"He walks into a crowded room with the easy aplomb of someone who knows that his very entrance holds people spellbound. Speaking without notes for an hour-and-a-half, an irrepressible Bill Clinton proved that even though he is no longer the most powerful man in the world, he remains one of America's most remarkable public figures, a leader who still stands dazzlingly head and shoulders above all other leaders in the world today...
Over time, of course, we have seen many Clintons: the intellectual class act running rings around his Republican foes; the foreign policy braveheart striving to facilitate peace in Northern Ireland and the Middle East; the sentimentalist recalling his childhood hardship in a town called Hope; the chastened philanderer fighting against rabid moral righteousness and political hypocrisy of those who would still revive the tumbrels of McCarthyism in America. But the Clinton we saw yesterday was the eloquent sophisticate.
That beleaguered appearance which marked him during the Lewinsky interrogations has disappeared. Now in his 60th year, and fit from the major heart surgery he underwent in 2004, he is one of those men who has gained urbanity with age. There is not one feature on his face that technically might be called handsome, yet the overall impression is one of immense charm. Does he miss the White House? You bet. "I loved the job. I loved the job," he said, with an intensity that mingled gratitude with regret for something lost. Yet here he is, articulate, intelligent, and colourful, a class act."
11 May 2006
Some guys just have it. Anne Simpson in The Herald (here) gets rather carried away by President Clinton: