Kicking the Can

by Jay Nordlinger

In Impromptus today, I treat the Hagel confirmation as inevitable. A politico writes me, “Not so fast. I’m not sure this is a done deal.” That’s good news. Then again, who would Obama’s next nominee be? What’s important is that Obama is president: and that his cabinet officers, of course, will reflect his views. The American people made this happen on November 6 (and four years before that).

Let me acknowledge something, though: I think Leon Panetta has been perhaps Obama’s best cabinet member. That includes Republicans. (Memo to itchy fingers: We’re grading on a curve here.)

There’s a pretty wide variety in my column today, but most of the mail so far is about basketball: I have an item on Jalen Rose, one of my guys from way back. (It’s funny, but thinking about the Fab Fab, whose years were 1991 to 1993, is a little like thinking about the Peloponnesian War.) I have an e-mail on the economy, however, which I think you’ll like:

“The can grows larger and heavier. You can’t kick it as far down the road as last time.” That seems a little pat and simplistic: like something you’d needlepoint and put on the wall, or a pillow. But, you know? I buy it.