The decision by the FBI and Department of Justice not to indict Hillary Clinton has likely ensured several years of exceptional internal turmoil for the United States, worse than we have had in the post-911 era.
Putting partisan politics and questions of gender aside, Clinton should have been indicted. In addition to the raft of problems outlined by FBI Chief James Comey and inconsistencies between his account and Clinton’s own explanation for using a private server, which suggest that she either lied to the press or lied under oath, another potential problem that the mainstream media has not considered is in plain sight: it is well documented that while Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton mixed state affairs with private business via the Clinton Foundation. In exchange for donations to the foundation, she awarded arms deals to weapons manufacturers and their buyers from foreign nations, despite their generally inhumane intentions . Is it any wonder, then, that she would want – no, *need* – a private server on which to conduct state affairs? Of course, it is not. Her admission of several thousand deleted emails suggests that the problem extends far beyond the sharing of classified information. Moreover, the claim that Republican Secretaries of State Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice are guilty of the same misuse of a private email server is incorrect.
Under these circumstances, we should want any candidate to be indicted regardless of party affiliation, gender, and policies, be they radically left, New Deal liberal, mildly liberal, moderate or centrist, neoliberal, conservative, or right wing, racist, homophobic hawk. Justice, of course, should be an equal opportunity lender.
The problematic nature of the decision not to indict suggests an extreme lack of foresight. Unprecedented and justifiable rancor should arise in the wake of the decision. Contrary to the notion that clearing Clinton will make the issue moot in the minds of most people, we are likely to see strong protest from those who have long harbored serious doubts about her ethics, given her questionable history. At the very least, not doing so will most likely lead to a series of investigations regarding the Obama-run Justice Department’s role in clearing her. Several top Republicans have already called for such an investigation. Accompanying Comey’s revelation of a decision not to indict was his provision of several leads for such an investigation. Perhaps most damning among them was the identification of “hostile actors” who successfully hacked the Secretary of State’s account. Depending on the timing of any investigation, if it sheds light on anything introducing even a shadow of reasonable doubt about the integrity of the process that has just taken place, there could be utter hell to pay at the voting booth, in the White House should Hillary win the Presidency, and in Congress as Democrats whose wagons are hitched to her fortune resist (or navigate) the gale force winds blowing them towards the shore of dishonesty while hanging on to their Capitol Hill seats for dear life.
It is also abundantly clear that the decision not to indict will exacerbate political unrest at the level of the citizenry. While concerned citizens on either extreme of the political spectrum from the centrist Clinton (and her supporters) have deeply divergent understandings of her – and why they don’t like her in historical proportions – they also possess a common understanding that the details of her political life suggest an elusive moral core and an uncanny opportunism. In the long term, Clinton has proven unable to maintain a consistent set of convictions while displaying an inhumane vision of African Americans, a cozy relationship with Wall Street, an approach to humanity that has caused the deaths of too many innocent people abroad, and enough concern among young feminists and established ones to have even garnered the New York Times’ criticism (even though the paper has otherwise displayed a widely acknowledged tendency to offer Clinton seemingly limitless biased support).
The general awareness of such problems inevitably comes with a more specific notion that the FBI’s decision is an example of extreme exceptionalism.
These perceptions and the conditions they foster probably won’t go away over the next few months, or years, should Clinton win the Oval Office. Nor should they. Indicting Clinton would have been tantamount to nipping the situation in the bud. Not doing so might open a thousand cans containing countless worms.
Here at Today’s Noise, we hope we’re wrong about all of this.