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Saturday, July 17



Est un ver.

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Wednesday, July 14


You Can't Make A Silver Tongue Out Of A Tin Ear

Via Insty, Mort Zuckerman gets slapped in the face with the cold, dead trout of reality:
The hope that fired up the election of Barack Obama has flickered out, leaving a national mood of despair and disappointment. Americans are dispirited over how wrong things are and uncertain they can be made right again. Hope may have been a quick breakfast, but it has proved a poor supper. A year and a half ago Obama was walking on water. Today he is barely treading water. Then, his soaring rhetoric enraptured the nation. Today, his speeches cannot lift him past a 45 percent approval rating.
Soaring rhetoric?  When he's on (which is rare these days) Obama is wooden.  When he's off (-teleprompter) he's simply inept.

To be fair, Australia's own not-late-but-decidedly-unlamented Kevin Rudd was not merely wooden but utterly leaden; his speeches were actively painful.

To continue:
The president failed to communicate the value of what he wants to communicate. To a significant number of Americans, what came across was a new president trying to do too much in a hurry and, at the same time, radically change the equation of American life in favor of too much government.
And they were right.

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Tuesday, July 13


Do Senators Make Bad Presidents?

I hold the U.S Senate of recent years in approximately zero esteem (unless esteem can hold a negative value) and it was some dismay that I watched the 2008 presidential campaign narrow to a choice of three senators.

But do senators intrinsically make bad presidents? Let's take a look at what jobs recent presidents held before election.

Bush, G.W
Bush, G.H.W


Roosevelt, F.D

Roosevelt, T


That leaves out three from the 20th and 21st centuries - Eisenhower, who was a five-star general, Hoover, who was Secretary of Commerce, and Taft, who held a number of roles including Secretary of War.

So, in the last century or so, three men have been elected from the senate directly to the presidency: Obama, Kennedy, and Harding.  So, one bad, one potentially great (if flawed), one incumbent.  Unfortunately I'll have to rule insufficient data here.

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