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Tilting at Windmills

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May 23, 2006
By: Kevin Drum

POWER COUPLES....The crack investigative unit at the New York Times has some raw data for us today:

Since the start of 2005, the Clintons have been together about 14 days a month on average, according to aides who reviewed the couple's schedules. Sometimes it is a full day of relaxing at home in Chappaqua; sometimes it is meeting up late at night. At their busiest, they saw each other on a single day, Valentine's Day, in February 2005 a month when each was traveling a great deal. Last August, they saw each other at some point on 24 out of 31 days. Out of the last 73 weekends, they spent 51 together. The aides declined to provide the Clintons' private schedule.

Now look. This is totally legitimate. The Clintons are a power couple, and the public has a right to know precisely how much, um, up-close time they have with each other. In fact, they're lucky that a quality outfit like the Times did this research instead of some lunatic blogger.

I think all power couples should accept this kind of transparency, so I'm going to set an example. After a thorough review of our calendars, it looks like Marian and I spent 47 of 52 weekends together in 2005. We spend an average of 26 days together, and at our busiest, last February, we spent 18 days together. Valentine's Day was one of them. In December we saw each other at some point on 31 out of 31 days. We often meet up late at night to watch Jon Stewart.

Who's next?

Kevin Drum 12:15 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (92)

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Comments

Yeah, that entire story seemed so weird to me. The Clintons are both on their first marriage and seem to be doing well. A much more intriguing story would be about Rudy Giulani (GOP presidential hopeful) or Newt Gingrich (ditto). The NY Times is a VERY peculiar paper where the Clintons are concerned.

Posted by: LeisureGuy on May 23, 2006 at 12:19 PM | PERMALINK

We just want to know how much sex they had, what form, and with whom.

Posted by: K. Starr on May 23, 2006 at 12:20 PM | PERMALINK

They must be having phone sex

Posted by: Matt on May 23, 2006 at 12:21 PM | PERMALINK

With transcripts soon to be leaked by the NSA...

Posted by: theAmericanist on May 23, 2006 at 12:25 PM | PERMALINK

They've been married for 30-something years. This is the first marriage for both. If you're a Republican politician I think they give you some kind of award for that.

Posted by: clb72 on May 23, 2006 at 12:26 PM | PERMALINK

Ummmm....What counts as "sexual relations"?

The past few years have made this a matter of some contention.

Posted by: Matthew Saroff on May 23, 2006 at 12:26 PM | PERMALINK

for the sake of full disclosure, my wife and i spent 365 days together out of the past year.

Posted by: mudwall jackson on May 23, 2006 at 12:27 PM | PERMALINK

Interesting. They spend leasure time with each other. They meet up late at nights. They are together around half the time. She is in the Senate, and he has a very busy schedule selling books and raising money for whatever charity or quasi governmental job he and George senior are doing at the time. You know, if I didn't believe what everybody else believes, I would think they have weathered the rough patches in their marriage better tnan seemed possible just a few years ago.

Posted by: Ron Byers on May 23, 2006 at 12:27 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin - who cares about Marian? We want to know how much time you spend with the cats.

Posted by: Tom DC/VA on May 23, 2006 at 12:28 PM | PERMALINK

I see my husband an average of 14 days a month. Does this qualify me for office?

Posted by: KathyF on May 23, 2006 at 12:30 PM | PERMALINK

Is Bob Dole still using Viagra? Is Dumbya?

Posted by: red_neck_repub on May 23, 2006 at 12:30 PM | PERMALINK

"What counts as 'sexual relations?'"

Nothing that involves a cigar, we hope.

Posted by: Peter on May 23, 2006 at 12:31 PM | PERMALINK

It's so nice to see that the NY Times cares enough about the Clinton's to basically stalk them.

Posted by: David W. on May 23, 2006 at 12:32 PM | PERMALINK

Gee, I wonder how many days Tommie Franks spent with his wife in 2003? If frequency is needed and indicative of the happiness and stability of a marriage we had a general with a real lousy marriage leading us into war.

Posted by: steve duncan on May 23, 2006 at 12:32 PM | PERMALINK

It's an amazing article. The Clinton camp had nothing to do with the article, of course, despite the fact that they obligingly provided their schedules for the reporter.

It's obvious that it has two main purposes:

-- Create the illusion that the Clinton marriage is something other than a creature of political convenience.
-- Garner sympathy. "The article we dictated to the NY Times..... I mean, the article in the NY Times about our marriage touched our PRIVATE BUSINESS.". It gives the media a meta-excuse not to delve into the affairs (LITERALLY) of both Clintons.

