January 24th, 2015

Being wrong

I first started reading blogs some time around 2002. I immediately liked them, although I no longer remember the first blogs I found and I suspect most of them are now defunct. I liked the bluntness, the honesty, the humor, and the comments sections, all so different from the newspapers that had been my major news sources previously.

I remember one of those original blogs had a joke that amused me mightily at the time. It went something like this: Hey, I think I know what’s wrong. We thought it was 9/11/2001, but actually we got the year backwards; it was really 1002.

The idea was that progress was an illusion, and that somehow through some terrible time warp or wormhole we’d been catapulted to the Middle Ages, or what used to be called the Dark Ages.

That was a joke, but not really a joke either. I’ve had occasion to think of it many times since. It seems to be a common thought among people who live in times of jarring transition.

For example, there’s this quote from a letter by Henry James, written the day after World War I (or “The Great War” as it was known prior to #II) began:

The plunge of civilization into this abyss of blood and darkness… is a thing that so gives away the whole long age during which we have supposed the world to be, with whatever abatement, gradually bettering, that to have to take it all now for what the treacherous years were all the while really making for and meaning is too tragic for any words.

You can feel James thinking how could I, how could we, have been so stupid, so wrong, about what we were living through and where the whole thing was going?

The style of the following excerpt is as different as different can be from that of Henry James. It’s more telegraphic and journalistic. But the sentiment is the same, although this time it’s from Victor Klemperer, diarist of the Third Reich, a converted Jew married to an Aryan woman and living in Dresden during the Hitler era. A scant two months after Hitler became Chancellor, Klemperer wrote:

Mood as before a pogrom in the depths of the Middle Ages…We are hostages. The dominant feeling…is that this reign of terror can hardly last long, but that its fall will bury us…In fact I feel shame more than fear, shame for Germany. I have truly always felt a German. I have always imagined: The twentieth century and Mitteleurope was different from the fourteenth century and Romania. Mistake.

It’s that one short word that overwhelms me and creates that sock-in-the-gut feeling: “mistake.” I was wrong; wrong about something hugely important. Klemperer has no false pride—he realizes immediately the enormity of his error, and the error is hardly his alone. He was, after all, a professor (a position of particular prestige in Germany) who specialized in the literature of the Enlightenment. The Enlightenment, that “whole long age during which we have supposed the world to be, with whatever abatement, gradually bettering…”

Klemperer, and the Reich’s, “abyss of blood and darkness” was just beginning, but Klemperer could clearly see where it was ultimately heading. He was wrong about the duration—he was underestimating the human capacity for both evil and for endurance (including his own endurance and that of his wife who, though sickly and depressed, survived the war and an astounding amount of suffering both petty and profound). But he was right that its fall “will bury us”—the Jews of Germany, and Germany itself as a bastion of culture and learning.

I have also known that feeling of “I was wrong about something extremely important.” My political change was based on a realization that I’d been wrong. More recently I’ve been wrong about what the American people will tolerate and accept in a president.

I wonder what else I’m wrong about.

[ADDENDUM: I just remembered another case of someone realizing they’d been wrong about something political and very, very important. It involves author Azar Nafisi, who originally supported the 1979 Iranian revolution and lived to regret it. The quote is from her book Reading Lolita in Tehran:

In later months and years, every once in a while Bijan [the author's husband] and I would be shocked to see the show trials of our old comrades in the U.S. on television. They eagerly denounced their past actions, their old comrades, their old selves, and confessed that they were indeed the enemies of Islam. We would watch these scenes in silence…I turned and ask Bijan, Did you ever dream that this could happen to us? He said, No, I didn’t, but I should have.]

January 24th, 2015

This seems…

…like a good idea to me:

Arizona state lawmakers have made their state the first of what could be 18 in America to require teenagers to pass the U.S. citizenship test to graduate from high school.

It’s the test immigrants have to take before they can move from a green card to a voter registration card.

North Dakota could become the second before the end of January.

Critics (and some of those critics include those on the right) say it will emphasize rote learning to pass a test, rather than a deeper understanding of history and what makes this country great. But although I agree with them in principle, there’s nothing to stop schools from teaching those things, too.

