George Will breaks out the Conservative Pundit Weapon of Mass Destruction by comparing Dubya to Clinton for his apostacy on protectionism. You know, I just want to say that I don't think conservative scribes and talking heads fully appreciate the great debt they owe Bill Clinton. He's the easiest and most convenient shorthand they've ever had for expressing their moral outrage. Whenever they want to spank one of their own, they just have to say he or she is equivalent to or worse than Slick Willie in some respect, and they can rest secure in the knowledge that everyone - especially the target of their wrath - knows exactly what an insult this is.
As an Extra Added Bonus, they get to dismiss or diminish accusations of bad behavior from the Left by saying that whatever it is their guy is supposed to have done, Clinton did it first and did it worse. Now how much would you pay for this? If they gave out awards for this sort of thing, the Houston Chronicle could finally shed its title of Paper With The Largest Circulation To Never Win A Pulitzer Prize.
So let's hear it for Bill Clinton, people. What would the Ann Coulters and Andrew Sullivans of the world do without him?
Oh, and for the record, I agree that this was a bad call by Bush. I agree with Virginia Postrel that this decision was made primarily out of political calculations. I also agree with Charles Dodgson that Bush's record on free trade is not very good to begin with.Posted by Charles Kuffner on March 08, 2002 to Show Business for Ugly People