Well played, Clintons. Well played. You've always been worthy adversaries, even if you can't afford scotch guard.

Posted by: Not Saying on May 23, 2006 at 12:36 PM | PERMALINK

I'm surpised that they are spending so much time together, actually. I figured they were both so busy they would see eachother maybe during one week per month or less. Sounds like they make it work pretty well. With the kid grown and out of the house, it gives them some flexibility.

Posted by: ChetBob on May 23, 2006 at 12:39 PM | PERMALINK

The above comment was me. I posted at another blog, and it retained my user info even though I told it not to...

Posted by: American Hawk on May 23, 2006 at 12:39 PM | PERMALINK

What's he "Not Saying?" "I'm a right-wing paranoid where the Clintons are concerned!," that's what.

Posted by: David in NY on May 23, 2006 at 12:39 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, I could tell it was you: stupid and indefensible. American Hawk all the way through.

Posted by: LeisureGuy on May 23, 2006 at 12:40 PM | PERMALINK

There are marriages I know where one or more spouses' jobs required travel and days away from home--sometimes for the better part of a month, or more.
So the Clintons are able to make it work, unlike the marriages of many prominent Repub politicians. Why the hell is this considered a relevant subject for the so-called liberal media?
The water-skiing squirrel has more of an effect on my life than this bullshit.

Posted by: Ringo on May 23, 2006 at 12:41 PM | PERMALINK

Heh. Could have guessed "Not Saying" was "American Hawk." In fact, I did: "right-wing paranoid" -- that's our AH.

Posted by: David in NY on May 23, 2006 at 12:41 PM | PERMALINK

THIS IS RICH: "American Hawk" thinks the Clintons view him as one of their adversaries!

Is this a common feature in the wingnut psyche, to believe that the human objects of their politcal fantasies return the favor and obsess about them as well?

Posted by: ChetBob on May 23, 2006 at 12:44 PM | PERMALINK

Yes, it's COMPLETELY PARANOID to think that a New York Senator might have a relationship with a New York newspaper, and that an article which says exactly what she would want it to say was somehow influenced by her.

The critical thinking abilities of the Political Animal readers is as 'impressive' as always...

Posted by: American Hawk on May 23, 2006 at 12:45 PM | PERMALINK

Nothing that involves a cigar, we hope.

Does sex with your wife involve a Peter?

Posted by: Buster on May 23, 2006 at 12:45 PM | PERMALINK

-- Create the illusion that the Clinton marriage is something other than a creature of political convenience.

Yeah, they almost fooled you. It's all part of their diabolical plan to rule the world, starting back when they met in college.

Posted by: Ringo on May 23, 2006 at 12:45 PM | PERMALINK

Does Shooter fuck what's her name? With Mary and Heather, who's fucking who(or whom)?

Posted by: red_neck_repub on May 23, 2006 at 12:46 PM | PERMALINK

Not Saying,

I hear what you are saying, but the Clintons are getting older. As that happens most of us become less interested in casual sex. It is just not worth the time. I would imagine that even Bill is not as horny as he was just a decade ago. When you are around 60 all the travel takes a toll. That said, I doubt they are dead yet, but you have to keep their current ages in mind when evaluating the information provided.

I am still not going to vote for Hillary in 2008, but I am going to be a little more charitable when I think of the crap they endure from the all knowing media elite.

Posted by: Ron Byers on May 23, 2006 at 12:47 PM | PERMALINK

Yes, it's clearly all a conspiracy between Hitlery and the LIE-beral media! I mean, isn't it obvious--she's from New York, the paper is in New York, it's perfectly sensible that a conspiracy exists. What more evidence do you need?

All I need is some more of that yummy kool-aid.

Posted by: American Hawk on May 23, 2006 at 12:49 PM | PERMALINK

Many military families I know spend one full year of every two apart. And that is when only one of them is a serviceperson; married couples in the Navy can end up spending three of five years part.

Why do the Radical Republicans and the conservative traditional media hate our military families? Why do they undermine the GWOT this way?

Cranky

Posted by: Cranky Observer on May 23, 2006 at 12:53 PM | PERMALINK

When Newt Gingrich meets his wife in the hospital recovery room to serve her with divorce papers, does that count as "time together"?

Cranky

Posted by: Cranky Observer on May 23, 2006 at 12:54 PM | PERMALINK

When are they doing a front page article on John McCain's marriage?

Posted by: croatoan on May 23, 2006 at 12:57 PM | PERMALINK

I posted a comment on the site applauding the article and asking them to dig up more information on the sizes of Clinton's penis and Hillar's bra so we can make more informed judgment on her suitability for the Presidency.

