Prediction: Soon, the far left will be as critical of President-elect Barack Obama as the far right.

Just 13 days after Obama’s victory, Clinton administration arch-critic du jour Chris Matthews was foaming at the mouth over Obama’s transition team and appointees to date. Talk about a “180.” “Where is the change? Where is the change?” Matthews repeatedly asked his guests.

My friend Airth wrote me about hearing a CNN discussion last night regarding Obama’s selection of “Clintonites” and how that does not represent the change he promised. “Well,” Airth said, “change is more about ideas than people. And 'Clintonites' have always had ideas that have led to change.”

Let me stop here, dear reader, and declare what follows is not a defense of the Clinton administration. I am defending President-elect Obama against those on the left and the right who are beginning to question his judgment.

Some of the strongest Obama supporters I know expressed concern over the influence Bill Clinton would have on a Hillary presidency. What then of the influence the former president’s administration appears to be having on Obama?

On Monday, I published a very important post, however lengthy, which discussed influences on Obama’s thinking as well as a very positive and progressive “blueprint” which has been proposed for him and for America. Unfortunately, few bothered to take note of the post, “A plan for the 44th president.”

Obama’s first cabinet appointment – Eric Holder as attorney general – might survive a confirmation hearing drilling on Bill Clinton’s pardon of Marc Rich, but will it survive questions about Ira Magaziner?

Hot on the heels of the Associated Press news flash about Holder came a statement from the National Legal and Policy Center (NLPC) criticizing Obama’s AG pick. NLPC, which promotes ethics in public life and sponsors the Government Integrity Project, is still ticked off over Holder’s involvement in what they deemed a “cover-up” by Magaziner. Read the story HERE. Be prepared for buzz about Magaziner’s chairmanship of the William Jefferson Clinton Foundation advisory board.

At the time, I concluded the charges against Magaziner were a Republican witch hunt (there was a helluva lot of that going around). Holder, Attorney General Janet Reno and President Clinton called them "unfair and unsupported by the facts." A 1995 criminal investigation into the so-called “cover up” ended without charges against Magaziner.

But, that won’t stop a regurgitation of anything that will shed bad light on the Clintons – and by inference, on Obama.

Kudos to Pat Buchanan who pointed out on “Hardball with Chris Matthews” last night that guests’ discussion of the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) suggested “corruption.”

The anti-Clinton forces who are chapped over Obama’s consideration of Hillary for secretary of state - including those on MSNBC - would have you believe there are some nefarious goings-on which should prevent her appointment.

The CGI mission is clear on its Web site: “The Clinton Global Initiative is a non-partisan catalyst for action, bringing together a community of global leaders to devise and implement innovative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing challenges.”

To see a list of all the amazing 10-year commitments made by CGI members: LINK

Then there is Joe Lieberman. I personally find Sen. Lieberman (I-CT) a despicable, self-serving opportunist who has not always put his country before his own political ambitions.

You can bet the far left is not too happy with Obama’s “pardon” of Lieberman and the Democratic Caucus’ willingness to overlook his support of John McCain.

Barack Obama is keeping his word. Throughout his campaign he promised to do all in his power to unite the people of this country. In the 2004 keynote address which catapulted him into the national spotlight, he said, “We are not blue states. We are not red states. We are the United States of America.”

In the College of Public Opinion, Obama might be flunking his first big test. In MY opinion, he is willing to put into place persons he deems best suited to salvaging what’s left of this country. The burden upon him is great – one few of us would welcome – and if he succeeds, he will leave the White House with highest honors.

The political factions of this country must put away pettiness and meet each other face to face, to paraphrase Mary Stewart’s “Collect.” We cannot let Obama – or our country - fail.


Phillip Hill said...

Hillary for Secretary of State would be great. Lieberman for anything would be a disaster. No matter who he chooses, he is going to be ridiculed. AT LEAST he is making an informed choice rather than randomly picking people who may or may not be qualified. Let us not forget Harriet Miers.

I love the Mary Stewart Collect. You should post that on here. You gave me a copy and I am sure I have it on my computer somewhere.

B.J. said...

