Bill Clinton to Obama: Don’t be so gloomy on economy

February 20, 2009

Bill Clinton has some advice for President Barack Obama — lighten up a little on the economic comments, dude. DAVOS/

In an interview with ABC News, the former president said he likes the fact that Obama does not engage in happy talk when he says “the economy could get worse before it gets better,” and that the $787 billion economic stimulus plan is only a start on the road to economic recovery.

“I’m glad he shot straight with us,” the husband of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said.

But, he added, “I just want the American people to know that he’s confident that we are gonna get out of this and he feels good about the long run.”

American presidents often have a tendency to talk up the good things about U.S. policy as a way of trying to encourage Americans, but sometimes that can go too far, as evidenced by President George W. Bush’s repeated reassurances about progress being made in the Iraq war when clearly things were going down hill there.

Clinton, as he did when he was president, took a few shots at the Republicans after most of them voted against the stimulus.

“I think there are some of them who really believe that just-say-no politics is good politics,” he said.
Photo credit: REUTERS/Christian Hartmann (Clinton speaks in Davos, Jan 29)


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Yes! lets not forget you dont always scream fire if there is smoke I like to look at lifes situations with a calm approach. T.A.D. Think,Act,Do always rolling with the punches.There will always be Pro,s & con,s with any choice so there is no perfect solution only better or worst.I do belive if you give more to the lazy they will only become worst. Welfare for the most part is getting abused by a lot of people As well SSI start checking on these poeple “also check on the people checkin on the people”.

Posted by lost shirt now underware? | Report as abusive

I sure wouldn’t listen to this creature. He sold American sovereignty off more than President of his day.

Posted by jason | Report as abusive

Bill Clinton did a great job economically for this country propelling growth in the Dow from a paltry 3500 to about 11,800 upon departure. By contrast George Bush Jr. increased debt while managing no growth over his two terms and in fact led us into the mess we are facing today. Thankfully, Bill Clinton can lend some support as have his advisors in a troubling time. American sovereignty is challenged today by the outsourcing of American jobs. The original concept proposed by Bill Clinton envisioned improving jobs in Mexico so workers would choose to stay there and build their futures. In years since, the trade agreements have morphed to favor large corporations seeking even cheaper sources of labor…moving from Mexico to Indonesia to China, etc. Bill had some moments od moral lapse, but his economic visions were very sound and I welcome his input.

Posted by Tom | Report as abusive

Clinton is 8 year old news and everybody know it but him. It’s time for him to stop running his mouth — he’s a civilian now.

Posted by James Brown | Report as abusive

I cannot say I support the bailout plans, but at least this President is willing to admit there are problems. Crazy to read the news for the last TWO YEARS and have nobody admit how bad things truly were and that we entered a recession until quite recently. I truly felt I was in the twilight zone every time Bush and others would say the economny is “fundamentally strong.”

More people need to develop their critical thinking skills. If it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, swims like a duck . . . do not let anyone tell you it is a chicken! Have a little faith in your education and ability to think for yourself.

Posted by legalbeagal | Report as abusive

The economy is “fundamentally strong”. Too bad the democrats and the media talked it down for the past 2 years. Since the economy is largely psychological, it is no wonder things went south. If only they wouldn’t have just wanted to get elected (at all costs…to us).

We had 8 years of a growing economy under Bush (remember the 14000 Dow). In spite of all the negative talk during those 2-plus years, it still grew 1.2 percent in 2008.

When you continue to talk down about the economy, people will eventually believe it. We are paying the price for that negative democratic and media led hype.

Posted by TC | Report as abusive

hey TC I’ve psychologically lost my job.

Maybe I can positively talk some food into my kid’s mouth.

Thank god you are here to assure us it’s all in our crazy liberal minds! What recession??

I thought you were just a crackpot before, now I know you’re positively delusional.

Posted by sf | Report as abusive

SF. Well, that’s what happens when people talk so negative during elections for over 2 years. That was my only point and it worked. Now people, you included, are paying the price for the negative talk.

I am truly sorry you are out of work. It wasn’t meant to be taken personally. If you read what I wrote, I think you would realize that.

The thing about it is that the unemployment rate is only something like 7 1/2 percent. About the same during the Clinton years, give or take.

I am as upset about this as others. All this talking down of the economy finally hit a nerve. It all served to hurt us. And it worked.

Posted by TC | Report as abusive

Hey TC,
Can you remember which president came into office declaring, recession, recession, recession while the Dow had just dropped to 11,800?
That is correct, you probably remember now… George DubyaBush (in term one)!
People never don’t remember the positive spikes during a term, they remember where the end result was. Can you say 7,500 give or take. Came into office at 11,800 DOW with a surplus and left at about 7,500, a deficit and rising unemployment.
Some positive news now would be nice and help to get things going. Maybe the GOP will say nice job Barack, showing some cajones and trying to undo some of the damage done over the previous 8 years.

Posted by Tom | Report as abusive

Tom. Actually, no positive news should be reported about what Obama is doing. He, along with the liberal democratic led congress, spending money we “don’t” have. It won’t work and will lead to hyperinflation because of all the money being printed to fund the liberal programs being forced upon us.

This has nothing to do with the GOP. It is all Obama’s baby now and he is fully responsible for making it worse. We will be the ones to suffer. But I really hope I am wrong. Either way, what he is doing is not good for the country.

I remember when Bush came in to office. Yes, there was a recession. I also remember Clinton saying there was no recession. Even the press was mostly reporting a recession. I remember clearly and I really don’t get your point.

But what Bush did was cut taxes and the economy grew. Too bad spending didn’t decrease too. BTW, that is exactly what 67 percent of the nation wants right now, lower taxes and lower spending. However, we won’t get those under the Obama spending plan, you can see that for yourself.

Posted by TC | Report as abusive

tc you have to watch the signs,i was never a clinton fan, but he is a very smart man.this might be his game plan now,to try and rewrite his legacy.,he is sitting on the perimeter making suggestions,you can guarantee that if any thing hits the fan not part of it,but any accolades out there he is savey enough to join in the celebration. biden is potentiality always going to screw up,and i can see clinton now quietly saying well i recommended hilliey,and most of obama,s cabinet are clinton segregates.this guy can,t help himself he is going to try and give the impression that he is pulling obama,s strings.

Posted by brian lee | Report as abusive