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Hugh Hewitt Book Club

Hillary Rodham Clinton on “What Happened”

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Former Secretary of State and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton joined me for an in-depth conversation about her new book, “What Happened”:

The audio:

11-22hhs-clinton

The transcript:

HH: So pleased to welcome Hillary Rodham Clinton to the program. She is and will always remain the first woman in U.S. history to become the presidential nominee of a major political party. She is our 67th Secretary of State. Of course, she is our former First Lady. She’s the author of a wonderful, new book, What Happened, which I want to urge everyone in this audience to get. It is candid. It is engrossing, and it is no-holds barred. Secretary Clinton, thank you for joining me. I very much appreciate it.

HRC: Oh, I’m happy to talk with you, Hugh. Thanks for having me on.

HH: I want to start with a compliment on the book, because it is so candid. And with Page 29, since it’s Thanksgiving week, where you talk about Thanksgiving last year, quoting, “We start our meal with Grace by Bill, and then go around the table so everyone can say what he or she is thankful for during the past year. When it was my turn, I said I was grateful for the honor of running for president, and for my family and friends who supported me.” It’s wonderful.  Now a year later, you’ll have Thanksgiving again, and you and I are grandparents, and we can agree they’re always the greatest blessing.

HRC: Yes.

HH: But what, other than families or friends, will you be thankful for in 2017?

HRC: I will be thankful for the opportunity to continue my service on behalf of the causes and values that are important to me. I will be thankful that many people across our country are assuming an active role as being citizens and speaking out and standing up, which is in the best tradition of America. So I will be thankful, as always, for our country, Hugh. I am fundamentally optimistic and confident, and despite what I see as some very big flashing warning lights going off, I believe in our resilience, and I hope that you know, we will have a very happy and successful new year.

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The Holiday Season Begins – It Is An American Thing

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We say it every year, “Thanksgiving is the start of the holiday season.”  Fair enough; not much restful about this season but there is much celebratory and enjoyable.  It seems almost trite to ask if you have stopped to think about what it is you are actually celebrating, but it’s appropriate.  Of course most people hate that question because it drips with religious implications, but it does not have to.

Thanksgiving, the holiday that kicks off the season, the holiday we celebrate this week, is a holiday dedicated simply to an attitude.  That’s all, an attitude.  Being thankful.  Regardless of whether one is thankful to a deity or a pet, the attitude is important.  That we have a holiday set aside specifically for that attitude, that such a holiday originated as an American expression, says that there is something essentially American about gratitude.  Thankfulness is supposed to be something that defines us as a nation.

To judge from our news, it is not something that defines us anymore.  We gripe, we complain and we demand – the exact opposite of thankfulness.  The news is full of someone’s latest grievance, or the most recent protest.  And the country now seems composed only of numerous individual groups claiming their “rights.”  Thankfulness implies a lack of grievance and a contentment with current circumstance.  But rather than be grateful for the health we enjoy, better than any other nation in history, we complain about the healthcare we do not have and think is ours by birthright.  Rather than be grateful that this is, while not perfect, the least oppressive, freest nation in history, we complain that someone else has it a little better than we do.  On this busiest of travel weekends we will gripe about the hassle when we should marvel at the mobility.

I am not immune from this tendency.  I will undoubtedly mumble about spending too much money and all the travel hassle if Butler does not win its bracket at the incredible PK80 tournament this weekend.  This thing may be the most spectacular display of college basketball ever that is not the NCAA tournament – and I am going to be there.  I should be more than satisfied.  And in that mumbling I will be something less than truly American.

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Talking Bobby Kennedy with Chris Matthews

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Hardball’s Chris Matthews has a terrific new book out: “Bobby Kennedy: A Raging Spirit.” As I told Chris in an interview this morning, I have worked for (in order) Gerald Ford, David Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, and H.W., interviewed George W Bush and Mitt Romney (and helped the later write a book), so my GOP credentials are pretty solid.  But the first poster on my wall was Peter Max’s Bobby Kennedy in 1968:

Image result for peter max poster bobby kennedy

Chris joined me this morning for the first part of a two-part conversation about RFK:

Audio:

11-20hhs-matthews

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