On the Nature of Duty and Politics

Wednesday, May 7, 2008
This is today's quote from The Notebooks of Lazarus Long:

"Do not confuse "duty" with what other people expect of you, they are utterly different. Duty is a debt you owe to yourself to fulfill obligations you have assumed voluntarily. Paying that debt can entail anything from years of patient work to instant willingness to die. Difficult it may be, but the reward is self-respect.

"But there is no reward at all for doing what other people expect of you, and to do so is not merely difficult, but impossible. It is easier to deal with a footpad than it is with a leech who wants 'just a few minutes of your time, please - this won't take long.' Time is your total capital, and the minutes of your life are painfully few. If you allow yourself to fall into the vice of agreeing to such requests, they quickly snowball to the point where these parasites will use up 100 percent of your time - and squawk for more!

"So learn to say No - and to be rude about it when necessary.

"Otherwise you will not have time to carry out your duty, or to do your own work, and certainly no time for love and happiness. The termites will nibble away your life and leave none of it for you.

"(This rule does not mean you must not do a favor for a friend, or even a stranger. But let the choice be yours. Don't do it because it is 'expected' of you.)"

This got me thinking about how Hillary considers the concept of duty and its role in her candidacy.

Does she consider it her duty to remain in the race? Does she consider it the duty of the Democratic party to give her the nomination? Does she consider the people who are asking her to sit down and shut up termites who are trying to nibble away her life and goals?

I don't think anyone can definitively say what the Psychology of Hillary is really like - she may not know herself what is motivating her behavior. But something must be, whether it's a sense of duty or a sense of entitlement. That woman will just Not Give Up.

I don't know if that's a good quality or a bad one in a presidential candidate, although I'm starting to think Hillary is "staying the course," if you know what I mean.

Go home, Hillary. Your public persona is changing from one of a tenacious, capable leader into a sad, sad also-ran. I don't think you want that to be your legacy.

3 comments:

Cindi in CO said...

I heard her say on the news this morning that she will fully support whomever the Democratic National Committee chooses as a candidate.

So, that's something

Janiece Murphy said...

Perhaps. Her behavior to date hasn't exactly been exemplary...

Nathan said...

I honestly don't mind her holding on like a pit bull. I don't think the electorate is so fragile that they can't take a race all the way to the convention.


Then, I think Obama will be the candidate and I don't really think Hilary's support is all that necessary.

BTW, my captcha is punxysm. That totally ought to be a word.