UTTERLY RANDOM IN BERLIN

it's whatever strikes my fancy, innit?
He had been a hapless vice-president; now he had to both personify and project the transition from bereavement to business as usual. In the midst of the cold war, with Vietnam brewing, the Kennedy administration had been trying to get civil rights legislation and tax cuts through Congress. There was plenty of business to attend to. Johnson’s advisers were keen that he introduced himself to the nation as a president who could get things done. For that reason, writes Caro, they implored him not to push for civil rights in this first speech, since it had no chance of passing. “The presidency has only a certain amount of coinage to expend, and you oughtn’t to expend it on this,” said “one of the wise, practical people around the table”. Johnson, who sat in silence at the table as his aides debated, interjected: “Well, what the hell’s the presidency for.”

What the hell is Barack Obama’s presidency for? | Gary Younge | Comment is free | The Guardian

"First," he told Congress a few days later, "no memorial oration or eulogy could more eloquently honour President Kennedy’s memory than the earliest possible passage of the civil rights bill for which he fought so long." Over the next five years he would go on to sign the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act, launch the war on poverty and introduce Medicaid (medical assistance for low-income families) and Medicare (for seniors). That’s what his presidency was for.

Barack Obama has now been in power for longer than Johnson was, and the question remains: “What the hell’s his presidency for?” His second term has been characterised by a profound sense of drift in principle and policy. While posing as the ally of the immigrant he is deporting people at a faster clip than any of his predecessors; while claiming to be a supporter of labour he’s championing trade deals that will undercut American jobs and wages. In December, even as he pursued one whistleblower, Edward Snowden and kept another, Chelsea Manning, incarcerated, he told the crowd at Nelson Mandela’s funeral: “There are too many leaders who claim solidarity with Madiba’s struggle for freedom, but do not tolerate dissent from their own people.

If there was a plot, he’s lost it. If there was a point, few can remember it. If he had a big idea, he shrank it. If there’s a moral compass powerful enough to guide such contradictions to more consistent waters, it is in urgent need of being reset.

There have been, of course, achievements—as Gary Younge goes on to name—but the point of his piece remains …

newyorker:

As of tomorrow, Clarence Thomas will not have spoken in the Supreme Court for eight years. Jeffrey Toobin explains why Thomas’s “behavior on the bench has gone from curious to bizarre to downright embarrassing”: http://nyr.kr/1jUZRtF
Photograph by Sidney Davis/Tribune Review/AP.

To be honest, I don’t see a problem with him keeping his mouth shut … if only more conservatives would do the same.

newyorker:

As of tomorrow, Clarence Thomas will not have spoken in the Supreme Court for eight years. Jeffrey Toobin explains why Thomas’s “behavior on the bench has gone from curious to bizarre to downright embarrassing”: http://nyr.kr/1jUZRtF

Photograph by Sidney Davis/Tribune Review/AP.

To be honest, I don’t see a problem with him keeping his mouth shut … if only more conservatives would do the same.

(Source: newyorker.com)

amdella:

FASHION FRIDAY IN BERLIN 
…hhmm what Im gone wear tonite ? #FOA #Berlin #blackbeauty

It won’t matter, you’ll still be gorgeous!

amdella:

FASHION FRIDAY IN BERLIN
…hhmm what Im gone wear tonite ? #FOA #Berlin #blackbeauty

It won’t matter, you’ll still be gorgeous!