Wednesday, January 30, 2008


Almost enough to make you root for Obama. Comment by Jeff Jacoby below

On the day a new president is inaugurated, the outgoing president traditionally keeps a low profile, slipping away quietly after the swearing-in and leaving the spotlight to his successor. Not Bill Clinton. His first order of post-presidential business on Jan. 20, 2001, was a 90-minute rally at Andrews Air Force Base, complete with honor guard and a 21-gun salute. "I left the White House, but I'm still here!" Clinton exultantly told the crowd. "We're not going anywhere!"

Like most Americans, I was ready for the tawdry and tiring psychodrama that was the Clinton administration to finally be over. But something told me he wasn't being rhetorical. "He means it," I wrote at the time. "He *isn't* going anywhere. Yes, he packed his bags, zipped his pants, and turned the White House keys over to the new tenants -- but he's still here. There are more grotesqueries to come from our ex-president. There will be more truth-twisting, more money-grubbing, more scandal. Even out of office, he will find seamy new ways to degrade the presidency. Just wait."

So here we are, seven years and one week later, and what do you know -- Clinton is back in the news, his angry rants and political attacks casting a shadow over the presidential campaign. Once again the only elected president to face an impeachment trial is generating waves of outrage and dismay. A Rip Van Winkle newly awakened from 10 years of slumber wouldn't be surprised to find Clinton under fire for spreading falsehoods and behaving disreputably. But he might do a double-take upon discovering that Clinton's critics now aren't Republicans. They are fellow Democrats and liberals recoiling from his attacks on Senator Barack Obama, who has had the effrontery to challenge Hillary Clinton for the presidential nomination.

Last week, Clinton was blasted by Senator Patrick Leahy of Vermont, an Obama supporter, for taking "glib cheap shots" that are "beneath the dignity of a former president." He was excoriated by Ed Schultz, the nation's top liberal radio talk host, for "lying about Barack Obama's record" and "embarrassing" the Democratic Party. Tom Daschle, the former Senate Democratic leader who has endorsed Obama, warned that Clinton's "overt distortions" were "not presidential" and could "destroy the party" if not checked.

A past chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Party charged the Clintons with practicing the "politics of deception" and likened the former president to Lee Atwater, a Republican operative who became infamous for his ruthless political warfare. "The Clintons play dirty when they feel threatened," wrote William Greider in a scathing piece for The Nation, a leading journal of the left. "The recent roughing-up of Barack Obama was in the trademark style of the Clinton years in the White House. High-minded and self-important on the surface, smarmily duplicitous underneath, meanwhile jabbing hard to the groin area. They are a slippery pair and come as a package. The nation is at fair risk of getting them back in the White House for four more years. The thought makes me queasy."

What a pity that liberals and Democrats weren't as plainspoken about the Clintons' shamelessness and dishonesty back in the 1990s. In fairness, a few were: Former senator Bob Kerrey famously characterized Bill Clinton as "an unusually good liar -- unusually good," and Jesse Jackson once described him as "immune to shame," someone who at the core consisted of "absolutely nothing . . . nothing but an appetite." But far too often the Clintons' habits of mendacity, anger, and self-pity, their constant blame-shifting, their stop-at-nothing pursuit of power were excused or minimized by the left. America's political culture might never have grown so embittered if Democrats then had been a little more outraged by the Clintons' lack of ethics and a little less zealous about demonizing those who criticized them.

If recent weeks have made one thing clear, it is that the current Clinton campaign is as much about returning Bill to the White House as about making Hillary president. Bill Clinton's angry outbursts, his lack of self-control, his overpowering presence in the public arena are surely a preview of what a Clinton Restoration would be like. Hillary might be the president, but Bill would still be, as he has always been, the dominant Clinton. To whom would he be answerable in a second Clinton administration? Not to the woman whose political career is a derivative of his, that's for sure.




Jonah Goldberg has very kindly linked to my little laugh at David Neiwert. Neiwert has been sufficiently energized by that to reply in typical ad hominem style by repeating some old accusations about me -- quite ignoring the detailed replies that I have long ago given to those criticisms. See here and here. It was a slam dunk that Neiwert would not mention any of the facts that I have publicized about the Fascist history of the Left. Abusing the messenger is all that Leftists can do when confronted with facts about their own history. Also not surprising is his typical Leftist claim that mentioning any average differences between the races is "racist". I do not of course acknowledge ANY "unmentionable" realities. Guilt by association is another one of Neiwert's little Leftist tricks. He mentions that I once did a bit of co-blogging on Majority Rights but fails to mention that I was kicked off that site because of my repeated RIDICULING of antisemitism.

A reader has sent me the following useful "definition". Electile Dysfunction: the inability to become aroused over any of the choices for President put forth by either party in the 2008 election year

There is an excellent pictorial tribute to the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan here. Also here

Sanity dawning in Brazil? "As Luiz Inacio "Lula" da Silva starts the second year of his second term as president of Brazil, he remains popular, with approval ratings of 50%. But those numbers were no help last month when he sunk serious political capital into a bid to renew the national financial-transactions tax. The effort went down in flames in Congress, where elected officials are finally waking up to the fact that the government can't squeeze the public forever. The death of any tax anywhere in the world is good economic news, but in a country like Brazil it's only slightly less amazing than the fall of the Berlin Wall was to Eastern Europe."

Learn more skills or face losing benefit, British jobless will be told: "There should be no "free-riding" on the welfare state, the new Work and Pensions Secretary said yesterday as the Government outlined a "carrot and stick" approach to reform. James Purnell, the most Blairite minister in the Cabinet, set out, with Gordon Brown, proposals to require people to obtain the skills they need or face sanctions. Every unemployed person would have a "skills check" to help Britain to raise its skills game to world class, Mr Brown said. One in five under-21s would be steered towards an apprenticeship, and private and voluntary sectors would be used to create the training posts. People refusing to take the chances given to them would lose benefit, first for two weeks, then for four weeks, and then for up to 26 weeks."

Stupid Leftist group-obsession causing ructions: "The National Organization for Women's New York chapter today issued a scathing response to Sen. Ted Kennedys endorsement of Barack Obama over Hillary Clinton in the Democratic presidential primary, calling it a "betrayal" of women. Marcia Pappas, NOW-NY's president, wrote in a news release that on a host of issues and positions, "Women have forgiven Kennedy, stuck up for him, stood by him," but "We are repaid with his abandonment. He's picked the new guy over us. He's joined the list of progressive white men who can't or won't handle the prospect of a woman president who is Hillary Clinton."


List of backup or "mirror" sites here or here -- for readers in China or for everyone when blogspot is "down" or failing to update. Email me here (Hotmail address). My Home Pages are here or here or here


"Why should the German be interested in the liberation of the Jew, if the Jew is not interested in the liberation of the German?... We recognize in Judaism, therefore, a general anti-social element of the present time... In the final analysis, the emancipation of the Jews is the emancipation of mankind from Judaism.... Indeed, in North America, the practical domination of Judaism over the Christian world has achieved as its unambiguous and normal expression that the preaching of the Gospel itself and the Christian ministry have become articles of trade... Money is the jealous god of Israel, in face of which no other god may exist". Who said that? Hitler? No. It was Karl Marx. See also here and here and here.

The Big Lie of the late 20th century was that Nazism was Rightist. It was in fact typical of the Leftism of its day. It was only to the Right of Stalin's Communism. The very word "Nazi" is a German abbreviation for "National Socialist" (Nationalsozialistisch) and the full name of Hitler's political party (translated) was "The National Socialist German Workers' Party".


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