Monday, August 24, 2009


Greg Nickels, Mayor of Seattle in on his way out, having come in third in a top-two primary election. A common criticism of the soon-to-be ex-mayor is that he ran Seattle City Hall too much like Chicago City Hall. This tell you one thing about a number of Mayor Nickels' critics - they've never lived in Chicago. Despite being a native of the Windy City myself, I don't consider myself an expert on the ins and outs of the city's political structure, but I do know what passes for a major scandal here in the Emerald City wouldn't even make the papers in Chicago. But I understand the logic. People here who considered Nickels corrupt saw a parallel in Chicago's infamous machine politics. And, not knowing any better, they were unable to tell the two apart.

The criticism that President Obama is a Socialist seems to work from the same principle - that is, that many (if not all) of the people who sincerely believe that the President is a Socialist have clearly never actually met one. Or, despite the rather close proximity of the Castro and Chavez regimes, understand how a socialist leader would operate. Again, not that I'm an expert on Socialism, but I have actually met a few living, breathing, card-carrying Socialists. I haven't spoken to one since the election, but I doubt they're exactly pleased with the current resident of the White House, any more than they were with his predecessor.

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