Needless to say, the comment stayed on the site for the full two minutes and was unceremoniously deleted.

Can't even praise the NYT articles.

Posted by: lib on May 23, 2006 at 12:58 PM | PERMALINK

It gives the media a meta-excuse not to delve into the affairs (LITERALLY) of both Clintons.

A whole new level of stupid for American Chickenshit. So, let's see if I have this straight, the Clinton's provide the media a "meta-excuse" (whatever the fuck that is) not to delve into their personal affairs by...delving into their personal affairs!

I shouldn't be surprised, it's the typical rightard talking point. Whatever the outcome, it's beneficial. Osama's not caught? They're glad he's not caught, so he doesn't become a martyr. Insurgent attacks are down? Signs that America is winning. Insurgent attacks are up? Signs that the insurgency is desperate.

Article on the Clinton's personal life? Planted by the Clinton's to, get this, discourage discussion of their personal lives!

Like I said, chickenshit, a whole new level of stupid. I'm sure your rightard buddies think you're a genius, but you're really just a dumbass.

Posted by: MeLoseBrain? on May 23, 2006 at 12:59 PM | PERMALINK

Croatoan: You have it backwards. Puff pieces for the Clintons start now, and continue until she's either president or out of the race. Smear pieces on McCain (or any republican candidate) won't start until a bit later. The NY Times 'reporters' are professionals at helping the democrat party win elections, and know how to time these things.

Posted by: American Hawk on May 23, 2006 at 1:00 PM | PERMALINK

The NY Times 'reporters' are professionals at helping the democrat party win elections, and know how to time these things.

Like the expose they did on Whitewater, which rethugs used to launch an independent counsel? Like the puff pieces Judy Miller wrote about WMD's, articles even Dick(head) Cheney referenced to garner support for war?

Get you head out of your ass, American Chickenhawk. If anything, the NYT wrote that piece to derail Hillary's nomination. I don't really care, I wouldn't vote for her anyway, but the way the media has treated, and continues to treat, the Clintons is reprehensible.

Posted by: MeLoseBrain? on May 23, 2006 at 1:07 PM | PERMALINK

Christ MLB, what do they say in the article that's bad about her? Not a damn thing.

Like the expose they did on Whitewater, which rethugs used to launch an independent counsel?

At some point, the dealings of a democrat president are so shady that not even the NY Times can ignore them.

Like the puff pieces Judy Miller wrote about WMD's, articles even Dick(head) Cheney referenced to garner support for war?

Like the CIA, the UN, and virtually every nation worldwide, Judy Miller thought Iraq had WMDs. Criticizing her for passing along the overwhelming consensus of the global intelligence community is one of the most peculiar of the democrat talking points.

Posted by: American Hawk on May 23, 2006 at 1:11 PM | PERMALINK

At some point, the dealings of a democrat president are so shady that not even the NY Times can ignore them.

Please remind us all -- what was proven at the end of the Whitewater investigations?

Posted by: Otto Man on May 23, 2006 at 1:16 PM | PERMALINK

But how many times per month did they 'do it'. Do we deserve to know that about power couples?

Posted by: dilbert on May 23, 2006 at 1:23 PM | PERMALINK

As for the Clintons planting the article themselves, could that have been intended to squelch the persistent Hillary-is-a-Lesbian rumors? I know those rumors aren't taken very seriously today except by some fringe elements, but if Hillary runs in '08 it might be a different story.

Posted by: Peter on May 23, 2006 at 1:23 PM | PERMALINK

At some point, the dealings of a democrat president are so shady that not even the NY Times can ignore them.

Yeah that whole losing money thing was sooo sleazy and sordrid.

You might be considered a genuis in your little circle of right wing idiots, but here you are joke.

You make tbrozz look scholarly. Quite a feat.

Posted by: SnarkyShark on May 23, 2006 at 1:29 PM | PERMALINK

AH:Like the CIA, the UN, and virtually every nation worldwide, Judy Miller thought Iraq had WMDs. Criticizing her for passing along the overwhelming consensus of the global intelligence community is one of the most peculiar of the democrat talking points.

Judy Miller has a much business reporting on WMDs as my sixteen year old sister does. And I'm sure my sister would do a more comprehensive job:

http://www.armscontrolwonk.com/1079/judy-miller-busted-again


Posted by: cyntax on May 23, 2006 at 1:31 PM | PERMALINK

Oh, come on. The Times, like all of us, is just nostalgic for a time when the biggest concern in Washington was the president's marriage. When the economy was booming, and we were at peace, and the world thought we were great, and employment was at an all-time high, and the president was so popular that the only way to "get" him was to make hay of him making whoopee.

