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    Test anxiety

    Claudia Rosett has a one-question quiz up about the DC reaction to the DPRK’s missile firings yesterday:

    The above phrase — “not helpful” — is from a U.S. State Department Spokesman, describing:

    a) A staffer who forgot to turn off the coffeepot

    b) A staffer who spelled Secretary of State Clinton’s first name with only one “l”

    c) A cloakroom attendant who lost the spokesman’s coat

    d) North Korea’s in-America’s-face test-firing, on July 4th, of yet another round of missiles, following illicit missile tests earlier this week, in May and in April (in that case a long-range rocket), plus a sanctions-busting nuclear test in May

    5 Responses to “Test anxiety”

    1. Sarah says:

      Gah. Just Gah. Given that I’ve been watching A & E’s Pride and Prejudice back to back, I feel at least gratified the answer from our state department is not “This is hardly helpful, Mary.” But I think the feeling is the same.

    2. Sean says:

      Yeah. Of course, it’s worth bearing in mind that this stuff predates the current administration—the Clinton and Bush II cabinents did it, too.

    3. Sarah says:

      Yes. A whole lot of mollycoddling. This is why I couldn’t be in politics. I think they get in the habit of mealy mouthing and can’t break out of it even when it’s desperately needed. Only the outliers and the oddballs manage it, and half of those are — of course — quite mad. The family was watching 1776 the musical and Robert went on about how all the founding fathers were very strange men. I told him they had to be, to come up with such a crazy idea as this life liberty and pursuit of happiness thing, let alone “No kings, no queens, no Lords, no Ladies, we’ll never be fooled again.” But oddities usually have better things to do than politcs.

      Let’s hope we were born too late…

    4. Sean says:

      He plays the violin….

      Yeah. And the people who go into politics trumpeting (and probably sincerely believing) that they’re doing something radically new are almost always affirming the old verities: rule from on high and happiness as defined by the elect.

    5. Rondi says:

      Sarah, I love using the “that’s not helpful” reaction, or a variation thereof. I first picked it up watching the wonderful film, “The Queen.” Tony Blair kept saying it, to increasing hysteria and headlines.

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