BREAKING: Instant answers to key questions!

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 29, 2018

Today's question comes from Slate:
Slate's Leon Neyfakh is producing a serial examination of—what else?—Bill Clinton's relationship with Monica Lewinsky.

Not that there's anything wrong with it! At any rate, we're prepared to offer an instant response to today's key question:
NEYFAKH (8/29/18): What happened between Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky? Why did it happen? And what are we supposed to do about the fact that the whims and impulses of individual men can—and constantly do—alter the course of history?
"Why did it happen?" No really—that's what it says!

We'll note that Lewinsky's whims and impulses were part of the mix there too. That said, we can offer an instant answer to Neyfakh's key question. Our answer will take the form of a second question:

What are we supposed to do about matters like that? Learn how to mind our own business?

(Or does Neyfakh attempt to micromanage everyone's private affairs? Warning! World population is currently more than seven billion.)

One more question: Who made Lewinsky's later life such hell? Was Bill Clinton mainly at fault? Or was it perhaps the many great apes who function like peeping Toms?

One of the best jokes we ever heard: We wouldn't have told the joke ourselves, because it mocked a belief we ourselves wouldn't mock.

That said, the joke was wickedly great. It was a scathing attack on "pro-life" belief. Its punchline went something like this:

"I think life begins at the point when you learn how to mind your own business."

We're fairly sure we recall whose joke that was, but we aren't entirely sure. We wouldn't have told the joke ourselves, but it was an extremely sharp joke. It packed a punch the way you'd like a topical joke to do.

23 comments:

  1. "What are we supposed to do about matters like that? Learn how to mind our own business?"

    First of all, should Linda Tripp, Ken Starr and the Republicans have minded *their* business? They made the affair public. Some of the same people who were morally outraged then can't run fast enough away today from the current occupant's transgressions.

    Second, of course Clinton shouldn't have done what he did. Could he not control himself for 4-8 years while he was in the White House, with Starr rummaging through his life?

    Next: the Lewinsky affair became public knowledge. It was important at the time. It led to impeachment, after all. The news media had an obligation to report on it.

    And now that it is public and history, it is a fair topic for discussion by Neyfakh and anyone else.

    And whose "business" is being minded? Is it preferable that the press kept silent about JFK's affairs, or that they were quiet about FDR's polio? Does the public have a right to know these things about their leaders, or should they be fed only the information that the media elite decide to feed them, the way it used to be?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Somerby wants us to keep quiet about Stormy and Trump's other women problems, so he has to argue that way about these past situations too. There is no political advantage or disadvantage about bringing up Lewinsky since neither Clinton is running for office, but there is a political consequence to talking about or not talking about Trump's sexual incontinence. So convenient to the Republicans to "mind our own business" today, when silence can only benefit Trump.

      Why would a good liberal be suggesting that we mind our own business, instead of suggesting that we believe Stormy? What kind of liberal does that?

      Delete
    2. What kind of liberal does that?

      The kind that knows how much the Republicans banked on the Lewinsky scandal to gain electoral advantage in 1998 and how well that worked out for them.

      Delete
    3. Well, Republicans won in 2000, now they control the entire federal government and lots of states. Did their impeachment of Clinton backfire? Can't say that it did.

      But none of that changes the question of whether the press should report on Lewinsky or Clifford. The press aren't equal to political parties.

      Delete
    4. Yeah, the Republicans won in 2000 but they weren't running against Clinton. They run everything today, but this is a long way from 1998. In the last seven tries, they've won the popular vote once. Did the impeachment backfire in 1998? Who knows? But it certainly wasn't the sure-fire winner they thought they had. A "good liberal" can reasonably conclude that the political sex chase is a bad idea.

      Clear now?

      Delete
    5. Apparently the Lewinsky scandal played little to no role in the 1998 elections. TDH often asserts that part of why Gore lost in 2000 was due to payback for the Lewinsky scandal. The Lewinsky scandal is not analogous to any of Trump's scandals. There is little to no evidence that any of the ways the press is chasing Trump is good or bad for liberals.

      Delete
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      Delete
  2. Memory.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWoQW-b6Ph8

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hearing a punchline without the set up is like hearing the plot of a movie you will never go to see.

    It took less than a minute to find using Google:

    "[An anti-abortion conference goer] says, 'Well, don't you believe that life begins at inception?' I say, 'No. I believe that life begins when you mind your own fucking business!'" –Lea DeLaria"

    ReplyDelete
  4. I don't think Bob really means we should mind our own business. I think he means we should mind our own business about sex. But, I imagine Bob would consider it our business if a candidate had behaved improperly in certain other ways. E.g., IMHO Bob would not have us ignore it if a politican had
    --committed racist acts
    -- used racists speech
    -- physically hit women
    -- committed homophobic acts

    ReplyDelete
  5. "Or was it perhaps the many great apes who function like peeping Toms?"

    Bob, dear, are you completely zombified? Had your demigod Bubba minded his own business with Paula Jones - NOT exposing his dick to her, and NOT ordering her to 'kiss it' -> there would've been no Paula Jones civil suit against Bubba -> Bubba wouldn't have to lie in the testimony about a certain fat intern -> we wouldn't have to know about the whole damned thing.

    But alas, demigod Bubba didn't mind his own business with Miss Jones. Tsk.

    Is this so complicated?

    ReplyDelete
  6. I would strongly prefer if podcast hosts didn't try to talk all curt and flippant like Ira Glass.

    ReplyDelete
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  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete
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