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Oo! Oo! I’ve been to Europe! I can be president too!

I really should save some of this for later but some days, there is just soo much material.

Today’s “too good to pass up” is Obama’s assertion that he has more foreign policy experience than either Hillary or McCain because, wait for it, he’s lived in Indonesia, has family in Africa and went to Pakistan two decades ago. Here’s a segment from the Huffingtonpost article titled, Obama: No Need for Foreign Policy Help from VP:

“I think a lot of people assume that might be some sort of military thing to make me look more Commander-in-Chief-like. Ironically, this is an area–foreign policy is the area where I am probably most confident that I know more and understand the world better than Senator Clinton or Senator McCain.”

“It’s ironic because this is supposedly the place where experience is most needed to be Commander-in-Chief. Experience in Washington is not knowledge of the world. This I know. When Senator Clinton brags ‘I’ve met leaders from eighty countries’–I know what those trips are like! I’ve been on them. You go from the airport to the embassy. There’s a group of children who do native dance. You meet with the CIA station chief and the embassy and they give you a briefing. You go take a tour of a plant that [with] the assistance of USAID has started something. And then–you go.

“You do that in eighty countries–you don’t know those eighty countries. So when I speak about having lived in Indonesia for four years, having family that is impoverished in small villages in Africa–knowing the leaders is not important–what I know is the people. . . .

“I traveled to Pakistan when I was in college–I knew what Sunni and Shia was [sic] before I joined the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. . . .

“Nobody is entirely prepared for being Commander-in-Chief. The question is when the 3 AM phone call comes do you have somebody who has the judgment, the temperament to ask the right questions, to weigh the costs and benefits of military action, who insists on good intelligence, who is not going to be swayed by the short-term politics. By most criteria, I’ve passed those tests and my two opponents have not.”

Yep, that’s the whole thing. Forget about Hillary visiting 80 countries as first lady. ANYbody can do THAT. Besides, all she was called upon to do was take flowers from little children- in a dangerous area of wartorn Bosnia. Or meet with ladies who lunch in Northern Ireland- to gather information to share with her husband’s negotiation team. Clearly, Obama’s experience, although much more limited is much more profound. There is no comparison. (*I’ll* say)

I think *I* should be president. After all, I’ve been to Europe multiple times on business trips and I can successfully navigate the Paris Metro and RER. I can order my pasta al dente in Tuscany. I’ve been to all of the major museums and know the culture. (What? There’s more than one culture?! )

PLUS, I was also against the Iraq War Resolution from the very beginning. I made many speeches – to my family, who I am sure remember every word. I banged my fist on the dining room table and howled at the chandelier. Did anyone listen to me? Nooo! But, gosh darnit, I was adamant and sincere and I have never backed down on my objections to any newspapers. I’m telling you, my judgment is sound. Not once have I voluntarily listened to a preacher go off on a tangent about how evil Americans are, especially typical white persons. Surely, SURELY, I am qualified to be commander in chief.

(Pakistan, Barack? Jeez, now I’m going to have to spend the whole weekend convincing Pennsylvanians that it was just a vacation)

44 Responses

  1. I used Flags of the World toothpicks in my hors d’oeuvres.

    I can spell hors d’oeuvres. Not correctly, but at least I try.

    Can I be VP?

  2. Well, I have been to 49 of the 50 states, so I am absolutely confident of my qualifications on the domestic front, and let me say this: I have spent a month in Europe, three months in Asia, three months in South America, four months in Africa, a month in Australia, and two months in Mexico. My foreign policy skills are nonpareil.

  3. I was in the Navy for 20 years. I’ve lived in Spain, Crete and Iceland. I’ve worked in Japan, Bahrain, Thailand and Malaysia. I guess I’m ready for Secretary of State.

    RD, another great post exposing the thinness of Senator Obama’s record.

  4. fab GF: “I went to Canada on a band trip when I was thirteen. That doesn’t mean I can play hockey.”

    snicker

  5. His total arrogance completely floors me each time I hear him open his mouth. Every time I think he can’t get any worse, he tops the last one.

  6. Gabriele: Every once in a while, I spend some time with my friends and come away thinking, “Alright, I’ll vote for the bastard,” then he says something contemptuously stupid like riverdaughter relates, and I think, “What an incomparable gasbag.”

  7. I grew up about 25 minutes from the border of Mexico (over 13 years). When I went to undergrad, I lived near Vancouver, BC and visited there several times. I too, was opposed to the war and went to rallies where there were only scattered hundreds. I’m ready to be president in 7 years when I’m eligible.

    Seriously, is this guy for real?

  8. Let’s see who among you can beat me in “Who Deserves to be President”.

    – I was on job assignment in France, Germany and Switzerland for years

    – I graduated for the B-School while Obama graduated from the Law School

    – I have know the difference between Sunni and Shia for years

    – I also have relatives in many countries

    If you guys have able to compete so far, here is the tie-breaker:

    – “I opposed the war from the start”

    For the last one standing, lemme finish you off:

    – I am black.

    Thank you! Thank you! See you at the inauguration.

  9. MABlue: I can’t top that. I am melanin disabled. I yield.

  10. He doesn’t seem to like flags very much.

  11. Aw heck, don’t dis BO. He’s just trying to sew up the arrogant pric* voters with his “understand the world better” comments. Is it naiveté or is he really that arrogant? I’m at a loss.

  12. This would be a fun thread if it wasn’t so damn depressing.

  13. I was French major in college and lived in France for a short time. My husband speaks fluent Russian and lived in Russia for several years. I think we definitely have earned our spots on BO’s foreign policy team.

    And yes, it is depressing that the dem. frontrunner is this tripe as his FP experience, and that people are going to buy it. Groan.

  14. Over the weekend I sent an email to a famous journalist commenting on a recent article.

    I JUST got a response.

    And this VERY important person thanked me and asked me what Obama has done to rate the presidency.

    Funny, isn’t it? That’s what I want to know too.

  15. Gee, he travelled to Pakistan when he was in college, and can now solve the whole problem of middle east. We should have asked him sooner.

    After all, the wonderfully titled Obama’s Messiah Watch brings up the extraordinary abilities of Obama, abilities which confounds the mere mortals like us.

    http://www.slate.com/id/2158578/?nav/navoa/

    Today’s item, from a Los Angeles Times profile by Larry Gordon about Obama’s two years at Occidental College (before he transferred to Columbia):

    In [political science professor Roger] Boesche’s European politics class, [classmate Ken] Sulzer said he was impressed at how few notes [italics mine] Obama took. “Where I had five pages, Barry had probably a paragraph of the pithiest, tightest prose you’d ever see. … It was very short, very sweet. Obviously somebody almost Clintonesque in being able to sum a whole lot of concepts and place them into a succinct written style.”

    So, yes, Obama is able to observe and absorb in one week what normal poliitician cannot dream to achieve in more than 80 trips overseas. Ask the media.

    There is a whole lot of them here.

    http://www.slate.com/id/2187289/ (slate’s Obama Messiah Watch) Don’t miss this; it’s full of goodies to cheer you up (or raise your blood pressure; in my case, stupidity amuses me).

    Today’s entry is from a Jan. 27 Associated Press feature by Glen Johnson:

    Obama analyzed and integrated Einstein’s theory of relativity, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, as well as the concept of curved space as an alternative to gravity, for a [Harvard] Law Review article that [Prof. Laurence] Tribe wrote titled, “The Curvature of Constitutional Space.”

  16. Hell, BO, when I was in Pakistan, I sailed down the Indus River and rode a camel on the beach. I even shared a beer with some of the locals- a foreign beer. I was afraid to ask them if they wanted a ham sandwich. They didn’t tell me whether they were Sunni or Shi’a. Did you go to the Sunni or the Shi’a mosques when you were there? I went to a party where there were some diplomatic types, but I didn’t talk to any local political leaders, either. Can I be your Secretary of State after lisadawn82? Oh, I almost forgot my great grandmother was born in a foreign country– my real great grandmother.

  17. “The Curvature of Constitutional Space” WTF?

