The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Does Levar Burton know about this?

Not the sort of thing you normally think about, but interesting. I imagine neither party has much to be proud of in this department, but Fearless Leader has once again demonstrated that no matter how shameful any predecessor might have performed, he can outdo them.

Presidential libraries. When did they start? Why did they become an American equivalent of pharaonic tombs? I'm curious. But if they were ever about largesse and civic-mindedness, these days they sound like a legal form of graft.

And the most ironically named library in history isn't going to be constructed on the cheap. Who's footing the massive bill? Not anyone by the name of Bush, but plenty of people who'd like to receive a favor or two....

Early reports suggest that George W. Bush plans to raise roughly $500 million for his presidential library, which will likely be based at Southern Methodist University in Dallas and possibly include a public-policy institute. According to The New York Daily News, "Bush loyalists have already identified wealthy heiresses, Arab nations, and captains of industry as mega' donors." It's a strange wrinkle in the law: The president can raise half a billion dollars--even while he's still in office--without any obligation to disclose any of it.

It'd be nice if donations were anonymous. Then the place would look the way it ought to--a single-occupant room with a crescent moon cut-out on the door.