This is a minimum requirement, not a maximum, and can act as a springboard to discussion of the deeper issues. When students graduate from high school not knowing what the three branches of government are, or the difference between the Senate and the House, the basics have been utterly neglected. The basics have to be put in place before students can even begin to understand anything about the wisdom of the Founders or who to write to if they’re perturbed about local government (the latter being one of the skills some educators would like to see taught).

Here’s one of the more disturbing statistics I’ve read in a long, long time:

The Center for Education Policy conducted surveys of school districts across the nation that showed the time spent on [subjects related to civics, such as American history) in elementary schools was reduced from an average of 2,239 minutes per week [*see note below] in 2000 to 164 minutes per week in 2008, a 93 percent decrease.

And I bet that 164 minutes consists mostly of America-bashing.

This decline is not the least bit accidental. And the effects have already been seen in the dumbing-down of the voting populace.

*NOTE As commenter “Paul in Boston” pointed out below, the figures quoted are almost certainly wrong, since the number of minutes stated for 2000 would constitute more or less a full work week. However, I can’t find a link to the research, so I can’t give you the correct figures.

January 24th, 2015

Yemen, schmemen: let’s hear about those balls

I confess it: I don’t care about Tom Brady’s balls. I understand that cheating is bad and that Brady/Belichick/ThePatriots may have done just that, although they deny it. But since I basically don’t care about football I can’t get in an uproar about it, try as I may, and try as the news media may to get me stirred up about it. And they’re certainly trying.

Sorry, that’s just the way it is. But I do understand why football fans care.

However, how on earth can this be more important than, for instance, the disturbing and dangerous chaos going on in Yemen, which is barely on the radar screen for the vast majority of MSM consumers? I know the answer to that, too, and it’s a human answer: people are tired of bad news from far-off Muslim countries they can’t place on a map. The Superbowl is up-close and personal, or relatively so, even though it’s more or less irrelevant to our geopolitical future.

I can hardly fault people for being people, can I? After all, some of my best friends are people.

January 23rd, 2015

Boehner’s invite and its meaning

I hadn’t thought of this, but Caroline Glick makes a good point about the significance of Boehner’s invitation to Netanyahu:

With Obama’s diplomatic policy toward Iran enabling rather than preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear power, members of the House and Senate are seeking a credible, unwavering voice that offers an alternative path. For the past 20 years, Netanyahu has been the global leader most outspoken about the need to take all necessary measures to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power, not only for Israel’s benefit, but to protect the entire free world. From the perspective of the congressional leadership, then, inviting Netanyahu to speak was a logical move.

In the Israeli context, however, it was an astounding development. For the past generation, the Israeli Left has insisted Israel’s role on the world stage is that of a follower.

As a small, isolated nation, Israel has no choice, they say, other than to follow the lead of the West, and particularly of the White House, on all issues, even when the US president is wrong. All resistance to White House policies is dangerous and irresponsible, leaders like Herzog and Tzipi Livni continuously warn.

Boehner’s invitation to Netanyahu exposes the Left’s dogma as dangerous nonsense.

Glick makes some other important points, particularly in describing a way in which Obama may have inadvertently damaged his own position by insulting the motives of anyone who opposes him on Iran—including Democrats:

[Obama] has cast proponents of sanctions – and [Democratic Senator Robert] Menendez is the co-sponsor of a pending sanctions bill – as enemies of a diplomatic strategy of dealing with Iran, and by implication, as warmongers.

Indeed, in remarks to the Democratic members of the Senate last week, Obama impugned the motivations of lawmakers who support further sanctions legislation. He indirectly alleged that they were being forced to take their positions due to pressure from their donors and others.

Menendez, who is not only the co-sponsor of the bill but the ranking Democrat on the Senate’s Foreign Affairs Committee, didn’t pull any punches in return, saying that the administration’s talking points sound like they “come straight out of Tehran.”

That’s strong rhetoric for a Democrat vis a vis Obama. The question is, how many additional Democrats feel similarly? If there are enough of them, Obama’s veto could be overriden, which would be a first. It might even be a turning point.

If so, not a moment too soon.

You can say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one:

Twelve Democrats in the Senate have in the past cosponsored legislation to impose sanctions on Iran. If they all continue to call for the sanctions, it would put the Senate close to the two-thirds majority necessary to override Obama’s veto; supporters would need just one more vote if all 54 Republicans support the bill.

[Hat tip: Nolanimrod.]

