Last week, Slate inaugurated the Obama Messiah Watch, a periodic inquiry into whether Barack Obama is the son of God. The Obama Messiah Watch will spotlight gratuitously adoring biographical details that appear in newspaper, television, and magazine profiles of the junior U.S. senator from Illinois, best-selling author, Harvard Law Review editor, Men's Vogue cover model, Grammy winner, and "exploratory" presidential candidate. The objective is not to insult Obama, but rather to restore a little rationality to the coverage of his potential candidacy. Indeed, those most awestruck by Obama invite suspicion that they're expressing the same condescension voiced last week by presidential candidate Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., and President Bush when they praised Obama as "articulate." (The noninsulting term is eloquent.) Or they may just be gaga. Or—we can't rule this out—perhaps Obama really is the Word made flesh.
Today's entry is from a Jan. 27 Associated Press feature by Glen Johnson:
Obama analyzed and integrated Einstein's theory of relativity, the Heisenberg uncertainty principle, as well as the concept of curved space as an alternative to gravity, for a [Harvard] Law Review article that [Prof. Laurence] Tribe wrote titled, "The Curvature of Constitutional Space."
By this measure, thousands of reasonably bright high-school students across the United States are destined to become president. (AP's Johnson gets extra credit for redundancy: Einstein's General Theory of Relativity includes the concept of curved space.)
Jan. 29, 2007: "The Obama Messiah Watch"
TODAY IN SLATE
The Irritating Confidante
John Dickerson on Ben Bradlee’s fascinating relationship with John F. Kennedy.
My Father Invented Social Networking at a Girls’ Reform School in the 1930s
Renée Zellweger’s New Face Is Too Real
Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band
Can it be again?
The All The President’s Men Scene That Captured Ben Bradlee
Is It Better to Be a Hero Like Batman?
Or an altruist like Bruce Wayne?
Driving in Circles
The autonomous Google car may never actually happen.