“You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, and like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton Administration, and the Bush Administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”

For what it’s worth, I disagree with Obama; in my experience, a good job with a respectable salary is no impediment to intolerance and gun-worship; I think what he’s out of touch with is the suburbs. Not to mention that clinging to anti-trade sentiment seems to be at least an understandable response to 25 years of job loss in the industrial heartland.

Hillary responded with all the dignity one would want from someone seeking the highest office in the land, doing Crown Royal (!) and chasers at a photo op and thus underscoring what bitter people of all incomes and political affinities actually cling to. Whatever–if she really wanted to be down with the volk, she’d pawn Mark Penn’s Blackberry and go on a meth bender. The Tribune reports that the bitter recriminations have led to an impassioned exchange about who has the most honest photo-op, basically the definition of a fool’s errand. The silliness: it’s getting out of control.

Personally, I’d think that no matter your feelings on the subject, the revelation that torture in Iraq was ok’d at the very highest levels of our government is way more interesting.