Everything Old Is New Again

Kalinin had a distinguished goatee, and, more important, was an organ grinder of secretary praise. In Kalinin‘s estimation, Stalin was “our best friend, our best teacher, the pathfinder of the ages, the genius of science, brighter than the sun, the greatest military strategist of all time.” Stalin tried to get Kalinin to please stop, no more, but he wouldn’t.

Martin Cruz Smith, on Stalin’s vice president, Mikhail Kalinin

Over nearly three minutes, Pence offered plaudit after plaudit after plaudit, praising Trump’s vision, his words, his strategy. By the end, Pence offered 14 separate commendations for Trump in less than three minutes—math that works out to one every 12.5 seconds. And each bit of praise was addressed directly to Trump, who was seated directly across the table.

Here’s the full list:

  1. “Thank you for seeing, through the course of this year, an agenda that truly is restoring this country.”
  2. “You described it very well, Mr. President.”
  3. “You’ve restored American credibility on the world stage.”
  4. “You’ve signed more bills rolling back federal red tape than any president in American history.”
  5. “You’ve unleashed American energy.”
  6. “You’ve spurred an optimism in this country that’s setting records.”
  7. “You promised the American people in that campaign a year ago that you would deliver historic tax cuts, and it would be a ‘middle-class miracle.’ And in just a short period of time, that promise will be fulfilled.”
  8. “I’m deeply humbled, as your vice president, to be able to be here.”
  9. “Because of your leadership, Mr. President, and because of the strong support of the leadership in the Congress of the United States, you’re delivering on that middle-class miracle.”
  10. “You’ve actually got the Congress to do, as you said, what they couldn’t do with [the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska] for 40 years.”
  11. “You got the Congress to do, with tax cuts for working families and American businesses, what they haven’t been able to do for 31 years.”
  12. “And you got Congress to do what they couldn’t do for seven years, in repealing the individual mandate in Obamacare.”
  13. “Mostly, Mr. President, I’ll end where I began and just tell you, I want to thank you, Mr. President. I want to thank you for speaking on behalf of and fighting every day for the forgotten men and women of America.”
  14. “Because of your determination, because of your leadership, the forgotten men and women of America are forgotten no more. And we are making America great again.”

Aaron Blake, on Mongo’s vice president, Mommy

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When I Worked

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