all the usage in the world
(I'm not sure election blogging is becoming of the Pangrammaticon, but I need to put these thoughts down somewhere...)Sarah Palin: I'm like John McCain with bling on, I'm complex.Anything?
I'm not quite sure of this comment is what you're hinting at, but it seems the McCain ticket is an effort to coordinate the complex relation between things such as clothes (which are, in this context, above all visual and easy to communicate) and words. Your argument, Thomas, has so far bin that it is all about words, am I right?I noticed that Time's Joe Klein refers to Palin as a 'monumentally dreadful selection of a running mate'. I expect he is thinking primarily in words, not things-and-words.
(Hey! I like this new comment posting system.)I was alluding to Jay-Z's "I'm like Che Guevera with blig on, I'm complex", which is at once clever and idiotic.In one sense, Che was already covered in revolutionary bling, in another his wardrobe is the antithesis of bling. It depends on your sense of humour about spending 100s of thousands of dollars on how you look.There's a great picture here of the state of Obama's shoes, including the interesting detail that he has them resoled.Let's remember that Lenin, whose writing Pound said was halfway between words and action, mended holes in his own shirts.I don't think you can fix Palin's "verbage" problem (another excellent analysis!) with lipstick. Not even 150,000 dollars worth. Not even if you are very complex.
Update: Obama (again like Lenin) "patches" his own suits (video at 1:50).http://i.cdn.turner.com/cnn/.element/js/2.0/video/evp/module.js?loc=int&vid=/video/politics/2008/10/22/moos.dressing.palin.cnn
(Yes, the Lenin connection is for you, Kirby.)
Here's a link that might work:http://edition.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/10/22/campbell.brown.looks/index.html#cnnSTCVideoIt's the second video, "Dressing Palin" (at the 1:50 mark)
We're not disaggreeing on the pivotal importance of words. But reading The New Yorker analysis I can't help thinking that the media (save perhaps blogs, used primarily by educated people) are now first and foremost visual. It just may be the case, even in the age of Obama, that being sceptical of words is a key political competence.
But that's the whole audacity of the Age of Obama. He's "hoping it up" for intellectual word fetishists. At the very least he's proving that eloquence CAN work. If he wins. He'll give smart people hope.I think 8 years of Obama will change the intellectual climate. It will make pop culture more accomodating to smart people. (longer post to follow on how guys like Jon Stewart were a precondition for Obama.)
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I am a grammarian.We will or we will not cry together.Gertrude Stein