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And I quote:

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"This has been the case for a couple decades now, but everything about the inaugural festivities reeks of empire and royalty. It's pure Versailles—so gaudy and overwrought. It's particularly gross when the country is suffering so much financially. But that's precisely when people love their monarchs and royal families—it gives them a fantastical escape.

"But the police state created in DC, and the marching and dancing troupes that parade before the waving Leader, and the ecstasy over his presence, are really unhealthy. The one exception was the 2008 inauguration—electing the first black president was something really worth celebrating given the country's history with race—but everything else is wretched. I had to ignore it.

"Political leaders really aren't meant to be revered. It's unhealthy and dangerous." — Glenn Greenwald

Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
anita_margarita
Jan. 25th, 2013 06:07 am (UTC)
Methinks he doth protest too much. Versailles? If that were the case ordinary people would not be allowed in or to participate. I don't see it as gross at all, and I don't see it as taking one spoonful of food from the mouth of a hungry child.

Because the country is in a recession, we should all eat gruel and wear hairshirts - like that would make it better, somehow? This isn't a job where one person hands over the office keys to the new guy as he walks out. Unhealthy? Greenwald is obsessing.
patrick_vecchio
Jan. 25th, 2013 08:43 pm (UTC)
The inauguration is increasingly a day of overstuffed pomp and wretched excess, and at least half of what the president said will wind up being (if you'll forgive me for trotting this phrase out) full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

And in the interest of full disclosure: I voted for him.
anita_margarita
Jan. 25th, 2013 08:56 pm (UTC)
Overstuffed pomp and wretched excess? No. The Olympic Opening Ceremony might be, but an inauguration ceremony lasting about 1 hour? Nope. I just don't see that. Signifying nothing? It's a ritual, and some kind of ritual is vitally important in the lives of just about everyone in the world. Some rituals are grander than others, but they all have their place to mark both constants and change.

The president's speech had the effect of making the Tea Party's heads explode, and that alone was worth it.
patrick_vecchio
Jan. 25th, 2013 09:34 pm (UTC)
The Olympics are in a different galaxy of pomp, but we all know it, and we know the Games are nothing more than jingoism disguised as sports—at least as they are covered by the U.S. media. I can't sit here and name a single medal winner. That's how much impact the Olympics have.

When I say "signifying nothing," it's because I believe Obama talks a much better game than he plays. I thought his inaugural address had much more fire to it than his typical public remarks. When he's on his game, he's an inspiring speaker. Despite his powers of speech-making, though, I'm not optimistic about the prospects of our looking back in four years and seeing he delivered on the potential and promise of his inaugural address.

sahlah
Jan. 25th, 2013 02:04 pm (UTC)
He misses the point entirely - we aren't celebrating the politician, we celebrate the process.

Edited at 2013-01-25 02:04 pm (UTC)
patrick_vecchio
Jan. 25th, 2013 08:43 pm (UTC)
Whoops! I must have missed the Electoral College Marching Band.
sahlah
Jan. 26th, 2013 12:43 am (UTC)
Victim of sequestration funding. They didn't sell enough doughnuts for all that airfare. :)
patrick_vecchio
Jan. 26th, 2013 01:20 am (UTC)
I think that every Thanksgiving, the president should pardon a couple of doughnuts.
(Anonymous)
Jan. 25th, 2013 05:59 pm (UTC)
And from what I read the celebrations this year were scaled back considerably, with cash bars, and pretzels served. So not the usual drain.
patrick_vecchio
Jan. 25th, 2013 08:44 pm (UTC)
What were there, ten inaugural balls? The folks at those weren't eating pretzels.
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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