Monday, February 23, 2009

King Bill and Czar Arnold I – forget Caroline, Robert and Uncle Teddy; Arnold is the “new Kennedy”

By Bernie Quigley

- for The Hill on 2/22/09

Why is Bill Clinton suddenly in the press again every day? A few days back he was denouncing Republicans for trying to destroy the country by talking bad about the economy. Then he apparently got hold of a newspaper and it was liberal New York Times economist Paul Krugman shilling for a new Great Depression. And Obama as well. I almost expected them to show up in a Busby Berkeley skit at the Depression Era themed Academy Awards last night.

They cornered themselves into it. If Obama’s going to be the “new Roosevelt,” they’ve got to make it look as bad as possible. So next day, Bill was saying Obama should stop talking down the economy.

Why do we need to know every day what Bill thinks? He didn’t actually know what to do himself until he hired Dick Morris.

We need to know what Bill thinks because we love him. We love him and we want him back. Possibly we can’t live without him. Because nostalgia is art’s poor sister and we’re getting bored with the new scolds; Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder telling all the white people that they’re a bunch of cowards. Jimmy Carter was a scold. We didn’t like him that much.

We love Bill. And the young ‘uns on the blogs keep asking for a “rock star.” That’s what they want in a president.

That’s Bill. He’s practically a rock star. Obama is boring. He never cheats on his wife and he hasn’t smoked a joint since high school. He’s a grown up. He’s no fun at all. He’s always reading to children and doing good works. Like Jimmy Carter. We want Bill back.

They thought Carter was going to be a rock star too, at first. Hunter Thompson, a journalist who was stoned all the time in the Sixties, said so. Then he turned out to be like a Sunday school teacher or something, telling us to try harder and turn the lights out when we leave the room.

It’s getting tedious watching Hillary traveling everywhere in the world as Bill’s proxy. It’s like a veggie burger instead of the real thing. We need Bill back and I will bet right now that there will be an initiative to allow him to run again in 2012, Constitution be damned. We don’t care that much about the Constitution anymore . . . Gitmo, habeas corpus, so many things. It is an archaic talisman which constantly interferes with our flow and yearnings and always has. Bill would be president right now if it wasn’t for the Constitution. It artificially keeps Bill out of the White House where we want him always. We don’t want a boring president like Obama. We want a king, like Bill.

16 years ago I interviewed one of the most important and influential fund raisers for the Democrats and she actually said: “I guess Bill and Hillary will be the closest thing we ever come to a king and queen.”

Myself, if I had to have a king I think I’d prefer Arnold. Although I think of him more as a czar and I’ve always found the big Russian czars more appealing than kings. And bigger. They call him “a party of one” so he could be Czar Arnold I. We’d have to change the Constitution to get him as well and it has already been suggested. I think he’d make a cool president. For about a month.

They say the “strong man” caricature Arnold has played so many times now actually compensates for moral and spiritual weakness. It doesn’t really, but it sends a signal of apparent weakness. Obama needs to pull him out of California right now to use him as a front man to sell his bailout. Arnold is finished with the Republicans now and the California Republicans are finished pretty much with him.

While they were gathering elsewhere this week, Arnold was meeting again with President Obama to work things out on the bailout. But he could still be seen as leader in a split which might have permanently divided the Republicans this week; Arnold the leader of the Obama Republicans; those who support the bailouts – or maybe they could be called Kennedy Republicans, due to Arnold’s family connection - while Louisiana governor Bobby Jindal, who said he would refuse part of Obama’s bailout, stepped forward to lead the real Republicans.

And Obama does need a front man; a pitch man. Someone who might know someone else in Hollywood who might know how to write a press release. It might help avoid public statements like Secretary Hillary telling the world that China and the United States will “rise and fall together.” Jesus in the Garden. Did she sign us on as an economic colony? Bill would never say something as stupid as that. He knows Hollywood guys.

There is a TV show coming up next month called Kings; a modern day reworking of King David’s story. During the Super Bowl they had a preview and one of the characters said: “We were nothing before we had a king.”

Maybe that’s it. Maybe that’s why they keep going back to Bill and why they drafted Arnold out of the movies in the first place. We need a king.

I’d like to think that governors and former governors such as Kathleen Sebelius, Mark Warner, Bobby Jindal, Sarah Palin, Rick Perry, John Lynch, and business leaders like Carly Fiorina and Meg Whitman and Mayor Mike Bloomberg of New York actually had a chance on their merits. But Governor Palin aside, none of these other competent managers were seriously considered in the last election. And she was laughed off the stage.

Maybe management abilities are no longer an issue. You hire people for that like Dick Morris.

Zhou Enlai, the great Chinese Communist leader and first premier of the People’s Republic of China, our new best friend, was once asked about the impact of the French Revolution in 1789.

“It’s too early to tell,” he said.

The same might be said today about Jefferson’s vision of a free republic.