Bill Clinton

Labour should do this with its leadership contenders

After the Democrats were trounced in the 1994 midterms, Barbara A. Bardes and Robert W. Oldenick claimed in their book Public Opinion: Measuring the American Mind, Bill Clinton employed the firm Penn and Schoen to conduct a poll a day dissecting his language, mannerisms and the nuances of his policy proposals. Heading into the 1996 election, on discovering that swing voters preferred outdoorsy vacations, the Clintons decided to summer in Wyoming.

Will New Zealand ever listen to Captain Mumblef*ck? They didn’t for the two years he lead Labour last.

Or vote for a double chinned, bespectacled, cardy wearing civil servant from the set of Gliding On who has his own set of skeletons lurking?   Read more »

When does a political scandal take its toll?

There is a great deal of talk about political scandals at the moment. Most of it is beltway and of no consequence, with the scandal largely manufactured by an opposition out of real ideas.

The polls should give them a clue as to what the public believes.

THere is some evidence though, actually quite a lot of evidence, to suggest what it is precisely that finally bites when a scandal runs.

Your allies may be quick to abandon you during a scandal if you’re expendable (think John Edwards), but if you’re, say, the president, they may be more likely to rally to your side. Scandals may also be more damaging for black candidates (PDF) than for white ones. Additionally, scandals may be more likely to emerge when the opposition party has a lower opinion of the incumbent and when it’s a slow news week (PDF). Voters think worse of scandals involving financial problems than they do of sex scandals, especially when abuse of power is involved. They are also quicker to forgive (or forget) sex scandals than financial ones (PDF). Read more »

Bill Clinton channels his inner Colin Craig

BillClintonWithAlien

Bill Clinton appears to be sharing information with Colin Craig:

Bill Clinton is intrigued by space aliens.

The former United States president appeared on Wednesday’s episode of “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” He ended up discussing, among other things, extraterrestrial life.

Clinton admitted that soon after becoming president, he had his aides research Area 51, the Nevada military facility, “to make sure there was no alien down there.” He was also interested in Roswell, N.M., the site of a reputed UFO sighting in 1947, which was celebrating its 50th anniversary during Clinton’s presidency.

“I had all the Roswell papers reviewed – everything,” he told Kimmel.

“If you saw that there were aliens there, would you tell us?” Kimmel asked.

“Yeah,” Clinton said, nodding.   Read more »

Friday nightCap

Bill Clinton might not be a dodgy rooting ratbag, but Tony Blair might be

Liz Hurley has denied a torrid affair with Bill Clinton, describing such rumours as “ludicrously silly”.

As celebrity gossip goes, it takes some beating: actress and model Elizabeth Hurley has year-long affair with Bill Clinton while he was US President.

Throw in the suggestion that they had a liaison in the White House while Hillary Clinton was next door, and that Mr Clinton ended it when he realised he was falling in love, and you have a story that rivals Marilyn Monroe’s alleged fling with John F Kennedy.

But when something sounds too good to be true, it usually is, as Miss Hurley pointed out on Wednesday when she was forced to deny the “ludicrously silly” report and threatened legal action as it gathered pace online.

The allegations were made by Tom Sizemore, a Hollywood actor who claims to have dated Miss Hurley in the 1990s.

Sizemore was recorded on video boasting to friends that he had arranged Miss Hurley’s first rendezvous with the president in 1998 following a White House screening of Saving Private Ryan.

The actor was one of the stars of the film and claimed Clinton pulled him away from the screening for a private conversation.

In the video, obtained by the gossip website Radar Online, Sizemore says Clinton asked him: “Did you go with Liz Hurley for four years? Do you still see her?”

When Sizemore confirmed that the couple had dated but were no longer an item, Clinton is said to have asked for Miss Hurley’s phone number.

In the recording, Sizemore claims the then-President told him: ‘Give it to me. You dumb m***********r, I’m the Commander-in-Chief of the United States of America.

“The buck stops here. Give me the damn number.”

Why didn’t he just get the NSA to give it to him?

Read more »

Dodgy buddhist ratbags rooting their followers

sex-buddhism

At least it is better than buggering little boys.

The Daily Beast looks at the dodgy rooting buddhist ratbags in the US.

A new ebook by New York Times religion columnist Mark Oppenheimer alleges what many in the American Buddhist community have known for years: that some of its most revered teachers were also serial sex offenders.

Case in point: Eido Shimano Roshi. The founder and leader of New York’s Zen Studies Society—among the largest Western Buddhist communities in America, with prominent CEOs and celebrities among its members—Shimano carried on clandestine affairs with over a dozen women in his community over the course of thirty years, according to Oppenheimer’s provocatively titled Zen Predator of the Upper East Side. The book is a devastating indictment of Shimano Roshi, filled with hard evidence of the affairs and the cover-ups, the testimony of several victims, and occasionally lurid details.  It even includes Shimano’s own confession to having sex with some students, though, he says, “far fewer” than his accusers allege.    Read more »

What would Bill do?

As predicted the MSM are targeting the messengers.

No matter what Len Brown still conducted an affair from the Townhall, treating it as his personal bordello, this was not after hours, in his own time liaisons, it was in and from his office and provided jobs and appointments for girlfriend. Now questions must be asked about the procurement procedures for contracts that her company received to provide consulting and services to the Council and whether or not Len Brown interfered in those too.

Anyone who thinks that this behaviour is ok for the highest elected position in the council of our largest city is bonkers…  Read more »

Brian Edwards on fallen haloes

My good friend (perhaps not as good as I thought, since he slams me in his post) Brian Edwards talks about fallen haloes.

He makes a very good point even if he does give me a tickle up on the way through.

I don’t like [Brown] either. It’s the gut again.

Some of my dislike may be put down to prejudice and should properly be discounted. He’s a god-botherer who wears his religious faith on his sleeve and I have very little time for that. He talks a lot and is not averse to  talking himself up. Much of his conversation with John Campbell last night was talking himself up: Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa… but I’ve been a bloody great mayor.

His reasoning seemed to desert him on the topic of whether, in the light of the revelations about his two-year-affair with Bevan Chuang,  he should resign: Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa…  but by a substantial majority the people of Auckland re-elected me because I’d been a bloody good mayor. Read more »

Why we broke the story of the rooting ratbag mayor

By now you will all have read the astonishing story of Len Brown and his affair.

By now there will be people whispering in the media’s ear trying to kill the story…they will be saying that this is someones private life and that in New Zealand their private life has been sacrosanct with media.

Normally that would be true…except…

  • Len Brown is the mayor of the largest city in NZ and has paraded his family before the cameras, including on election night
  • Len Brown conducted his affair from his office, using council provided resources including cellphones and vehicles, the Ngati Whatua Meeting Room, his own office and bathroom, and utilised council staff to keep and hand over hotel cards at reception in the Town Hall to facilitate his liaisons.
  • Len Brown used functions he was attending in his official capacity to entertain his mistress, including a private dinner with the CEO of Southern China airline.  Read more »

I’m not sure this is an endorsement I’d want

Barack Obama called John Key to thank him for chairing a TPP session.

David Cunliffe, who like to jump queues to shake the hands of American politicians like Bill Clinton might be a bit miffed, but John Key Is probably miffed too at the news that Obama called him has been broadcast.

The White House has issued a statement about Mr Obama’s phone call, in which he thanked Mr Key for chairing the talks.  Read more »