WordPress does a pretty decent job of giving its users some statistics on page views and how folks found the blog on Google (that is, what they searched for that brought them there), and since mid-2008 I’ve been surprised at how many people stumble onto the blog by searching for “Warren Buffett.” As small as it is, my tiny blog post from April of that year titled “Apparently, life on Mars knows Warren Buffett’s phone number” seems to pop up on people’s search results from time to time.
I was reminded of this today when I read the online WSJ’s “Notables & Quotables” section which contained an excerpt of an interview CNBC’s Becky Quick conducted with the famous investor that discussed the Massachusetts election and Buffett’s views about why America seems so frustrated with Congress and the Obama Administration. It included this exchange:
QUICK: You talk a little bit about what has happened with the economy. Is there anything different the Administration could of, or should have, done?
BUFFETT: It’s, you know, probably if you’re going to spend close to 800 billion on a stimulus bill, I think it could have been done in a way that had more immediate impact. But, you know, what we saw with the stimulus bill, was it 8,000 earmarks or something? I mean, that is the sort of thing that is depressing to the American public. It’s depressing to me. That is old-style Washington squared.
That last line made me smile: “old-style Washington squared.” Not that I like “old-style Washington” — hardly! Rather, the use of the mathy “squared” as an intensifier is always a plus as far as I’m concerned. (Or should I say it’s an exponent?)
Then there’s the fact that this seems to be an honest admission from someone who made quite a stir when he expressed support for then-Senator Obama during the election. For a former supporter who, to some extent, stuck his neck out to do so to be depressed about the choices and behavior of the one he supported should say something.
Regardless, the hope many held that Washington would somehow be different after this election is hopefully now exposed as the illusion it was. (Not that I think it would have changed under a President McCain, either. Politics is politics.) The only way it has changed is in its degree of intensity.
“Old-style Washington squared.” Yep — seems to sum it up nicely to me.
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[Leadership — and the crisis of leadership we are currently experiencing (and have for many years) — is not an infrequent topic on this blog. You can see several different posts on the topic by searching the blog for the word “leadership.” (It’s a long list and some posts may not be relevant. A shorter list that misses some but guarantees more relevancy is this one.) Even better, however, you can also search the Tomorrow’s World website for the the word “leadership.” Good stuff out there!]