Saturday, February 11, 2006

One of a kind

Andrew Sullivan links to this AP article that discusses some of Bill Clinton's comments before the annual gathering of the world's movers and shakers in Davos, Switzerland, ostensibly because of the humorous retort Mr. Clinton came up with in response to a question concerning advice to future U.S. presidents. The quip is indeed funny, but I suspect that Mr. Sullivan points to the article more so because of the substantive clarity and sensibility of Clinton's remarks, though he won't come right out and say that because he so loathes Bill Clinton.

Mr. Clinton's speech doesn't really contain anything earth-shattering or particularly new, but when you read his comments on global warming, Iran, Hamas, globalization, etc., and then look at the recent approach by the United States, particularly rhetorically, on all of these issues, it becomes very clear how far away from the approach Mr. Clinton advocates we currently are, officially.

I'm an unabashed fan of Bill Clinton, obviously, though I don't agree with everything he says, nor do I pretend that his shortcomings are not as gargantuan as his amazing skills. But when you read an article like this one, which describes the rapt nature of the audience, hanging on his every word, it's difficult to imagine another American leader (or another international personality, for that matter) who has that kind of stature , even (and especially) among those who diametrically oppose much of what he stands for.

It is also a sort of reminder of how close November of 2008 really is, and of the undeniable fact that no one currently on the horizon from either of our two political parties even comes close to capturing the imagination, or being able to articulate a vision for the country and the world the way that President Clinton can.

We can all agree that hopefully, somehow, that will change over the course of the coming months...

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