Today, I spent my afternoon with Bill Clinton. You might know that the former President was in Gastonia at the Highland School of Technology giving a speech supporting his wife, Hillary, in her bid for President. What you may not know is that the speech was of the highest caliber and made up for a lot of the tarnishing of the man’s legacy due to his campaigning of late.
I have always been an ardent supporter of President Clinton, and in recent years a strong Edwards supporter. It was only when forced to really look at the policy differences between Hillary and Obama that I could make a choice on who to support in the upcoming primary. My basis for choice had nothing to do with personality or popularity. I thought that Hillary’s plans were more detailed, well-organized and aligned with my own issues.
However, I have been disappointed in both sides of the debate in the manner they have conducted themselves.
President Clinton made a huge step toward making me a happy and satisfied Hillary supporter. His speech in Gastonia focused on the issues. He did draw some distinctions in regards to Hillary and Obama, but nothing could be considered negative. His speech contained details about why the economy is in the shape it is in and how we can salvage it. It also detailed Hillary’s plans for making this country an even better place to live. Highlights below:
Environment: President Clinton spoke about creating a new economy by training workers to make our buildings greener. He said the best thing about that would be that none of the jobs could be outsourced!! He spoke for a long time about bio-fuels (not the inefficient corn kind, but many other ideas), and investing in creating hybrids that can get 100 mpg. He also talked about real investment in wind-energy technology.
Healthcare: President Clinton explained the details of Hillary’s plan. He talked about the importance of 100% coverage and how that translates into costs.
War: He talked about the responsible withdrawal from Iraq, the use of diplomacy vs. force, and the continuing cost and obligation to our veterans.
Economy: President Clinton explained why we feel like we have been in a recession even though by economists standards we have not. The average income of US Households has gone done instead of up over the last decade. During the Clinton administration the opposite was true. Because of trickle down economics the top part of the economy has kept us from the true definition of recession but the average family has felt it anyway. President Clinton talked of Hillary’s plan to focus on the middle class instead of giving money to the rich.
Trade: This was the most interesting point to me. President Clinton said that the trade regulations in the country are enforced 1/5 of the amount they were under his administration. The key is in the reason: We now have a $9 Trillion national debt. Our biggest trade partners are China, Japan, S. Korea, and oil countries such as, Saudi Arabia. The biggest owners of our national debt are China, Japan, S. Korea, and oil countries such as, Saudi Arabia.
The entire speech was classic Clinton. It reminded me that he is still the smartest person I have ever met in real life, and that issues and answers can be just as intriguing as personal attacks. Thanks, Bill.