No-excuses woman blames Colin Powell for her schlock, homebrew e-mail server

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Published by: Dan Calabrese on Friday August 19th, 2016

Tells FBI it was his idea, but that's not the way he remembers it.

Yesterday Rob informed you, during the moments when he was able to stop laughing, that Hillary Clinton considers herself to be a "no excuses" type of person. You know how it is. No matter what happens, if it's under your watch, the buck stops with you. And you don't mind taking responsibility because you can handle it. That's how Hillary is!

Er, so says Hillary, and we all know what her words are worth.

But let her come under FBI interrogation concerning her violation of multiple federal statutes, and you know, it could be, just maybe, that someone else told her to do all those terrible things. And wouldn't it be just perfect if that someone was from the Bush Administration?

Hey! Know what? That schlock, homebrew e-mail server of hers that put sensitive classified information at risk of being seen by our enemies around the world? Don't blame Hillary! It was all Colin Powell's idea!

The Times also cited an upcoming book that described a dinner conversation where Powell told Clinton to use her own email except for classified information. The newspaper also reported that Clinton asked Powell in a 2009 email exchange about his use of email while serving under former president George W. Bush.

Reuters could not independently verify the report. Representatives for Clinton could not be immediately reached late on Thursday.

Colin Powell's office in a statement said he could not recall the dinner conversation. He did recall describing the system he used to her, but the statement did not say he suggested Clinton do the same.

"He did write former Secretary Clinton an email memo describing his use of his personal AOL email account for unclassified messages and how it vastly improved communications within the State Department," the statement said. "At the time there was no equivalent system within the department."

He used a secure department computer to manage classified information, the statement said.

Powell has said he had no choice besides using his private account as the department did not have a fully functioning email system of its own when he joined in 2001.

Now one can certainly envision that a conversation between Powell and Hillary took place, and I would not at all be surprised if Hillary was looking for ways to avoid having a State Department e-mail account because she knew its contents would be subject to Freedom of Information Act requests and congressional subpoenas. In fact, I'm certain she was looking for a way to avoid that.

But to suggest it was Colin Powell's idea that she do exactly what she did is insane.

In 2001, e-mail was not even a decade old as a widespread tool of communication. I'm sure the federal government had e-mail but I'm equally sure there were not the sophisticated security safeguards they have today. And AOL was still a pretty prominent player at that time, perhaps the most common e-mail domain for people who weren't using a work domain.

But Powell also specifies that he used a government-server only for classified information, and that's the crucial difference between what he did and what Hillary did. Hillary's people and their media apologists have tried to excuse her behavior by pointing out that other secretaries of State also had private e-mail accounts. Big whoop. Everyone has a private e-mail account. I have Gmail and Yahoo accounts. But I also have my work account and everything work-related goes on there.

Hillary didn't set up a Gmail or Yahoo account to separate personal and work content. She had State Department employee Brian Pagliano come to her house and set up a schlock, homebrew e-mail server that was not even as secure as Gmail, and she then used that schlock, homebrew e-mail server for all her work e-mails, including the ones containing classified information. That is in no way the same as what Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice or any other Secretary of State did. Only Hillary did this, because only Hillary was that determined to hide the contents of her e-mail from the public.

It sounds to me like when they discussed this in 2001, Hillary had almost no knowledge of e-mail to begin with, and the information about AOL was as much an elementary tutorial as it was a suggestion for what she should do as Secretary of State. Powell certainly did not suggest the full measure of the route Hillary took.

But there's your no-excuses woman, America! She takes responsibility! Except when she screws up, lies or commits a crime. Which is basically every day. And Donald Trump bothers you so much that you really want four years of this crap coming from the Oval Office?

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