Wednesday, March 03, 2004

Quoting Michael Moore
I was in Oita city last week, and bought “Downsize This” by Michael Moore. It’s one of his older books, published in 1996. I knew it would be a bit dated, but the English book selection is rather limited, so I bought it anyway.
Interesting, even though the book is 8 years old, some of it is very relevant today. For instance his chapter on the hatred directed towards President Clinton.
Quoting from the book:

“I’m amazed that Clinton hasn’t been shot. U.S. News & World Report recently felt a need to conduct a poll to find out how many people actually hate the President: not disagree with him or dislike him or want to throw him out in the next election. I’m talking about hard core hatred…”

“The Secret Service says that Clinton is the subject of at least 1,500 ‘very serious’ threats on his life each year, and that number has been rising by 30 percent a year since 1994. Clinton seems destined to set the record as the biggest presidential target ever. On an average of every five hours, Clinton is the recipient of what the Secret Service believes is a ‘very serious’ threat.

“Senator Jesse Helms, Representative Bob Dornan, and talk-show hosts Rush Limbaugh, G. Gordon Liddy, and Oliver North have each offered some sort of veiled or obvious threat that , in essence, has said that Clinton had better watch it or harm will come to him.”

“Senator Jesse Helms of North Carolina issued the following threat to the President: “Mr. Clinton better watch out if he comes down here [to North Carolina]”

“What has Clinton done to deserve this? Massacred millions in a war? Caused the stock market to crash? Brought back the bubonic plague? To listen to the Right, you’d think he has brought about the end of Western Civilization—because he smoked a joint? Because he dodged the draft? Because he has an eye for the ladies? C’mon, people! Get a grip!”

I suppose you know where I’m going with this. The next time your favorite Republican complains about how uncivil the political discourse has been recently, or talks about how important it is to respect the office of the President, remind him or her about the dialogue during the Clinton years.

Video Version

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