Peggy Noonan has some thoughts about the size of Barack Obama's ... um, signature:
... I have on the wall of my office something that means a lot to me, a framed presidential commission from 1984 that named me a special assistant to President Reagan....Yes, that's right: a big signature equals big government! And both of these things are awful! Having a small, modest signature is way more American!
Underneath my Reagan commission is another, same size, almost identical, signed in 2011 by President Obama....
The two commissioning documents ... are different in one big way. On the Reagan document, the president's signature is small, clear, modest -- rising about half an inch at its highest point....
The Obama commission is startling in that the president's signature is so big, more than an inch and a half high at the B, which is an inch and a half wide. Reagan's first and last names could fit in the B alone. Obama's signature is dramatic, even theatrical: The O is cut almost exactly in two by the elongated b of Obama. Even in his signature he starkly divides....
To me it's a metaphor for the growth in the power and size of the federal government the past quarter century and, frankly, the more flamboyant egos -- or, a nicer way to say it would be the bigger personalities -- that populate it today.
So take that, John Hancock, you commie! Elbridge Gerry was a much better American than you!
This always makes me think of what's happened with American flag lapel pins. I have one from Reagan days on my desk. It's a little bitty thing, half an inch wide. Now American flag lapel pins are more than twice that size, as big as a man’s thumb.You wonder why, Peggy? I'll tell you why: it's because your ideological soul mates incessantly play games of "Who's more patriotic?" with their enemies. The flag pins wouldn't be quite so flamboyant if your wingnut pals would back the hell off once in a while.
I wonder why. The men aren't bigger, or the suits.