"Before the bombing occurred, there was a sort of fever" in the political dialogue that was in ways similar in content to the anger currently boiling up on talk radio and on the Internet, Clinton said at a forum on the 15th anniversary of the attack by Timothy McVeigh that killed 168.
"The fabric of American life had been unraveling" in 1995 amid high unemployment, Clinton said.
"The structure of the Cold War -- the clear bipolar world -- was coming to an end," Clinton said. "There were more and more people having trouble figuring out where they fit in. It is true that we see some of that today."
Clinton said people have the right "to advocate whatever the livin' Sam Hill they want to advocate" but they must observe "the basic line dividing criticism from violence or its advocacy."
April 17, 2010
Bill Clinton in a fevered rave — or a calculated manipulation of public opinion — about the Tea Party and the Oklahoma City bombing.
The Oklahoma City bombing took place in 1995, during Bill Clinton's watch, so maybe little things set him off and the memories come flooding back. Maybe we should be tolerant of the old man's maunderings. But I think that Clinton is super-sharp, that he knows he can connect with the American psyche — not all the time, but some of the time, and that he's deliberately applying his skills for specific, political effect: