In today's Times Rog Cohen explains that he hopes Obama will be guided by a mystically prophetic pig. He wants "magical realism." God, how I hate that phony genre label. So did Borges, and Rushdie, whom Cohen quotes, is no fan either. Rog seems to believe that the "magic" has something to do with optimism, or hope, or alternately, lying about current economic outlooks.
One thing seems certain: The meltdown is going to hang over at least the first 18 months of the Obama presidency. The Treasury is bare. Americans are deluged in debt. Confidence has been Madoffed."The three-syllable universality of a child's lullaby"? Where does Bill Keller find these guys?
That’s the realism. But this 47-year-old man of mixed race, whose very name — O-Ba-Ma — has the three-syllable universality of a child’s lullaby, has always had something of the providential about him, a global figure who looks more like the guy at the local bodega than the guys on dollar bills. That’s the magic.