Grand Master Of Deceit

"May the spin be with you..."

“May the spin be with you…”

I thought about adding his name to the title, but really: who else could I be referring to?

I think it’s good to know, comforting even, that Bill Clinton is still shameless, still at the top of his game, still adept at manipulating language for the deception of gullible listeners. So much changes! The Tunnel Tree lies on the forest floor among the great Sequoias, the Great Stone Face has fallen off the mountain, and Jennifer Connelly no longer looks like a Vargas Girl. Yet Bill Clinton goes on, spinning, parsing, obfuscating, lying like the master he is. It’s almost inspiring.


Bill recently showed he was still in playing trim by offering a deceitful defense of his wife’s absurd claim that Hill and Bill were “dead broke” when they left the White House, telling NBC’s David Gregory that “It is factually true that we were several million dollars in debt.” Yup, and here are several other things that are factually true:

  • They also had several million dollars worth of assets.
  • Being in debt is not the same as being “dead broke” when you have assets to move around, book advances on the way and what you and everybody else knows is massive earning capability and the contacts to exploit them immediately.
  • The average person who will never earn a million dollars in a lifetime will probably gasp at being several million dollars in debt, and mistakenly equate it with being “dead broke”—which is Bill’s intention.
  • It took a matter of months of paid speeches and nothing else—we’re talking about maybe 72 hours of actual work here, to obliterate all debt and put the Clintons on their way to becoming fabulously rich.
  • Since the dawn of mass media, no U.S. President could ever be “dead broke,” because their contacts, name, physical being and reputations are all worth millions wherever they go.
  • Bill Clinton knows all of this, and
  • He and Hillary were not dead broke.

It is also comforting to know that Bill has passed on his most notable talent to a new generation. In a published interview in May that was resuscitated in June after it was revealed that she was paid $600,000 to be an inexperienced, amateurish on-air correspondent for NBC, Chelsea Clinton said,

“I’ve tried really hard to care about things that were very different from my parents. I was curious if I could care about [money] on some fundamental level, and I couldn’t. That wasn’t the metric of success I wanted in my life.”

Of course, she still needs to practice a bit. For example, who sets out to try to “care about money”? Plausible deceit has to be a little more believable than that. If money meant so little, why did she accept a $600,000 salary she didn’t deserve? Clinton’s adult life has been spent as the child of millionaires: she didn’t have to care about money the way those of us who sweat out every mortgage do.

I’m sure Dad will give her some tips, and if she sticks to it, Chelsea will be able to pull the wool over the eyes of most of the public, and certainly the uncritical media,  as deftly as her parents.

Sources:Politico, Reuters

9 thoughts on “Grand Master Of Deceit

  1. If I hold out one sliver of hope that Hilary won’t be the next president, it’s due to the fact that she does not have the charisma or gift for beguiling talk that her husband does. She is not very likeable herself, and that’s a key piece of the presidential package. She’s the gasbag, and he’s the gaslighter, making us all doubt our own otherwise reasonable thoughts.

    • I think she could be beaten, even by a completely unqualified, platitude-talking, pandering, pie in the sky, community organizer and former pot head with no more innate leadership ability than Lou Costello. Just to take one wild, hyperbolic example…

  2. Jack: I take issue with a couple of your comments here. First, you write, “I think it’s good to know, comforting even, that Bill Clinton is still shameless, still at the top of his game, still adept at manipulating language for the deception of gullible listeners.” Well, this is the same fellow that pondered the many definition of the word “is”. Could we expect anything else? Point: Me. 15 love.

    Next, you posit this: “Jennifer Connelly no longer looks like a Vargas Girl”. Yes, in fact, she still does look like a Vargas Girl. She is a very talented and gifted actress who just happens to be extraordinarily beautiful. Point: Me. 30 love.

    Third, you ask “If money meant so little [to Chelsea], why did she accept a $600,000 salary she didn’t deserve?” That’s shooting fish in a barrel. She was simply stating that she tried to care for $600,000’s feelings. She couldn’t do it because, well, she didn’t have time to get to know each and every one of them: it came in the form of a wire transfer from NBC into her ever-burgeoning bank account but didn’t last too long there because it had to take a trip to meet with mom’s campaign fund (I am speculating here, by the way . . . .). I am sure that, given enough time, she would have learned deep love and affection for that $600,000 payment. Point: Me again. 40 love.

    Serving for the game, set and match, you write, “I’m sure Dad will give her some tips . . .” Whoops! Thunder and lightening. Match delayed for rain.


