The Blame Game

Hillary Clinton's newest book, entitled "What Happened," was released today. It is a text book example of the narcissism, imperial ego and ultimate detachment from reality within which she lives. It’s indicative of her core, her very nature, and it’s highly illustrative of the woman I worked for as President Bill Clinton’s Air Force Military Aide during the 1990s. In her “book,” which is simply a well-funded vehicle for her to explain the how and why she lost last year’s presidential election, an election that was supposedly bequeathed to her. In it, she blames (among others) the Russians, the Macedonians, Jim Comey, Matt Lauer, Republicans, misogynists, white people, her own campaign, Trump, stupid people, and Bernie Sanders. Nowhere, is there a sliver of introspection, responsibility, intellectual thought for her failure.

I am reminded of an experience I personally had with her in which she resorted to similar irrational, and unhinged behavior.

In early, January 1997, the Clinton’s and entourage were going to St. Thomas, the Virgin Islands, for a vacation. The trip had been planned for weeks and most of the logistics were set. But as soon as Air Force One touched down in St. Thomas, I knew something was amiss. Mrs. Clinton was visibly upset. She was screwing herself into the ceiling of the aircraft and berating anybody who would dare enter her field of view. The staff quickly learned that Chelsea had left her backpack full of books in Hilton Head, South Carolina, where the Clintons had been attending their annual Renaissance Weekend, a gathering of liberal government, business, media, and academic leaders. But it wasn’t Chelsea’s fault, of course, because it never is. Monica Lewinsky wasn’t Bill’s fault, Benghazi wasn’t Hillary’s fault, and leaving text books behind wasn’t Chelsea’s fault either. Hillary chose to blame the presidential valets.

Nowhere, is there a sliver of introspection, responsibility, intellectual thought for her failure.

The president is served by career Navy enlisted men as valets. These valets, traditionally Filipino by birth, have a long and proud history of serving the first family. In my experience, they were loyal, devoted, impeccable employees. They worked diligently to attend to every detail—no matter how small.


It seemed to me amazing that the idea of holding Chelsea responsible—Chelsea was a senior in high school—never crossed Hillary’s mind.

Kelly Craighead, Hillary’s personal assistant, asked me to find a way to get the books down to St. Thomas tout de suite. Chelsea had finals approaching and needed to study. We sprang into crisis mode. I called back to Hilton Head, catching my fellow military aide before she caught her return flight to Washington. She sounded the alarm, gathered remaining White House staffers, and scurried to find the backpack full of books. Once safely in hand, we dispatched one of the president’s valets to deliver the goods. It took a combination of military and commercial aircraft to pull it off but the books were sitting on Chelsea’s bedside table when she woke up that morning.

Just another day in the Clinton White House—the quick assignment of blame, often angrily and profanely, and a relatively minor issue mushrooming quickly out of control.


Lieutenant Colonel Robert "Buzz" Patterson, United States Air Force (Retired), is a military combat pilot, distinguished White House military aide, bestselling author, and popular conservative public speaker. Among Patterson’s literary efforts include two New York Times best sellers, Dereliction of Duty and Reckless Disregard. His most recent books include War Crimes and Conduct Unbecoming. Patterson was born in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. He is a Distinguished Graduate from the Air Command and Staff College; he has his Bachelor's Degree in Political Science from Virginia Tech University and a Master's in Business Administration from Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri. He, his wife and their three children currently reside in California. 


Buzz Patterson

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