Wednesday, January 21, 2009


Omigod, he's practically naked!


...In the Bush administration, it was a rule: Jackets in the Oval Office -- and now, it seems, one of the first Bush-era regulations to get scrapped in the Obama White House.

Of course, this was Reagan's rule before Bush's; Clinton's White House, by contrast, was known to be casual, to the horror of right-wingers everywhere. Yeah, yeah, yeah, they brought us peace and prosperity, but they did it tieless and in jeans! So it doesn't count!

This, of course, doesn't strike me as casual at all -- Obama looks like real go-getter, and quite spiffy to boot.

But righty blogger Matt Lewis smells danger to the Republic. Here's what he says at AOL's Political Machine blog:

My guess is that he will soon be breaking out a cardigan...

And at Townhall:

Could cardigans be far behind??

You know what that means: "cardigan" = "Jimmy Carter" = "America without a penis."

As a New York Times fashion story put it a couple of years ago:

Just weeks after his inauguration, President Jimmy Carter faced the nation, sitting fireside in a beige wool cardigan, and told the United States to turn down its thermostat. They were words no one wanted to hear.

The cardigan, already synonymous with the numbingly inoffensive style of one Mr. Rogers, completely unraveled, becoming an emblem of President Carter's wet-blanket austerity.

Personally, I don't see how you get from a tie-wearing but jacketless Obama to Carter in a cardigan, but, then, I'm not a Republican. In any case, this is why I'm glad Obama didn't pay attention to Tom DeLay and others when they whined about the costly fancy-dress inaugural parties. If Obama actually had approached Inauguration Day in a spirit of austerity, the same people who criticized the cost would have accused him of creeping Carterism -- accused him, in other words, of sapping our vital essence. And apparently, in the eyes of Republicans, exposing his dress shirt does that, too.

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