Former President Bill Clinton Calls For Unity During Speech in Dutchess County
RHINEBECK, N.Y. – Former President Bill Clinton called for unity amidst the government shutdown in a speech in Rhinebeck on Sunday afternoon.
Clinton returned to the town and county his daughter Chelsea was married in to speak at a conference held in Dutchess County by the Omega Institute.
“Everyday gives you some opportunity to make something good happen and you gotta take it,” Clinton said. “It’s OK to complain but fundamentally it doesn’t change anything and is dis-empowering.”
With the “craziness” going on in Washington, D.C., Clinton said that good intentions need to be made into real changes adding that any debate in politics revolves around what is going to be done and how much is going to be spent.
“This includes thinking but you never see that in the headlines because it is too complicated,” Clinton said.
Clinton said that the national debate over the Affordable Healthcare Act, commonly known as Obamacare, is “crazy” adding that the United States already spends 17 percent of its money on healthcare compared to other developed countries which he said spend around 12 percent. Clinton said that the United States needs to pay more attention to things being done by people in other countries that are working.
“Sometimes in poorer countries, they are doing better than we are and we have to learn how to do that,” Clinton said. “It’s like any other business including coaching a football team. The first thing you want is see film of how the other team is doing.”
Clinton said that the world is too unstable and with too much instability comes an inability to build trust adding that this contributes to constricting economic opportunities. The former president also said that the world needs a sustainable way to produce energy and other resources to build a sustainable future.
“The world has seven billion people and there are still countries with a lot of money who can’t afford to feed everybody,” Clinton said. “Our consciousness is still not where it needs to be to develop the solutions that are most ready to work. If we want a future with shared responsibilities and opportunities, we have to believe certain things like creative cooperation is better than constant conflict. We’re all in this together and our common humanity matters more.”
Clinton said that every difference from skin color to body shape that is not age-related is only one-half percent of people’s genealogy adding that the other 99.5 percent of people is identical. Still, Clinton said that a lot of people will still focus on what is different.
“We need a critical group of people who can think rationally and can imagine what we have to do,” Clinton said. “What we have in common is more interesting that our differences. Nobody is right all the time.
And the former president said that whether we like it or not, the future of humanity and its experience is shared. Clinton said the question is whether people will share their similar opportunities or go down the road of “chaos and destruction.”
“What we see in Washington is totally clashing worldviews where people think it is not only ok to try and kill healthcare reform but risk full-faith and credit of the United States,” he said. “Still, it’s important to recognize that the people who I think are dead wrong are not the devil incarnate.”