I'm talking about Bill Clinton's latest interview, which aired on NBC Monday morning.
He was on TV to plug his new book, a "thriller" co-written with James Patterson, when the questions veered off into the Me Too movement and the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Needless to say, Clinton was not too thrilled when past episodes of his sexual predations came back to haunt him.
Borrowing a page from the playbook of long-suffering wife Hillary, who once complained that she and Bill were "dead broke" from legal bills by the time they left the White House, necessitating a new career of extreme money-grubbing just to make ends meet, the former president portrayed himself as the real victim of his tryst with a White House intern.
As such, he's never felt the need to apologize to Lewinsky, whose own public profile and "wokeness" to the lopsided power dynamics of the affair has risen as much as Clinton's has fallen in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein crime spree and other revelations of bad behavior in the highest places. His relationship with Monica Lewinsky, plus the accusations of outright sexual assault have, as Hillary parsed it during her latest political campaign, already been "litigated" and are therefore not open to further serious discussion -- MeToo movement, or no MeToo movement.
Even if he were president today, Clinton insisted, the movement would do nothing to change how he viewed the Lewinsky episode.
“I don’t think it would be an issue because people would be using the facts instead of the imagined facts,” he whined in his best legal parsing fashion, bringing back memories of "it depends on what the definition of 'is' is" and "I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Ms. Lewinsky." (So much for his jab at Trump and the previously unheard-of phenomenon of "fake news" emanating from the mouths of government officials.)
In exonerating himself yet again on Monday, Clinton gave the feeblest possible compliment to the MeToo movement, parsing his approval with the disclaimer that he "disagree(s) with some of the decisions that have been made." He didn't say if he was referring to Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance's belated decision to charge Democratic mega-donor Harvey Weinstein even after Vance had accepted campaign donations from him, albeit carefully and legally funneled through the disgraced mogul's lawyer.
Vance said he has since returned Weinstein's cash. The Clintons, though, carefully parsing to the end, dodged the issue by claiming all Weinstein's donations to their Initiative and Foundation had already been given away to charity anyway, so they cannot possibly return the money. As far as her political campaign chest goes, since Weinstein was largely a "bundler" of millions of dollars from his fellow oligarchs, she won't be returning that money, either. Her running mate, Tim Kaine, has falsely claimed that since the campaign was over anyway, they couldn't possibly even return Weinstein's own personal donation. (The campaign is over, of course, but as FactCheck.org notes, the excess cash was deftly funneled right into her super-pac, Onward Together.)
Meanwhile, Barack Obama has apparently pardoned himself for his own role in giving us Donald Trump by promoting Hillary Clinton, not to mention rewarding Wall Street over Main Street during his eight-year tenure, ensuring that the richest Americans clawed back 94% of all the trillions of household wealth "lost" in the wake of the 2007-08 financial meltdown.
The D.C. Bubble is full to bursting about of the latest blame-game book, this one from one of his former flacks, one-time aspirational novelist and national security adviser Benjamin Rhodes. Since I don't have my barf bucket close to hand at the moment, I'll just refer you to one nauseating positive review from the New York Times's resident palace stenographer, and to another much more palatable one from the New York Times's resident style maven.
Long story short: Obama was shaken, if not stirred, by Trump's victory. He confided to his flacks that the ingrates of America were just not ready for his awesomeness. The legend in his own time turns out to have been about ten or twenty years ahead of his time. So it's our bad, Bottom 90% of America.
But just in case you're concerned that Obama is wallowing in a dysfunctional depression like tens of millions of bad and unready Americans, you'll be happy to learn that fresh off inking his reputed $50 million production deal with Netflix, he'll be the headline act at a major Hollywood bash later this month. He will sell intimate access to his cool self for a cool $100,000 a pop. (the flashbulb kind, not the unwanted and odious Clinton/Weinstein kind.)
And the Democratic functionaries still wonder why the party lost a thousand seats during the Obama years, not to mention a huge hunk of the working class vote to Donald Trump's paranoid-style populism.“I am very excited to announce that President Barack Obama will be joining DNC Chair Tom Perez in Los Angeles on Thursday, June 28 to headline his first fundraising event for the DNC on the West Coast this year,” said the invite to the $2,700 to $100,000 priced event. “This will be a rare opportunity to spend an evening with President Obama,” the pitch added. “While at the event, President Obama and Chair Perez will discuss the strategy of the Democratic Party for winning elections in 2018 and beyond.”
Meanwhile, former President Jimmy Carter took a much-needed break from building Habitat for Humanity houses last week, and visited a North Carolina McDonald's restaurant for an egg biscuit and a "senior" cup of coffee with his wife Rosalynn. And he isn't even running for anything.
He also isn't getting invited to headline Hollywood fundraisers or to appear on the Today show.