Thursday Open Thread | The Movies of John Hughes

Today, we continue to remember the films of the late John Hughes.

Today – Some Kind of Wonderful
Plane, Trains and Automobiles

Some Kind of Wonderful is a 1987 American romance film starring Eric Stoltz, Mary Stuart Masterson, and Lea Thompson. It was one of the many successful teen dramas written by John Hughes in the 1980s, although this one was directed by Howard Deutch.



The film is set against the strict social hierarchy of an American public high school. The tomboyish Watts (Mary Stuart Masterson) has always considered working class misfit Keith Nelson (Eric Stoltz) her best friend. But when Keith asks out the most popular girl in school, Amanda Jones (Lea Thompson), Watts realizes she feels something much deeper for him. Meanwhile, Hardy Jenns (Craig Sheffer), Amanda’s Corvette-driving ex-boyfriend from the rich section of town, plans to cause trouble for Keith; although he has no real feelings for Amanda, he feels humiliated at losing her to a social inferior. However, Keith cunningly manages things to his own and Amanda’s advantage and gives Hardy his well-deserved comeuppance. In the end, Amanda realizes that she needs time alone and Keith clues into Watts’s feelings for him. Realizing that he loves her too, he gives her the diamond earrings he had originally bought as a present for Amanda.


Planes, Trains and Automobiles is a 1987 American comedy film written, produced and directed by John Hughes. The film stars Steve Martin as Neal Page, a high-strung marketing executive, who meets Del Griffith, played by John Candy, an eternally optimistic, overly talkative, and clumsy shower curtain ring salesman who seems to live in a world governed by a different set of rules. They share a three-day odyssey of misadventures trying to get Neal home to Chicago from New York City in time for Thanksgiving dinner with his family.

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31 Responses to Thursday Open Thread | The Movies of John Hughes

  1. rikyrah says:

    GOP senators fear a debate on gun legislation

    By Steve Benen
    Thu Mar 28, 2013 2:13 PM EDT

    When President Obama delivered his State of the Union address last month, he urged lawmakers to simply give a bill a fair hearing. Referencing parents of Newtown victims, the president said, “They deserve a vote. Gabby Giffords deserves a vote. The families of Newtown deserve a vote. The families of Aurora deserve a vote. The families of Oak Creek and Tucson and Blacksburg, and the countless other communities ripped open by gun violence — they deserve a simple vote.”

    And right now, Senate Republicans’ top goal on gun legislation seems to be making sure that doesn’t happen.

    Sen. Mike Lee (R) of Utah argued today that he intends to block a floor debate on gun legislation in order to ensure a “full debate.” I don’t mean to be picky, but that’s gibberish — one does not guarantee a debate by blocking a debate.

    Nevertheless, Lee’s efforts are drawing more support from the far-right. We talked the other day about a trio of conservative Republican senators — Lee, Rand Paul, and Ted Cruz — who’ve vowed to filibuster any legislation that changes any gun laws in any way. Their little group is apparently growing.

    Sen. Marco Rubio R-Fla. will reportedly sign the letter from Sens. Mike Lee R-Utah, Rand Paul R-Ky., and Ted Cruz R-Texas to require 60 votes to bring the Senate gun control bill to the Senate floor.

    “Sens Rubio and Inhofe have signed the Lee-Paul-Cruz letter stating they will object to bringing new gun legislation to the floor,” announced Lee’s press secretary on Twitter earlier this afternoon.

    Soon after, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) followed suit.

    Just so we’re clear, what these five senators are saying is they intend to filibuster the motion to proceed on any gun bill. In other words, they’re not only going to try to prevent legislation from passing, they also intend to block any bill related to gun violence from even being debated on the Senate floor.

  2. rikyrah says:

    Top donors threaten Dems: Do the right thing on guns, or no more money

    Posted by Greg Sargent on March 28, 2013 at 12:54 pm

    With red state Democratic Senators remaining skittish about embracing Obama’s gun proposals, at least two top Democratic donors are stepping forward and vowing to withhold any and all future financial contributions from any Democrats who don’t support the centerpiece of Obama’s plan: Expanded background checks.

