HARVARD SQUARE COMMENTARY

February 11, 2008
From the Editor

John Turner


Being in the little town of Bowling Green, Florida, in a house with no internet hookup and no cable TV, allows me to experience the sense of politics that probably reigns among most Americans. The national political condition is simply not very important here, or at least, is not perceived to be important. No one imagines that the actions of the International Monetary Fund or the World Bank have much influence on their lives. People do note that grocery prices at Wal-Mart are rising, but they don’t perceive that the policies of a presidential administration have anything to do with what they have to pay for a loaf of bread or a jug of milk.

Their intellectual condition is what allows the plutocrats to continue filling their coffers at our expense. Bowling Green is an undeniable lesson that we have a very long way to go before we can approach political equity.

Mitt Romney got tired of spending millions so now the Republicans have only one credible candidate -- that’s assuming Mike Huckabee’s ideas are simply too bizarre for him to win the support of a national party. I’ll admit, I would rather have Huckabee running for the presidency than McCain. I don’t think either of them has much chance of winning, but if something really bizarre happened and another Republican were elected, I hope it would be the one who would kill fewer people. In that respect -- which is by far the main issue where Republicans are concerned -- I think Huckabee is preferable.

I watched the opening rerun of the film series made from Pride and Prejudice last night, the one starring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle. I have to say it’s pretty good. I’m still not entranced with Firth’s Darcy. He strikes me as being far more sullen than the real item -- that is the one that comes off the pages. The genuine Darcy is aloof, but he isn’t sullen. But much of the other casting is excellent, and Ms. Ehle is the best Elizabeth Bennet I’ve ever seen portrayed.

I’ve discovered, for all of you who might be traveling through Wauchula, that the Java Café, though still a fine place for a snack, is not really necessary for internet connection. The town itself has a signal which is easily accessed from the downtown public park. All you have to do is drive down Main Street, steer your car next to the curb, and open your lap top. You’re instantaneously connected to the world. It’s such a good service I don’t know why more towns don’t provide it.

It’s warm here in Florida. The average temperature in the daytime is about 76. The strange thing is, you have to be in this sort of weather for only about two days before it comes to seem perfectly normal.

I hope those of you not quite this far south are keeping warm.


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