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‘Explainer-In-Chief’ Bill Clinton Goes On The Daily Show And Absolutely Kills It

Former President of the United States Bill Clinton appeared on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart Thursday night. Stewart ended up interviewing Clinton for nearly 30 minutes, throwing the extended interview on the show’s website after the episode aired. Clinton touched on a wide ranged of subjects such as the Clinton Global Initiative, how new technology has both positive and negative impacts on today’s societal power structures, the importance of youth in the current economy and the fact that government is necessary and works well when administered effectively. Overall, as is always the case with Clinton, this was an extremely informative and compelling conversation that brought a lot of American and world issues into perspective.

Clinton first started the interview off by discussing the Clinton Global Initiative and how it is helping to contain and eradicate the Ebola virus in western Africa. He explained the obstacles that face the organization’s ability to coordinate efforts to help out different localities and countries where the outbreak is hitting. Clinton expressed optimism that enough infrastructure was in place and the different health ministries and governments were on board with what was required that the epidemic could be stopped.



After discussing the Clinton Global Initiative, Stewart moved the conversation to world events and asked Clinton if the world was more fractured and disintegrated or if it was more an exaggeration. Clinton explains that the trendlines around the world are actually positive but that the headlines are focused mostly on the bad news coming out around the world. He pointed out that our advanced information technology is the main reason for this.



In the extended part of the interview that was sent to the web, Clinton and Stewart talked about a return to nativism due to countries being more interdependent. Clinton had previously said in the interview that today’s borders are more like nets than walls. The former president spoke about border security and the awful reaction by many Americans towards Central American immigrants trying to escape horrid conditions. He also spoke about the need for comprehensive immigration reform and pointed out that our country is a nation of immigrants. Per Clinton, there is also a need for more youth in our country as the population is aging dramatically.



The interview ended on a discussion of government competence and if leaders focus solely on headlines versus trendlines. Clinton stated that it is somewhat true that administrations tend to react more to negative headlines, but also feels that they really have no choice. Crises force action and divert attention from long-term plans. As an example, the VA was brought up. Clinton pointed out that the department was structured in a way to work in a more efficient manner. However, two long-lasting wars caused a lot of veterans to come home with catastrophic injuries, overloading the system beyond what was initially expected.



This was a truly excellent interview. You can always tell when Stewart is truly excited to have a certain guest on. In the case of Clinton, he made sure to give the former president a long time to discuss a number of important topics. On top of that, Stewart didn’t just play fawning fanboy, but pressed Clinton with some difficult questions, forcing him to provide detailed answers and engage in an informative discussion.

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