I happen to flip past C-Span earlier this evening while Bill Clinton was giving a speech promoting his soon to be released memoir. It was interesting to see him speak, since it has been a few years since he left office, and what a difference there is between his speeches and Bush’s style. Perhaps it was just the freedom to not be “presidential” but Clinton was really engaging and got a number of deserved laughs out of the crowd. What I saw of his speech reflected on the creation of the current political climate, and how the 60’s and Vietnam War created much of the divide between the parties. Nothing too shocking there, but he went on to describe the post-Cold War Republican party as a unified front, as opposed to what he considered himself to be a part of, the tradition of individual politicians working with members of both parties in the spirit of compromise. It’s my impression, in online discussions and listening to much of talk radio that people have become so polarized politically that common sense and critical thinking goes out the door when politics are involved. Critical thinking and the ability to analyze is the core of what makes democracy work, so why not use it when it comes to your political views? Just a thought that I believe more Americans will rediscover soon, although it may take another four years. (I caught a bit of “Crossfire” earlier this week and was shocked by the complete devotion to partisanship since both sides were taking cheap shots at the other candidate’s Memorial Day activities as being contrived.) Overall, I was left inspired by Clinton’s speech, and was impressed at his willingness to admit his faults, both personal and political.