To borrow a phrase — Now I want you to listen:

President Bill Clinton is a genius.

Don’t misunderstand — perfect, he’s not. I hated Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, for forcing Americans to lie about who they loved. I hated Welfare to Work, for forcing poor people away from their children and into terrible jobs that don’t support child care. And I hated all the dick-led foolishness – he was in the Oval Office, for God’s sake, both literally and figuratively.

And he’s a genius. A GENIUS.

And I mean that quite literally. Did you see that speech? Did you see that speech? That man — that flawed man who also (btw) erased the national deficit, introduced SCHIP, and facilitated the end of hostilities in Northern Ireland — is so overwhelmingly smart, he is a goddamn force of nature!

The entire forty-five minute speech — huge, sprawling swathes of it entirely extemporized — was a force of nature, but the best part, the single best part was one word: “Arithmetic.”

Bill Clinton was never shy about his country boy roots (and even mentioned them tonight), but he has also never, ever been shy about the importance of knowledge, and education, and smart thinking. He has never been shy about the fact that being a country boy, or growing up poor, or fatherless, does not mean that one cannot be an intellectual. That money can’t buy facts — and that facts actually matter.

Arithmetic. Because facts actually matter.

Thank you, Big Dog. That was 45 minutes of wonky awesome. Thank you.

Now, Internet? I will need you to create a t-shirt that reads: Arithmetic.




  1. JHarper2

     /  September 5, 2012

    And where he warned people what would happen if Romney and Ryan kept their budgetary promises “for they are honorable men”.

    ….and Brutus is an honorable man.

  2. wearyvoter

     /  September 5, 2012

    The dude just feeds off the energy in the room. OMG. @JHarper2-Thanks for the Shakespeare reminder.

  3. “I want to nominate a man who’s cool on the outside… but burns for America on the inside.”

    The man can light up a room with his words and his passion and his energy.

    • That was like the ONE turn of phrase I didn’t like! You know why? It immediately reminded me of Newt Gingrich’s reason for cheating on his wife…! So, yeah. Couldn’t go there with him on that one. Sadly.

      • Well, I tend to think he was referring to how Romney seems cool enough externally but has no real passion inside him. I also think President Clinton kind of short-circuited that idea when he mentioned that the President was “smart enough to marry Michelle,” which, given who is wife is, I think was a subtle dig at Ann Romney without being too overt.

        Any way you look at it, at the end of the day, it was a speech that lit a fire under the DNC.

  4. CitizenE

     /  September 6, 2012

    Comparison/contrast–the beginning of crit thinking, Clinton’s calling card. Loved the fact checkers everywhere…well, um, by and large he was telling the truth. So where were the points he got wrong? Um, um, um, well, by and large.

    Or some of the more extreme conservatives, the guy was mendacious not gonna try to spell that out here, but Geez M’knees why are our guys so lame by contrast? I just wish someone on our side had something to say.

  5. Found one on Cafepress off the bat:

    There may be others.