    • 1. I don’t understand your first point at all, John, so you’ll have to spell it out. Yes, this is the same guy that 16 years ago made his classic “is” spin and also said he and Monica weren’t alone, because they were together, so how could they be alone. He’s still an ace at this crap. That’s what I wrote?It seems to me you lost the ball in the sun.
      2. Jennifer, an all-time fave, had taken up running and being a vegan, is still beautiful but is very thin and drawn in the face, plays mothers, and most of all, is no longer in any way voluptuous, which was the hallmark of Vargas girls. You must be thinking of another Jennifer Connolly. She has been quoted as saying she doesn’t miss her boobs, but those of us who remember “The Hot Spot,” “The Rocketeer, and Career Opportunities, or whatever that thing was where she was trapped in the store over night, do. You hit the ball into the net.

      3. I’ll give you this one. Chelsea apparently thought she was Amy Carter.

  3. What a great country we live in that anyone, no matter how poor (or corrupt… or disingenuous) can attain or aspire to the office of the Presidency while avoiding jail or a lynch mob. And when two of the prime examples are married, the sky’s the limit.

  4. Funny, the U.S. is several trillion dollars in debt and yet it seems not to be dead broke, though the lack of a balanced, sustainable budget or any form of repayment plan is worrying to say the least. Considering that the Clintons’ groupies are in general the same people who don’t see a problem with U.S. national debt, I’d say they manifest the depressingly common human inability to spot inconsistencies. Of course, they’re self-selected for that by being Clinton groupies in the first place.

  5. […]and what you and everybody else knows is massive earning capability and the contacts to exploit them immediately.

    This point is true, but I don’t think it’s relevant to a defense of Hillary’s comment. She was talking about a specific point in time, and the fact that her husband was president (and that she was pretty danged famous herself) was known both to the interviewer she was talking to and also to any intelligent person in the audience. She wouldn’t have been doing an interview with Diane Sawyer in the first place if she weren’t famous, so I don’t think pointing out that famous people are different from the rest of us is really necessary to your critique. Michael Jackson, for example, was broke or in debt at certain times late in his life, and it would be reasonably accurate to say so, even though we all know that a person with his fame had the potential to earn unimaginable sums of money if he got his act together.

    Since I’m new to commenting on your blog, I’ll mention this out one more time, and then I’ll hope this disclaimer will be taken as a given: if I should make a comment (like the one above) that points out something like “argument #3 out of your list of 5 arguments is flawed” that does not mean I am saying “OMG your whole post is wrong! I disagree with everything you say and you’re a bad person and they should take away your birthday!” I like to focus on arguments or examples one at a time; I think that it’s useful to eliminate all of the bad arguments even if the thrust of your point is correct.

    • 1. The disclaimer isn’t necessary, but thanks for clarifying.
      2. As for the rest, I don’t understand your critique. “Being in debt is not the same as being “dead broke” when you have assets to move around, book advances on the way and what you and everybody else knows is massive earning capability and the contacts to exploit them immediately” is what I wrote, is true (as I said), and is not just relevant but core to what was wrong with Hillary’s silly statement and Bill’s “defense.” Bill was the one who defended Hillary’s dead broke comment by noting that they were in debt, so noting that this isn’t really relevant to defending her statement was the point of I was making, and why Bill’s statement was deceitful, as it suggested otherwise, when he, you and I all know better. That they were not just famous but also hot commodities is core to what makes Hillary’s statement so dishonest, insulting (because everyone does know they were famous and she said it anyway), annoying (because so many still people swallow this crap, because Hillary) and alarming (she is a compulsive liar, you know) is that despite what you correctly note, she said it anyway.

      • Right. I was specifically referring to your statement that Hillary (or the Clintons) had “what you and everyone else knows is massive earning capability and the contacts to exploit them immediately.”

        It might have been dishonest of Hillary and/or Bill if they had exploited the fact that people didn’t know they had massive earning capability and a wealth of contacts. But since it is a given that the person Hillary was speaking to (Sawyer) and any reasonable segment of the audience knew that was the case, that isn’t a reasonable critique of Hillary, and isn’t relevant to your critique of Bill’s defense of Hillary. The fact that we all know it, and Hillary obviously knew that we know it, means that it was always on the table.

        There is no functional difference between Hillary saying, “When we left the White House, we were dead broke” and Hillary saying, “When we left the White House, we were dead broke, although we were obviously both very famous and had lots of influential friends.”

        Yes, the concept of being “broke” is very different for people who are incredibly famous. But the fact that Hillary and Bill were incredibly famous was so obvious it did not need to be stated. As you acknowledged, everyone already knows it.

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