Good Luck, Sarah and Family

I’m surprised, as I’m sure everyone is, by Sarah Palin’s decision to resign as Governor of Alaska.  It seems as though she made her decision for family-type reasons, and if so I hope people will respect that.  It reminds me of when Kish and I had decided to send the boys to Columbus Academy rather than a neighborhood school.  Some people tried to talk us out of the decision, and my reaction was:  “It’s none of your business.”  Decisions about which school would work best for their kids is a personal decision exclusively reserved to parents.  Sarah Palin’s decision about what is best for her family is her decision, and not something that others really should question or second-guess.

It would be sad if Governor Palin’s decision were motivated in any material way by the harsh treatment she has, at times, received from the media.  Politicians must be thick-skinned, but no politicians should be required to endure mean-spirited comments about that politician’s kids, marriage, and so forth.  In a sense, this is the flip side of the Governor Sanford situation.  We want him to shut up about his affair; we are entitled to his professional execution of his job, and don’t care to hear his comments about his emotional issues.  With Governor Palin, she seemed perfectly willing to be judged on her gubernatorial record, but  some people in the media seemed unwilling to leave her personal life alone.  By stepping away from the limelight, she can better shield her personal life from that kind of withering scrutiny and comment.

I suspect we have not heard the last from Sarah Palin.

The Anacreontic Song

The Star-Spangled Banner is our theme as we approach the Fourth.  

It is American lore that The Star-Spangled Banner is a poem composed by Francis Scott Key (a lawyer, incidentally) that is set to the tune of what was a popular British drinking song.   The “popular British drinking song” is The Anacreontic Song, the lyrics of which are found here.   A whimsical YouTube version of the song is below:

Hard to imagine you could do justice to that tune and remember the lyrics after quaffing a few pints at the neighborhood pub!  In any case, we thank our British friends for allowing us to borrow the melody.

Stimu-later

The latest jobless statistics, and the gloomy prospects for unemployment for the rest of the year, suggest that the “stimulus” package failed of its principal purpose — to provide an immediate boost to the economy so that, overall, jobs would not be lost. The concern now should be whether the stimulus legislation will have the opposite effect over the long term.  A significant part of the legislation consists of spending to occur over the next few years, and the question is whether that longer-term governmental spending, all of which requires more borrowing and more debt, will act as an impediment to a speedy and full recovery.