Thursday, October 9, 2008

Election Countdown "A to Z" (B is for Bill Clinton)

I've decided that out of sheer ambition and a dose of chutzpah, I'm going to do a post every day between now and the election (25 days from today) and tie it to a letter of the alphabet. All the posts—in order, from A to Z—will be election and politics oriented, and no subject is off limits. Here goes nothing.

B is for Bill Clinton

Bill, we knew you when—and really liked you better then too. Yes, some will find it hard to ever forgive you for those cynical words in South Carolina. And Chris Rock hardly thinks you've been redeemed. Author Toni Morrison may now even regret actually calling you our "First Black President."

But your speech in Denver was vintage Bill. And you're still, by far, my favorite president, if only for another month. In fairness, you and Hillary are doing a lot in spite of your losses so we should maybe be a little more appreciative. And whenever I forget your gifted ability to speak to the American people better than anybody in modern times, you come out with beautifully presented thoughts like this (talking to Tom Brokaw about the ongoing challenges in Africa):

"I wish we could have a cessation in the use of the word "Africa" for just 18 months, while America learns that Africa is a continent. That, just in sub-Saharan Africa, has 48 separate countries. And that it's not just the geography, it's the politics, the culture, the language, everything is different. . . We've got to stop thinking that Africa is a monolith."
—Bill Clinton on Meet the Press, September 28, 2008

You have a magic with words, Bill, easily reducing complex issues to digestible terms. If only you could just magically show up during the debates, or weekly on the Sunday talk shows, ready to dismantle hypocritical Republican goons and lame pundits. It's what we grew to expect—and what we continue to need. But it's also why we were so disappointed when you used your skills against your own team during the primaries and are sometimes selfish with your helpful words these days.

All I ask is that in the remaining days, sir, you will use your powers for good. I mean, isn't Obama the true continuation of all that is great about your legacy? Hillary can run again in 2016 and you will still be spry enough to hang around the office chasing interns. I know it doesn't exactly make up for wifey's loss and your postponed return to that comfy bed at 1600 Pennsylvania, but Secretary of State Bill Clinton doesn't sound so bad, does it?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

C is for Condoleezza.

Looking forward to what that piece is about.