On Barack Obama’s Religion

Wasn’t it P.T. Barnum who said that “You’ll never go broke underestimating the intelligence of the American public?” That’s how I felt this morning, when I heard NPR’s story on a just-released Pew Research poll that indicates that a growing percentage of Americans — now 1 in 5 — believe that President Obama is, inContinue reading “On Barack Obama’s Religion”

On Hillary Clinton’s 2012 Political Options

It’s August. Political reporters need something to write about. So why not write about the 2012 election? How else to explain the sudden flurry of articles — with this one from Politics Daily a typical example — speculating on Hillary Clinton’s plans for 2012? Or, this article which suggests that Clinton will stage a primaryContinue reading “On Hillary Clinton’s 2012 Political Options”

On Today’s Inauguration

President Barack Obama acknowledged today that non-believers are part of the American tapestry. That’s a far cry from George Herbert Walker Bush, who said that atheists were neither citizens nor patriots. Or from his son, George Bush the Younger, who said that the hallmark of civilization was a belief in god. I’d like to thinkContinue reading “On Today’s Inauguration”

On the End of the Beginning

For a few months now, I’ve been referring to tomorrow’s inauguration of a new President by quoting Gerald Ford’s famous phrase from his address to the nation upon taking the office at Nixon’s resignation — “Our long national nightmare is over.” But that’s not exactly true. George Bush will be leaving office tomorrow at NoonContinue reading “On the End of the Beginning”

On Some Political Musings

Something has been nagging at me for days, and it took a column by E.J. Dionne in today’s Washington Post to crystalize my thinking. Dionne asks, is the progressive Left disappointed in Barack Obama, a month before his inauguration, for not being Left enough? At the same time, I’ve noticed the belief on the RightContinue reading “On Some Political Musings”

On Sgt. Obama’s Hopeful Hearts Club

This is really quite neat. Artist Michael Cuffe has taken Peter Blake’s famous cover art for The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and reworked it into a nifty Obama/Biden poster. Here’s a large version of it. Some personages on the poster are a little mystifying to me. Why Robert Downey, Jr.? Why J.K.Continue reading “On Sgt. Obama’s Hopeful Hearts Club”

On the Fifth of November

Remember, remember The fifth of November I can say that with a halfway decent Hugo Weaving voice, to which I usually append “Frodo Baggins.” But that’s just because I’m silly. 😉 From this day forward, the fifth of November will be remembered for two reasons. It will be remembered for Guy Fawkes and the GunpowderContinue reading “On the Fifth of November”

On Conversations About Politics

I ride the Baltimore subway to work, and at times I think I’m the only white person who rides the rails in the evening. Friday evening, there was a man on the subway platform there at State Center. I’d have judged him to be about forty. He had muscle tremors of some kind. He approachedContinue reading “On Conversations About Politics”

On Community Organizers, Myth, History, and Politics

Over the past month I’ve seen a meme making its way across the interwebs. Not a meme in the questions-passed-from-blog-to-blog sense that “meme” usually means online, but a meme in the more traditional sense, an idea that’s spreading and taking root. The meme? “Jesus was a community organizer. Pontius Pilate was a governor.” This is,Continue reading “On Community Organizers, Myth, History, and Politics”