Our journey begins in the White House Stenography Room, where Flack-in-Chief Jay Carney prepares to commit a Ziegler and declare a previous statement Inoperative. You can feel the tension mount as the Obama Administration is about to be shaken to its core:
Fox News’ Ed Henry asked Carney about the claim by the President’s uncle, whom Carney cut Henry off to characterize as “his father’s half-brother,” and why the discrepancy in the stories.
And there — right there — you know we’re in for a Thrilling Adventure. Maybe there exists one of those complicated exceptions where Your Father’s Half-Brother isn’t Your Uncle, but — free advice! — you probably don’t want to press that point before The Eyes of The Nation.
So what did the Putative Uncle know, and when did the White House know it?
It seems — please, sit down, dismiss the children from the room, the usual drill — he once met Barack Obama.
We know! It totally lets Kennedy off the hook for Giancana!
As far as political Bible-thumping goes, Arkansas Senator Mark Pryor’s new campaign ad verges on reasonable:
“I’m not ashamed to say that I believe in God, and I believe in His word. The Bible teaches us no one has all the answers. Only God does. And neither political party is always right. This is my compass. My North Star. It gives me comfort and guidance to do what’s best for Arkansas.”
Sure, we can quibble — why would anyone in Arkansas feel ashamed to profess their belief in God? — and we might be curious about what specific guidance the Bible offers politicians, unless they plan on implementing the rest of Leviticus, but what Pryor says strikes us as little different than anybody else being deeply inspired by what they’ve read.
It’s almost squishy, really. And given that Pryor is a Democrat, that might be a problem:
Let’s set some ground rules: We respect Will Farrell, but we are by no means an unabashed fan; the first Anchorman was disappointing, even if we live in Stay Classyville; and Ron Burgundy hosting a real North Dakota newscast isn’t as good as it ought to be.
But if you can make it to the story about the Black Friday shoplifter being chased out the store and almost running down the employee who blocked her car, then you’ll respect the challenges faced by a local newscast when there isn’t any news.
Which, given that this is Bismarck, is probably most days.
The first thing we did upon learning that WaPo’s Dana Milbank had written a column advocating the Draft was look up (a) his age, and (b) his military service.
Having grown up during That Decade, you can understand why. Our babysitter had a Vietnam map on her livingroom wall, tracking the Last Known Locations of her son, the draftee Army cook. We checked our Number every year, even though we weren’t even a teenager. We gave Serious Thought to Canada, at least as serious as a twelve-year-old could muster.
And then it all went away, and Our Generation gave the world Toga Parties.
But despite the fact we dodged the Draft — even dodged Registration, since Jimmy didn’t dare piss off young voters with it in 1980 — we’ve never forgotten that sword hanging over our head growing up, our status as a potential pawn in Somebody Else’s War. Whatever the Draft’s justification in earlier eras, it didn’t apply to ours.
“I can’t imagine an atheist version of confession. What would it look like? How would it work, if you don’t think there’s any such thing as sin?”
Forgive me, God Particle, for I have Sinned.
It has been 54 years, seven months, and four days since my last Confession. Not counting that time I mistook you for Hendrix, and spilled the beans about my unhealthy obsession with Sigourney Weaver.
I have touched myself 32,540 times.