    Using terms like these outside of the very narrow and highly specialized field to which they belong is crap. It’s the intellectual equivalent to some guy sticking a pair of socks in his y-fronts.

  18. You go from the airport to the embassy. There’s a group of children who do native dance.

    Am I the only one who thought this was a sexist reference to Hillary’s trips as First Lady?

    By the way, I am totally prepared to be CiC:

    I live in NYC, the capital of the world.
    I have traveled to:
    – England (where I’ve gained an understanding of the legal system), Scotland, Wales and The Republic of Ireland (many times on both business and pleasure);
    – France (many times);
    – Spain;
    – Portugal;
    – Italy (many times);
    – Switzerland;
    – Germany;
    – The Netherlands (twice);
    – Belgium (twice);
    – Monaco;
    – Greece;
    – Turkey;
    – Israel (where I stood on the Lebanese border and posed for a picture with an Israeli soldier while holding an Uzi) and the West Bank;
    – Canada (many times);
    – Mexico (many times);
    – China(twice);
    – Brazil;
    – Costa Rica;
    – The Cayman Islands;
    – The Bahamas (twice);
    – Bermuda;
    – The Dominican Republic;
    – Kitts and Nevis;
    – Barbadoes;
    – Puerto Rico (not a foreign country, but they speak Spanish), from whence my family originates and where I still have relatives (many times).

    I am clearing my calendar from January 20, 2008. I am ready and eager to serve.

  19. Oops, I mean 2009. You see how I am not only read on Day 1, I was ready on Day -366.

  20. Man, all I have is a couple trips to Mexico, one to Costa Rica and three months in Japan – maybe I could quickly jet off to Europe to up my cred.

    I have always wanted to start a budget to rein in my spending, does that count as economic experience? I do pay my bills on time – that has to count for something in regards to the Presidency.

  21. Litigatormom: It is obvious from your lengthy recitation of the countries that you have visited that your “experience” is 10,000 miles wide and an inch deep. Do YOU have family living in Africa? Well? *Do* you?!!
    BTW, I’ve been to St. Thomas for an afternoon and St. Maarten (which counts as 2 countries) for most of one day. Not only that but I’ve sailed in international waters. I see your rum punches and raise you 3 mai-tais.

  22. Off topic:

    Really nice video of Joe Scarborough on Bobby Kennedy and his courage. Really good.

  23. Ohio, I love your vivid imagination:

    Using terms like these outside of the very narrow and highly specialized field to which they belong is crap. It’s the intellectual equivalent to some guy sticking a pair of socks in his y-fronts.

  24. I can’t count the number of times I’ve been to Canada. Sometimes it was just going over to Windsor for lunch or dinner. But once I made to Montreal for whole weekend; being around French speakers has to count for something. Probably half my trips were to Stratford for the plays, so I claim cultural brownie points.

    Oh, plus I know the words to the Canadian national anthem. Does anyone know if dropping the puck afterwards is part of the original lyrics?

  25. litigatormom:

    It’s Barbados. I know this b/c I lived in Port of Spain, Trinidad for four years. I’m going to be president when the chupid man is done.

    I’m thinking of taking up MABlue’s challenge. Any fabulous prizes?

  26. lotigatormon: “I am clearing my calendar from January 20, 2008. I am ready and eager to serve.”

    That’s outrageous! You pretender, you!

    How dare you?

    – I have to add South Africa (that’s for you rd)

    – You forced me to add Denmark, and Belgium

    – Did I say “I was against this war from the start”?

    I know you cancel my “blackness” with your “latinaness”, which means I have to go for the jugular:

    WE DON’T ELECT WOMEN TO THE WHITE HOUSE!!!

    Now bow!

    Thank you, I ‘ll send a couple of tickets for you and your family.

    See you January 21st, 2008 at *my* inauguration ball.

  27. These guys who trimmed my trees a couple of months ago have family in Central America and had to travel through Guatemala and several Mexican states to get here. Maybe they should be President. O they’re not con law perfessers. (With emphasis on the CON.) Nevermind.

