to politics, the Chronic Campaignerrntakes fewer risks.” He adds astutely, “Forrnyears the Chronic Campaigner has beenrnhanding over power to bureaucrats, tornjudges, to anyone who will protect himrnfrom having to make a potentially unpopularrndecision so that elected officialsrnno longer have the power that they oncernhad.” Perhaps George Will has this developmentrnin mind when he refers to thern”miniaturization of the Presidency.” AsrnTyrrell reflects, “[the Clintons] almostrnalways settle for a semblance of power.”rnAt least, Mr. Clinton does. What seemsrnlikely is that the Chronic Campaigner isrna product of the sensate culture with itsrncult of personal celebrity and its searchrnfor the endless high. “Clinton,” Tyrrellrnsays, “is a very reckless man, . . . [He] isrnnot courageous, but he seems always tornhave been a daredevil.”rnAnother reason for Clinton’s desire tornbe on both sides of every issue, Tyrrell explains,rnis the determination of the “Coatrnand Tie radicals” of the 1960’s and 70’srnto “have it all.” With that determinationrncomes an “incomparable capacity forrndouble-talk,” and also a prehensile abilityrn—shared by old associates of Clinton’srnlike Ira Magaziner, Robert Reich, MickeyrnKantor, and his own wife—to marketrnthemselves without having actually producedrnanything. It is hard to say whetherrnthe ubiquity and influence of politiciansrnlike these creates or reflects a characteristicrnof the electorate observed after thern1996 elections by Maureen Dowd, whenrnshe wrote that Americans apparentlyrnwant liberal politicians who are reallyrnconservatives, and conservative politiciansrnwho are actually liberals. In anyrncase, Tyrrell is surely correct in concludingrnthat the 60’s radicals’ combination ofrnamorality with self-righteousness is havingrnhistoric consequences. “So closelyrnhave they identified with all the goodrncauses they have espoused that at somernpoint in their development they assumedrnthat they themselves were goodrncauses.”rnThey were, in other words, selfseduced:rna form of seduction thatrnseems not to have occurred to Mr. Brock,rnwhose sensitive and balanced treatmentrncrosses the line at times to play the Devil’srnadvocate. Bill Clinton’s First Lady,rnhe insists, is “not a phony,” but fundamentallyrna “good person” led substantiallyrnastray by a variety of bad influences,rnthe greatest of which is BillrnClinton himself. The major weakness ofrnthis meticulously researched, well-written,rninteresting, and agreeably humanernbook is that its principal thesis belongs tornthe little-bit-pregnant school of moralrnreasoning. One cannot, first of all, bernseduced unless at least half of oneselfrnacquiesces in the seduction {“Vorrei ernnon vorrei; . . .”). Secondly, had the seductionrnof Hillary Rodham not occurredrnas Brock describes it, what then wouldrnshe be today? Certainly not the First Ladyrnof the United States. Otherwise, it isrnimpossible to imagine her much differentlyrnfrom David Brock’s evocation.rnAs Brock tells it, the irresistible temptationsrnto which Mrs. Clinton provedrnunequal include the influence of arnMethodist minister who urged her tornread the Bible as a basis for political actionrnand pointed out tlie similarities betweenrncommunism and the Christianrnfaith; the political theory of Saul Alinsky,rnthe Machiavellian organizer who persuadedrnseveral generations of activistsrnthat the ends always justify the means,rnand that law is simply the instrument ofrnthe ruling class; “Boy Clinton,” the attractivernnarcissist who went about thernYale quad telling people he was going tornbe President of the United States somernday; Marian Wright Edelman, whorntaught her to think of government as anrninstrument of virtue and a tool for socialrnprogress; her tenure as chairman of thernLegal Services Corporation when, inrnprotracted confrontation with the Reaganrnadministration which sought to curtailrnthe LSC’s activities, she took shortcutsrnacross the rules in order to achievernwhat she conceived to be noble ends; thernone-party system in Arkansas, breedingrn”a certain moral arrogance and carelessnessrnabout any appearance of improprietyrnor possible ethical lapse”; and, finally,rnthe prospect of attaining her life’s ambitionrnby following a script rewritten by herrnhusband’s handlers in 1992 to make herrnmore appealing to the conservative majorityrnof the American public. Had theserntemptations not arisen, or had HillaryrnRodham found strength to cry, “Getrnthee behind me, Satan!” at the climax ofrnher moral crises, then. Brock suggests,rnthings might have turned out differently.rnHow differenfly? Well, her expertise acquiredrnfrom her work with the LSC, thernChildren’s Defense Fund, and the NewrnWorld Foundation might eventuallyrnhave won her a federal judgeship, or arnseat in the Senate. Maybe it would have;rnthen again, perhaps it wouldn’t. Therntrouble with this line of argument is, ifrnHillary had had it in her to reject her variousrntemptations, then she wouldn’t bernHillary but some other woman, whetherrnjudge, senator. First Lady, or the first femalerndrill sergeant at the Virginia MilitaryrnInstitute. The What If approach is,rnif anything, even less promising when appliedrnto biography than it is to the studyrnof history. Like everyone else in thernworld, Hillary Clinton, having made herrnbed, now must lie in it, even if it has beenrnknown to accommodate four or five peoplernat a time.rnBrock’s reading of the Clintons’ partnershiprnindeed suggests a certain inevitability,rna fatedness. “The co-candidacyrn. . . mav best be understood not as arncold political bargain but as a kind of codependency.rnBill and Hillary not onlyrncomplemented one another in a remarkablernway: over time they came to seemrneerily necessary to one another, asrnthough neither can really exist or succeedrnon their own.” Brock’s accountrnleaves absolutely no doubt that withoutrnbenefit of his wife’s practical efforts andrnhardheaded political astuteness, thernChronic Campaigner would neitherrnhave retaken the governorship in thern1982 race that made the later presidentialrnrun possible, nor would he in all likelihoodrnhave succeeded in his bid for thernpresidency. On the other hand, lackingrnalmost entirely her husband’s personalrncharm and appeal to the voters, Hillaryrnmust have recognized that electoral politics,rnpracticed in her own right, was notrnthe means to the political power and influencernthat she sought. So, in additionrnto fatedness, there remains the matter ofrnconvenience as a principal factor in thernClintons’ unconventional marriage. Thernmore we learn of the Clintons, it seems,rnthe more nothing about them changes.rnSo far as the Whitewater scandal goes.rnBrock makes the best defense for Mrs.rnClinton that we are likely to hear outsiderna court of law with a very high-priced attorneyrnarguing on her behalf. HillaryrnClinton, he suggests, knowing little ofrnher husband’s dealings with James Mc-rnDougal but having allowed herself to berncompromised by the Arkansas mob intornwhich she had married, was willing tornrisk the appearance of wrongdoing byrnrepresenting Madison Guaranty; later,rnwhen accused of the doing itself, she engagedrnin what may have been illegal tacticsrnto cover over the appearance. Sincerncharges of influence-peddling and money-rngrubbing have registered hardest withrnthe cohort of disillusioned feminist pro-rn24/CHRONICLESrnrnrn