In "His way," David Greenberg
argues that the real Bill Clinton
has been misunderstood,
and makes the case that true
Clintonism – a combination of
populism, pragmatism, and
the language of values – is the
best hope for Kerry and the
Democrats in 2004. What is
Clinton’s legacy? And should
Kerry claim it – or run away
I agree with David Greenberg's assessment of " Clintonism". Bill Clinton is unique. I frequently wish he were still President. John Kerry has to be himself but he would do well to adopt Clinton's approach to governing. If possible in politics, try not to "serve two masters". No one will be properly served.
Edvarda , Hanover
Only Monica Lewinsky knows for sure.
Peter , Cohasset
Clinton's legacy, unfortunately, is Monica. After that, he governed as a liberal. He only signed welfare reform to keep his chances for reelection high. On social issues he was liberal. He didn't reduce taxes. He appointed Ginsburg to the Supremes. If he had any conservatism, it was that he didn't let the deficit get out of control. But he did that by cutting defense. He could have been more liberal, of course, but he was pretty liberal. Since Monica is Clinton's primary legacy, Kerry should distance himself from him, but not so much as to alienate the base of the Democrats. That will be difficult to do, which makes Bush's reelection likely.
Clinton's legacy is being too busy chasing skirts to do any harm to a booming economy. Kerry might as well run on Clinton's "legacy". He can't really run on his own record.
John Kerry should know that the people who will vote for him are enlightened enough to look beyond Monica and understand that Clinton was a great president. Kerry shouldn't make the same mistake Al Gore did by distancing himself from that.
Let's see, Clinton's legacy...giving plans for nuclear weapons to the North Koreans; lying under oath; Jones, Flowers, Lewinsky etc...(if he lies to and cheats on his closest friend, do you think he would have a problem lying to and cheating us?); reducing Dept. of Defense budget/personnel by 50%; NAFTA; stealing at least $28,000 worth of art and furniture from the White House in 200; using the White House as a Bed and Breakfast; etc... If John Kerry has a functional brain cell in his head, he would stay away from Bill's legacy and develop his own.
Kerry can claim the Clinton legacy by saying, as Clinton did, anything that sounds good and then doing whatever he wants to do. Here's a list. 1. Talk about feminism and prey on women, as he did with Katherine Willey and Juanita Broderick. 2. Talk about abortion being safe, legal and rare and then champion partial birth abortion. 3. Stick American kids in Bosnia and Kosovo, where we have no security interests, and run like hell or do nothing when our people are attacked, like in Somalia and the WTC. 4. Take credit for an economic boom, that largely was the result of the Internet madness that briefly spawned silly, temporary jobs. 5. Blame the next guy when reality intrudes and those jobs blow away. (In fact, what is a better metaphor for the Clinton years than the Internet craze and the highly paid jobs that briefly appeared. It was great! Everybody playing foozball and getting stock options. Companies hired people to have warm bodies so the VC's would give them more money to hire more people to get more money. Smells like Democrat economic values to me.) I wish Kerry was a real JFK Democrat. I no longer consider myself a liberal Democrat because liberal Democrats are now way over on the far left. I'm a John F. Kennedy Democrat. Imagine if the real JFK were alive today to see his disgraceful brother and the rest of them.
Monica Lewinsky is Bill Clinton's legacy? Amazing conclusion! FDR died in the arms of his mistress while Eleanor was out of town. Dwight Eisenhower apparently took comfort in the arms of his mistress in England during WW11. We all know about JFK, LBJ and their womanizing. How about Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemmings? Is the legacy of these men determined by their sex lives? The only difference is the media was not as "active" then, nor were their enemies as vicious as those who feared Bill Clinton and his tremendous popularity. A dumb thing for Clinton to do? Of course but he was forced into lying by the media and enemies. The other Presidents were not confronted with their affairs. If sexual activities determine a president's legacy, then probably very few men would qualify for the job. Bill Clinton is one of the best presidents America has been priviledged to have.
Claim it. It could be the best thing going for him.
Kim, Boston, MA
Clinton had his day...now move over and let Kerry drive the Democrate party bus.....Bush is killing us and the country, he is the worst president in the history of our country has to go......
jack, bradenton fl