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Bill Clinton: You’re Breaking My Heart, Man

bill-clintonadsfasdf.jpgI’ve mentioned it before, but it bears repeating: I grew up on Bill Clinton. He was my governor and then my president for 20 of the first 26 years of my life. In an era when idols have all but died, he was nevertheless mine. I worked his first presidential campaign when I was only 17, and again four years later, when I could actually cast a vote. I had a fucking life-size cardboard stand-up of the man in my college dorm, which scared the bejesus out of me every morning when I woke up thinking there was a stranger with a saxophone standing over me.

In short: The man meant a great deal to me. Sad as it may seem to some of you, he was a huge influence in my life, and the fact that a small-town kid from a single parent home could come out of backwoods Arkansas and be the President of the United States was a huge inspiration for me; in a lot of ways, Bill Clinton was the reason I wound up in law school in the first place.

And despite the man’s many faults, his personal setbacks, and his political blunders, I’ve nevertheless maintained a huge affection for him. But for the first time, really, he’s starting to lose a lot of luster for me. It’s heartbreaking, in a way, to see how he’s orchestrating his wife’s campaign. He’s not only damaging his wife’s campaign, he’s hurting his own image. Maybe irrevocably. And a statement he made earlier this week has put it over the top:

“I think there is a big reason there’s an age difference in a lot of these polls,” he said. “Because once you’ve reached a certain age, you won’t sit there and listen to somebody tell you there’s really no difference between what happened in the Bush years and the Clinton years; that there’s not much difference in how small-town Pennsylvania fared when I was president, and in this decade.”

Essentially, what Bill is saying here is that young people are supporting Barack Obama because they’re not smart enough to know better. And in saying so, he’s completely alienating the younger demographic. And the irony here is that Obama has done more than anyone since Bill Clinton to galvanize the American youth. College students are people in their 20s, for the first time in decades, really, feel honestly excited about a presidential candidate, and what does Bill do? He discredits them. The very same demographic that put him over the top in 1992 is now too dumb to know any better.

Well, you know what, Bill? Fuck you. Kids are excited about politics again, and how dare you try to take that away from them. Don’t be that guy, Bill. Don’t be the crusty old fogey who tells kids to get off his political lawn. Instead of discrediting younger votes, try to embrace them like you did in 1992 and 1996.

And stop being a douchebag.

| Comments (15)


Comments

Yea! What he said!

I've started to wonder if perhaps ol' Bill has started to suffer from some mental deterioration, due either to after effects from his past health problems or just plain old getting older. Sure, he's still sharp as a tack and an almost peerless speaker, but more than a few times I've seen the cranky old man thing progress to more serious mental deficiencies.

I dunno, I'm one of those 20-somethings, and I must say my kind is not demographic you want to count on. Sure, they're vocal, write blogs and make youtube videos, but how many of them will actually get their asses out and vote? I bet if you polled them, the majority wouldn't even be registered. The Obama Girl never voted in her primary. Remember that whole "rock the vote" campaign last election? As far as I remember, it didn't even register a blip on on the voting radar for our demographic.

I'm hoping they prove me wrong this year, but I'm not holding my breath ;)

Firstly, I'm not a frequent visitor of your site but I bookmarked it. I just wanted to commend you on having such a personal and passionate post on your blog. Not many blogs focussed on public items get personal.

I agree with three elle about the 20 somethings - they're just frills and hype. Also, you had a point in how young people are starting to get interested in politics. I'm part of that demographic and this is the first time I sought out American politics.

Please keep up your dedication to this blog! It's the most informative thing I read :)

OK, ya had to know I was going to chime in on this fucking topic!

Just so we're clear, I don't know how it is to be Bill's age, but from what's going on in my life now, you're late forties and onward can be cool as shit.

My girls have turned into awesome, mostly unfucked up, smart, assertive, educated women who are going to get out and vote for Obama in the PA primary and they're going to vote for him in November. Bill won't be able to stop them.

So, on another note. I'm in Philly visiting my kids. My son in law is a Vegan. Everytime I come here I make him go with me to get a cheesesteak. I don't think he knows I'm doing it just to fuck with him. Does that make me a douchbag?

Nah -- that makes you a cool father, Bill. -- DR

Actually, the question of whether it makes you a douchbag or not doesn't turn on fucking with him like that. It turns on where you go for the cheesesteak. If it's Pat's, you're a good man. If it's anywhere else, well, there might be an issue.

Yeah! Yeah!

Just a quick thought: is it possible Bill's doing it on purpose? Maybe he's a closeted Obama man and he's willing to sacrifice his own popularity to make it happen. He can't just come out and say "Don't vote for her." Then he'd certainly be a douche nozzle for all time.

"Essentially, what Bill is saying here is that young people are supporting Barack Obama because they’re not smart enough to know better."

I thought that was painfully obvious to everyone by now.

At least you had 20 years to sort out Bill in our head. The newly proselytized Obama followers have had slightly over 3 years to vet him. With issues like Rezco and Rev. Wright to not holding his hand over his heart durring the national anthem and saying he never said he wouldn't wear the flag pen when he said exactly that last October.

Like Obama himself said... "Words matter."

He just admited that lower capital gains taxes increase revenue but he'll raise them anyway out of "fairness" I thought Marxism was dead.

I hope the newly minted converts don't get the leader they deserve.

Vagina/Power whipped. Yep, could be that. Methinks it has more to do with the power though.

thanks so much for writing this post. i can't decide if bill is torpedo-ing his wife's chances on purpose to make sure he's the only clinton who got to occupy the oval office or if he's just got early onset old fogey disease. but as someone who inspired me to actually be interested in politics (i was one of those 20 somethings that got out and voted for him), it's a sad, sad degeneration...

The mind reels just trying to comprehend it: I remember not being paranoid and physically ill over what was happening to/in our country when Clinton was president; I don't recall reading or hearing about 4,000-plus young soldiers dying needlessly for a cause that only seemed to suit a president's personal interest during the entirety of the Clinton years; and I think it's certainly provable that our national budget wasn't ripped to shreds seemingly overnight under Clinton's administration.
Dustin, thank you so much for this article and giving me the courage to finally say out loud that we had it pretty damned good in the Clinton years. The Bush gang have simply made me sick of life anymore, and I think this generation is doomed as the repercussions of this idiotic administration echo on for years to come.
So, have a great weekend!

I, too, LOVED Bill. And I am also saddened by his recent douche-like behavior. But I think it's just him working to defend his woman rather than help her campaign. And even that I find hypocritical of him. So... you can publicly humiliate and disrespect your wife, but no one else can? Kiss my ass, you cheating bastard!

A++

Ah - that Bill is still canny I'd warrant. Really, his hands are tied here no matter what he might think. I honestly get the notion that he's inspired and intrigued by Obama, but in the tight and not enviable position of having to/wanting to support his wife at the same time. As much as he may want to do the right thing for Hillary, he just might be on the fence about whether he thinks she's the right candidate in this particular field. If that's true - he's probably just cranky as all hell and payback's a bitch. But he owes her, and he's still a mostly stand up guy. I can't wait to see his face when the chips fall - I'll know right there and then.

And you young voters - go with your gut. There's a mess of trouble in your country and it's landing on your laps, so vote for whomever you think will sort it out and set it a'right.

I sound like I'm 80! Haha! Oh well - for the record, I'm Canadian, mid-30's and all about Obama.