If you read between the lines of what Bill Clinton is saying, these
days, he has already come to grips with losing power.
“Do you have any idea how much time I spend every day signing my name?
I’m going to feel utterly useless if I can’t do that anymore,” he said in
Ireland last week in little noticed comments. “You know, by the time you
become the leader of a country, someone else makes all the decisions,” he
said last week. “You may find you can get away with virtual presidents,
virtual prime ministers, virtual everything.”
Hmmm. That’s not the same kind of arrogance we’ve heard from this
president during the last six years. What’s this all about?
I submit to you that Clinton has been given the word that he’s through.
I don’t mean by the Congress or Kenneth Starr. I think he’s been told he’s
finished by someone in that invisible ruling elite that empowered him to
reign in the first place. The handwriting is on the wall. He may pretend to
be president for awhile longer, but the coup is under way.
As my friend, Missy Kelly, an extraordinary researcher and political
analyst, who connects the dots better than anyone I know put it: “Bill’s
job was to pretend — pretend he was the leader, pretend he was in charge
— maintain the facade as a virtual president in a virtual democracy where
a virtual rule of law exists. In fact, the levers of power were already
controlled — controlled so precisely, in fact, as to make the president
irrelevant, controlled by people who have never been elected to office, and
whose names we do not even know.”
Sound far-fetched? I don’t think so. And this is why I sincerely doubt
that we will ever see impeachment hearings. Though I have said previously
that I believed Bill Clinton when he said he would never resign, I now
think he will be gone — one way or another — very, very soon, perhaps
within two weeks. He has his marching orders. And this time, there’s no
draft to dodge, no conscientious objection loophole to pursue.
If he didn’t get it when he was told, maybe he understood it when
Attorney General Janet Reno inexplicably opened a 90-day investigation into
his personal involvement in moving Democratic National Committee funds into
the Clinton-Gore re-election effort.
Oh, I have no doubts that he will pursue every conceivable option in
hopes of rallying political support. The scorched-earth policy his acolytes
warned about is in practice. Terry Lenzner is busy digging up dirt. Rep.
Dan Burton is just the latest casualty. Clinton will not go easily,
So, Clinton is involved in a very dangerous game. He no longer has the
support, I believe, of those hidden hands which wield tremendous power in
this country and worldwide. He has become something of a political
liability. He can no longer be effective at advancing their agenda. Thus,
he is not only expendable, he is actually getting in the way.
Bill Clinton was the consummate actor in a political stage play. He was
content with that role because it allowed him to achieve what he always
wanted — the presidency. But he doesn’t like the way this script
concludes. I’m sure Hillary doesn’t either. She gave up plenty — including
her self-respect and dignity — to stay with him because she believed that
the all-important “agenda” transcended the man. And she wanted to be a part
of that agenda — if not to lead it herself.
Bill Clinton is in a tough spot, now. I’m sure Hillary’s advice has
always been to stay the course — to deny, to fight, to play every card in
their hand. But there’s no denying that Clinton is damaged goods. He
certainly doesn’t have the power or moral authority to lead. It’s very
doubtful he even has the ability to retain the trappings of power.
Every day, now, the outlook for Clinton finishing his term looks a
little bleaker. Kenneth Starr, by all accounts, has amassed a persuasive
case for impeachment — even if he has ignored most of the worst crimes of
the Clinton administration. Key Democrats in the Senate have let it be
known that they will not excuse his conduct any longer.
So, what will he do? How will this play end? I don’t know the answer.
But we’ll find out very soon.