Here you go:

Mary Stewart’s Collect

Harriet Miers. Good point@


airth10 said...

Good of you to include my observation in your article.

The Clintons do raise an ire in people. I wonder what it is. George Bush didn't raise any questions when he picked people from past administrations, including his fathers.

Eowyn said...

I think the world has moved on from the Clintons.

I don't know that Obama brought up Hillary as Secretary of State, I kind of assume her camp did. And he's very good at avoiding the conflict. It actually seems telling that Daschele was appointed to a post she might have reigned in.

Esquire has this issue that points out all kinds of things in pictures and one-liners--an end of the year thing. And their prediction was, with a picture of Bill and Hillary in 1970, "The Clintons will NEVER go away." I'm starting to see that, but the country's going to hell in a handbag, and there's a lot to deal with in 2009. I think left, right, center, we need to get together.

B.J. said...

Well, Eowyn, as Monday’s post indicated the Clintons are definitely NOT going away. Wish you had read it. Guess you couldn’t get past the opening paragraph about Bill Clinton, LOL. I guess what is relative is whether you want them to go away or to stay and be a part of helping this country. In my opinion, it would be a shame to waste such minds.

As for WHO leaked the story of her being considered for secretary of state: NBC/MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell broke the story and said her sources were inside the Obama camp.

As you know I don’t look at the Clintons as the “bad seeds” that some do. I believe they have been the victims of the most sustained smear campaign ever. And, that’s a shame, because they both entered public service determined to do good.

I know you don’t have a TV, but the subject of this post and Monday’s has been reported all over cable news. (I, on the other hand, cannot read all the great magazines you have access to.) I do think the subject is relevant and needs discussion.

I think it is time for two things to occur:

1) It is time for naysayers to get off Bill and Hillary Cliinton’s backs, and

2) You are right, the nation is going to hell in a handbasket, and it is time for Americans to pull together – and that includes a curtailment of the Clinton bashing!

Just being as honest as I can be!


P.S. The LINK to CGI commitments is an incredible read and brings encouragement to my heart that so much good is being doen around the world!

Phillip Hill said...

Reaganomics, under Reagan and Bush the first, destroyed our countries economy in a span of 12 years. The next 8 years, under Clinton, had a growth in economy. Now comes the "W" with 8 years of a decline in our economy. Personally, I feel that Clinton was a good president but that is beside the point. Even if you feel Clinton was a bad president you must admit the growth in the economy. We are in a terrible economic state at this moment and for Obama to see that he can gain insight from someone who, in many ways, fixed the economy is a logical choice. Both Clintons care deeply for this country. Bill Clinton made a speech on behalf of Obama after his wife was defeated by him because he knew that McCain would not be a good choice for our country and I truly do not believe it to be just a partisan decision.

Athena said...

Exellent post, B.J.

Eowyn said...

My point is not that cabinet members should not be chosen from the former Clinton cabinet or that we did not experience growth and prosperity in Clinton years. Or that the Clintons can do no good. My point is just that in an era of possibly changing the definition of politics and politicians to strategists, planners and negotiators, it may be to our advantage to have the two-for-one Clintons off doing excellent good work on their own, as they would do far more good out there fighting than working as part of a team. They are excellent fighters. It would be nice to also see a new era in which the public is not held hostage to how many press releases a person or group gets. With Obama at the helm . . .we shall see. He certainly has a lot to do, as this economic down turn leaves none of us even basically secure.

Frodo Onhiswayouthedoorus said...

Barack Obama is one smart dude. He has learned that if you throw something out for discussion early enough in the cycle, it will have a very short shelf life. Let Matthews and company play their game, nobody will remember it next month. In that manner, you avoid Anita Hill and Clarence Thomas Redux, on national TV. We got bigger problems, and the guy to be-in charge doesn't have to concern himself with the trivialities of "too much Clinton" or "not enough change."

Today he comes forth with Janet Napolitano. This is the first nail in that coffin.

Good post, have patience with Frodo. He's kinda busy.

airth10 said...

I have a friend in Chicago who canvassed for Obama. She never liked Hillary. But one day she met her and was pleasantly surprised to like her.

