Alexander's Column

Reality check — please!

Mark Alexander · Feb. 9, 2001

“One of the more noteworthy effects of Bill Clinton’s grubby, larcenous, and practically locust-like exit from office – that pomp-clinging, furniture-pinching, pardons-for-crooks-dispensing, office-ransacking, Air-Force-One-stripping processional into private life – has been to ignite a white-hot outrage on the part of many of the former president’s to-the-death defenders in the media. Clinton-o-phile talking heads, who for eight years were at-the-ready to spin themselves into contortions of logic from which they still haven’t unraveled, now find themselves in a righteous funk over Mr. Clinton’s pardon racket – er, procedures. Columnists and editorial writers who once programmed their laptops to spew out the words ‘doesn’t rise to the level of impeachment’ with a single keystroke are now [changing their tune]. But talk about too little too late.” –Washington Times

The Leftmedia are feigning great shock over their discovery that the Clintons may not have led the “most ethical administration” after all. For your reading pleasure, The Federalist has compiled some representative examples of Leftist mass opinion-shapers’ newfound perspective on the corrupt-to-the-core Clintons.

“The cascading events of the past several weeks feed the impression that the Clintons have a warped sense of entitlement and a deaf ear for ethics. In fact, the Clintons seem stunningly unaware of standards so basic that they can’t be explained away by legal technicalities or staff-level mix-ups. Among them: Ethical senators don’t skirt already-loose ethics rules. Former presidents don’t order the most expensive digs on the real-estate menu. And even long-term guests of the White House don’t make off with the furniture. For sheer arrogance of power, nothing came close to matching Clinton’s exercise of the pardon authority at a moment when he was free of accountability and immune from legal or political consequences. The more that is learned about some of the beneficiaries of his largess, the worse it looks.” –USA Today

“Leave it to Bill Clinton to close out his presidency with one last helping of his signature dish: a pungent stew of campaign contributions, ethical shortcuts and what-the-hell disregard for likely consequences.” –Newsday

“The Clintons’ defining characteristic: They have no capacity for embarrassment. Words like shabby and tawdry come to mind. They don’t begin to do it justice.” –The Washington Post

“We are particularly troubled by the numerous instances in which Mr. Clinton granted pardons or commutations without proper consultation with federal prosecutors, often to reward friends or political allies or gain future political advantage. … [His pardon of Rich] was an inexcusable abuse of the president’s absolute clemency power.” –The New York Times

“[Ms. Rodham-Clinton must] forthrightly address the questions that have accumulated in recent days and make clear that she intends to set a higher standard for her service as a senator. … We think it is within the rights of every New Yorker to expect Mrs. Clinton to avoid the grasping approach to political money that was a hallmark of her husband’s administration and to promise in a public way to avoid entanglement in compromising political deals.” –New York Times

Of the Times and Post criticism of HILLARY!, Lefty Camille Paglia says, “For the New York Times (in a lead editorial last weekend) to call on Hillary to end her ‘bunker mentality’ is hilarious, since both the Times and the Washington Post let her get away with that for years…. Because she was so pampered and coddled by her cooing apologists, Hillary is now disastrously ill-prepared for public life. Stripped of her White House entourage last month, she began her Senate committee work looking like a bug-eyed, droopy derelict flushed out of a train tunnel.”

Even Time Magazine’s perennial Clinton apologist Margaret Carlson joined the chorus: “The Clintons have long dismissed the criticism of those in the vast right-wing conspiracy whom they don’t respect. But how do you dismiss the views of those you do respect –who insist you would never sink so low, until they are silenced by proof of your grasping? … There may be no connection between the disgraceful pardon Clinton gave Marc Rich and the coffee table Denise Rich gave the Clintons. But I’d never be comfortable putting my feet up on it.”

Carlson added, “Here is the real tragedy: Hillary doesn’t realize that finally she is rich, with her $8 million book advance and married to a man with massive earning potential.”

Memo to Ms. Carlson: No…. The “real tragedy” is that the Clintons are poster children for Chronic Character Deficit Disorder – and always have been – despite years of denial by highbrow Leftists like yourself.

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