I long for those days too. I long for the day when American soldiers weren't dying every day. I long for the day when the stock market wasn't fragile and the job market was robust. I long for the day when we were told to worry about where the president put his cigar-- not what country the president wanted to invade next.

Yeah, like most Americans, I long for the Clinton years. What a guy. What a president. Too bad we're stuck with this one who keeps his... cigar... in his pants by "penetrating" other countries and "violating" our privacy.

The Times is just picking up on our desire to turn back the clock to the pre-Bush years.

Posted by: cous on May 23, 2006 at 1:32 PM | PERMALINK

How did or does Laura cope with W's alcoholism?
Would be interesting to read.

Posted by: Renate on May 23, 2006 at 1:32 PM | PERMALINK

I seem to remember the entire left-wing writing about Jeff Gannon's sex life. But of course, it's only OK to talk about someone's sex life if the person is a Republican. Otherwise, it's disgusting prying.

Ahhh, the hypocrisy.

Posted by: Al on May 23, 2006 at 1:35 PM | PERMALINK

If it was fourteen days per year, I could see making a story out of it.

But my mother is a full-time minister at a rural church and my father a full-time professor at an urban university.

They spend less time together than the Clintons, but talk on the phone daily.

Fourteen days per month seems like a lot considering their various obligations. How do the Clinton's numbers compare to Dick Cheney and his wife? Greenspan and his wife pre-retirement? Isn't Elaine Chao the wife of some Republican Senator? How much time do they spend together?

BTW, who was Judith Miller fucking while she was lying to the American public about WMD? It wasn't anybody who had a personal stake in the debate was it?

Posted by: Carl Nyberg on May 23, 2006 at 1:36 PM | PERMALINK

Al nails it! You people should have more respect for homosexual prostitutes posing as reporters at the White House. They are owe their privacy until the Bush Administration decides otherwise.

Santorum/Keyes '08

Posted by: HappyConservative on May 23, 2006 at 1:38 PM | PERMALINK

A-Hawk:
Q: How many times do you f*ck your wife/year..?
A: None, 'cuz I'm a d*ckless wonder
Q: How many times do you f*ck your wife/year..?
A: I don't have a wife, 'cuz I'm a d*ckless wonder

Posted by: retroafric on May 23, 2006 at 1:42 PM | PERMALINK

No, Al, you moron, Gannon made his sexuality an issue by violating the laws against prostitution - a career he made public by advertising on the internet. The hypocrisy is owned by Gannon, who also made second living - that of conservative, family-values-supporting "reporter", which was opposite of his true nature

Better trolls, please.

Posted by: Tom DC/VA on May 23, 2006 at 1:43 PM | PERMALINK

As annoying as Unamerican Chickenhawk is, I think we should take him seriously. It looks to me as if he is testing out swiftboat tactics for the Radicals' 2006 media campaign. More heavy-handed and less subtle than some of his predecessors, but perhaps the Scaife Counter-Blogging Team has decided they need to start testing the heavy-handed stuff as that is what the media eats up.

Cranky

Posted by: Cranky Observer on May 23, 2006 at 1:44 PM | PERMALINK

I seem to remember the entire left-wing writing about Jeff Gannon's sex life. But of course, it's only OK to talk about someone's sex life if the person is a Republican. Otherwise, it's disgusting prying.

Ahhh, the hypocrisy.

Yeah, hypocrisy. But republicans trying to bring legislation to the floor of the Senate to amend the constitution for a ban on gay marriage, that's just good political strategy. Even if they neither want nor care if the legislation passes, and are just trying whip up the Christian Fundamentalist demagogues for the mid-term elections. No hypocrisy there, just move along.

The only thing that was notable about Jeff Gannon's sexuality was the Republicans' willingness to use someone for their own gain whose past was so anathema to their professed values. Also not hypocritical.

Posted by: cyntax on May 23, 2006 at 1:50 PM | PERMALINK

At some point, the dealings of a democrat president are so shady that not even the NY Times can ignore them.

Oh, really? What became of the Whitewater hearings, oh wise one? Even Ken Starr said there was nothing to it, that's why he had to go investigate Clinton's sex life. Whitewater was dead as an issue until NYT recycled it.

The article rehashes all of the garbage surrounding the Clinton's marriage. Questions surrounding Bill's dinner with a female Canadian politician? He must be banging her!

The Times has had an odd obsession with the Clintons, and not in a good way.

Criticizing her for passing along the overwhelming consensus of the global intelligence community is one of the most peculiar of the democrat talking points.

Criticizing her for passing along the conspiracy theories of hacks like Ahmad Chalabi? The guy that the CIA found extremely unreliable? Yeah, it's the dems with the talking points!

You need to recycle your list of talking points, Chickenhawk, yours a very stale.


Posted by: MeLoseBrain? on May 23, 2006 at 1:54 PM | PERMALINK

I seem to remember the entire left-wing writing about Jeff Gannon's sex life. But of course, it's only OK to talk about someone's sex life if the person is a Republican. Otherwise, it's disgusting prying.

You know, Al, you used to at least be interesting. I don't think your heart's in it anymore. You're not even trying. One would think even you're disillusioned by the bungling of the rightards.

It's OK, admit your mistake, and move over to our side. You'll see how welcoming we can be.

Posted by: MeLoseBrain? on May 23, 2006 at 2:02 PM | PERMALINK

The Clintons and, for the most part, their aides declined to cooperate for this article and urged others not to cooperate as well.

You're right, Chickenhawk, sounds like a Clinton-planted story to me.

Several prominent New York Democrats, in interviews, volunteered that they became concerned last year over a tabloid photograph showing Mr. Clinton leaving B.L.T. Steak in Midtown Manhattan late one night after dining with a group that included Belinda Stronach, a Canadian politician. The two were among roughly a dozen people at a dinner, but it still was enough to fuel coverage in the gossip pages.

Yep, sounds like a real flattering article!

Mr. Clinton is rarely without company in public, yet the company he keeps rarely includes his wife. Nights out find him zipping around Los Angeles with his bachelor buddy, Ronald W. Burkle

Oh yeah, marriage isn't working out, Bill spends his time hanging out with bachelors.

It might be a little too much to ask you to read between the lines, Chickenhawk, but at least read the article.

Posted by: MeLoseBrain? on May 23, 2006 at 2:12 PM | PERMALINK

American Hawk:

Oh c'mon, Judy Miller was freelancin'; she made here own damn judgments about sources and invested the kind of credulity in them that no decent reporter ever should -- least of all for a story as important as alleged Iraqi WMDs. If you wanted to follow the talking-point WMD script, you could do it from Washington. She was in Baghdad.

Otherwise, I do agree with some of your assessment about the story. I also think, like cous, that it represents a certain degree of nostalgia for the Clinton Era, and don't see it as a hatchet-job at all, but rather (as per AH) perhaps a form of innoculation, to squelch the "marriage of convenience" meme. Whatever kind of relationship the NYT had to the Clintons while they were in power (think MoDo), I do believe Hil's received a tremendous amount of well-earned props for being an outstanding senator. Don't see motives for a takedown; do see something of a home team advantage in the coverage.

That said, there was something entirely creepy about not only the story, but Kevin's assumption that "power couples" aren't entitled to a zone of privacy.

And it was also kind of snicker-inducing to see him reproduce his schedule with Marian -- like, what -- posting this on a blog make them a "power couple," too?

Well, I'm not a power anything thankyouverymuch.

And my private life is NOAFB.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on May 23, 2006 at 2:35 PM | PERMALINK

here = her

Posted by: rmck1 on May 23, 2006 at 2:36 PM | PERMALINK

How do the Clinton's numbers compare to Dick Cheney and his wife?

Isn't the real question how do the numbers for George Bush and Dick Cheney compare to George Bush and Laura Bush?

Posted by: Advocate for God on May 23, 2006 at 2:45 PM | PERMALINK

Or how about Condi and Bush vs Laura and George?

Posted by: Advocate for God on May 23, 2006 at 2:46 PM | PERMALINK

"Now look. This is totally legitimate."

Kevin, sometimes I'm not sure if you day something tongue in cheek or if you really mean it. Ok, your story seems to suggest that it's legitimate if all marriages of politicans are subject to the same scrutiny. Of course, we all know that the NYT doesn't intent to do that, so their story is not legitimate and actually serving rethuglican interests by advancing their rumours!

Posted by: Gray on May 23, 2006 at 2:51 PM | PERMALINK

Yeah, hypocrisy. But republicans trying to bring legislation to the floor of the Senate to amend the constitution for a ban on gay marriage, that's just good political strategy. Even if they neither want nor care if the legislation passes, and are just trying whip up the Christian Fundamentalist demagogues for the mid-term elections. No hypocrisy there, just move along.

Hillary Clinton is against gay marriage too.

Therefore, according to this asinine logic, her private life must be fair game!

Let's face it, Democrats are the ultimate hypocrites - willing to criticize others' private lives, but crying to momma when someone mentions their private lives.

