The world's most powerful man, we now realise, does not seem to care that cigars are for blowing and nothing else.
The blow-by-blow account in independent counsel Kenneth Starr's report on Clinton's sexual encounters has, no
doubt, dealt a deadly blow to Clinton's
That aside, his sexual encounters with
intern Monica Lewinsky described in graphic detail in the report for the world
to see, put all parents and serious
newspapers around the world in
Malaysian newspapers, for example, have had to, well, skirt around the issue. Serious newspapers are,
after all, for the family. All the gory
details won't be appropriate for any newspaper in education (NIE)
So the only decent thing to do is to leave
out those naughty bits. That's certainly
fine with most parents. All the
skirt-chasing and voyeurism would just
have to be read on the Internet.
But that leads to another problem. You think your kids are surfing the
Internet, trying to earn a college
degree online, but they are actually
looking up the 400 pages of Clinton's
bizarre sexual acts which certainly make
more interesting reading.
You are a liberal parent and you think
that explaining safe sex to your pimply
teenage kid is the best thing. But hey,
the footnote in Starr's report says
Clinton had hundreds of sexual affairs
in the early years of his
And before you can even explain the
consequences of full-blown HIV cases,
your kid will be interrupting you to ask `what is a blow job.'
Next, you will be asked how Clinton could manage to talk on the telephone to members of the Congress when you
would think his attention would be otherwise engaged.
Now, you know why you are struggling
with your job while Clinton still has
the Americans insisting he shouldn't be sacked despite his sexual sins.
Like any sex scandal in any part of the
world, blowing to pieces what has been
built politically over the years, leads
to a certain degree of disbelief among
What we know about people in high places
are the visual images that come to our
living rooms through the television and
in the newspapers.
And we all tend to equate high politics
with high standards because politicians all over the world preach morality. They tell us that whatever they do is for the people, justice and good governance.
The followers sometimes get carried
away, forgetting that politicians are also human beings. Strip away the trappings of power and the larger-than-life image created by the
spin doctors, and they are just normal
There's always a dark side which we
sometimes do not know. When the
character flaws are exposed, there's the initial shock.
Starr's report looks like an improbable script with unconvincing acting. It looks more like a sexual farce rather than a political tragedy.
But take away the lurid details, it's
simply a case of a politician who has a
history of lying and getting away with it.
It's not a case of adultery or a man who
cannot control his appetites but about perjury and obstruction of law. He has
denied sexual harassment under
Clinton has, of course, said it's a
right-wing conspiracy. His lawyers have used a string of legal jargon to get him out.
But like someone who is armed with a
blow-gun, Starr has finally hit his
Like other politicians, Clinton has his
followers and admirers. As more details
are released, Clinton has found himself
His followers, who had dedicated their
lives to him, now feel betrayed. Clinton was a man who could do no wrong, as far as they were concerned.
This was, of course, the very man who
said he did not “inhale'' but merely
“blew'' it, when asked if he had smoked
grass in college.
Now, his lawyers are saying he did not
lie, in the legal sense. Of course, he
did not have any sexual relations, if
you were to trust him.
The political weather at the White House
certainly looks dark and windy now. The
Clinton expose comes just two years
after Dick Morris, Clinton's image
consultant, was dismissed because of his
affair with a prostitute, like something from the movie, Mars Attack.
Blown out of proportion by the media,
Clinton has been reduced to a sexually
compulsive liar who is now begging for
Like the presidency, the once
prestigious appointment of an internship to the White House has now become a huge, salacious joke.
American parents may not be so keen for
their kids to work in the White House
anymore, what with all the worrying they
have to do. After all, other middle-aged
officials may be equally menacing.
Herein, lies a lesson for parents from
the baby-boomers period. Many
politicians, who grew up in colleges
protesting against the establishment and singing Bob Dylan's Blowing in the Wind,
may not necessarily hold the same
It's like the wind that blows the
lallang. For some politicians, their
stand can swing from side to side,
depending on the circumstances.
For these politicians, the lesson is:
Don't blow your own trumpet too much or
the fall from grace can be very hard