President Pitchman

Wherever a President traveled during the dark days of the cold war, he was never more than a few steps away from a military aide who clutched the "football"--a briefcase containing the codes the Commander-in-Chief could use to launch a nuclear strike. As Bill Clinton hits the road these days, he conjures up a far less sinister image: that of a fast-talking supersalesman, traveling the world with sample cases full of glittering American wares. Clinton is such an ardent booster of U.S. exports that he has been chided for acting less like a statesman than a rug merchant. The President's retort recently to workers at a Boeing factory: "I'm not ashamed that I've asked other countries to buy Boeing, and I'll do it again if given half a chance."

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