Last updated on: 6/25/2017 | Author:

Thomas Frank, PhD Biography

Historian and Author
Con to the question "Was Bill Clinton a Good President?"

“Evaluating Clinton’s presidency as heroic is no longer a given… After the bursting of the dot-com bubble in 2000, the corporate scandals of the Enron period, and the collapse of the real estate racket, our view of the prosperous Nineties has changed quite a bit. Now we remember that it was Bill Clinton’s administration that deregulated derivatives, that deregulated telecom, and that put our country’s only strong banking laws in the grave. He’s the one who rammed the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) through Congress and who taught the world that the way you respond to a recession is by paying off the federal deficit. Mass incarceration and the repeal of welfare, two of Clinton’s other major achievements, are the pillars of the disciplinary state that has made life so miserable for Americans in the lower reaches of society. He would have put a huge dent in Social Security, too, had the Monica Lewinsky sex scandal not stopped him. If we take inequality as our measure, the Clinton administration looks not heroic but odious.”

Listen, Liberal: Or, What Ever Happened to the Party of the People?, 2016

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Historian and Author
  • Founder and Editor, The Baffler, 1988-2010
  • Former Columnist, Harper’s Magazine
  • Columnist, The Wall Street Journal, 2008-2010
  • Contributing Editor, Harper’s Magazine, 2004-2010
  • PhD, University of Chicago, 1994
  • BA, University of Virginia, 1987
  • Attended University of Kansas
  • None found
Quoted in:
Pro & Con Quotes: Was Bill Clinton a Good President?