Watching the remaining crop of Democratic candidates for president--Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John Edwards--you'd get the impression they're all Washington outsiders bringing a fresh, independent vision to a process that's dominated by lobbyists, special interests and the old guard. The most prominent self-professed agent of change is Barack Obama, who also just happens to be in a very exclusive group of 100 of the world's most powerful people: the U.S. Senate. Ditto for Hillary Clinton, who also belongs to another very powerful political machine called the Clintons. And John Edwards, a former member of this prestigious group of Washington insiders, is also an extremely wealthy trial lawyer. These three hardly can hardly portray themselves as agents of change with any real credibility.
But if I was heading the Clinton campaign, here's what I'd be telling her to do: start talking about changing things back to the way they were when she and Bill resided in the White House. We don't need to bring anything "new" to Washington. Just bring back the old. Is there any rational Democrat (or even moderate Republican or independent for that matter) who would not like to turn the clock back to when we experienced unprecedented economic prosperity (low inflation, 23 million new jobs, a $230 billion budget surplus; surging stock market); were a country at peace; and were still respected in much of the world? When we were led by an intelligent, curious, responsible president who could also string together two sentences without sounding like an unintelligible moron? A president who left office with a healthy 62% approval rating.
So why is Hillary--an obvious life-long Washington insider--trying to pawn herself off as an agent of change rather than reminding us of all this relative peace, prosperity and popularity from '92-'00? What's wrong with looking back to the future? The eight years of Clinton-Gore represents a time in our country that we could use again. While I had hoped that the former vice-president would enter the race, he clearly is not (unless he slips in under a brokered convention should neither Obama and Clinton get enough delegates to win the nomination...a dream I'm still holding out for). Personally, I'd give my right arm to have Bill back in the White House, under any circumstance. I for one don't need "change," just a solid return to those indisputably successful years. And if Hillary Clinton were to remind voters of this instead of getting caught up in this bogus "agent of change" game, she'd sail straight to the White House.
On another note, we could use your help at The The Adrienne Shelly Foundation. We are a tax-exempt, non-profit organization dedicated in my wife's honor to help carry out her spirit and passion, with the goal of assisting women filmmakers. Adrienne was brutally killed in NYC on November 1, 2006. Through the Foundation, her commitment to filmmaking lives on. We've established scholarships, grants, finishing funds and living stipends at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts/Kanbar Institute of Film; Columbia University; American Film Institute; Women in Film; the Independent Feature Project; the Nantucket Film Festival; and the Sundance Institute. Your generous contribution will go a long way towards helping us achieve this very important mission. Thank you.