No. 301: "Army Men"

No. 301: "Army Men"

No. 301: "Army Men"

Testing your knowledge of what happened this week
Sept. 10 1999 3:30 AM

No. 301: "Army Men"

Fill in the blank as Professor Charles Stevenson of the National War College assesses a new study of military and civilian beliefs. It is "scary," he said, to have "an officer corps so overwhelmingly _____________."

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Send your answer by 5 p.m. ET Sunday to newsquiz@slate.com.

Tuesday's Question (No. 300)--"First Sight":

"I've never seen one of these," President Clinton said Monday, as he used something for the first time. Apparently he enjoyed the experience: "Now that I'm a homeowner, I better get one of these." What was it, and what did he do with it?

"Handgun. Shot at the dark outline of an 'intruder.' "--Norman Oder

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"A crotchless barbecue apron with the words 'Fellate the Chef' printed on it."--Floyd Elliot

"An electric screwdriver. Pass it on to the Puerto Ricans, and maybe they can get their own way out of jail."--Ian O'Henley

"It was his family ... and he loved them ... <sob>..."--Al Cloutier

"Clinton used a floor mop to clean up the dirt he had tracked onto the shiny floor of an elementary school. 'If prison is going to be my next home,' he did not quip, 'I'd better get used to this.' "--Sean Fitzpatrick

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Randy's Wrap-Up

When you live an isolated life at the White House or in a maximum security prison or in Patricia Duff's head, you are bound to be out of touch. That's one argument against letting money buy access to power. Even if he remains uncorrupted, the president will be immersed in the concerns only of the wealthy and will lose all feeling for the lives of everyone else. It is an argument for requiring those who run the subway system to come to work on the train and not in a limo, for public officials to send their kids to public school, and for dentists to work on their own teeth with some kind of complicated mirror system and a stiff shot of bourbon. Some of these arguments make sense.

One measure of attachment to ordinary life: Does the president carry a wallet? I wrote to Jimmy Carter in August 1980, asking this question. Daniel M. Chew, director of presidential correspondence, couldn't--or wouldn't--say.

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"However, you might like to know that the President and his family pay for all of their personal expenses. I would imagine they use checks rather than cash for such purposes.

"Since President Carter's appearance in stores would attract undue attention, merchandise is sometimes brought to the White House by invitation. In an effort to avoid appearing to be partial to selected competitors, no details about brand names or companies are made public."

Gentler times.

Hand-Tooled Answer

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President Clinton used a cordless electric screwdriver to help assemble a computer desk at the Coleman Place Elementary School in Norfolk, Va., to demonstrate--I dunno--cordless electric screwdriving?

It was Labor Day; he was laboring--indeed he wore a hard hat to assemble what was basically IKEA furniture--and he wanted to dramatize his call to Congress to fund the building or upgrading of 6,000 American schools.

The president spent about five minutes at his task, failing to complete it; the desk was finished by volunteers from a construction trade union.

"I'm pro-business, but I'm pro-labor, too. I don't think you can help the economy if you hurt the working people," he said. "But I'll try. I've hurt them pretty bad so far. By continuing Reagan's policies, the richest 1 percent--folks like me--now have as much after-tax income as the bottom 100 million!" he did not add.

Meet theCandidates Extra

Wednesday in his hometown of Crystal City, Mo., Bill Bradley formally opened his campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination by ladling out the traditional fatuous twaddle. Take this test to learn just how well you know his core beliefs and your own capacity for absorbing lackluster clichés.

TheQ

1. Now, above all, is not the time for something. What?

2. What does he "feel an urgency" to do to the weak?

3. For him, there is only one thing deserving of hate. What?

4. What kind of moment are we at in American history?

5. What is happening to the nature of work?

6. At what rate is the world changing?

7. Does the Dow Jones measure a young girl's smile?

8. Does the Dow Jones measure a young boy's first handshake?

9. Does the Dow Jones measure a grandmother's pride?

10. How many kinds of politicians are there?

11. Which kind is Bill Bradley?

TheA

1. Complacency.

2. Strengthen them.

3. Hate itself. (But partial credit if you said the ABC fall lineup.)

4. A special moment. (Not that you could tell from those jerks at ABC.)

5. It's changing. (But don't expect anything better from CBS or NBC.)

6. A dazzling rate. (Unlike a certain form of mass entertainment.)

7. No.

8. No.

9. Yes. Oh, wait, no. (Sorry. I dozed off there for a second.)

10. "There are two kinds of politicians, maybe more." (Maybe a zillion?)

11. The good kind. I think that's No. 1. (And those little upstarts Fox and the WB and UPN: innovation, my ass.)

Clarification

While nothing in the CBS-Viacom merger compels the establishment of a Dan Rather-Angela Lansbury Love Ranch in the high desert near Newhall, Calif., to breed "the next generation of network stars," nothing in the deal expressly forbids it, nor does the above use of quotation marks mean that anyone is actually being quoted.

CommonDenominator

Masturbation with various household appliances.