[NOTE: Paul Mirengoff of Powerline asks why Obama parrots Iran’s talking points. He believes that “Obama sees Iran as the rising power in the region, and sees a grand bargain with the clerics as the solution to our woes in the Middle East.” Mirengoff speculates that Obama believes this because it “appeals to his intellectual arrogance,” is “consistent with his laziness,” and because he admires “successful anti-American strongmen” (like most leftists do).

That all seems correct, but it probably doesn’t go far enough. I believe that Obama and his main advisor, Valerie Jarrett, are both simpatico with the Iranian regime.]

January 23rd, 2015

Obama’s spitting mad…

at Netanyahu:

“We thought we’ve seen everything,” the newspaper quoted an unnamed senior US official as saying. “But Bibi managed to surprise even us.

“There are things you simply don’t do. He spat in our face publicly and that’s no way to behave. Netanyahu ought to remember that President Obama has a year and a half left to his presidency, and that there will be a price,” he said.

Officials in Washington said that the “chickenshit” epithet — with which an anonymous administration official branded Netanyahu several months ago — was mild compared to the language used in the White House when news of Netanyahu’s planned speech came in.

That rings way too true for our juvenile, snarky president.

And at this point, “there will be a price” is pretty much an empty threat. Obama has already spit in Bibi’s and Israel’s face so many times, and so assiduously worked against its interests, that it’s hard to see what more Obama could be threatening. Maybe to make concessions to Iran in negotiations? You can see my point.

January 23rd, 2015

Alberto Nisman: death in Argentina

Prior to today I hadn’t followed the rumors about the death of Argentine prosecutor Alberto Nisman, but recent developments in the case are very alarming: first reported as a suicide, it appears it was far more likely to have been murder, and not any ordinary murder. Nisman was killed on the eve of giving testimony “regarding his government’s complicity with Iran to suppress the investigation of the 1994 Jewish community center bombing.”

That government, headed by President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner (one of those implicated in the suppression of the bombing evidence), initially brushed Nisman’s death off as suicide. Now she’s singing a different tune, one of persecution—of Cristina Kirchner, who is now suggesting “that the prosecutor’s death was part of what she hinted was a sinister plot to defame and destroy her.”

Well, I suppose it’s possible that someone other than Kirchner killed him—after all, there’s no lack of other people and other countries who must have wanted him dead—chief among them, other officials in Argentina and much of the leadership of Iran, who had apparently been in cahoots in planning a coverup about the JCC bombing’s source:

…[T]he intercepted telephone conversations [Nisman] described before his death outline an elaborate effort to reward Argentina for shipping food to Iran — and for seeking to derail the investigation into a terrorist attack in the Argentine capital that killed 85 people.

Argentine prosecutors suspect Iran of shielding guilty parties in the bombing of a Jewish center in Buenos Aires that killed 85 people.

The deal never materialized, the complaint says, in part because Argentine officials failed to persuade Interpol to lift the arrest warrants against Iranian officials wanted in Argentina in connection with the attack.

There’s another good post about it all at Legal Insurrection, and Fausta has a lot of information, too (see also this). The LI post and Fausta both point out an interesting fact, which is that it’s been reported that Nisman’s 10-person security guard was mysteriously absent that day.

At this point I’d say there’s about a zero-percent chance that Alberto Nisman committed suicide.

January 23rd, 2015

Richard Landes knows France…

…and he wonders which way it will turn, now that the Charlie Hebdo massacre has gotten its attention:

…[W]hen mainstream news journalists, whose publications have been notably silent on these critical issues for 15 years, suddenly extol Charlie Hebdo as “fellow journalists” and heroes of free speech it rings hollow…

Can France listen to the story its Jews have to tell? Can even those who agree with Valls really contemplate seriously what’s happening to Jews in France? Can they hear in Netanyahu’s call on the French Jews to come to Israel, not primarily the insult to national honor that it undoubtedly is, but a rebuke, however tactlessly expressed, that should promote some self-reflection about what France has done that he would even think of making such an appeal? Can they see in the Israeli burials of the victims at Hypercacher, not the discarding of a French identity, but the desire to be buried where their graves will not be desecrated? Will Jews continue to be allowed to bear witness, or will some members of the French intelligentsia turn eagerly once again to the “alter-juifs,” the asajews, who feel they show their greatness of soul by publicly promoting a war narrative that targets their own people?