Posted by: Al on May 23, 2006 at 2:51 PM | PERMALINK

Oh for Christs sake, I could not possibly give less of a care. I will defend, even Hillarys' right to a private side to her life. I didn't give a shit when Bill was playing outside of his stadium and I don't give a shit how much time they spend together now. Not my biddness.
Now how about something a little (even a very little) more news worthy.

Posted by: Lurker42 on May 23, 2006 at 3:00 PM | PERMALINK

I think you should ask your grrlfriend Ann Althouse. She complains you don't link to her, and she apparently felt this NYTimes article to be blogworthy.

So Professor Ann Althouse, are you getting any, how often, and with what genders?

Posted by: jerry on May 23, 2006 at 3:04 PM | PERMALINK

Hillary Clinton is against gay marriage too.

Therefore, according to this asinine logic, her private life must be fair game!

Really? I'm sorry but that just doesn't follow from what I said at all.

This isn't about Gannon per se, but about how Republicans say one thing in public: "gays are bad" and do another thing in private. If you want Hillary's position against gay marriage to map to what I said, then you have to find a subject like Gannon who belongs to a group she is repudiating in public but still using for political ends. And then it would be this subject's personal life, not Hillary's that is of interest because that disconnect would show Hillary's hypocrisy.

Just untangling your confused reasoning is more work than it's worth.

Posted by: cyntax on May 23, 2006 at 3:07 PM | PERMALINK

Okay, I'm going to do something to which I've never before sunk: I'm going to respond to an Al idiocy.

Al: Yes, many bloggers pointed to the Jeff Gannon story as worthy of coverage -- though the interest sprang as much from the fact that a male prostitute was being given regular press passes by an administration preaching the evils of homosexuality, as from the mere fact of him being gay.

But...here's the deal: the Times NEVER did a front page story on THAT. Apparently it paled in importance next to a sub-People, anonymously sourced study of the nookie-frequency in a three-decade-old marriage.

Posted by: demtom on May 23, 2006 at 3:11 PM | PERMALINK

At some point, the dealings of a democrat president are so shady that not even the NY Times can ignore them.

For Clinton, that point came before he was ever president. And no one had ever heard of the Whitewater "dealings" until the NY Times stopped ignoring them in early 1992.

Posted by: Boots Day on May 23, 2006 at 3:13 PM | PERMALINK

willing to criticize others' private lives, but crying to momma when someone mentions their private lives.

sounds like The Cheneys.

Posted by: cleek on May 23, 2006 at 3:21 PM | PERMALINK

Kevin, in how many months did you see Jasmine and Inkblot more days than your wife?
Full disclosure please!

Posted by: robd on May 23, 2006 at 3:37 PM | PERMALINK

Now look. This is totally legitimate. The Clintons are a power couple, and the public has a right to know precisely how much, um, up-close time they have with each other.

Why? Is this some new Bush administration rule via DHS? Who gives a shit how much time they spend together?

Posted by: JeffII on May 23, 2006 at 3:40 PM | PERMALINK

I haven't seen my wife in 11 years. It's working out really well.

Posted by: buddy66 on May 23, 2006 at 3:55 PM | PERMALINK

Bob,

That said, there was something entirely creepy about not only the story, but Kevin's assumption that "power couples" aren't entitled to a zone of privacy.

I must have misread Mr. Drum as I interpreted his commentary as fully sarcastic. This line is what set up my interpretation:

In fact, they're lucky that a quality outfit like the Times did this research instead of some lunatic blogger.
Posted by: Edo on May 23, 2006 at 4:08 PM | PERMALINK

buddy66,

Yeah. She sez "Hi!"

Posted by: Tripp on May 23, 2006 at 4:09 PM | PERMALINK

Nothing that involves a cigar, we hope.

Posted by: Peter on May 23, 2006 at 12:31 PM |

Nope, just 4 sets of identical twins, 2 gallons of Cool Whip, 5 quarts of chocolate syrup, 2-1/4 pounds of strawberries, satin sheets, a magnum of champagne, a trapeze, and a python.

Posted by: Matthew Saroff on May 23, 2006 at 4:11 PM | PERMALINK

Matthew Saroff:

You forgot the 55-gallon drum of kidney suet.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on May 23, 2006 at 4:21 PM | PERMALINK

Edo:

Well shit -- color me embarrassed.

I re-read the post and it's pretty obviously sardonic, if not out-and-out sarcastic (the difference is one of tone, not intent).

Kevin's subtext "WTF's up with this shit?"

As Emily Litela so famously informed us:

Never mind.

Bob

Posted by: rmck1 on May 23, 2006 at 4:25 PM | PERMALINK

Does Karl Rove go home to a wife every night? If so, whose wife?

