The Ghost Of Bill

Michael Isikoff has a daming rebuttal to Sid Blumenthal’s The Clinton Wars, Blumenthal’s 800 page suck-up to Bill and Hillary Clinton. Isikoff accuses Blumenthal of playing fast and loose with the facts, defending the undefendable, and generally being a synchophant to the Clintons while ignoring contrary evidence (and the obvious).

It’s highly evidendent that Bill Clinton treated the office of President with contempt. It’s clear he was involved in shady dealings, even if they were barely on the side of legality. It is also undisputable that he did commit an action that would lead to legal prosecution for sexual harrassment, and he later lied about this while under oath. None of these things require any grandoise conspiracy theory to frame the Clintons – they were all actions that the Clinton did themselves.

One would think that the Democratic Party would be all too glad to be rid of the Clintons once and for all. Yet it seems that everyone from Blumenthal to Atrios want to craft elaborate conspiracy theories designed to exonerate the Clintons. The problem is, no one cares any more. Clinton became irrelevant years ago, and the only purpose served by beating the dead horse of Whitewater and Monicagate is looking both petty and petulant. When even Susan Estrich is saying enough is enough it’s clear that Blumenthal is either acting as hopeless synchophant to the Clintons or behaving in a shamelessly self-promoting manner. Either way, the ghost of Bill could very well haunt the Democrats again in 2004.

4 thoughts on “The Ghost Of Bill

  1. The “ghost of Clinton” will only haunt the Dems in 2004 among people so obsessed with hating him that they cheered publicly when his dog was killed by a motorist. Granted, this probably accounts for a quarter of the country, but most Americans couldn’t care less about Whitewater and Zippergate as it was happening, let alone six years later when real-world problems of war, recession and Republican debt are on the forefront.

    Honestly, it would be nice to move off of Clinton, but it’s Republicans who are the least likely to let him go. Given Bush’s glaring incompetence at effectively handling any of the problems facing him, conservatives are quick to dig into the Clinton-bashing archives as a way of defending Bush. I certainly don’t wish to defend Clinton’s personal indiscretions, but more people need to defend the comparatively responsible fiscal policy Clinton employed during his eight years in the White House.

    Your attempts to denounce the Clinton administration as embarrassingly corrupt would be more convincing were it not for today’s administration wearing its ethical bankruptcy on its sleeve. Clinton’s mistake, apparently, was trying to conceal the shady dealings of his past. This administration gets to brazenly show off its crooked nature in everything from handing out multi-billion dollar contracts to an oil company that Dick Cheney was the CEO and chief stockholder of, to the mounting lies they’ve made about their positions on reducing emissions, banning stem cell research and the reason why he had to land a jet rather a helicopter on the navy ship 20 miles off the California coast.

    In the few cases where this administration has actually tried to cover-up its dirty dealings, such as Cheney refusing to provide the audio tapes of his conversations with Enron executives before their bankruptcy, little fuss was made of it at the end of the day. Had the Enron bankruptcy happened two years earlier and their executives had conversed with then Vice-President Al Gore, the Republicans would still be shouting conspiracy today. I guess if Clinton just made it clear that corrupt, unethical and habitual lying was going on in his administration, as Bush continues to do, his indiscretions would have went on with considerably less fanfare. But then again, Democratic indiscretions are held to a different standard than Republican indiscretions.

  2. It appears that the Democrats have failed to learn from history.

    Bashing Clinton didn’t work for the GOP in 1996. In fact, it hurt them. Constantly pounding on Clinton turned off swing voters. In 2000, Bush wisely referred to Clinton only indirectly and chose to craft his image around his own policies rather than carping on the past.

    If the Democrats can’t do anything other than constantly harp on Bush, especially over issues as petty as the speech on the Lincoln, they had better be ready for a repeat of 2002. The Democrats have no other issue for 2004 other than "we hate everything George W. Bush does." Between that and dredging up Clinton once again, the Democrats are doing a marvelous job at shooting their own feet.

  3. None of the Democrats running for Presidents have “drudged up Clinton”. One writer apparently defended his indiscretions, but other than that the only people talking about him are people like yourself. It was a monthlong party for conservatives when Clinton’s dog died. One has to wonder how excited they’d have been if it was his daughter that was killed instead. Funny hearing the same group who can’t speak two sentences without spewing venom about Bill Clinton and then have the nerve to say that it’s the Dems who are obsessed with him.

    The Lincoln incident was merely symbollic of the habitual lying and immature political posturing by this President. I don’t personally care about it, save for the fact that the brazen lies and exploitation of other people’s sacrifice is still hidden behind a false badge of “integrity” by this administration. The Democrats have plenty of issues for 2004, but you’re right that they have don’t have much in the way of an alternative agenda. Bush’s tax-cutting the nation into bankruptcy has effectively killed the Dems chances of putting forward their own proactive agenda for America since so much time and resources will have to go into undoing the mess Bush has intentionally created.

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