  28. The more I hear of Obama’s quotes, the more I am floored by the elitism in his words. I GET IT, you’re A MAN OF THE WORLD. INTERNATIONAL, COSMOPOLITAN, EDUCATED, with the mixed-race, African, white AND poor relatives!! YOU ARE THE AMERICAN DREAM, OBAMA. WE HEAR YOU!!!!!!!

    Does that mean you have many types of experiences on which to draw in your life? YES. Does that mean you know how to engage comfortably with many different types (BUT NOT ALL TYPES) of people? QUITE POSSIBLY. Does this make you qualified to be POTUS? NO.

    You know what would? HOLDING MEETINGS OF THE SUBCOMMITTEE YOU CHAIR.

    You know what would? ACTUALLY RUNNING AGAINST OPPONENTS IN CHICAGO (AS OPPOSED TO KNOCKING THEM OFF THE BALLOT, OR ENJOYING RUNNING AGAINST NON-STARTERS LIKE KEYES).

    You know what would? NOT VOTING PRESENT ON THOSE TOUGH POLITICAL CALLS YOU’RE REQUIRED TO MAKE ON BEHALF OF YOUR CONSTITUENTS.

    You know what would? RUNNING ON THE PROGRESSIVE MOMENTUM OF THE MOMENT AND BUILDING A PROGRESSIVE COALITION VS. RELYING ON RIGHT-WING TALKING POINTS AND A POLARIZED ELECTORATE FOR VOTES.

    You know what would? GETTING SOME WORK DONE IN THE SENATE BEFORE CATAPULTING YOURSELF INTO THE RUNNING FOR THE HIGHEST OFFICE IN THE LAND (capitalizing on Clinton fatigue and CDS in the process after having explicitly watched and learned from Hillary & Bill Clinton).

    You know, Obama reminds me of some of my (and my peers’) worst tendencies as an exceptionally highly educated person (BA, MBA, PhD) from elite, private schools (MIT to his Harvard, believe me, I know the world of community organizers who shop at Whole Foods from which he orbits) – to assume my interpretation of the world, even based in part on my own personal experience, is THE accurate/legitimate one, and to exploit my connections with the “real” world as part of that legitimacy project. Insufferable, much?

    Anyone who ever read my blog or knows me knows that I come from a family of low-income urban whites. I talk about my family A LOT, because it’s shaped my personal and professional worldviews and goals. But I am not the one who’s ever been on AFDC (aunts and cousins), I am not the one who cried when my clothes were stolen from a laundromat (my mom), I’m not the one who’s ever had to navigate the government welfare system or worrying about feeding, clothing and sheltering my kids and grandkids. While if I ran for office, I’d certainly talk about how my single mom and divorced dad and extended family – wealthy and not – shaped me AS A PERSON and oriented me towards the kind of work I’d chosen/choose to do, I’d be DISINGENUOUS to say that I should be Secretary of HUD or HHS or F***ing POTUS because I’m related to people who have had to live on TANF and in public housing, and have spent time with them there – that somehow that translates into qualified experience. How arrogant is that? Visiting one’s relatives in Africa, attending school in Indonesia, are all valuable experiences that would bring a newer, more global face to the Presidency, esp. after the last President, BUT IT DOES NOT EQUAL PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS. There are many of us at the elite level at which Obama and I are fortunate to be educated that believe we are entitled to something because we’ve made it into these high status institutions, and that our judgments are somehow superior to others.

    I’m so aggravated, because I’m pretty happy to have such well traveled, worldly types running for President after the parochial, imperialist oligarchy we’ve had for the last 7 years. But both Clinton and Obama have the elite, academic credentials that are still prereqs to even access high status political opportunities, and talking down to those of us w/o the access they’ve had (or even those of us with it) about how they know best is really alienating. This decision of his to run on “judgment “is really high risk, I think, after Bush and especially in a country like the U.S., because he’s doing so little to equate his experiences without all the privilege he’s had.

    Social mobility in the U.S. is highly unequal, stagnant and shifting, but I believe the pattern persists that the strongest indicator of individual upward mobility in this country is the father’s education. Sen. Obama’s parents met at Harvard. He is a legacy student. I wish more people would remember this.

  29. MABlue: “Now bow!”

    Shouldn’t that be: “Now bowl!”?

