Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Is this all they've got?

The Wall Street Journal editorial page -- demonstrating again the gulf with the FT page -- gives conservative novelist Mark Helprin space to run through a version of Mitt Romney's critique of Barack Obama: that Obama wants to make the USA like Europe. They must think it has some mileage, but Helprin is forced into some bizarre assertions and attempts at "humour" to make it work. It's all so painful that we can only handle two excerpts:

As a museum of culture, it has few competitors. Europeans make better movies; their cuisine is better (except in Eastern Europe, Central Europe, Scandinavia, England, Ireland, the Low Countries, Germany and Switzerland); and they do a better job of suppressing modern architecture, for which they are to be commended.

Note: through this phrasing, he appears to be claiming that Scottish and Welsh cuisine is excellent, while Belgian cuisine is terrible. Also, regarding the architecture remark, has he left the historical core of any of the European cities that he's visited?

No European air force except Russia's is superior to Saudi Arabia's.

So if it comes to a mano-a-mano duel in the skies between France and Saudi Arabia, he's taking Saudi Arabia? Good luck with that.

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