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Clinton and the Ten Commandments

President Clinton has finally found a spiritual adviser who suits him — one who will whisper sweet nothings in his ear and help spin the press on the idea he’s not really a sinner and has done nothing for which he should be ashamed or penitent.

He even brought this guru along with him to Africa at taxpayer expense. Whatever happened to separation of church and state? Not to worry. This unofficial presidential chaplain is also a special envoy to Africa. His name is Jesse Jackson.

Clinton turned to Jackson, we’re told, during the weekend the Monica Lewinsky story broke. More recently, Kathleen Willey has been on their minds. Perhaps tomorrow it will be Elizabeth Gracen Ward.

So what does the good reverand have to say about the sex scandals swirling around the White House?

“Sex,” he explains, “is not the one string on the guitar. There are nine more Commandments.”

Hmmmm. I thought the president was denying the sex stories. Sounds like his spiritual adviser may be hearing more than the rest of the American public. I guess that’s as it should be. But, nevertheless, let’s analyze this statement, since it’s no doubt indicative of the kind of rationalization Clinton is hearing from his minister.

The president appears to be changing tactics again. First he and his aides adamantly denied everything. Now, as is characteristic, they seem to be on the verge of admitting to something. “OK, OK,” he will say, “I broke one Commandment, but I keep the other nine.”

But is this true? Perhaps Clinton and Jackson haven’t read the Ten Commandments lately, or maybe they’re reading another translation than me. Or maybe lawyer Clinton has a unique interpretation of the Commandments. So let’s review them:

1. You shall have no other gods before Me.

Pretty straightforward. How does Bill Clinton measure up on this one? While it’s true that only God can judge a man’s sins, mortals are commanded to associate themselves with righteous people and condemn sin where we see it. Personally, I think Clinton worships false gods. Which ones? Power. Government. Himself. So, Jesse, there goes another string on that guitar.

2. You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God …

Clinton probably thinks he’s safe here. As far as anyone knows, there are no idols in the White House. He’s not worshipping some golden calf in the Oval Office. But, particularly with the latest brainstorm from his vice president about continuous video coverage of the earth from space, we are reminded about this administration’s tendency to worship the planet — to invest in it certain spiritual characteristics. Whoops! There goes another string.

3. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain …

You may not have heard it with your own ears, but sources close to the president says he does just this when he blows his top — which, with all that’s going on around him these days, if fairly often. Pluck! Another string.

4. Observe the sabbath day to keep it holy, as the Lord your God commanded you.

Well, you say, Clinton does go to church on Sunday. We see him frequently emerging from a house of worship, Bible in hand. But he also admits to frequently working seven days a week. Whoops! Not a good example, Bill. We’re running out of strings on this here guitar.

5. Honor your father and mother …

Though some would argue, the point, let’s give him this one.

6. You shall not murder.

We’ve all heard about the unusually high body counts surrounding this administration. But let’s not get into any conspiracy-mongering here. At least let’s save it for another day. Instead, I want to remind you of the most tragic day in the history of this administration (besides the two Inaugurations). I refer to April 19, 1993. That’s the day more than 80 men, women and children were gunned down and/or incinerated by this administration’s storm troopers in their Waco, Texas, church-home. Clinton blamed his underling Janet Reno, but that’s no excuse — especially since she continues to serve as attorney general. No string here.

7. You shall not commit adultery.

What can I say? Even the president’s own spiritual adviser says this string is missing from his guitar.

8. You shall not steal.

Whitewater. Castle Grande. Cattle futures. Enough said? Pluck.

9. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.

Kathleen Willey, Paula Jones, Monica Lewinsky, Linda Tripp, Gennifer Flowers, etc., etc. Pluck.

10. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, and you shall not desire your neighbor’s house, his field or his male servant or his female servant, his ox or his donkey or anything that belongs to your neighbor.

Of course, Shelia Lawrence comes to mind for starters. But there’s a larger issue when it comes to covetousness. Isn’t this the very basis of the president’s class warfare program of increasingly high “progressive” taxes? When he wins office by promising to take from the “rich” to give to the “poor,” isn’t this the very definition of covetousness? Everytime he swears not to give another tax break to the rich, isn’t he really practicing the politics of envy?

One string left. Not much of a guitar, Jesse. Better stick to the saxophone, Bill.