I think that is with the majority of people who meet her. And a great thing about her is that she is smart and articulate (I wish that came across better during the campaign). Being so, she will be a great Secretary of State of any other cabinet post. But a S of S I think she will influence and change many minds. An american needs such a charming force to repair the damage done by the previous ruffians.

airth10 said...

PS, I pressed the wrong button before I corrected some mistakes in the above posting.

B.J. said...

A reader sent me the following article from the far left Web site Alternet.com and asked for my opinion of it.

This Is Change? 20 Hawks, Clintonites and Neocons to Watch for in Obama's White House

My opinion: the article proves the point of this post.


Papamoka said...

You can not discount the Clinton political machine and "Relationship" that Hillary Clinton has with world leaders. She would be a great Secretary of State simply because she is a great politician. She would be an asset that the new administration could use and benefit from after the Bush Doctrin of "Screw you world" policies. It does not hinder her abilities to also have a former and well respected husband that just might travel with her on the world tour to repair American relations around the world.

You can check this out...


Obama has the Presidency, and he can pick who the hell he wants for his Secretary of State and Hillary Clinton is the rock solid choice. Even if you do not agree, Obama is the next President and that is the end of this discussion.

B.J. said...

PapaRocker!!! You tell 'em@ Here's an active link to Papamoka's post:

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

Enjoying the discourse! BJ

B.J. said...

She's the one! NBC/MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell broke the neews on "Morning Joe" as 6 a.m. It's Hillary for secretary of state. (Obama will officially announce after Thanksgiving.) Good for him for not yielding to far-left pressure when Gallup was showing eight out of 10 Americans were behind Hillary for the post.

Bear in mind, the POINT of this post is NOT going away - expect great flap from the far left.

"Why can't we all jsut get along?"


Tiny said...

This is a great post and lots of comments. Obama made the comment that he would not have appointed Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court. That speaks volumes about his character.

Senator Hillary Clinton for the post as Secretary of State, brings an abundance of great experience and intelligence for that post. I heard a while ago pundits debating whether Pres. Clinton would fill her senate post. Wouldn't that be a turn of events that would really slap the naysayers in the puss!

BJ, Tiny loved your "Club Collect" by Mary Stewart and copied it to her Thanksgiving greetings she sent to family and friends. Lots of good comments from some of them. Rich food for thought for them. They need it too! So many thanks for including it in your post.

Tiny wishes everyone an abundantly Happy Thanksgiving. May we witness our beloved country on the high road of healing and recovery, and multitudinous prosperity for all. Not just material prosperity, but spiritual prosperity.

Each of us need a few material things to live in a material world. We live in a rich world with plenty for all if we help to take care of our fellow brothers and sisters.

Eowyn said...

I guess I still can't understand, after all that's been said in the Primary, and before, why why why not in charge of health care reform? It was her passion.

And it would have mega mega coverage, it could be a position in which she would be in the limelight but not in conflict with Bill's fundraising from the same world leaders.

I guess I will never understand the ways of God or government. Maybe being in the line of fire--and surviving--really impressed Obama that she could handle this. I really believe in his vision, but wow there's a whole lot of us out there hoping against hope that she does see that it's not all about her. Jobs, healthcare, sustainability, and negotiating with world leaders--it's as GW said of McCain's choice of Palin, "It's a gutsy choice."

For those of us who really did not want to bank on Hillary as president, maybe this is a good compromise. We will be seeing it for a long long time. You know what I really wish? And have wished ALL along? In this time of serious need, that we would see one day of Hillary without Bill. It's odd. And it's not like anyone else's run. I spent his entire term defending them both, but this is not "today." It's what seemed odd to me all along. She doesn't seem to mind.

B.J. said...

I know we are all looking to Obama for promises kept. But, he won’t be able to achieve ANY of his campaign promises until this economy turns around. Ironically, the same thing happened to Bill Clinton during his first 100 days, including health-care hopes. I suggest reading Hillary’s memoir, “Living History” to get a feel for her possibilities as secretary of state. There is no doubt in my mine she will be there to serve Obama’s foreign policy goals. There really was not that big a difference between their foreign policy ideas. BJ