RUSH: Here's Steve in Dallas. Steve, I'm glad you waited. Thanks for the call. Great to have you on the program.
CALLER: Thanks, Rush. Hey, I really appreciate your program, and I'm really excited I got through to talk to you today.
RUSH: Thank you very much, sir.
CALLER: Hey, I'm hoping you can help me out with something here. The Clintons, nobody understands them better than you. So what did the Clintons have to gain by getting associated with this administration? Hillary Clinton never had to accept the secretary of state job, and Bill Clinton didn't need to give a speech for 'em at the Democratic National Committee (sic), and I've always considered them to be more political and ideological. In 2016, if she's the nominee for president, how in the heck does she expect to get elected with all of this, with being associated with this administration? They're gonna hang this around their neck, especially all this Arab stuff. So...?
RUSH: Well, they didn't expect this. This current stuff this week they didn't expect to happen. Let's go back to the beginning of your question: "Why would she accept secretary of state?" Off the top of my head, the real question is: Why did Obama want her? These two families do not like each other. You are right there. The Clintons and the Obamas, there's no love lost there. But it's the party, man. The party comes before everything. If the Clintons do anything that appears to damage the party, then they're damaging themselves down the road. There was also the --
RUSH: No, wait. There was also Hillary's campaign debt, and I think there was a deal to pay off her debt if she would take this gig or some gig in the administration. It was major debt that she had from her campaign. This also keeps her close. It keeps her in the news. It keeps her name out there as a member of the administration. And, remember, when this thing all started, this is The Messiah's administration! It's easy to ask now, but you go back to January 2009, the first year, and this bunch was loved and adored by everybody but me. They couldn't do anything wrong. It was the place to be in Washington!
CALLER: Even during the primary, Bill Clinton said it was a "fantasy" and she said he wasn't ready to take the three o'clock call, which was evidenced by what just happened.
RUSH: Right. Right. And they threw down the race card on Clinton and he's been holding a grudge. Look, I think Clinton has already tried to sabotage Obama by praising Bain Capital, praising Romney's qualifications, praising private equity. But then, when they called him and asked him to keynote the convention, he almost can't say no. And then when he does it... One thing about Clinton: I don't think he can help doing a good speech.
He is a full bred, 100% through-and-through politician. That speech Clinton gave at the Democrat convention was a classic political convention speech. It's timeless, a hundred years. There was nobody else's speech at that convention that was anywhere near as perfect as Bill Clinton's was within the context of a party, its convention, its purpose. It covered every base, and I think he can do those in his sleep.
RUSH: Do you think they regret it now?
CALLER: Well, I have no way of knowing. You mean because it might have helped Obama?
CALLER: Well, no. I'm just saying, do you think they regret being part of this administration knowing how it's gonna probably effect them?
RUSH: Ehhhh... Look, I don't think these people live in that world where they regret things. If they did, he wouldn't show his face. I mean, this is a guy that's been accused of rape, credibly. He's been disbarred, he's been impeached, he lied to a grand jury. His reputation is one of a womanizer. I don't think these people live in the world where they regret anything. They don't beat themselves up. They don't.
They're not that introspective. If they do anything, they tell themselves how great they are. That's the world they live in. You know, here's the thing. People ask me... No, I'm not gonna not use myself here 'cause there's a better way to do it. Before doing this show, when I was in Sacramento, I went to Washington and did some interviews, which I don't normally do, but that was the reason I went. They sent me.
I interviewed a bunch of people, and George Will was one. The question, back then... This was before I had had any measurable success. My success track was just beginning. It was local, and it was the first time I'd ever experienced any, but it wasn't anything to speak of at the time. For me it was great 'cause it was the first time it had happened after so many years in radio.
So I always, whenever I had a chance to talk to people who were the best at what they did, just profoundly successful, I asked every one of them if they stopped to think about it. I asked George Will, "When the family's gone to bed at night, you're the only one up, you sit down with an adult beverage, do you think about how important you've become to people?" I asked Bill Buckley this. I've asked practically everybody. And I don't think there's an exception to it. Every one of them said, "No. I'm too busy worrying about what I gotta do tomorrow. I don't live in the past. I don't pat myself on the back, I don't do this."