Was this an historic day in which France found its national will to resist? Or will it be the largest selfie in history, a sad tale of nearly uninterrupted and, too often, undeserved self-admiration?…

As an observer and critic of the French intelligentsia for the last 15 years, I’m not too sanguine. In principle, it’s hard to imagine a civilization committing suicide from vanity; from the ground here in France, it’s not so inconceivable.

I don’t know France the way Richard Landes does. In fact, I barely could be said to know it at all. But I, likewise, am not too sanguine. I’m basing that on what I know of leftist and pro-Palestinian thought, and how deeply entrenched and widespread it has become—and not just in France, either.

I hope we’re both being too pessimistic.

January 22nd, 2015

And now for something completely different—my mother’s childhood poetry

Long-time readers here probably remember when I used to write about my elderly mother. And you probably also recall that about two-and-a-half years ago she died. Although I haven’t written much about that event, some day I may.

Shortly after my mother’s death I went through a lot of her possessions, sorting things out and throwing much of it out. It’s not an easy task. But then after that initial spurt of energy I stopped. In particular, I’ve been reluctant to go through the notebook she kept of her poems.

I’d seen that notebook long ago in my childhood, and had already read much of the juvenilia in it. In fact, the whole thing is mostly juvenilia. It’s heavy on poems my mother wrote between the ages of ten and fifteen, when her poetic precocity was much-admired by her family and in her school, and she got a lot of praise from both sources for it. She was always good with words, both spoken and written, and as a child she could churn out boilerplate poetry for holidays and family birthdays, often on demand (a demand she told me she sometimes resented). The notebook goes right on through her college years with a certain amount of more mature poetic verbiage about love gained and lost, and then the whole poetic endeavor abruptly ends when she’s about nineteen years old, never to be resumed.

I don’t know why my mother gave up writing poetry so early in life, but she did. By the time I knew her (I was born when she was in her mid-30s), the only verse she wrote was light song parody to be performed at friend’s parties or fund-raising functions. She was very very good at that, too (I particularly remember one song about shopping at Loehmann’s, to the tune of “Loch Lomond.”

But last night I decided to take up her poetry notebook and do some reading. Amidst the usual odes to snowflakes and flowers, Thanksgiving and grandma’s birthday, was a poem she had written that seemed very very different from the others. I offer it here for your amusement. She wrote this at fourteen, obviously after having gotten a rather hefty dose of Poe’s “The Raven” in the classroom (it’s actually entitled “Written for School,” and the date is 1928). It’s not perfect in its rhyme scheme or meter (and my mother’s name wasn’t “Eleanor”; that was poetic license). But I think for a fourteen-year old it’s awfully fine:

Have you ever had a feeling
That has set your head a’reeling
While so calmly lesson learning
You’d no midnight oil a’burning
On the night before.

Mists before your eyes are lifting
Farther is the classroom drifting
In a daze of joy abounding
Drones of voices never sounding
Thrilled by dreams’ sweet lore.

Suddenly you hear a tapping
Some one who is softly rapping
Tis the boy in back–quite frantic
And the teacher looks gigantic
Towering above the class.

Then you realize you’d been dreaming
Trapped by her ingenious scheming
As you’re thinking—what’s the reason
Nathan Hale committed treason?
This subject you’ll never pass.

Then it comes, that awful feeling,
Horror, clammy cold comes stealing
As you gasp and as you mutter
Swallow, and then madly stutter
She says, “Answer, Eleanor!”

When you’re in this cruel position
To get away is all you’re wishing.
Reader, can you ere forget
That great and most sincere regret:
“I’ll study now and evermore.”

[NOTE: Here’s Poe’s “The Raven.”]

January 22nd, 2015

Mr. Boehner requests the honor of Netanyahu’s presence

I think the invitation Boehner extended to Netanyahu to address Congress on the issue of Iran was one of the most clever moves Boehner has made.

Which isn’t saying all that much, since Boehner hasn’t made too many clever moves. But still—and although in the end it probably won’t stop Obama from doing what he wants to with Iran—it shows a certain amount of (to coin a phrase) chutzpah on Boehner’s part:

But Boehner told members of the GOP House Conference on Wednesday morning: “The president warned us not to move ahead with sanctions on Iran, a state sponsor of terror. His exact message to us was: ‘Hold your fire.’ He expects us to stand idly by and do nothing while he cuts a bad deal with Iran. Two words: ‘Hell no’.”

