More evidence of European anti-Americanism

Just kidding :slight_smile:


I can’t figure out what it is with the Irish and Bill Clinton. I mean, sure, he made a great contribution to the northern peace process (such as it is), but these people love him. Absolute hero worship. I think if he ran for the Irish presidency he might well have a shot at it. As it is, plenty of people are hoping that President Kerry will name him as Special Envoy to the North.

I mean, I voted for the guy (twice!) and I still don’t understand it … :confused:

Well, he’s a womanising party animal who plays a flute. Ring any bells yet? :slight_smile:

Seriously, I think it’s mostly that Bush made Europeans admire Clinton retroactively. We took him for granted - just another US president. But in the current light, it’s becoming all the more apparent how good a president Clinton really was, especially in light of US-Euro relationships.

And yes, if he’d have the right passport, he’d be prime minister of the Netherlands in a heartbeat. Hell, we’ll supply the cigars and interns free of charge. :smiley:

Will you provide the kneepads though?

I walked past the queues on my way to work. At the side of the store was a line a block long of wannabe starf*ckers, and at the front was an anti-abortion protest (?).

Anyway, I was present during Clinton’s rapturous welcome to Ireland in 1996 and, in Ireland at least, the admiration shown for the man wasn’t Bush-inspired retroactiveness at all - it was current.

Oh, he was liked in Holland during his presidency as well. A lot. He got a very warm welcome on his visits here, too, even playing the saxophone together with Hans Dulfer, and eating pancakes in Leiden. :slight_smile:

I’m just saying that the current admiration could be partially inspired by the comparison. I mean, I saw his speech at the DNC last month, and well, you can’t HELP but get nostalgic. Fantastic speech, great personality - and an agenda most Europeans like a little more than GWB’s.

On the radio this morning they were interviewing some of the people waiting in the queue. One woman went on and on and on about how happy she was to be meeting Clinton and then they asked her: If this was President Bush would you be here?

Immediately her tone of voice changed and she said: “I wouldn’t go within 200 miles of him. I’ve no time for the man.”

…and don’t think that it was just Ireland that loved Clinton-he was absolutley loved when he came over here for APEC in '99. My favourite story that did the rounds:,

…just to explain the story in case it doesn’t quite make sense: At every APEC, part of the tradition of the host nation is to supply a national “costume”. This time round, the leaders were issued a fleece jacket, and a polo shirt designed by Drysdale. After Drysdale’s converstation with Clinton at the gala dinner, Clinton decided to showcase Drysdale’s polo shirt the next day. It was these little things that endered Clinton to the New Zealand public-the current out pouring of respect for Clinton is clearly not retrospective, he was extremely well thought of world wide at the time. (Off topic, during APEC I was supposed to be the personal butler for the graveyard shift for former President Joseph Estrada, of the Phillipines, but when his party arrived in the country, they decided that our hotel wasn’t good enough for him :eek: and they moved to the Heritage… so instead of having a busy APEC like every other hospitality worker in Auckland, I ended up doing a dinner for thirty travellers at four in the morning, then I had the rest of the week off! )

He got a very warm reception when he came to sign books in Toronto as well. People lined up around the block.

Understatement! :wink: Some people camped out overnight! Although CBC said news said everyone “lined up in an orderly fashion” front page newspaper photos made it look like the time Ricky Martin was in town with a good sized mob of (well-behaved) people.

Actually, he gets the same reception over here. Its just that he gets almost equal numbers of people who line up in protest and oppose him with visceral hatred.

Yes, I’ve heard Clinton often receives a warm hand on his entrance.

To me Bill Clinton was a pretty run-of-the mill politician. He didn’t do anything very dramatic, nor did he take any great risks in his foreign policy. Other than the fact that he made a lot of speeches, I don’t see how he was anything but ordinary. His record as president is pretty mediocre…in fact he liked to compare himself with Chester Allen Arthur, one of the more obscure presidents of the 19thn century.
Of course, I don’t know how he compares to most European politicians…next to somebody like Helmut Kohl, he (Clinton) probably stands out more.

I have a dyed-in-the-wool conservative, arch Republican friend who met Clinton at an investor’s conference several years ago. There were about ten people in the room. She told me she was amazed by the strength of Clinton’s personal charisma, and how immediately and directly he was able to establish a connection to everyone in the room. She said resisting his charm was like resisting a tractor beam. She managed to snap out of it.

My wife met him a few years ago and said the exact same thing. She hadn’t even thought of him as vaguely attractive before she met him, but the tractor beam was in full effect - even to the point of saying ‘if I had been Monica, I probably would have too’.

Are the Irish nuts for ex President Kennedy too? If so, maybe they just have a blind spot for charmers.

I used to hang out on a chat board of European hockey players and fans, mostly UK folks. Back when Monica’s big book came out and she was over there doing signings the absolute hatred of her astounded me. There’d always been a lot of Clinton love but the vitriol these guys attacked her with was scary.

Was it just that particular crowd, although they insisted their views were widely held? Any one remember any Monica-hating to go along with, or contradict or coincide whichever, all the Clinton-loving?

Hmmm, interesting one. Speaking for my own country, there wasn’t any Monica-hatred per se, but she was considered to be a very naive girl. Then again, most people -as much as they loved him- thought Clinton was a dumbass for taking the risks he took with her. Mostly, people over here just didn’t understand why it was such a huge DEAL, though. Yeah, he did some chick, just get back to work already. Work it out with your wife, get it all sorted out, then business as usual. Of course, there’s no excuse for lying under oath, but I’m pretty sure that had Clinton been PM of the Netherlands, he would have just admitted to the adultery off the bat, and gotten away with it.

So, no real Monica-hatred, but she sure was made fun of a lot.

Was it adultery?

Oh, please. That’s been dealt with ad infinitum. Obviously, whether it was adultery depends on what your definition of the word “is” is. :smiley:

Absolutely bonkers for him. That he was of direct Irish descent doesn’t hurt either.

Anyway, Billy-boy drove past me this morning in his convoy. He didn’t wave, and Hillary didn’t flash me like last time. But I still call it stalking.

I don’t remember any Monica-hatred up here either; she was gently made fun of. The hatred was reserved for those who made a blow job into an issue sufficient to bring down a president.