Wednesday, February 6, 2008

The Clintons and the Democrats


By DAVID REINHARD

News item: Prominent Democrats are upset with the aggressive role that Bill Clinton is playing in the 2008 campaign, a role they believe is inappropriate for a former president and the titular head of the Democratic Party—Newsweek, Jan. 28, 2008.

Please, sit down, folks. Let's get started. Help yourself to the fair-trade coffee and herbal tea. First, I have to say up front that you represent a whole new clientele for me. I don't see many Democrats. My patients have been exclusively Republicans until the last few weeks. Now, as you all know too well, Clinton Nausea Syndrome—or CNS—has jumped to Democratic populations. Many practitioners have been predicting this would happen for years, and now we're seeing CNS outbreaks of the kind we haven't seen since 1992.

Two things before we begin our emergency Democrats-only CNS group therapy session: One, there's no reason to feel shame. The insidious thing about this disease is that Bill and Hillary Clinton want you to think it's your fault—oh, no, criticism of them is never their fault. Two, there's help. We now know how to manage CNS. You can never cure it, but it can be managed. We at Happy Days are Here Again Treatment Center are here for you. So let the bipartisan healing begin.

Jack: I hate them. I hate them. I hate them. I hate them. ...

Dr. Pill: I'm sensing authentic anger here ...

Jack: I hate them. I hate them. I hate them. ...

Dr. Pill: ... but we've found that it's better to examine the reasons behind our anger.

Michelle O: They will say anything ...

Ed: And the lies. Bill Clinton's lying on the campaign trail. He's lying about the opposition. And he's playing the race card.

Tom: The truth is not in them.

Dr. Pill: Are you sure you're Democrats?

Barack: You know the former president, who I think all of us have a lot of regard for, has taken his advocacy on behalf of his wife to a level that I think is pretty troubling. He continues to make statements that are not supported by the facts. He makes statements that are not factually accurate.

Dr. Pill: I know you're awfully young, Barack, but did you miss the 1990s?

Ed: I think Bill Clinton is the Mike Tyson of American politics. He can't control himself.

Jack: I'm starting to call them "Hill-Billy." It just feels good.

Dr. Pill: Sometimes name-calling does feel good, but it isn't necessarily helpful, is it?

Tom: Bill Clinton's not acting presidential.

Dr. Pill: And having sex with a White House intern in the Oval Office and lying under oath was presidential?

Michelle O: The Clintons turn everything we say around on us. How does he get away with it?

Jack: And there's the self-pity ...

Ed: The paranoia, don't forget the paranoia. You criticize them and all of sudden you're a cog in some vast conspiracy, you're doing a "hit job" on them.

Barack: And they just make you feel so dirty responding to them.

Dr. Pill: You Democrats are so cute. Remind me never to let you go one-on-one with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

Jack: Why didn't you people tell us about the Clintons?

Dr. Pill: Ah, well, ah, actually I think we did?

Barack: I mean, you mention that Hillary was on the board of Wal-Mart and the next thing you know she says you represent "a slum landlord business in inner-city Chicago." I mean, golly willickers.

Jack: The audacity of the man from Hope.

Tom: It's the politics of personal destruction. They take a guy with a distinguished record—a veritable Boy Scout—and turn him into a rabid beast.

Dr. Pill: Let's not get ahead of ourselves. Ken Starr will be here next week for a special "Politics of Personal Destruction" Survivors Workshop.

Michelle O: I guess what's so maddening is that they're so good at this kind of thing. What can we do, Dr. Pill, what can we do?

Dr. Pill: I feel your pain—sorry, bad choice of words.




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