Monday, August 26, 2013

Playing at the positives

Cute Finnish girl Pilar O'Flaherty and her equally adorable mom Baroness Olga von Augenstein from Ghana.
Watched by Mr. Pierce, so I don't have to:
DAVID BROOKS: Well, let me play at the positives, because I want to ask you something Congressman Labrador just said. We are still an amazingly talented country. You go to schools, you've got kids named Juan Hernandez Goldberg floating around there, mixtures of all these different ethnicities. We're really tolerant compared to other countries. And we still have these fantastic stories. I just had lunch with a woman named Katie who was from a not great family, she's homeless, spends part her time homeless, decides she's going to enlist in the navy, the enlistment officer says, "No, you shouldn't enlist in the navy, you should go to Annapolis." She graduates this year number one academically in her class, she gets a Rhodes Scholarship, she runs track, she's a Marine. You run across these stories all the time and they still are endemic to the way we live.
Jan van Eyck, Ghent Altarpiece:
 Angel musicians with positive organ, 15th
century. Wikimedia Commons.
Wow! Like my zayde used to say, only in America could a Jew be mayor of Dublin! Or could you become a track-star Marine at Annapolis (this turns out to be real—I had no idea the Marines didn't have their own academy—but why don't they, are they too working class?).

Only in America could The New York Times find an Italian named Jonathan Wajskol, a Brazilian named Carla Greeb, a Colombian called Alain de Beaufort, and a German called Xiaoning Wang who all decline to become US citizens because permanent residency is enough (though a couple of subjects relented so they could vote for Obama, sorry Brooksy).

It's because we're so tolerant, of the not-great and the part-time homeless. And that kind of thing is endemic, if not quite epidemic yet. What did Congressman Labrador just say? I have a banana in my ear.

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