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      Mary Stewart was a best-selling author for much of the 20th century. I first stumbled across her as a child, reading the “The Hollow Hills” and the “Crystal Cave”, two of her books about Merlin, but most of what she wrote were adventurous romances, often described as “Nancy Drew for adults.” Recently I read her book “Airs Above The Ground”, written in 1965. […]
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Sunday: “too presumptuous”? Nawww, not OUR Barack

The NYTimes is suffering from an upregulation of obviousness brought on by an overdose of Kool-ade. In Going for that Presidential Look but Trying not to Overdo it, The Dauphin of Democracy pronounces:

“In terms of raw politics, in the short-term there’s just as much downside as upside to a trip like this, even when it’s well executed,” Mr. Obama said in an interview as he flew here from Paris on the final leg of his trip. “People at home are worried about gas prices, they’re worried about mortgage foreclosures — and for a week they’re seeing me traipse around the world? It’s easy to paint that as somehow being removed from people’s day-to-day problems.”

What could *possibly* be wrong with taking a tour of the middle east and Europe after a long, grueling semester, er, primary season?  The world got a chance to get just as enamored with him as America has been.  In the meantime, the Republicans have taken the opportunity to gently poke at his campaign, probably to see if it’s tender, and John McCain appeared in a German restaurant while Barack was in Berlin.  Very downhome with a soupçon of the here and now but hardly on anyone’s radar like the throngs of cheering new voters in Berlin.

What could possibly be the downside to all those ecstatic foreigners basking in the glow of his reflected radiance?

In nearly every city on his eight-day trip, Mr. Obama awoke to find a newspaper with his photograph — and often several — on the cover. Yet by the time he reached the end of his travels here on Saturday, a moment of political reality set in with a headline in The Times of London that stated, “Obama’s capital tour loses him ground back home.”

Asked on Saturday about his political fortunes, he said, “I wouldn’t even be surprised if in some polls we saw a little bit of a dip because we’ve been out of the country for a week.”

Ruh-Roh.  Barack is quickly getting out in front of the dip that his pollsters have been detecting in the past eight days.  Oooo, it must be bad.  Maybe it was that endless, tortuous presser he gave in Israel where every sentence started well but meandered from prepositional phrase to prepositional phrase, delicately accented by a plethora of ah’s and um’s that convey a sense of hesitation to the listeners.  The labrynthine sentence structure that seemed to have no beginning, middle or end, let alone a point, left me scratching my head and staunching my bleeding ears.  Oh, sure, it makes his presentation sound shallow and spotty, like he isn’t comfortable with the material or the facts.  But what else can you do “when you can’t dazzle them with brilliance” but “baffle them with bull$%#^”?

Damn!  It’s too bad that Hillary isn’t around to run interference for him and answer the question first so he can answer the question second.  That worked so well in the debates.  But she’s back on Capital Hill, doing that whole work thing.  Work is for LOOOOSERS.  Everyone knows that if you want to get to the top, you gotta learn how to schmooze.  And all working people have had experience with The Schmoozer who rockets to the top by agreeing with everything the powers that be say and taking credit for other people’s work and using friends as connections to be discarded later.  Sure it leaves a trail of resentful and vengeful former friends and colleagues but nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Only, this one time, maybe he should have gone easy on the arrogance abroad and spent time closer to home doing something like this:

Do not be concerned, Conflucians.  Obama is planning a series of town hall meetings for ordinary Americans. You know, the type of voter he has been trying to avoid all year?.  Not the joint town halls that John McCain proposed, but undoubtably a series of thoroughly planned and scripted ones where no detail has been left to chance.

Can we have Hillary back now??? (H/T SophieL)