Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Meritocracy American Style Redux: Chelsea Clinton Edition

I've already covered the absurdity of Chelsea Clinton getting paid $600,000 a year by NBC to work as a special correspondent and the even bigger absurdity of Clinton saying publicly that she deserved that compensation because she works hard.

The absurdity grew to new heights yesterday when it was disclosed that Chelsea gets paid $75,000 every time she gives a speech:

There is a new Clinton paid to deliver speeches — Chelsea, the former first daughter — and she is commanding as much as $75,000 per appearance.

Aides emphasized that while Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton often address trade groups and Wall Street bankers, Ms. Clinton, now 34, focuses on organizations whose goals are in line with the work of the family’s philanthropic organization, the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation. Organizers said her star power helped sell tickets and raise money.

And unlike her parents’ talks, Ms. Clinton’s speeches “are on behalf of the Clinton Foundation, and 100 percent of the fees are remitted directly to the foundation,” said her spokesman, Kamyl Bazbaz, adding that “the majority of Chelsea’s speeches are unpaid.” The Harry Walker Agency, the firm that represents her parents’ engagements, handles Ms. Clinton’s talks on behalf of the family foundation.

The family speechmaking business is a lucrative one and has generated more than $100 million for her parents over the past decade as they hopscotched the globe. Their fees range from $200,000 to $700,000 per appearance, and Mr. Clinton alone earned $17 million last year giving speeches.

Her parents' connections got her a well-paid job at McKinsey.

Her parents' connections got her a well-paid job at NBC.

That's what she's done with her life so far.

What could she possibly share in a speech that anybody would want to pay $75,000 to hear it?

Here's what the Times says she shares:

Ms. Clinton’s speeches focus on causes like eradicating waterborne diseases. (“I’m obsessed with diarrhea” is a favorite line.) And she dispenses lessons picked up from her family. (“Life’s not about what happens to you, it’s about what you do with what happens to you,” she likes to say.)

I said in my last Chelsea Clinton post that she had risen above Jenna Bush on my list of Presidential Offspring Deserving Of Derision.

The news that she's getting paid $75,000 a speech puts her even higher on that list.

Just another example of how the elite take care of their own.


  1. We have turned into an aristocracy.

    And, I now have so much respect for the Carter family.

    1. Yes, I agree. The stature of the Carters has increased as you see the post-presidency Clinton & Bush Families in action.

      Here, for example, is the wiki on Amy Carter:

    2. Sandra Lee, Chelsea Clinton, What engaging intellectuals, how does one fit all of their talks into one's head in a single session?

    3. Heard today that Chelsea Clinton's baby is going to command $35K a speech when he/she is born. Very exciting!