While the NYT is exploring the Clintons' time allocation as a couple, could we also implore them to learn more about the companionship of other rumored Presidential contenders, like Condi Rice? Don't you think Pat Dobson and Jerry Falwell would like to know (I bet Michael Hayden knows the answer).

Newt Gingrich?
John MCain?
George Allen?

Ugh...my stomach is acting up with each name I add to the list. I just don't have the same voyueristic interest in the sexual appitites of middle age, white men, like the many right wing, conservative "values voters."

Posted by: fcadmus on May 23, 2006 at 4:29 PM | PERMALINK

When Newt Gingrich meets his wife in the hospital recovery room to serve her with divorce papers, does that count as "time together"?

Whenever you mention Newt Gingrich's wife, you have to be specific about which one you mean. After all, right now he's on number three, the office aide 23 years younger than him whom he cheated on his second wife with....

Posted by: Stefan on May 23, 2006 at 4:41 PM | PERMALINK

Yes, many bloggers pointed to the Jeff Gannon story as worthy of coverage -- though the interest sprang as much from the fact that a male prostitute was being given regular press passes by an administration preaching the evils of homosexuality, as from the mere fact of him being gay. But...here's the deal: the Times NEVER did a front page story on THAT. Apparently it paled in importance next to a sub-People, anonymously sourced study of the nookie-frequency in a three-decade-old marriage.

Now let's imagine that it was 1998, and it came out that a female prostitute with no journalistic qualifications and ties to prominent Democratic contributors had been planted in the Clinton White House Press Corps as a "reporter" and had had several mysterious overnight stays in the White House, overnights where no one knew where she was actually "sleeping" -- think that might have merited front page coverage for the Times?

Posted by: Stefan on May 23, 2006 at 4:47 PM | PERMALINK

Nope, just 4 sets of identical twins, 2 gallons of Cool Whip, 5 quarts of chocolate syrup, 2-1/4 pounds of strawberries, satin sheets, a magnum of champagne, a trapeze, and a python.

*pffff* Amateur....

Posted by: Stefan on May 23, 2006 at 4:49 PM | PERMALINK

I hear the talking point alot that every other intelligence agency in the world thought Saddam had WMDs. Where does that come from? Does someone have an article or a statement or a document that demonstrates this is true? Something beyond Dick Cheney claiming it's true on Fox News? I would really like to know where this talking point originated from.

Posted by: Show me on May 23, 2006 at 5:00 PM | PERMALINK

Imagine if the NYT had done this much investigative work looking into the WMD claims. If they had done as thorough a job looking into WMD claims as they have looking into the Clinton marriage we might not have had the Iraq debacle.

Posted by: Nan on May 23, 2006 at 5:10 PM | PERMALINK

A few days ago I overheard a couple on a date re-hash Bill Clinton's Oval Office indiscretion. I noticed because the man's voice started rising.

Set off by her comment about how bad Bush was, he'd countered with a run-on diatribe about how 'it was wrong to do that in the White House, and I think it's much worse than what's going on now and I was offended by it then, and I'm still offended by it now!"

He just went on and on, ridiculously.

Then they finished their pizza in silence.

After awhile he asked her what was the matter, was something bothering her? "Well, you're being awful quiet."

When they left, she trailed behind him reluctantly, still wearing that 'oh, shit' posture ...

I think she just learned something new.

I would have spewed Coke laughing, but I was too tired and too accustomed to the ugly and utter lack of any perspective at all to be surprised.

Still, he got his. Or rather, didn't.

Posted by: SombreroFallout on May 23, 2006 at 5:43 PM | PERMALINK

> I hear the talking point alot that every
> other intelligence agency in the world
> thought Saddam had WMDs.

At the time I wrote my Senators telling them that I saw no evidence of WMDs or any justification for an unprovoked war. I know plenty of other people who did too. So at least some people are on record, on paper, as having said the opposite.

Of course, we are just little peon citizens, oops, I mean consumers whose thoughts are as nothing compared to the deeply serious people who think serious thoughts and attend serious seminars at thinktanks run by Wolfowitz where serious subjects, such as PNAC and Team B, are discussed.

Cranky

Posted by: Cranky Observer on May 23, 2006 at 5:54 PM | PERMALINK

You're bored.

Posted by: Name on May 23, 2006 at 5:59 PM | PERMALINK

So is Healy's next article going to answer the burning question of why the Santorums, who are Catholics practicing birth control? Is it anyone's business even considering the fact that Ricky is concerned about moral values?

Posted by: horatio on May 23, 2006 at 6:37 PM | PERMALINK

That's great to know Kevin thanks. If your going to keep fellating Andrew Sullivan though maybe Marian should have regular test's?
I know a good discreet clinic nearby in porn valley.