    Kenneth Lerer, a New York businessman who is chairman of, and David Bohnett, a technology entrepreneur and philanthopist based in Los Angeles, are both major financial supporters of Democratic candidates, having each given scores of large contributions over the years. They are both key players in the political fundraising world and wield influence among other donors and fundraisers.

    Neither will give another dime to any Senate Democrat who does not support expanded background checks, I’m told — and both will suggest to other donors that they do the same. The move underscores the rising importance of gun control as an issue in Democratic politics — and the rising frustration in some Democratic circles with elected officials who continue to regard gun politics as a third rail, at a moment that presents a real opportunity to achieve serious reform, with a policy that enjoys near universal public support.

    “At some point you have to draw a line in the sand — for me that time is now,” Lerer told me in an interview. “If candidates or officeholders can’t support something like comprehensive and enforceable background checks, then I wouldn’t think of giving them any money going forward.”

  3. rikyrah says:

    Solar power coming on strong
    By Steve Benen
    Thu Mar 28, 2013 11:00 AM EDT

    When Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) unveiled his Republican House Budget plan a few weeks ago, he specifically criticized two U.S. solar projects as examples of “ill-fated ventures” that received federal loan guarantees from the Obama administration.

    Even for Ryan, it was an odd thing to complain about. The two projects the congressman called out — Solar Reserve’s solar tower in Nevada and Sempra Energy’s Mesquite Solar complex in Arizona — are both doing quite well. Solar Reserve chief executive Kevin B. Smith, who wrote a letter to Ryan to explain why his business is an American “success story,” told the Washington Post he has “no idea” why the Budget Committee chairman made the charge.

    Asked why Ryan calls the businesses “ill-fated ventures,” the congressman’s spokesperson dodged the question and changed the subject.

    There is, of course, a larger point to this: not only are the companies Ryan doesn’t like succeeding, but the entire solar industry is starting to boom. Bloomberg News reports that, as of this year, solar power “will be the second-biggest source of generating capacity added to the U.S. electric grid.”

  4. rikyrah says:

    Are Prenups Pernicious? Ctd

    Mar 28 2013 @ 9:30am

    A reader writes:

    You will probably get a flood of emails on this issue. I speak from experience on this. In my first marriage I had no prenup. It was a brief marriage of a couple of years between two naive fools with almost no money. Both my wife and I had a combined income at the time (early ’90s) of about $25k. But in the divorce judgment (in a “no-fault” divorce state) I got creamed, forced to cough up $500/month in alimony to a working woman with more education that I had, for no discernible reason other than the fact that I was a man. I could barely pay my rent and eat for a period of time, until she married another guy.

    In my current marriage I insisted on a prenup. People were perplexed because my current wife earns far more money than I do. Why would I need protection when she has more than I? They also presumed that prenup’s are for the very wealthy – millionaires who don’t want to lose half the fortunes they earned before getting married. But I always make a couple of points to the naysayers:

    1) Never presume a divorce judge is going to be fair or rational – as was made clearly evident in my divorce. 2) When you enter divorce proceeding without a prenup, you risk all of your future earnings. That means a percentage (or fixed amount) of your future income could be claimed by someone else for the rest of your life. This is where the assumption that prenups are for “rich people” falls apart. If a movie star earning millions per year has to give up half of that to an ex-spouse, he still has millions left over with which to live his life and save for retirement. But if someone in poverty level income brackets gets shafted and forced to pay out a large percentage of his income to an ex-spouse, it could be the tipping point to starvation or homelessness.

    Prenups should not only be encouraged for younger and low-income betrothed; they should be required by law.

  5. rikyrah says:

    How The Democrats Have Evolved

    Mar 28 2013 @ 11:56am

    In the video below various Democrats rail against marriage equality. Given her recent change of heart, Hillary Clinton’s 2004 speech is particularly jarring – but not surprising – to watch:

    Weigel comments:

    The new Democratic advocates for SSM fall into two camps. The first consists of people who always liked the idea of this but worried about losing national elections. In his memoir, Democratic consultant Bob Shrum remembers John Kerry fretting that the Massachusetts Supreme Court had forced Democrats to talk about gay marriage before they were ready to. “Why couldn’t they just wait a year?” he asked Shrum, mournfully. The second camp consists of people who really do oppose the idea of gay people getting married. Republicans argued that this second camp was tiny, and that liberals were hiding behind it. They were right

    I’m not so sure. But Kerry’s position was that of most of the Democratic pols and they were backed up through the 1990s by the Human Rights Campaign, who wanted nothing more than to kill this issue they deemed premature (while their number one goal back then, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, remains unaccomplished). In some ways, I find the opportunism of the Clintons – who did more substantive harm to gay people in eight years than any other administration – more disgusting than the fundamentalist hostility. At least the Christianists were sincere. The Clintons have always been phonies and opportunists and for Bill Clinton to proclaim the sanctity of marriage and sign DOMA while cigar-fucking his intern tells you a lot about him. On no issue were they as shameless as on this one – portraying themselves as civil rights advocates while kicking those of us fighting for equality squarely in the groin.

    The former president still refuses to apologize for what he did to us. He cannot own it. But history will.

  6. Ametia says:

    ADAM LANZA THE- Newtown school gunman had large weapons cache: court papers

    By Mary Ellen Clark
    MERIDEN, Connecticut | Thu Mar 28, 2013 10:42am EDT
    (Reuters) – The man who attacked a Newtown, Connecticut, elementary school in December had a large arsenal of weapons including additional guns, swords and hundreds of rounds of ammunition, according to court papers released on Thursday.

    The pale yellow two-story suburban Colonial house where the gunman, Adam Lanza, lived with his mother was stocked with weapons before he carried out the second-deadliest school shooting on record in the United States, police who searched it after the shooting said.

    Documents released after the expiration of a 90-day sealing order showed that the 20-year-old Lanza, who killed himself at the end of his rampage, had a gun safe in his room and many weapons besides the AR-15-type assault rifle and two handguns used in the December 14 attack.

    Police inspecting the home found an Enfield Albian bolt-action rifle, a Savage Mark II rifle, a revolver, three samurai-style swords with blades measuring up to 28 inches and a 6-foot, 10-inch wood handled pole with a blade on one side and a spear on the opposite side, according to the documents.

  7. rikyrah says:

    Immigration fight coming to a head

    By Steve Benen
    Thu Mar 28, 2013 10:29 AM EDT

    Half of the Senate’s “Gang of Eight” immigration working group toured the U.S.-Mexico border in Arizona yesterday, with Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), John McCain (R-Ariz.), Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), and Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) getting a first-hand look at ongoing enforcement efforts before unveiling their bipartisan, comprehensive plan.

    “The bottom line is we’re very close,” Schumer told reporters, referencing the unfinished legislation. “I’d say we’re 90 percent there.”

    President Obama certainly hopes so. He told Univision yesterday he’s ready to stand behind the bipartisan plan, and he’s counting on it being “before the Senate” in April.

    But while the legislative machinations continue, Brian Beutler flags a story that went largely overlooked the other day. (“CIR” refers to “comprehensive immigration reform.”)

    The short version is that Janet Napolitano sat down with reporters yesterday and effectively rejected one of the GOP’s key CIR demands — that any path to citizenship remain locked until border security is strengthened to meet some measurable, yet to be determined standard.

    She essentially said that creating such a metric is exceedingly complicated — perhaps impossible — and that even if DHS could devise one, it wouldn’t be sound or just to keep 11 million undocumented immigrants in limbo for as long as it might take to limit crossings, reduce crime, improve property values, and so on and so on along the southwest border.

    In other words, if CIR includes a “triggered” path to citizenship, it will almost certainly be an ersatz trigger.

    This is obviously important. We don’t yet know exactly what the bipartisan plan will include — even the so-called “gang” doesn’t know, since their bill isn’t finished — but Napolitano has already said the pound of flesh Republicans are demanding is simply “not the way to go.”

    And that complicates matters a bit.

  8. rikyrah says:

    Memo Reveals NYPD Change To How Stop-And-Frisks Are Documented

    By: Lindsey Christ

    As two police officers took the stand Wednesday in the Manhattan federal trial regarding the NYPD’s stop-and-frisk policy, a newly released memo shows that the city police department has already made major alterations to how the practice is documented.

    The department letter, which is dated March 5 and was sent out to every officer in the city, orders “all uniformed members” to describe in their own words in reports why a person who is stopped and frisked is considered suspicious.

