If Bill Clinton Had Been President on 9-11-2001

By Proof

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Our Hero at Ground Zero: Couldn't find a bullhorn ??

Some years back, there were stories floating around, that either Bill Clinton, or some person or persons in his administration were jealous of George Bush, for the admiration and adulation garnered, for his leadership during and after the terrorist attacks of 9/11. Well, they couldn't go that far, so they hinted that they were "disappointed" that nothing like 9/11 happened to Bill Clinton while he was in office, as if the only difference between Clinton and Bush was which years they served. A person might rush into a burning building to save a child, while others might only stand by and stare in horror. It is not the situation that creates a hero, the situation reveals them.

Aside from the mildly ghoulish and creepy idea that anyone would want three thousand people to die so that someone could demonstrate what a great and competent leader Clinton was, I figured at the time, that this was probably just a clumsy and backhanded way to assert that Clinton was every bit the leader that W was, and more, only he did not have a similar circumstance to demonstrate it.

Let me make it clear, that I am not saying that Clinton ever said or asserted this himself. Certainly not publicly. He might have shared some small regret with a friend or staffer, who may have taken a chance or offhanded remark out of context, and a rumor was born. Maybe not. Either way, no one paid it that much attention at the time, because a) it sounded vaguely like sour grapes, and b) no one seriously would wish a catastrophe and tragedy of this magnitude would occur, simply so that a politician could showcase his marvelous leadership skills. In other words, no one in their right mind would have "9/11 envy". But, in light of recent events, and the actions of our current president, a slightly different perspective and interpretation of that rumored envy occurred to me.

Many people rightly mark 9/11 as taking a significant role in the erosion of liberties we took very much for granted in the country on 9/10. The creation of the TSA, with its invasive searches and scans, with the possible extension and expansion to rail and highway travel, the NSA recording cell phone data and scanning your emails without warrants or even suspicions, the proliferation of security cameras, the roving and stationary scanning by law enforcement of hundreds of thousands of license plates, with the data all being stored for future reference, all ostensibly to protect us from terrorists.

Since 9/11 we have seen more and more government intrusion into our lives. But, what if someone of the "Never let a good crisis go to waste" mentality, was of the opinion that government did not go far enough in intruding upon the lives of its citizens (and a Clinton administration might have done more)? Witness the control freak mentality associated with the current (and partial) government shut down. An attempt to control each and every person, and every activity that takes place on every federal property, large and small, without exception. (Perhaps "AR stands for "Anal Retentive", and the "AR-15" that everyone fears so much is merely Obama, his Attorney General and twelve assorted cabinet members, Supreme Court justices and czars?)


* Attempts to keep people from open air memorials

* Shutting down restaurants, inns and other businesses not supported by government funds.

* Removing handles to water fountains adjacent to running trails

* Coning off scenic overlooks to try to keep people from even gazing upon federal lands

* Closing access to cemeteries both at home and abroad

The list goes on and on. The amount of control that the government is trying to exercise over it's citizens on public lands is unprecedented. Clinton never tried to ban visits from the Lincoln Memorial just because there was a squabble over government funding. (Another reason to believe it was someone in his administration and not Clinton himself with 9/11 envy). Clinton, by the way, for all his flaws, is starting to look more like a 'philosopher king' by comparison to Barack Obama, even to Republicans.

"Never let a crisis go to waste". Did the clean water crisis allow the government to seize control of how large your toilet tank is? Did the "global warming" hoax determine whether the government could ban the ubiquitous Edison incandescent bulb in favor of some mercury filled haz-mat opportunities? There's talk of letting utility companies control your thermostats through Smart Meter networks, (once Obama's EPA has shuttered enough coal fired plants). Name me a single item in your home that is not regulated by the federal government? I understand that there is even a regulation as to the size of the holes in your Swiss cheese, and that, if those standards are not met, the producer cannot call it Swiss cheese, even though all the ingredients are identical. (Of course, the holes are produced by C02, so the EPA would have gained control of your cheese one way or another!)

If Bill Clinton had been president when 9/11 happened, would he have been as good or better than Bush? There's no evidence of that that I have seen. Bill handled the first World Trade Center bombing as a criminal matter and, via the court system, our intelligence gathering capabilities were damaged. There's no evidence that he would not have taken the same approach to the 9/11 bombing. The same goes for his globally baked acolyte Al Gore.

If the apocryphal story of Clinton administration's 9/11 envy is true, it may have come from sour grapes, or a misguided pride in their boss and an attempt to inflate his ego and legacy. But, it could also have come from a "crisis gone to waste" devotee, bemoaning the lost opportunity to wield ever increasing control of American citizens. Food for thought. (Hold the Swiss!)

Original art work created for Proof Positive by John Cox

Cross posted at Proof Positive


  1. He wasn't.

    Following eight years of GWB and his great expansion of the federal bureaucracy and ballooning the national debt only to be followed by BHO who largely followed GWB's lead and continued on while things kept getting worse I for one am beginning to develop fond memories of WJC.

    1. Hence, the philosopher king comment. Nearly all of BC's shortcomings pale in comparison to the current holder of the office. I'd venture that at least 80% of the nation, in all parties, would swap Bill for Obama in a heartbeat.

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    3. Willie was no better than Zero (remember Elian Gonzalez, Mogadishu, DADT?); if Dick Morris hadn't been making decisions for him in thr middle 4 years of his Administration, this "nostalgia" wouldn't exist.

      Willie never balanced a budget and he never cut the debt; those were all in the projections.

      That some people believe it only shows how gullible they are.

      And, yes, Willie was the one who wished 9/11 happened on his watch.

    4. I remembered hearing the stories, but I couldn't remember if Bill himself had been identified as the source. I didn't want to attribute it directly to him because, well, it sounds a lot like sour grapes and false bravado. I didn't want to insult him by crediting him with saying petty and delusional things he may not have said, unless I could verify the source.

  2. Better philosopy than mythology. Dontcha think?

    1. Better philosophy then phrenology, but we could play this game all day!

    2. Or "than". Desperately seeking second cup of coffee...


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