We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Mah Fellow Socialists

There was special guest appearance today at the Labour Party Annual Conference in Blackpool in the shape of former US President Bill Clinton.

At least we were spared Hilary. Bill’s sidekick and trusty companion for the day was film-actor Kevin Spacey who managed to muscle his way into every photo-op like Zelig.

Clinton was on top form, pressing flesh and distributing his effortless charm. One could have been forgiven for forgetting which of the two men was the movie-star. And, boy, were the BBC impressed. The commentators could barely contain their hormonal surges as Clinton glided through the throng. I’ve heard of politicians making love to the camera before but never have I seen the cameras making love to a politician.

He made a speech to the Conference. A long speech. The text of it may be available somewhere out there in cyberspace but if I was you I wouldn’t waste valuable time hunting it down because a) it was dull and b) it’s of limited significance. However, perchance you are interested, here is the gist:

“Mah friends, I am so pleased to be here with you today because we all share a common vision; one of peace, one of hope, one of children. Children, children, children, children. That’s what we’re about: children. And that’s what the Third Way is all about; it’s about you, me, us all joining together to strive for a better world for children. Children anywhere, children everywhere. Not like those knuckle-dragging right-wing loons who don’t care about children. In fact, they eat children. We must not be like them. But we must also help them. We must help them to find a better way; the Third Way. So stay focussed and strong because I know that if we all work together and believe in ourselves we can make socialism work. Oh yeah, and Saddam is a real bad guy and he has to go. Thankyou. I love you lots.”

He got a standing ovation

10 comments to Mah Fellow Socialists

  • He said Saddam has to go! Fantastic!

  • David, do you chaps say “LOL” in the UK? because that version of the Clintoon speech was a riot! Thank you!
    I blogged about it, too, but said things a little differently although they amount to about the same thing, which is that Bubba is a cretinous, but much ballyhooed Communist!
    Will Britain EVER end her love affair with Billy Jeff Blythe?

  • Brian Micklethwait

    What interests me about Clinton’s speech, and reception, at Blackpool today is the way that more and more, front line national politicians everywhere are abandoning the pretence of not wanting their side to win, in other countries (indeed of not even knowing which their side is). Don’t any of you Americans go thinking that Clinton lined up alongside Bush. He lined up alongside Blair and against Bush.

    Time was when every big time national politician would say “It’s none of my business” about political battles anywhere else but in their own country. Not anymore. National boundaries mean less and less. I feel the age of global political parties rapidly approaching. Countries, even the USA itself, are declining slowly but surely into what we call “constituencies”, or what Americans call things like “states” and “congressional districts”.

  • Very, very funny. Reminds of of Rev. Lovejoy’s wife on The Simpsons: “Won’t somebody pleease think of the Chill-dren!?!?”

    Clinton’s the kind of fellow you just love to hate: the perfect politician. He has no set views other than his knowledge of the evils of people on “the right,” he switches from side to side on issues quickly, and got almost nothing done in 8 years. People still love him. It seems likely to me that he would have made just as big a superstar if he had grown up in a slightly different family, but on the “other side” of the political fence.

    The sad thing was, that for such a competent politician, he was incompetent at getting his socialist programs enacted. What a champion.

    Brian: What would be so bad about world political parties? A lot of wars are started as a result of nationalism and patriotism. If people start to perceive that national boundaries are irrelevent, then would we have as many wars?

  • David Carr


    Thanks for the link. I think, in fairness, most of Britain is indifferent to Mr.Clinton but the left (especially the new left) adore him.

    It is my feeling that a lot of the anti-Americanism of the British left is, in fact, anti-Republicanism. There was much less antipathy towards the USA when Clinton was in the Oval Office.

  • Margaret Thatcher is a big hit with the right in the states. Still, it’s hard to imagine her speaking at an official Republican function.

  • I think Dame Thatcher would get a very warm welcome should she speak at any Republican function.
    She is highly thought of in Conservative circles.
    By the by, I live in Dallas, TX and got to see her and husband Dennis when they were here to visit their son, who was then living here, and I was thrilled and I’m a Republican, so does that partially count?

  • Brian Micklethwait

    Lucas Wiman: Nothing at all. I was merely noting a trend, not regretting it. And of course Jennie T’s comments about Thatcher being well received among Republicans flag up the same story.

    I am, however, a little less certain than you seem to be about how automatically peaceful global political parties will be. There is such a thing as a civil war, as we constantly have to remind the fanatical supporters of the Euro-super-state. Just because a place gets politically tied together and counties or states stop mattering, statesmanship-wise, that doesn’t mean that the combined show can’t then be fought about. Very nastily.

    Are you an American? Forgive me, I don’t know. The USA had its own civil war, I seem to recall, all about the exact meaning of the “U” bit.

  • Jennie: I’m sure Mrs. Thatcher would be welcome at a Republican function (and at my house any time she wishes). I was thinking of her speaking at a convention. I can’t recall a foriegn leader speaking an ‘official’ party function. As for Tony Blair speaking to the Democrat Party, he would need to be at least as superficial as Clinton. Very few of them would publicly admit to being as far left as Blair on domestic issues.

  • One historical trend in America is that once a president leaves office, he becomes more popular. Even presidents as bad as Ford or Carter gernerally get praise now from most people. The only president in recent history to have more people dislike him than like him after he left office was Nixon. That is until Clinton. Although it is a narrow gap, most Americans dislike Clinton now despite that most liked him while in office. Even some of the liberals I talk to say that Clinton is going to be remembered for running in Somalia, not going after terrorists when he had the chance, and for builiding an economic boom that was based on a fantasy of dotcoms.

    By the way, most republicans I know think Thatcher was pretty much the British female version of Reagan. She spoke in my town before I moved here and I am still mad I missed her. I did see Major once and he made jokes for most of his speach at my university and only had about 400 people show up. Other speakers like GHW Bush and Powell got 2500 with other people getting turned away beacuse of lack of space.