and your bosses print, again and again, that 65% of Americans think I’m “not trustworthy.” Never mind that most of them think so because you and your newspaper have published hundreds of stories saying there must be something shady about me, even if you never actually, you know, find any evidence.

But here’s what you and your bosses never include in that sentence: a recent Gallup poll found that only about 36% of 18-to-50-year-olds think reporters like you are trustworthy. That’s an all-time low, Amy, and maybe that’s because you keep treating right-wing rumors as “legitimate questions.” And when you can’t find facts to prove the rumors, you spew innuendo about “shadows” and “clouds” and “appearances.”

So scurry back to your cubicle and write about how “defensive” and “harsh” and “arrogant” I was today. Because heaven forbid that a Democrat and especially not a Democratic woman might challenge media bias. That’s reserved for Republican men who think you haven’t witch-hunted me hard enough, because I haven’t yet been burned at the stake on the National Mall.

But don’t think you’re going to intimidate me. I’m going to keep campaigning – yes, even with pneumonia – and I’ll keep fighting for American families. And the Clinton Foundation will keep providing AIDS drugs and making lives better around the world.

You and your bosses have been after me for 25 years, and I’ve no doubt that you’ll stay after me for years to come, with smear after smear, because that’s who you are.

But I’m not going away, and Bill and Chelsea and I will keep working to make other people’s lives better, because that’s who we are.

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Photo Credit: Josh Edelson (AFP/Getty Images)

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Good day and good nuts