Friday, May 25, 2007

Hillary: The Books and the Movie

If Hillary Clinton had gone on to the lecture circuit and corporate boards after leaving the White House, she might not now be the subject of two new books and all the babble that will surely follow.

At the moment, the only word about their contents comes today from copies “obtained” by the Washington Post and summarized thus:

“The Hillary Clinton who emerges from the pages of the books comes across as a complicated, sometimes compromised figure who tolerated Bill Clinton's brazen infidelity, pursued her policy and political goals with methodical drive, and occasionally skirted along the edge of the truth along the way. The books portray her as alternately brilliant and controlling, ambitious and victimized.”

To anyone who has been paying attention, none of those adjectives will be shocking. "The news here,” the Senator’s campaign spokesman says, “is that it took three reporters nearly a decade to find no news."

Connoisseurs of irony may appreciate the fact that one of the Hillary tomes was written by Carl Bernstein of Watergate fame, who married and was divorced by screen writer Nora Ephron, who wrote a novel about their marriage, “Heartburn.”

Afterward, readers of Harper’s Magazine were regaled by a copy of their divorce agreement, which included detailed understandings about how Bernstein would be portrayed in the movie version.

In it, he was played by suave Jack Nicholson to Meryl Streep as the heroine, a Bernstein upgrade from dorky Dustin Hoffman in the Watergate movie.

If they film Bernstein’s "A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton," Streep could complete the circle by starring in it.

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