  30. Obama analyzed and integrated Einstein’s theory of relativity, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, as well as the concept of curved space as an alternative to gravity

    Sure he did — right after reading ‘Tensor Math for Dummies.”

  31. riverdaughter,

    I don’t have family living in Africa, but according to my grandmother her side of the family came to Puerto Rico from the Canary Islands, which are located off the coast of Morocco.

    I should add that my father-in-law is a WW2 veteran who served in the Pacific, fighting on Okinawa and ultimately ending up in Japan. I think that adds significantly to my CiC readiness.

  32. OMG! The stupidity is hair-raising.

    John McCain will rip BHO to shreds in the GE. Please, superD’s, are you paying attention to these ridiculous statements?

  33. This guy’s a joke! He doesn’t want to criticize McCain bc he loves Republicans. All he can do is criticize a girl!

  34. Folks, folks, this is OT, but I’m going to say it again:
    I think she’s going to get the nom. I actually have more than that funny feeling in my gut. And it’s based on the best argument of all: money.

    A comeback story is worth more to the MSM than an ending of her race.

    This story racing through the summer to the convention—keep up revenues. Keep up the arguing. Keep up people glued to blogs and TV.

    I could be wrong. But watch for some mea culpas from the press about double-standards (nobody any of the bigshots, but enough), some Obama slams (not too hard, but still, and she’ll get blamed for it), and maybe a positive Clinton story.

    And if she gets a less than shitty shake in the MSM, she will run with it.

    She is quite remarkable.

    Like I say, I could be wrong. But if you were some TV talking head, which would you rather babble about: staged events of nominees being boring?

    Or Thunderdome?

  35. Let’s email all the major news outlets and superdelegates this article. I’ve already emailed it to five of my friends. It just amazes me how he belittles her REAL experience. I guess you could say John McCain really knows Vietnamese people since he stayed there (unwillingly) for five years. Goodness gracious.

  36. well, I’ve been to Europe, the Bahamas and Canada, which more than qualifies me, but more importantly, I have a globe, a map of the world and an atlas!

    and I was against the war from the start. I can make a video of a speech I may have made back then, or thought about making.

    I know I must have relatives in Ireland. they count, right?

    all I want is VP, honestly. I’ll run with any of you!

  37. I guess he doesn’t know how stupid he sounds..he should read this thread.

  38. litigatormom,

    London is the capital of the world–financially, way more so than Wall Streeet, and culturally… well, they play with cultures; geopolitics.

    My hope is that Hillary may change that, and we can go to sovereign nation states. Perhaps the USA can be the beacon on the hill again after some time.

    To comment on the top post here: It seems Obama will not be president in this election. He’s only being used by “the capital of the world” folks to stop Hillary. Their system has collapsed, it’s long past bankrupt and finally in it’s final throes Said slime mold are desperate, therefore, that no FDR-type solutions be used to put things back together again. If their toy Obama gets the nomination for them, he will be so smeared and tossed to the wolves–opening the way for the same kind of government that followed in corporatist Italy and Wiemar Germany.

  39. This comment could be placed in many threads of many blogs at many sites, but I’m here when it crystalized, so here goes:

    I see the quantity of snide comments as a marker of the deterioration of our culture. We are in deep do-do here people. Most, I think, know that, even if their description would vary from mine.

    One of you people who can write well could find a valuable topic here. Look at this growing phenomenon of people who would call themselves patriots, some significant portion of whom sit for hours making snarky comments on blogs which are essentially focused on getting out of this mess. Considered overall, I think it’s wrong. A sprinkling of snark I have no problem with–daily parades or virtual showers of it, I do.

    People who work their butts off, day in and day out, doing political organizing, and then stop in at a blog and let off steam, especially with real life friends, I can understand, but I suspect those people don’t, overall, make all that many snarky comments on blogs.

    We are better than that, I think, and should take it down a notch, or maybe take a good look at ourselves in this regard.

    If Ben Franklin or Jonathan Swift are reading, I’d like to clarify that you two are not being addressed here. I wish you could help me clear my imperfect thinking on this, but I’m sure there is some truth in it.

