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Editor’s note: Warning. Because this column is about the behavior of the president of the United States, it contains adult material unsuitable for children and other living things.
WASHINGTON — Picture President Clinton on the telephone trying to persuade a reluctant congressman of the absolute need for a bigger and longer commitment of U.S. troops in the Balkans.
While he discusses these decisions of life and death for young American soldiers, a 21-year-old intern is on her knees performing fellatio on the president.
Such behavior has not been unusual in the Clinton White House. The president has let heads of state cool their heels outside the Oval Office while he played hide the salami with young female public servants.
The more you know about this administration, the more it resembles the court of Rome.
They say power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. I guess it figures that the most powerful man in the world would emulate the decadent behavior of the worst of the Roman emperors. Caligula had nothing on Slick Willie.
What’s amazing to me is that it is still a matter of debate in our society whether such reckless, irresponsible, degrading, illegal, immoral and stupid behavior warrants impeachment. Without question it does. And it warrants conviction and a life of public banishment, scorn and humiliation.
“Well,” you might say, “aren’t you being a little judgmental? After all, there’s no evidence the president forced or coerced women to perform sexual favors for him. These were consensual acts — certainly not ‘illegal,’ as you say.”
Not true. In Washington, D.C., there is a city law that prohibits bosses from having sex with underlings. It is considered a form of sexual harassment when one partner has “power” over another. In the case of the world’s most powerful figure and a (pardon the expression) entry-level employee, you’re talking about an extreme illustration of the kinds of situations such laws were designed to prevent.
So, forget, for a moment, the perjury, the cover-up, the abuses of power that have been uncovered by Kenneth Starr; the president committed a criminal offense the day he unzipped his fly and put his penis in Monica Lewinsky’s mouth while, as he would say, he was “going about the business of running the country.”
Furthermore, we know this politician had a history of using his power to coerce women into such compromising positions. There’s Paula Jones, Kathy Ferguson (now deceased from a bullet in the back of her head), Juanita Broaddrick, Kathleen Willey, how many others?
I have never considered “Sexgate” to be the most important of the many scandals swirling around President Clinton. Personally, I think it pales in comparison and importance to the way our political system and national security have been compromised by Chinese money. I find Monica Lewinsky a far less compelling and significant figure than, say, Vincent Foster, Ron Brown, Jim McDougal, Jerry Parks, or even her intern colleague, Caity Mahoney — all of whom died under extremely suspicious and unexplained circumstances during this administration. I find it to be amazing that Clinton is permitted by the press, the Congress, the Justice Department, the Internal Revenue Service and the independent counsel to collect legal-defense trust fund money to defend himself in his various scandals. It is completely illegal for public officials to do this, as Judicial Watch’s Larry Klayman has astutely pointed out in his report to Congress. I’m much more repulsed by the way the Clinton administration has politicized every agency of government during its watch — from the IRS, to the FBI, to the Pentagon — using them and abusing them to maintain and increase its power over the people.
I could go on and on with the list of high crimes and felonious abuses of this administration — treason and bribery among them. But still, even if Congress, the press and the independent counsel insist on limiting the scrutiny of this administration to Sexgate, there is every reason to impeach, convict and dispose of this human blight on the White House — this “cancer on the presidency,” if you will.
If not, radical revision of our laws are in order. All the sexual harassment legislation passed by the president’s political allies in the last 20 years must be scrapped. If they don’t apply to the president of the United States, it is certainly unfair and hypocritical to hold ordinary Americans accountable to them. In fact, virtually all laws governing employer-employee conduct will need revision in the post-Clinton era. It will be time to scrap all the pious clauses about moral turpitude as a disqualification for public office. Any solution short of impeachment, conviction and removal from office will translate into a moral coup d’etat — an intentional and deliberate landmark shift in the way we govern and what we believe about the rule of law in the United States.
And that would be just fine with the Clinton White House — which is just one more reason this scandal-ridden administration has to go.
After all, if a college professor was caught doing what Clinton did, he’d be history — even in the liberal bastion of academia. If a general was caught doing what Clinton did, he’d be gone — even in that male-dominated institution. If a governor, mayor, chief executive officer, you name it, broke the trust of his position by taking advantage of a young woman half his age, everyone understands there would be severe consequences.
That’s the way it should be. But all the rules change if Clinton is allowed to skate by with a rebuke, an admonition, a “censure.”
Clinton would love a good tongue-lashing. After all, that’s how this scandal began.
Somehow, Americans have forgotten what this scandal is all about. They’ve been conned into believing the issue is “an affair” the president had with a “consenting adult.” Nonsense. When this scandal first came to light — even before the ugly details were made public — everyone intuitively understood it was the end of the Clinton presidency. Even George Stephanopoulos was quoted as saying impeachment would be the result.
What has happened since is an example of the kind of “spin” designed to save the presidency at the expense of personal responsibility and the moral fabric that holds America together.