This Vanity Fair article about how Washington works (or doesn’t) these days is worth reading for several reasons, but especially for the following terrifying passage (emphasis added):
And yet a recent New York Times/CBS News poll reveals that 20 percent of Americans believe Obama was born in another country, and that another quarter aren’t sure he was American-born. The mainstream media have published lengthy reports that, by any objective standard, should have thoroughly refuted the idea that Obama is a Muslim, or was educated in a madrassa, or favors the creation of “death panels” to ration end-of-life care. It doesn’t matter. A national Harris poll this spring found that 57 percent of Republicans believe that Obama is in fact a Muslim (and, for good measure, 38 percent believe he is “doing many of the things that Hitler did,” and 24 percent believe that Obama actually “may be the anti-Christ”).
They scanned the certificate of live birth, had it authenticated by the state registrar and GOP governor, and put it on the Internet. They produced the birth announcement from the Honolulu advertiser. And yet 45 percent of people steadfastly refuse to put both feet in the reality-based community.
On the brighter side of unreality: you may not be familiar with the schizophrenic singer-songwriter Wesley Willis, whose fractured bio-tunes covered famous people and organizations of all stripes. His humorous non sequiturs and bizarre Casiotone songcraft kept people scratching their heads. Until recently I wasn’t aware of his song “Bill Clinton.”
Much of the song is, as is the Willis standard, fairly nonsensical. But it includes the lyric: “You have the ability to put people to work. You are the President of the United States.”
It’s kind of surprising when Wesley Willis starts to make more sense on economic policy than a bunch of people with Ph.Ds, but there it is.
Similarly surprising: Pat Buchanan calls out Newt Gingrich for going too far in demonizing Muslims. When the erstwhile apologist for Hitler says you’ve crossed a line, well, let’s just call it a taking-stock moment.
Finally, here’s a great poem by James Dickey, “Cherrylog Road,” that I first read in high school and revisit every once in a while for reasons including but not limited to the stellar last line.