  40. Gary: Let us not forget the value of humor in all things governmental and political. The jester got away with a lot in front of the king because he could make the monarch laugh while simultaneously reflect on his faults.
    Snark works in a similar fashion. There are some people who legitimately believe that Obama has the bona fides to be president based on these thin international experiences and at the same time, they think Hillary’s experience as first lady travelling in over 80 countries is insignificant. I’m not sure if that’s because she had *lady* after her title or not but Hillary is most certainly NOT a typical first lady and never has been.
    In such circumstances, it is very important to highlight the ridiculousness of Obama’s claim to foreign policy experience. In truth, it didn’t take much snark to point out the absurdity of his credentials. Any one of us could claim as much or more. We have levelled him. Hillary’s experience can now be studied in context.
    I don’t think a dry analysis of Obama’s claims would be nearly as effective at putting it in context.
    But you are certainly more than welcome to read other blogs that are more formal and reverent. Blogs in the political realm tend to be more satirical and irreverent. This can be just as effective as a formal critique.

  41. Please don’t misunderstand me. I do have a sense of humor. Here’s what I just posted at dKos.
    http://www.dailykos.com/story/2008/4/8/163541/7155/907/492348

    I hope you enjoy it in light of the koss-aks comments that will inevitably follow.

    I meant no offense. And I was talking about *comments,* not the post at the top.

    And I thoroughly agree with the point of the post and think it well written.

    I shall endeavor to make myself better understood, and not to be a nuisance.

  42. Seems like McCain lived abroad for several years, too. You know that sojurn at the Hanoi Hilton? I think that trumps Obama’s Indonesian “experience” even including his yearly dinner at olive Garden.

  43. CUNT – Citizens United Not Timid, – Anti Clinton group… but the story it fits into is much bigger. Not a small group of idiots.

    http://preview.tinyurl.com/64tjeo

  44. Great thread and comments.
    Slightly off topic – Larry Johnson posted a thread called “Be Obama’s European Tour Guide Contest” at NQ – in which you were to state why you were best qualified to be the tour guide. Here was my entry..

    Dear Sen. Obama,
    Like you I am bi-racial, grew up on two languages, spent much of my childhood overseas and my parents practiced two different regligions.
    Also, like you, I have foreign policy experience. As a Little Leaguer, we played against
    the Japanese All Stars. And I’ve also served as an unofficial tour guide on the continent for friends and colleagues.
    (Since you’ve already been to Great Britain, we’ll go there along with Scandinavia,
    the Baltic States, Germany and Eastern Europe the next time around.)

    First stop, Amsterdam. Uh no,not for THAT or THAT, I was thinking the Rembrandt museum.
    Next stop, Brittany. It’s charming, beautiful, the people are lovely and the food is superb.
    Note; Please don’t refer to the English channel as the English channel. I think they call it Le Mer de la France or something like that.
    They had this war with England that was called the Hundred Years War and some of ‘em aren’t over it. I understand completely. I feel the same way about the Anaheim Ducks who knocked the Red Wings out in the Stanley Cup playoffs last year. Also, skip any Lucky Pierre jokes – trust me they don’t fly.
    Also on our itinerary: Alsace-Lorraine, Lugano, Barcelona, Geneva, Vienna, Palermo and Genk, Belgium.
    Why Genk you ask? Great question. That way we can always say “We’ve been Genked!”
    And now that it’s euros, you won’t have to worry about that “pretty money” with pictures of broads
    and musicians on it. I was always suspicious of that kind of currency.
    You will hear jokes about Belgians, I found it best to simply pretend not to understand

    .
    I will also share with you the European idea of Heaven and Hell.
    Heaven
    The Germans are the factory workers.
    The French are the cooks.
    The English are the police.
    The Swiss are the bankers.
    And the Italians are the lovers.
    Hell
    The French are the factory workers.
    The English are the cooks.
    The Italians are the bankers.
    The Germans are the police.
    And the Swiss are the lovers..
    Respectfully,
    Taters

    http://noquarterusa.net/blog/2007/12/21/be-obamas-european-tour-guide-contest/

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