42nd President of the United States
Age during term: 46-54
PROS: Elusiveness — I mean, the man could weasel out of anything. And I'm not just talking about various extra-marital affairs (though trust me, we'll get there). In the early stages of the 1992 Democratic Primaries, Clinton found himself sinking in the polls following charges of sexual misconduct (again, we'll get to that). After he and his wife Hillary went on 60 Minutes, Clinton's poll numbers rebounded enough that, even though he didn't win the somewhat-important Massachusetts primary, he came to be called "The Comeback Kid."
|"And I'm only getting started."|
|Arsenio Hall couldn't quite believe what was going on.|
Neither could America, for that matter.
You also got a moment in 1994, inexplicably missing from the Internet, where during an MTV-sponsored event where the President took questions from Young People, a giggling 17-year old asked the Leader of the Free World if he wore "boxers or briefs."
CONS: The slight inability to keep it in his pants — Yes, we're finally getting to it. What do Gennifer Flowers, Paula Jones, and of course, Monica Lewinsky have in common?
|That's right, ladies.|
Now, okay, Clinton is hardly the first president in U.S. History to have stepped out of bounds while in office. What sets him apart is that his indiscretions led to his being impeached by the House of Representatives. Oopsie. In terms of the fight, we figure it would be tough to engage in hand-to-hand combat while in the middle of a case of "it burns when I pee." Food for thought.
Easily confused at times — I'm just going to leave this here:
I mean, I get that he was trying to be evasive and all, but... yeeesh.
39th President of the United States
Age during term: 52-56
PROS: Lots of post-presidential mileage — Being president is stressful and Carter's term was particularly bad. Stagflation, energy crisis, hostages and he was getting blamed for all of it.
Despite this fact, he has the second-longest retirement of any president, which just passed 30 years last month. Only Herbert Hoover had a longer post-presidential life span at just over 31 years and 6 months.
Though we didn't know it at the time, Carter had a lot of life left in him in the late '70s.
He sees into the FUTURE — Instead of relying on foreign oil, which muddied up U.S. foreign policy, he wanted to wean us off relying on the Middle East. He got on TV and told everyone to turn the thermostat down and to put on a damn sweater. He also added solar panels to the White House, hoping to set an example to the rest of the nation.
Americans didn't want to hear that they'd have to alter their behavior. They elected someone who would ignore all of this nonsense and remove those stupid solar panels.
with America's BF"F", Iraqi Dictator, Saddam Hussein
Thirty years later, the Middle East is still a mess and we're still depending on them for oil. The green energy move only started to really take hold a in the past few years, but only after Americans were forced to pay $4/gallon to gas up their inefficient and needlessly oversized SUVs.
Carter can either see the future, or he's sensible way beyond popular opinion. If it's the former, then he'll be able to anticipate his opponent's moves.
CONS: But let's all be honest, it's most likely the latter; sensible way beyond popular opinion.
Peaceful — The Independent reported that Carter is seen as a better man than he was a president. Say what you will about Carter's presidency, he was a peacemaker and a humanitarian. This, sadly, makes you a bad president.
It's hardly a leap to assume that these attributes would make him an even worse combatant in the Presidential Gladiatorial Arena™.
After he left the White House, he continued doing whatever makes you a bad president but a good person. In the past decade, he's won a Nobel Peace Prize, criticized British Prime Minister Tony Blair for blindly following the U.S. into a war in Iraq and, in 2008, called for the next president to apologize for torture that allegedly occurred at Guantanamo Bay.
Carter has always had a "Shit, you assholes hate me already. What the fuck do I care what you think of me now?" approach, except he's way too nice to put it that way.
No Fighting Experience — The very idea of engaging someone else in a fight is as about anti-Carter as one could get brings up the point that his fighting experience is lacking.
He had a brief career in the Navy, and he saw his future working in the fledgling nuclear submarine program. However, he left the Navy when his father died.
That's about as warlike as Carter got and it was short-lived.
Doug: First, let's disregard the fact that these people have met several times and have even worked together on humanitarian efforts. Jimmy Carter will enter the arena with a major advantage — the element of surprise. C'mon, who is Carter going to hit? No one. And everyone knows that. Some presidents would take advantage of this fact. Jackson, I'd imagine, would show no mercy. Bill Clinton, however, is not a raging dick — okay, poor choice of words.
Who could hit the peacemaker who exudes kindness, anyway? Clinton will go in thinking he can go easy and then...
Carter lays one into Clinton.
"What is this?" Clinton thinks, only he has no idea what the meaning of "is" is. Then:
Tony: Here's the thing with Carter: what fuels him? What drives him to transform from a global crusader for peace and justice into a cold-blooded gladiator? Here's what: nothing. I mean, maybe he'd be pissed off at not winning the Nobel Peace Prize in 1978? Except then he won one in 2002, so I don't know how that tracks. Maybe he'd be fueled by fear that the Olympians he screwed over in 1980 were tracking him down?
|Someone like this guy, for example.|
But, whatever, let's say Carter does manage to get in a few cuts. He's going against THE COMEBACK KID! I don't think Clinton's gonna let a couple jabs from some lousy peanut farmer derail him. He's gonna come strong and he's gonna come hard.
I... could have phrased that better.
I think this match comes down to two words: Swamp Rabbit. If Carter couldn't defend himself from one of those, he's got no chance in the Presidential Gladiatorial Arena™.
Here's what actually happened. Carter was solo fishing in a boat in Plains, Ga., (which means he was sitting in a boat and he probably had Secret Service men on the shore) when he noticed some a rabbit swimming towards his boat making strange hissing noises. Carter splashed it with a paddle and the rabbit turned around. End of story.
He returned to Washington, told the story to a few people as kind of a "Hey guys, you'll never believe what happened. Blah blah blah, swamp rabbit. Isn't that weird?" story. White House press secretary told someone from The Associated Press, who put the story on the wire. Then, newspapers ran a story saying that this happened:
And the whole world went on thinking that the president was attacked by a bunny, and to this day, people still believe he was unable to defend himself against a rabbit. If that's not enough to piss him off, then how about the fact that everyone seems to think that he said that there was a feeling of "national malaise," when he never said that.
This is Carter's chance to set the record straight, and he's going to do so with his fists.
I'll give you the national malaise thing, but this leads to another point in Clinton's favor. Carter may have never uttered the words "national malaise," but it's not like his years as president were really Party Times for America. Stagflation? Not a pleasant time for the economy. Compare and contrast to the Clinton years, which featured the longest period of economic growth for the country in history. That? Is gonna give you a swagger.
Carter may open strong, and he may open with a bout of righteous fury, but Clinton's got the power and endurance to win this bout. Hands down.
Okay, now before we turn this over to the voters, first, a word from...
Doug & Tony: The Chief!
THE CHIEF descends
The Chief: Thanks as always, boys. Now, I just wanted to take a moment, since this is our first match featuring not one, but two presidents who are both real, and still living, to clarify the point that we at HttCttD do not condone actual violence against any president, real or fictional, living or deceased. Given that, for this week's match, we ask for you not to envision these men in a fight to the death, but rather that they will battle to place one another into a very long, deep, and restful sleep.
Now, readers, go forth and vote! Remember, once you've voted, drop us a line in the comments to let us know why you voted the way you did. Your comment could end up being a tiebreaker!