Today, CNN reported here that Hillary Clinton says she “misspoke”, when suggesting she came under sniper fire in Bosnia during a foreign policy speech at George Washington University recently.If you’re not familiar with what happened, you can watch the video of it here, but in short she was responding to a question wherein she described landing in Bosnia in 1996 by saying “I remember landing under sniper fire. There was supposed to be some kind of a greeting ceremony at the airport, but instead we just ran with our heads down to get into the vehicles to get to our base”.
But when you watch the actual video of the landing, you see her walking casually out of the plane with her daughter in tow, over to a greeting party where she shook hands with several soldiers and an 8 year old Bosnian girl who gave her a poem.
Interestingly, in response to the whole deal, she said “I say a lot of things – millions of words a day – so if I misspoke, that was just a misstatement.”
First, I’m not sure if she realizes, but to speak even 1 million words in a day you would have to speak 15 words a second for 18 hours straight. To be “millions”, you would have to at least double that. I’m also not much comforted by a statement indicating that proportionally speaking, most of what she says should be true.
Still, perhaps I’m splitting hairs. On the other hand, perhaps we’ve become too acclimated to environments of dishonesty where we try to cover one exaggeration with another one. Where much is given, much is required. People in the top echelons of our government are given much authority, and much should be required of them – including honesty.
Honesty seems to succumb to Newton’s first law of motion – mass in motion tends to stay in motion… Once you start a lie, it seems more naturally follow to support it in a self-perpetuating cycle of dishonesty.
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