I remember 1992. I was in high school getting ready to graduate. Young, naive, and still wondering what it was I was going to do with my life. I was in love, in the best shape of my life, and had no clue about the complicated world that I inhabited.
The earth was changing at least in my tunnel vision. The cold war was over and it seemed the world would be safer. Butt rock was going the way of the dodo. Environmental causes were becoming a necessity rather than a hippie cross to bare.
The first time I saw Bill Clinton speak I was hopeful. Granted he wasn't a great speaker at the time, but I believed in him. After the Gulf War part 1 as well as Panama I really wanted to see the tyrant elder Bush ousted from the White House. Being 17 I couldn't vote yet, but I really thought that Clinton was someone to believe in. I thought young people would head out in droves to polls. Sadly hardly anyone of my generation did and still don't.
I was normally cynical about politics from an early age, but yet I was so taken with the idea of the Republicans losing control of Presidential politics. Having only remember seeing Bush and Reagan I thought them as everything that was wrong with our electorate. Clinton coming along promising health care, a good economy, and a reign of peace seemed so welcoming I cast aside all thoughts of hatred towards politicians and threw in my lowly support of the man from Arkansas.
Deep down I really didn't like Bill nor Hillary, but I did have hope. He appeared on MTV and was asked the famous question about his undergarments preference. He played the sax. He fucked around. He tried pot. All of this shouldn't matter when picking the leader of the free world, but the young people wanted a change. Sometimes for reasons they never understood. Maybe it was just for the sake of change.
The world was becoming black and white for me and I found safety in that. When November 8th hit I was relieved to hear Bush would be packing his U-haul and a regime change was upon us. The Democrats had the White House, Senate, and House. Things were looking bright.
Then Clinton went to work. He appointed incompetent people to important positions including his wife. Her failed health care plan as well as Bill's own lackluster policy initiatives really brought me down. His only real successes were Republican agendas, such as NAFTA which was a larger blow to the environment than anyone recognizes. The public grew weary of his lack of leadership, but were marveled by his ability to communicate to them.
1996 came and the Republicans took over Congress. I imagine the voters got tired of Clinton's right leaning policies and decided they might as well go with Republicans rather than
Republicans masked as Democrats.
You know the rest. Clinton became an embarrassment, but it took Bush II to make me miss him. I imagine though there was some young Republican in the fall of 2000 who felt just as I did in 1992. Come 2008 I believe they'll feel the same way I did after 8 years of incompetence. I feel somewhat betrayed by my elected leaders and will probably never feel the energy I possessed as a young armchair politician, but I'll always miss 1992.
"Today is a big day in TV history. On this day forty-one years ago, the Beverly Hillbillies aired for the first time right here on CBS. They took a little break, then in 1992, they moved into the White House for eight years." - David Letterman