    Critics of the policy, including those who are suing the NYPD in federal court, say that the practice is an institutionalized form of racial profiling, as the majority of New Yorkers who are stopped and frisked are black and Latino males.

    Before the change, police reporting a stop-and-frisk only needed to check a box on a form to describe why the stop was made.

    Now, an officer who checks off a box on a form, such as “furtive moment,” must also describe what he or she observed.

    This particular change to the controversial policy was one of the main reforms plaintiffs’ lawyers were seeking in the federal trial.

    “What the memo literally says is what we’ve been asking for for more than 10 years, which is that the documentation of the stop information needs to be more detailed and more narrative, so that somebody can actually tell by looking at the form whether or not there was reasonable suspicion to make the stop,” said Darius Charney of the Center for Constitutional Rights.

    “It’s part of what the relief is were seeking in this case, and it’s not coincidental,” said Jonathan Moore, an attorney for the plaintiffs.

    Charney said Wednesday that the policy change is an “avoidance tactic” on the NYPD’s part, so that the department would not have to be forced by the court to make changes.

    “The documentation of the stop information needs to be more detailed and more narrative, so that somebody can actually tell by looking at the form whether or not there was reasonable suspicion to make a stop,” Charney said. “That has not been the case, as I said, for about 10 years. We’ve asked dozens of officers and sergeants about this and deposition at a trial. All of them say, ‘Yeah, we don’t have to do that. We can if we want. We don’t have to do it.'”

    The NYPD says the stop and frisk program is an important crime fighting tool and is non-discriminatory, but the vast majority of those stopped each year are black or Hispanic men.

    The issue of why officers stop certain people is at the heart of the case, brought on behalf of four plaintiffs, all black men, who say they were unlawfully stopped and frisked based on their race.

    Lawyers questioned four members of the police department Wednesday. All of them acknowledged inconsistencies, errors and incorrect information in the documentation they’d submitted for stop-and-frisk incidents.

    “These are not minor mistakes,” Charney said. “They are making mistakes about the reason they stopped somebody, and that really goes to the heart of whether or not there is a constitutional violation.”

    One officer acknowledged telling a 13-year-old boy who had been stopped, frisked and handcuffed in March 2010 to “stop crying like a little girl” as they were driving to the station house. His supervisor, who was also there, maintained that they had probable cause to stop the boy, Devin Almonor, because they’d seen him break a law: by jaywalking.

    Meanwhile, opponents of the NYPD’s stop and frisk policy rallied outside of the federal courthouse Wednesday.

    They say practices like stop-and-frisk and surveillance programs amount to everyday harassment.

  9. rikyrah says:

    When a persecution complex goes awry

    By Steve Benen

    Thu Mar 28, 2013 9:38 AM EDT.

    For the social conservatives and the religious right movement, a sense of victimization and a profound persecution complex aren’t just hallmarks of their ideology, it’s been elevated to a near art form. Nobody — nobody — feels sorry for themselves as dramatically and effectively as far-right evangelical activists.

    And with the culture-war winds blowing even stronger in a progressive direction of late, the urge among social conservatives to feel sorry for themselves is apparently uncontrollable. David Brody of radical TV preacher Pat Robertson’s Christian Broadcasting Network offered this self-pitying gem yesterday (via Ed Kilgore):

    In the media’s narrative, you would think that homosexuals are the poor souls who have been banished by society like ugly stepchildren and are now rising to overcome incredible odds.

    But what about today? Let’s be honest: If you are a conservative evangelical who believes in the biblical definition of traditional marriage then guess what? You are one of the following: An outcast, a bigot, narrow-minded, a “hater” or all of the above. It’s a different type of ridicule but it’s still ridicule.

    Erik Erikson embraced a similar sentiment, and added a healthy dash of paranoia: “Within a year or two we will see Christian schools attacked for refusing to admit students whose parents are gay. We will see churches suffer the loss of their tax exempt status for refusing to hold gay weddings. We will see private businesses shut down because they refuse to treat as legitimate that which perverts God’s own established plan.”

    Erikson is basing these wild-eyed predictions on nothing in particular, but he’s nevertheless certain that he and his brethren are the victims of a libertine monster intent on punishing the righteous.

  10. rikyrah says:

    The Morning Plum: Don’t punt, Dems. It’s not too late to defeat the NRA.

