This show has only been on the road for a few months and I’m already tiring of it.
What show is that? It’s the Bill Clinton is the greatest living man in the East, West, North and South dog-and-pony show that has been testing the waters for a while. Now Esquire magazine calls him The World’s Most Influential Man with accompanying bill-gasm:
Since leaving office, Clinton has been so active that his post-presidency amounts to “a third term” for the Democrat who held the White House from 1992 to 2000, the magazine said. He has tackled global issues from AIDS, poverty and global warming to the recovery from last December’s Indian Ocean tsunami.
Esquire editor David Granger argued that Clinton was poised to become “something like a president of the world or at least a president of the world’s non-governmental organizations.”
How exactly has Clinton “tackled” all of those “global issues,” beyond showing up, getting a picture taken, shaking a few hands and picking up the check? Can anyone tell me? Oh, right, he’s like Hillary was in her vague way before she became a “senator,” he’s now an “advocate!” All that running around talking is really “tackling” an issue! He doesn’t have to do anything substantial, never had to, as long as he bit his lip and used all the right words.
I recall on Bush’s first inaugural day, what a spectacle Clinton made of himself, aided and abetted by the adoring media which would not take their cameras off him…“gasp – Au revoir, Bill! We can’t stand to see you go! (Sob, sob…Oomp!)”
They followed him to the plane hanger where he, no longer Commander in Chief, reviewed the troops he never much cared for while he was president (hell, he couldn’t even be bothered responding when 17 of his sailors were ambushed in Yemen.) The media hung on his every word while he did his humble-cornpone guffaw, “Ah’m still here!” before getting serious…”we did some good thangs!” (Not actually on Education, Social Security, Taxes, Medicare, AIDS, poverty, human freedom or, you know, TERRORISM – but they did manage to do some “good thangs,” – welfare reform was a notable success. Unfortunately they also erected a wall between the FBI and the CIA; they made human intelligence extremely hard to come-by by insisting that only pure and good people work as or with informers…unfortunately pure and good people are not the sort who hang with terrorists, but hey, hey, we all feel good about ourselves, don’t we? Then that’s all that matters.)
I’m not the only one to notice that Bill and Hillary are falling back on their tried and true triangulation method (whoever is running for president steps center while the other one reassures the left) in pursuit of their ambitious double fantasy, but you have to look to the blogs, and a few – only a few – newspapers to find the appropriate level of disgust he is due for going before students in the United Arab Emirates and declaring – on foreign soil, during a time of war, mind you – that his successor’s undertaking against a tyrant, an undertaking he thought about in 1998 and defended in 2003, (“When I left office, there was a substantial amount of biological and chemical material unaccounted for . . . it is incontestable that on the day I left office, there were unaccounted for stocks . . . “) was a mistake. Aside from being a weasly and cowardly thing to do, he classlessly breaks a long tradition of ex-president’s not criticising a sitting president – a tradition and courtesy, it must be said – his predecessor afforted to Clinton, when he was in office.
What a feckless human being he is. And how the press continues to look the other way at such behavior! Do you think for one moment, if a former president had criticized him while he was in office the silence would be so deafening?
Pretty much everything is in place. There are now Clintonistas set up in positions of power and authority in every media and informational venue, all over the world. They’ve either “become” journalists, like George Stephanopolis (and several others) in America and Sidney Blumenthal in England, or “married” journalists, women like Jennifer Loven and Christiane Amanpour, who can be counted on to do their jobs.
This is unprecedented. Presidents used to retire and their staffers wrote books and became law partners or lobbyists. But the Clinton team suffers from an excess of ambition and energy. Right now, there are Clinton operatives in television, in movies, in book publishing – one thing you must admit, it is Bill Clinton, and not Howard Stern, who is King of All Media. Things, as I say, are “in place.”
And as every good tyrant knows…if you are the King or Queen of All Media and you’re looking for your crown and sceptor…well…then all you have to do is keep the rhetoric close to meaningless, and rein in your appetite. Then you step aside and rehearse your lines, and wait for your many-tentacled minions to do the work of destroying whoever they must and clearing the path for your own easy access…and then you simply slip onto the throne.
Even Napoleon had to pick his crown up from the gutter. Bill and Hillary’s path is being made so straight for them, they won’t have to stoop to conquer. Their crowns will be delivered, by any means necessary.