Posted by: professor rat on May 23, 2006 at 7:38 PM | PERMALINK

Dear Mr. Drum,

No, no, no. I appreciate your half-hearted attempt at openness, but you must realize that as a public and outspoken Democrat you have invited the Bright Light of Truth to be shone down on your genitals and the Periscope of Public Prurience poked up your poop-chute. If you are serious about proving that, despite your liberal tendencies, you are a moral and sane person, you will have no problem answering the following more specific questions. If not, we will appoint a free-ranging special prosecutor to subpoena your kindergarten records in order to prove that you are a danger to our Glorious Christian Republic.
Note that I was going to ask you about your "penis" but, because as a Conservative I am obliged to Protect The Children who might find this posting when they are accidentally and not on purpose surfing for porn while their parents are passed out on the couch after drinking a case of Bud Light and watching NASCAR all day, I will instead refer throughout to your Organ. But you will know what I mean.
In that spirit, please answer the following easy and not embarrassing or humiliating questions:

1. What is the name of your Organ?
2. Does your Organ curve to the left or right?
3. Does your Organ have any distinguishing characteristics?
4. Does your Organ smoke cigars?
5. Does your Organ do the Hokey Pokey? Is that what it's all about?
6. How often does your Organ speak to your wife's Organs? Does it ever raise its voice?
7. On those days when your Organ was not with your wife's Organ, where was it? How many witnesses can attest to your Organ's whereabouts on those days?
8. Did your Organ ever travel to Arkansas and engage in money-losing land development deals?
9. Do your wife's Organs engage in hot torrid lesbian affairs when your Organ is out of town? Can you prove they don't? If not, why are you not in control of your wife's Organs?
10. Do you wife's Organs engage in hot torrid affairs with your friends or assistants, leading to suicide or murder of said assistant? If not, doesn't that prove (9) above?
11. Has your Organ ever engaged in drug running for the Medellin cartel? Any other cartels?
12. Do you and your Organ file jointly or separately?
13. When unsupervised, does your Organ come to town and trash the place even though it's not your Organ's place?
14. Are your wife's Organs cold and frigid and do they exist only to further her political ambitions?
15. Does your Organ believe that oral sex is sex? Do you agree with your Organ's answer to this question?

Understand that I only ask these questions because I assume you are a Democrat. If you are a Republican, I instead invite you to my house where, after accepting my groveling apology, you may sit on my face and tell me that you love me while Pat Healy nibbles your toes and Judith Miller gives you a hummer. (I hear she's MUCH better than Monica -- not as toothy and, let's face it, thinner). Your wife and your wife's Organs are not invited.

Thanks in advance for proving to my satisfaction that, despite your liberal tendencies, you are still worthy to be called moral and decent. I would hate to think that a moral degenerate was perverting our public discourse.

Posted by: Jim Perrin on May 23, 2006 at 8:29 PM | PERMALINK

I wanna know how often Boosh bushing with Laura after 8 years of hard works. Hell, I wanna what he's doing now.

Posted by: anonymous on May 23, 2006 at 10:25 PM | PERMALINK

I was amused to notice W and Laura's faces on the cover of a tabloid today (Nat. Enq. or Star), with the screaming headline that their marriage was on the rocks--living like strangers, anger over booze problems, etc. I nobly refrained from reading the story, but only because the line at the cash register was moving to quickly to sample more than a nibble. The new day has arrived!

Posted by: Jess on May 24, 2006 at 12:32 AM | PERMALINK

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Posted by: biu991 on May 24, 2006 at 12:51 AM | PERMALINK

The thing about this paragraph Kevin quotes to open this thread is that it applies equally well to the Bushes. It seems like every other day GW is in another part of the country giving a speech or taking a photo op. How often does the president actual spend the night in the White House? 'Cause I doubt that Laura is flying all around the country with him to provide him with his spousal prerequisties. I suspect they spend less time together than the Clinton's.

Posted by: beb on May 24, 2006 at 7:53 AM | PERMALINK

I spent every night last year with my Jenna Jameson blow-up doll.

Posted by: American Hawk on May 24, 2006 at 1:45 PM | PERMALINK

I spent every night last year alone, frustrated because American Hawk wouldn't agree to a mnage trois with him and his Jenna Jameson blow-up doll.

Posted by: Al on May 24, 2006 at 1:49 PM | PERMALINK

Hi,

Someone must stop this Chinese jerk that spam this blog all over around .

Posted by: Mark on May 25, 2006 at 9:09 AM | PERMALINK




 

 

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