Florida Pilot

A compendium of random thoughts from a former Washington Beltway insider who is now having a lot more fun flying small airplanes in Central Florida.

Friday, November 19, 2004

The Clinton show continues

Another Clinton day -- "Top Clinton administration officials, both Presidents Bush, rock stars and ordinary admirers of Bill Clinton turned out Thursday to pay homage to 'a man of compassion' at the opening of the Clinton Presidential Center."

And Clinton really is like a rock star; a lot of showmanship and not much substance.

We seem to have a lot of "Clinton days" and, after Kerry's loss, this is likely to continue. The media always loved Clinton and his era was the best of times for them; before Drudge broke the Monica Lewinsky story and before the bloggers caught Dan Rather's forged documents story within hours after the story aired.

Clinton likes to state how well the economy did on his watch and how he was able to reduce the federal defecits but a lot of the economic boom was due to the dot com bubble that ultimately burst and the reduction in deficits was due to a major tax increase and savings due to hollowing out the military.

While liberals music acts U2's Bono and The Edge provided the live music for the festivities, one can imagine the words "Don't Worry, Be Happy" which was the real theme of the Clinton years. Don't worry about bin Laden, be happy with Monica. Don't worry about structural weaknesses in the economy, be happy with the runup in stock prices of companies that never made any money (and never would).

Of course, the biggest part of the Clinton "legacy" is scandal but, in the Clinton library, all is spun to Clinton's advantage:

"The Lewinsky matter is covered in an alcove dedicated to the "politics of persecution." The display lumps together Newt Gingrich's "Contract With America" and independent counsel Kenneth Starr's Whitewater investigation."

So, in Clinton's imaginative view of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy (VRWC), the whole Lewinsky matter is somehow the fault of Newt Gingrich or Ken Starr. In a couple of years, Clinton might even be bold enough to claim that Lewinsky was a plant by the VRWC and one can imagine Clinton claiming "that bitch set me up" in the manner of Washington D.C.'s own Marion Barry.

The library building itself it supposedly styled to represent Clinton's "bridge to the 21st Century" -- see Newsweek's puff piece for an artist rendering. Of course, a lot of folks are seeing a mobile home in the sky. For Clinton, it all make sense; the man who calls himself the first black president with his grand visions is loathed and despised by others as something akin to a petty criminal.


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