a time when policies and polish were assets, not liabilities

RORSCHACH

Senior Member
Farsi-persian
Hi,
I know the meaning of the words of this sentence "a time when policies and polish were assets, not liabilities." but I cannot understand it. Could you explain it to me?


“Now the event seems almost like a quaint throwback to an earlier era of politics—a time when policies and polish were assets, not liabilities.”

Source: Hillary Rodham Clinton. “What Happened.”
 
  • kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    polish

    elegance or refinement, especially in style, manner, etc.

    She is saying that having good policies and good style used to be an asset.

    Now, she is basically implying, the opposite is true. No doubt, she's talking about Donald Trump, and saying that he has bad policies and bad style (unpolished) and still people support him.
     

    DonnyB

    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    I think the core of the problem here is "liabilities". Could you explain it to me?
    Yes, one of the meanings of "liability" is a disadvantage or hindrance.

    So while I don't pretend to know anything much about American politics, what I think she's trying to say there is that she was finding her polished style and her sound policies (which in former times would have acted in her favour) were now disadvantages: they were counting against her and hindering her chances of success.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    So while I don't pretend to know anything much about American politics, what I think she's trying to say there is that she was finding her polished style and her sound policies (which in former times would have acted in her favour) were now disadvantages: they were counting against her and hindering her chances of success.
    :thumbsup:

    Of course, it's in the eye of the beholder whether she was polished and was promoting sound policies. But that's what she meant. As always, it's meant to highlight a contrast between her style and her supporters and her view of Donald Trump and his supporters.
     
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