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"Indeed, the rage of theorists to make constitutions a vehicle for the conveyance of their own crude, and visionary aphorisms of government, requires to be guarded against with the most unceasing vigilance."
     -- Joseph Story
     Commentaries on the Constitution of the United States
     Book III, § 1857.
 

Monday, January 27, 2003

I note Peggy Noonan on OpinionJournal and Andrew Sullivan on the Daily Dish, both of them dispensing advice to the President about just what he ought to say during the State of the Union address for the maximum impact. I've seen other advice columns out there, chock-full of helpful hints for the State of the Union address, and I'm sure there are plenty of others as well, but I haven't been keeping track of them, so these two will have to stand in for them all.

It's more or less a commonplace among the blogs I read just how thoroughly the President snookers his adversaries: the "let them blather, then jerk the rug out from under them" strategy that has so many admirers. What I don't see mentioned much is how thoroughly the President snookers his supporters as well. Coming up to a set occasion, we get lots of, "Mr. President, you should do this," and then, when the President ignores all this unsolicited advice and deals the brilliant stroke no one on either side saw coming, "Ooooh, that was even better!" Still, though, the advice keeps coming.

-- posted by Clayton 1/27/2003 07:46:00 PM


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