The best expression of it I heard yesterday. There was an excerpt of an interview with Roger Ailes on Fox. Bill Hemmer did the interview. I guess it's part of a longer interview coming up. It was about Neil Armstrong and the moon landing. Ailes was Nixon's media guy at the time, and the interview was about that. There were pictures. Hemmer was showing pictures of Ailes with Nixon in the Oval Office, talking about the media at that time of the day and how they were dealing with the possibilities of what could go wrong and maybe lose these astronauts. How to arrange the phone call. Remember, Nixon called these guys on the moon, and Ailes staged it so that Nixon sitting in his office on the split screen looked like he was looking at Neil Armstrong, who was on the right side of the screen, a split screen.
And he ran Bush 41's campaign. He was the media guy there, consultant, what have you. Probably one of the last real conservative consultants we've had. And Hemmer asked him, "You've been at the focal point of real history in this country your whole career. There you are with Nixon. There you are with Bush 41 throughout --" Ailes' role at the '92 convention for Bush was to tell him jokes to keep him up, happy, focused, confident and so forth. He played all kinds of roles, ran the media. In 92 he was doing that. No, no, '92 he'd gotten out. He was there as a friend in '92. He was not official. He'd gotten out of it by then. But he had worked with Nixon, David Frost, a bunch of people, and Hemmer's question was essentially mine.
"Do you ever stop and think all of these great things that you've done or the moments in American history that you've been a part of?"
And Ailes said, just like everybody I've ever asked this question, he got a frown on his face, he shook his head, he said, "No. I never attached myself to that aspect. I was just doing what I did. And I was just trying to do it the best I could." It's not 'til those events are long gone that you look back on them and whatever emotional attachment you have that you live. You marvel at it or you feel pride. You feel good about it. But he said, at the time it's happening, it's like being in the forest. You're there, you don't see the trees. You know you're there. You don't have to look, "Oh, wow, there's trees." He's too busy doing what he had to do. He didn't attach himself. I've never heard it put better. I didn't attach myself to the historical nature of what was happening, because who knew? I was just doing it.
This is really a long, long way of telling you, I think the Clintons and the Obamas do attach of themselves to the historical aspect of what they're doing, and I think they get caught up in it, and that's the reason that they do it. They're not just doing what they're doing and they'll look at it later. They are doing it precisely to get caught up in it so that they can tell themselves how wonderful they are and how great they are and how special they are. So when you ask me, "Do the Clintons have any regrets?" They don't know what it is. You gotta have a conscience to have regrets. They do attach themselves. And it all goes to the reason why you do something.
Most people who are considered great, that was not their goal. "I want to be great." They wanted to accomplish something. They wanted to invent something or create a service or they wanted to perform better than anybody else that had never done it. But they never said, "I want to be great. I want to be famous." This bunch, "I want to be great. I want to be thought of as great, even if I'm not, I want to be thought of as great." Meaning, these people, are pure surface. There's no depth to them whatsoever, and I firmly believe that. It explains so much, once you understand that. That's why they run around and say, "How in the world could this happen? Why, we closed Abu Ghraib, and we told 'em that we hate conservatives." They're generally mystified, :How could this happen?"
They're also totally absorbed with what people think of them. So, anyway, that's the long answer to the question, "Do the Clintons have regret?" No. Everything's a calculation. Everything. I couldn't live that way, especially a calculation for media coverage, a calculation for media treatment, a calculation for public perception. I couldn't live that way, wouldn't want to. But everybody whose success is a direct result of media treatment or media coverage must live that way, must live with those kinds of calculations. Reagan didn't. Reagan didn't care. He had a mission. His goal was accomplishing things, and there were three of them: Beat the communists, lower taxes, rebuild the military. That's what he set out to do. Can anybody name those things for Obama? I can. I can. But they are tied to his personality. Everything's a calculation.