To Tell the Truth

What if Clinton had said he loved those blowjobs?

The president is pissed. Where does Starr get off telling him what to do? How come the most powerful man in the free world can't get the sexual privilege god gave a jock? Marv Albert's going back on the air, for god's sake! Athletes can still get away with raping women! And the president can't get a blowjob? (Probably the only comparable case of denied privilege in sports is O. J. Simpson's—like Packwood, he seems to flirt with the idea of confession, and like Clinton, he's utterly mystified that anything could tarnish his golden glow. But even in this society, murder is going too far. For that, you've got to sell the mansion.)

If only Clinton had called a blowjob a blowjob, he might have started an adult conversation about sex, relationships, power, and privilege. He might have helped remake America as a nation that could have real scandals, like Italy or Japan. He could have disrupted the narrative of Hillary as victim and sparked a more intelligent discourse about the possibility of a union in which the bonds may not be primarily sexual. It would be fascinating to hear Hillary discuss such a marriage, except that she too is wedded to fake story lines. She may have replaced the previous months' incessant hand-holding with an equally suspect distance, but that's most likely just Bill's scripted punishment. When she permits his redemption, will the whole country follow suit?

Clinton could have contributed something really useful to the public exchange in that speech of his. But no. And so the same old tired songs play nauseatingly on.

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