And it should come as no surprise whatsoever that Obama does not plan to see Netanyahu on his visit here in February. I doubt Netanyahu will be weeping into his beer at the slight.

The most interesting question is whether the legislation proposed by Republicans, which would impose sanctions on Iran to kick in if Obama’s negotiations fail, will have enough votes to override Obama’s veto.

There’s also this:

Aside from the sanctions bill, a Senate committee was considering a separate bill on Wednesday that would give Congress a vote on any nuclear deal.

January 22nd, 2015

The fog of GOP war: the late-term abortion bill

What to make of all of this?

I wake up to a huge brouhaha about the report that a bill banning late-term abortion—a bill that’s hugely popular with the American people when polled, and which President Obama swears he’ll veto if passed—has been shelved for the moment over the objections of several female Republican representatives who object to the wording of a rape reporting provision.

In article after article and comment after comment from the right, I read that this is just another awful betrayal by the awful GOP, who are liars and false promisers and who have no cojones and no plan and no this and no that.

Until this morning, I’d never even heard of this bill, although I’ve certainly heard of the problem of late-term abortions and the campaign to ban them. But I wonder whether this latest sequence of events isn’t just another issue on which the right is being played by the media and being whipped up into an angry frenzy over something that is a minor speed bump that will be resolved in short time. I wonder whether this isn’t just a case of legislation being pulled temporarily in order to iron out some controversial language so that more people will get on board.

Now, I’m well aware that this might be wrong. I’m well aware that the GOP often does not keep its promises, and often shows an extreme lack of intestinal fortitude. But I’m also aware that the right carries a huge sack of free-floating rage at the GOP and is ready to activate it at the slightest suggestion of betrayal (although I also understand that there are some very good historical reasons for that).

And it is also clear to me that the only people who benefit from these tendencies on the right are those on the left.

Note the inflammatory word “dropped” in the WaPo headline of the article about it, “Abortion bill dropped amid concerns of female GOP lawmakers.” Note the lede:

House Republican leaders abruptly dropped plans late Wednesday to vote on an anti-abortion bill amid a revolt by female GOP lawmakers concerned…

Abruptly dropped. Makes it sound like it’s curtains for the bill. But if you stick with the article), there’s this:

A senior GOP aide said that concerns had been raised “by men and women Members that still need to be worked out.” The aide, who wasn’t authorized to speak publicly about the plans, said in an e-mail that Thursday’s vote will help “advance the pro-life cause” and that GOP leaders “remain committed to continue working through the process [on the Pain Capable bill] to make sure it too is successful.”

So, what is it? Permanent shelving, or postponement? And if the latter, is it still such a big deal? The disagreement appears to be over a controversial reporting requirement. It appears that, to qualify for a late-term abortion through a rape exception, a woman would have had to have reported the abortion to authorities earlier, a requirement meant to insure that the pregnancy really did result from rape.

But the larger controversy is really this:

A broader cross-section of Republican members also questioned why the House was spending time on legislation that was unlikely to overcome the 60-vote threshold in the Senate, let alone be signed into law by the president.

The divide over the abortion legislation marks a broader disagreement within the Republican Party that has been raging for the last several years. Now that Republicans have an expanded majority, conservatives want to flex their legislative muscles and dare the president to use his veto pen. Meanwhile, moderates want to use the opportunity to tackle less controversial measures.

How about this: do some of each, but stop ripping each other apart?

[NOTE: Renee Ellmers, the main objector to the reporting requirement, explains herself here:

“It’s unfortunate the way it played out,” Ellmers, a Republican from North Carolina, told reporters Thursday morning. “I think we’re all just going through some growing pains.”

Ellmers supports banning abortion past the midway point of pregnancy — which is what the bill the House originally planned to pass Thursday would have done. But she wants it tweaked so that women who have been raped don’t have to report it to law enforcement before they can obtain an abortion.

The measure, which leadership still intends to bring for a vote at some point, would ban abortions past 20 weeks of pregnancy unless a woman has been raped or her life is in danger…

Ellmers has already voted for the bill before, when the House passed it in June 2013. She dismissed that vote, saying she didn’t realize at the time that it contained the reporting requirement because it “wasn’t evident in the base language of the bill.”]

