Saturday, July 12, 2008

Reading Assignment

I remember reading Charles P Pierce's Obama article in Esquire when it first came out—but, it was probably hurriedly, while in the library or something, and I didn't really absorb it.

So, I was doing some design research the other day in the library in Charleston, and I photocopied the article along with lots of other stuff from an array of well-designed magazines. I intended to re-read the piece, so I copied the whole thing...

I read it on the flight back to Michigan today, and I was positively blown away. No, not because I'm an Obama guy. After all, the piece does not extol Obama, nor is it really even about him. It is about us as a country. And it is fucking phenomenal.

Pierce is a great writer—always has been. Sports, politics, humor, whatever. He's one of the best. But this article isn't just the best political article I've read lately, it's probably the best writing I've read in years, period.

I don't know how I missed it the first time. Probably because my Obamania at the time was temporarily suppressing my cynicism...

The piece is simultaneously exhilarating and disillusioning in its brutally honest assessment of the state of politics in America.

The Cynic and Senator Obama.

Too good to excerpt. Read the whole thing.

6 comments:

Toast said...

Pretty good article, but Pierce always strikes me as a little too full of himself, too obviously impressed with his own writing. I mean, on page two, if he repeated "Someone will have to measure the wreckage. Someone will have to walk through the ruins. Someone will have to count the cost." one more time I think I might have upchucked.

Mr Furious said...

Who cares? I'm impressed with his writing...

He's able to weave the most honest and damning critique of our politics and electorate I've read in a long time, if ever, out of some beautifully descriptive passages.

He also comes closest to capturing the mix of disgust and cynicism I have for things and the struggle to want to get past it.

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That's exactly what I was going to say.

Bob "Serious McLiteral" said...

"He also comes closest to capturing the mix of disgust and cynicism I have for things and the struggle to want to get past it."

That is where I am: In the struggle to want to get past it.

I struggle when I wonder if this is just one more moment of hope; where in the end young people won't actually be inspired to vote, where the typical voting trends reappear, where red states stay red and where white voters, vote white.

IF we get past all of that, you also wonder if the governance will be as good as the inspiration

You want to be inspired, but you have been disappointed too many times before.

Smitty said...

You want to be inspired, but you have been disappointed too many times before.

Wow, that applies to so many things in life. The 4th Indiana Jones. The Star Wars "prequels." New, improved products from macro-breweries like Miller.

While I agree with toast that Pierce is a bit impressed with his writing style, I am letting that go in lieu of the fact that this is an article that finds a way to state exactly what I'm feeling better than I ever could on my best day.

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