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William C. Altreuter
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Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Frank Rich on Clinton sex scandals. Actually, on Bill Clinton sex scandals. 1992 was a long time ago, but few things have changed. Ol' Bill still makes Republicans froth at the mouth, and Hillary does too. For some reason these people seem to think that sex is the way to get other people to dislike the Clintons. Oh, and just for fun I went back and had a look at the 1992 Democratic Primary. You know, people act as though Hillary's talk of a "vast right-wing conspiracy" was Easter Bunny stuff, but do the math. The Gennifer Flowers story was brought to us by Rupert Murdoch's Star Magazine. (Later, of course, CBS and the NYTimes had good fun with it, because Liberal Media.) Going into the convention the delegate count stood thus:
Now, think back. Do you recall Jerry Brown, or Paul Tsongas hammering, or even mentioning, O'l Bill's sexual adventuring? What about Pat Schroeder? No? Me neither. It's not that it was a non-issue: surrogates made references to it-- but for the most part the focus was on policy and "electability". My remark at the time was, "What I hate about Clinton is that in November I'll be voting for him."

I mention all of this now because it seems as though a dependable conservative tropism is to insist that something will work even after it has been conclusively established that it will not work, it has never worked, and it always ends badly. It's not just wars. It's climate science-- or the way they talk about science generally. Think about economic policy. Try this one one for size: every time the question of raising the minimum wage comes up conservatives howl that it will cause layoffs and unemployment. Of course it doesn't. So here we go again, the people who are always wrong about pretty much everything are going to talk about sex. The sex that Bill Clinton had, the sex that married gay people have, all the sex. Good luck with that.

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