All at once, everything is going to Hell.
• Mitt Romney loses the election as America confronts Obama’s economic stagnation, managerial incompetence, and class division, and then screams, “Four more years!”
• While apparently consulting no one at all, House Speaker John Boehner seems poised to take a political party that voters no longer trust on spending (Thank you, G. W. Bush, Tom DeLay, Bill Frist, Dennis Hastert, Trent Lott, and Karl Rove, among others) and turn the GOP into a party that voters no longer trust on taxes. Boehner singlehandedly is demolishing what’s left of the GOP’s credibility by offering to raise tax rates on millionaires in exchange for Obama’s vague promise of another bipartisan can-kicking session on expenditure cuts and entitlement reform . . . further on up the road. Boehner’s proposed tax hike would not shrink America’s $16.3 trillion national-debt cancer. Instead, it would fuel fresh spending, including Obama’s $50 billion demand for brand-new “stimulus” outlays. And Boehner now wants to sheath his debt-ceiling weapon until 2014. House Republicans would be better off exhuming Neville Chamberlain to negotiate on their behalf.
• “Hillary Clinton,” “stomach virus,” and “concussion” all now fit accurately in one sentence.
• Just in time for Christmas, a reputedly almighty God must have been on break Friday morning when Adam Lanza massacred 20 Connecticut school kids. These six- and seven-year-olds were far too young to choose wrongly between good and evil — that choice being the way that believers typically explain how a supposedly omnipotent, omniscient, omnibeneficent God allows such atrocities. Atop the ongoing mayhem of Hurricane Sandy, the carnage in Syria, and the burgeoning power of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood, it should be clearer than ever that no one up there watches over us Earthlings. We are on our own.
• If all this is almost too much to bear, one thing has gone right in recent weeks. Now on TV and on YouTube, Bailey’s Irish Cream has fashioned a commercial that harkens back to Busby Berkeley’s lavish musicals of the 1930s and ’40s
Several dozen dancers in phenomenal costumes perform exquisitely to Blondie’s 1981 hit “Rapture.” Their skill and synchronization merit less description here and more observation on TV screens and computer monitors everywhere.
This brilliant advertisement, the best in years, overflows with elegance and beauty at a time when coarseness and ugliness stain the republic and soil the globe.
This Bailey’s commercial offers an escape from the increasingly grim 21st century. Alas, it lasts just 60 seconds. So, please press that replay button again and again.