Why do Democratic ex-presidents have so much more class?
The brightly-illuminated side of the force
Jimmy Carter contributes in innumerable ways, wins Nobel Peace Prize.
Bill Clinton throws himself into fighting AIDS.
The dark side of the force
Ronald Reagan cashes in with a $2 million speaking gig in Japan shortly after leaving office, appearances be damned.
George HW Bush cashes in with Carlyle, conflict of interest be damned.
Now, in fairness . . .
(Here we go again with that incessant liberal need to be fair as opposed to going for the jugular the way our “friends” to the right do)
. . . after leaving office Reagan did do some public service work and Bush the First has probably done more than Reagan; it was never, however, the major focus of Reagan’s ex-presidency, nor is it today with the elder Bush.
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August 29th, 2006 at 5:01 pm
I think it’s because Democrats feel they need to give back and because they have no problem with sex.
August 30th, 2006 at 12:47 am
I remember Joan Rivers making jokes about the Democrats, who wear cloth coats and not minks. At the time, her remarks were considered cute by the Media, not so cute, of course, by the Democrats. It was the Reagan Era, and conspicuous spending was in, fighting AIDS was out. Many Republicans never recovered from that era, and certainly, the Wannabees remain addicted. Reagan appealed to the Me,Myself and I group. They saw absolutely nothing wrong with ignoring the homeless; and instead, competed for the “who has the most toys wins contest” in life. They were and continue to be proud of that attitude. Papa Bush, being of that class of people and considering himself to be a Patrician, just carried the banner forward. His son is an exaggeration of the father, a much less subtle version. The Carlyle Group can be found in the shadows wherever corruption and mayhem abide. Papa Bush will advocate for the safe charities, but , trust me on this one, he won’t be going out on any limbs or chopping down any of his deeply rooted money trees.
Jimmy Carter was not quite adept as President, but he is a genuinely good person, and walks the walk. Bill Clinton is plagued by his Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde personality. He has seen personal poverty and hardship.That part of him identifies with the dispossed of our society. But, he desires to be a Player, and gets caught up in the myth. Thomas Merton once wrote that he(Merton) never failed to be amazed at how our own sins punish us. Bill Clinton should know that by now.
August 30th, 2006 at 6:42 am
Nor are they as likely to use religion/the bible as a weapon.
September 2nd, 2006 at 7:03 pm
In all fairness (yes, more of that fairness thing), President Reagan was likely suffering from early stage Alzheimer’s when he left office, so he really wasn’t in as good a position to devote himself to charitable works.
Steve responds: A fair point, although he wasn’t diagnosed until six years out of office and his 2002 Republican convention speech, when he was already four years out of office, was still classic Ronald Reagan.
That said, my principal reason for mentioning Reagan was the $2 million (1989 money) payment by a Japanese firm for making two short speeches very soon after he left office. To be fair (here we go again), however, Bill Clinton has also been cashing in big time with speeches since leaving office.
I guess only so many Jimmy Carter’s come along.