If you grew up in a small town you knew of a family like this. They were the family where the oldest son would always go barreling through town in a red coupe with the top down at high speeds—and the cops would usually look the other way. And if he happened to get a little over-served and hit a trash bin, that would be covered up too.
If the roguish juvenile miscreant got a little feisty and drove his car on the golf course or over the sprinklers at the high school, everyone would just shake their heads and chuckle about his youthful hi-jinks and how everybody was always picking on his family and never going after “the real troublemakers.”
They were the family who put up buildings without permits that were also taller and wider than the law allowed, but somehow the authorities never nicked them or gave them anything other than a slap on the wrist.
Because that boy was so charming and so lovable and so gosh darn cute that nobody could be angry with him for long, unless he happened to get some poor girl in trouble, and then it was the poor girl who got all of the grief, unless she did the right thing and kept her mouth shut, or better yet, moved out of town. Because this family was important enough that you would regret reminding them of their peccadilloes. Better to just move on.
And if, and if, some member of the family did something that was so egregious and obvious that even the compliant, winking authorities couldn’t ignore it, especially if they had just put someone in the hoosegow for a similar infraction, then they would whine and complain about why everybody always picked on them.
Of course, I’m talking about the Clintons. The family for whom there is one set of laws, while the rest of the country, like, say, Scooter Libby and David Petraeus, operate under a different code.
Since Hillary will probably become president in November, it’s best for those of us in the news business to keep in mind that for people who operate with one set of rules while everyone else has a stricter set that things will never get any better. The boy (and now the girl) in the red coupe will just keep on barreling through town and anyone in her way had better watch out. Because for some families, the brakes don’t always work. Fortunately the clean up crews always do.