Quotations on a variety of topics currently in the news . . .
Barack Obama, discussing the many Clinton-era alumni he is selecting for his administration of "change": "Understand where the vision for change comes from first and foremost. It comes from me. That's my job . . . to provide a vision in terms of where we are going and to make sure that my team is implementing it."
Emory University law and economics professor Paul Rubin, formerly a member of the Reagan administration and an unpaid adviser to the McCain presidential campaign: "Today, the U.S. is in better shape than in 1932. But it faces similar circumstances. The stock market has been in a tailspin, credit markets have locked up, and (Obama ran) on expanding the role of government, laying the blame for the economic turmoil on the current occupant of the White House and his party's economic policies. Barack Obama is one of the most liberal members of the Senate. His reaction to the financial crisis is to blame deregulation. . . . (With the heavy Democratic majority in the Senate, he will have) more power than any president has had in decades to push a liberal agenda. And given the opportunity, Mr. Obama will likely radically increase government interference in the economy."
The late novelist Michael Crichton -- author of "Jurassic Park" and "The Andromeda Strain" -- on global warming, in a 2005 National Press Club speech: "Our approach to global warming exemplifies everything that is wrong with our approach to the environment. We are basing our decisions on speculation, not evidence."
Brookings Institution fellows Robert Crandall and Clifford Winston, on the U.S. auto industry: "The most constructive role the government can play at this point is to provide a short-term infusion of capital with strict repayment rules that will essentially require the auto makers to sell off their assets to other, successful companies. Why is such a dramatic step necessary? For the unavoidable reality that the fundamental problem the auto makers face is not their pension, health-care, or other legacy costs. It is that they are not making cars and trucks that enough Americans want to buy. And this has been true to some degree since the first energy shock hit the U.S. in the early 1970s."
Iran's Mahmoud Ahmadinejad -- on war with the West (2005): "Is it possible for us to witness a world without America and Zionism? You had best know that this slogan and this goal are attainable, and surely they can be achieved." (And 2008): "The big powers are going down."
Ross Mackenzie lives with his wife and Labrador retriever in the woods west of Richmond, Virginia. They have two grown sons, both Naval officers.
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