Political blogging is, by its nature, slave to the zeitgeist. If it happened more than two hours ago, it’s old news. And if it happened more than 24 hours ago, you’d better have some sage reflections to make the waiting worth the while.
Heedless of this, Brian Moore is getting around to fisking the speeches of John Kennedy. For those not familiar with Kennedy, he was president for roughly a thousand days before his term was tragically cut short by an assassin’s bullet two years before I was born. And I’m not a young man.
Anywho, here’s the speech, as redacted for a commercial:
It’s about the decision to launch the space program and land on the moon. We’ll celebrate the 40th anniversary of the accomplishment of that goal next Monday.
Moore’s considered reaction:
What the hell does “we choose to do this thing, not because they are easy, but because they are hard” mean? It’s just flatly moronic. People choose to do things based on the benefit they estimate to receive minus the cost of doing so. There are tons of hard things we could choose to do — some even harder than going to moon. How about not nearly provoking a nuclear holocaust with Russia? How about not sleeping around with East German spies? How about not becoming addicted to drugs? If only we could’ve achieved these “hard” goals as well!
Don’t even get me started on “ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.” Good thing I can rely on superior historical Americans to retort with: “government of the people, by the people, for the people.” Does anyone even listen to what these people are saying? Or do the billowing flags and resonant marches just summon up that deep lizard part of our brain to blindly prostrate ourselves before Important Men saying Important Things?
More at the link. Suffice it to say, were Kennedy still alive and running for a second term, he would not get Moore’s vote.