January 21st, 2015

Obama’s denial

Byron York points out that Obama’s SOTU speech featured a lot of denial of reality:

Obama described the world as he wishes it were, not as it actually is. Indeed, in Obama’s State of the Union, things are going so well that it’s hard to imagine why voters would decisively turn control of Congress over to the opposition party — not that Obama would acknowledge that, either. Doing so would be a concession that something is still terribly wrong.

But Obama long ago concluded that the best defense is a good offense. He has never had to face the consequences of his failures. He has been able to fool most of the people most of the time, at least when it counted. He has skated past disaster after disaster, and gotten away with lie after lie. The biggest repercussion he’s been met with—the 2014 Democratic defeat in Congress—may not stop him. Republicans are somewhat toothless, in part because they are divided among themselves but also because Obama has veto power that will be difficult to override. He’s also got that phone and that pen, and the will to use them. He has successfully transformed the US into a second-rate power and allies into enemies (or at least, into abandoned and confused ex-allies). And he has turned enemies into, if not allies, then gloating and stronger forces in the world for whatever evil they’ve got in mind.

It’s actually worked out very well for Obama. So why not brag? Who’s going to correct him besides the Republicans and a few pundits in the right-wing press?

Strangely enough, Richard Engel of NBC, that’s who:

Not that it will matter. But I applaud Engel.

[NOTE: Here’s Engel’s bio. Pretty impressive. He actually seems to have knowledge and experience. He’s also very very lucky to be alive; he was kidnapped in Syria in late 2012 and held for five harrowing days.]

[ADDENDUM: Is there anything open and above-board about the people President Obama uses as examples of the wonderfulness of his policies? Not so much:

The woman whose story of economic recovery was showcased by President Barack Obama in his State of the Union address is a former Democratic campaign staffer and has been used by Obama for political events in the past.

Rebekah Erler has been presented by the White House as a woman who was discovered by the president after she wrote to him last March about her economic hardships. She was showcased in the speech as proof that middle class Americans are coming forward to say that Obama’s policies are working.

Unmentioned in the White House bio of Erler is that she is a former Democratic campaign operative, working as a field organizer for Sen. Patty Murray (D., Wash.).

It’s all a Potemkin village, anyway.]

January 21st, 2015

America gets the snarky juvenile president it deserves

I was puzzled by this headline: “President Obama’s SOTU ‘sick burn’ lights up Twitter.”

Sick burn? What on earth? From Urban Dictionary [spelling corrected in the following excerpt]:

[definition of "sick burn"] to insult someone on an elevated level; to put someone down to the lowest; usual victims of a “sick burn” will be the guy in your school who tucks his plaid shirt into his pants and clips a cell phone on his belt

a good way to know if you’ve been sick burned is that whoever has burned you will immediately shape his hands like two guns and imitate blowing the smoke off them on at a time and will say in a baritone voice : “sick burn”, possibly with a clever smirk on his face.. you must have a mustache and a red leather jacket to sick burn someone

Bobby: “Hey Jimmy, wanna go for a ride”

Jimmy: “Yeah,…. on your MOOOMMMM..”

Jimmy: “Oh…. sick burn”

“Sick burn” is a term of admiration for the person dealing out the insult, by the way. The insult of Obama’s last night that was so heavily admired was his apparently unscripted ad lib, “”I have no more campaigns to run…I know because I won both of them.”

Isn’t that…elevated. Doesn’t that just set the tone we want in a president?

Apparently, it does. That’s what people admire these days.

Remember back when Obama did the following in 2008? Remember that Republicans were puzzled that more people weren’t offended by it? Silly old Republicans, so behind the times:

Notice the first couple of comments at the YouTube video. YouTube comments are not known for their brilliance, but they do say something about what people are thinking and feeling, and this is the sort of thing you see there: “Such a cool president, he might not be the best, or does a lot of good, you gotta admit that he’s a pretty cool person despite all the president shit.”

Indeed.

It’s not news that Obama’s main appeal to so many voters, particularly the young, is his supposed coolness. It was already known back in 2008 and in 2012, those two victories of which Obama boasted last night. “Coolness” these days seems to include a large juvenile and street-smart component (which, by the way, seems phony and forced to me in Obama; he’s older than that and comes from a very different background). But hey, it works.

[ADDENDUM: And yes, I’m aware that Obama’s “I won both of them” came after some Republicans applauded when he said “I have no more campaigns to run”–which was also snarky of them.]

·

About Me

Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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