    Posted by Greg Sargent on March 28, 2013 at 9:17 am

    There has been a lot of chatter out there to the effect that the “moment may have passed” for real legislative action in the wake of the slaughter of 20 children in Newtown. It’s all nonsense. If no meaningful action takes place — which is certainly a real possibility — don’t blame waning public sentiment for it. Blame the cowardice of our lawmakers.

    Today Obama will hold an event with mothers at the White House to keep up the pressure on members of Congress, and gun reform advocates are holding similar events in multiple states across the country. As the White House and gun reformers well understand, it is critical to keep the need for reform in the headlines.

    The notion that public sentiment is fading is based on a few recent polls that found slippage in support for the general idea of restrictions on guns. But the fact remains: Support for the actual policies being proposed remains strong. Polls by the Post and Quinnipiac taken this month — well over three months after the Newtown shootings — both found that roughly nine in 10 Americans support universal background checks, the centerpiece of Obama’s gun package.

    So the public’s appetite for legislative action to combat gun violence does remain strong. The problem lies with our lawmakers. A number of red state Dem Senators are still refusing to say whether they will back expanded background checks, and Republicans who support that as a general policy goal — such as Tom Coburn — continue to withhold support for the proposal over bogus concerns about record keeping. Dem Senators Joe Donnelly and Kay Hagan are now indicating they’re generally supportive of the idea, which suggests some movement. But this simply isn’t good enough. Where are Kay Hagan, Mark Pryor, Heidi Heitkamp, and Mary Landrieu? The time to declare independence from the NRA is right now. As Michael Tomasky writes:

    These … Democrats, along with their fellow red-staters, need to stand as one and say to the NRA that something that’s so common-sense, that was good enough for Tom Coburn (assuming that turns out to be the case), that is supported by a majority of their voters, is something they are going to support, period. And they’ll win. Democrats need to learn that you’re far better off taking a stand than looking like a water-carrier. The NRA is never going to love them anyway. If some Democrats in red states can go against the group and win, gun politics will change.

  11. rikyrah says:

    Republicans know they have a problem on gay marriage

    Posted by Greg Sargent on March 27, 2013 at 2:31 pm

    House Republicans continue to shell out taxpayer money to defend the Defense of Marriage Act — they hired Paul Clement, the lawyer representing the law in the Supreme Court today. But as NPR’s Nina Totenberg reports, the law’s defenders are oddly reluctant to discuss their position in public:

    Those defending DOMA have been strangely unwilling to make their arguments outside of the court. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, declined to be interviewed for this article, as did Clement and leading House members who voted for the law. Even Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, who filed a friend of the court brief supporting DOMA, was unavailable for an interview. The primary sponsor of the bill, former Rep. Bob Barr, R-Ga., now retired, has changed his mind and now opposes the law.

    According to the Twitters, Clement didn’t speak to reporters after the arguments today.

    The remarkable thing about all this is that Republicans know they have a problem on their hands when it comes to the rapid evolution on marriage equality and their party’s failure to keep up with it, yet they appear to be constrained from doing anything about it. As I noted here yesterday, polls are showing a generational divide among Republicans over this issue; while majorities of Republicans overall continue to oppose gay marriage, pluralities or even majorities of young Republicans now support it. Kevin Drum comments on this problem:

    Republican leaders are painfully aware of this, I’m sure. They know they’re losing the gay marriage battle, even among their own partisans. The only question is how to make a passably graceful U-turn without pissing off their base of angry old tea partiers too badly. It’s going to be a challenge.

  12. rikyrah says:

    Red-state Dems signal support for background checks

    By Steve Benen
    Thu Mar 28, 2013 8:00 AM EDT

    Pending legislative proposals to reduce gun violence are already facing a perilous path, but there’s an initial hurdle that serves as prerequisite to the others: Democratic support. It’s going to be tough enough to overcome Republican opposition in both chambers, but if a significant number of Senate Dems balk, too, passing meaningful legislation will be practically impossible.

    With this in mind, Greg Sargent reported the other day that several red-state Democrats have been noticeably silent on their intentions, even on measures like expanded background checks, which enjoy near-universal support from the public.

    But as the week has progressed, there’s been some progress. As Rachel explained on the show last night, there’s a rush among some in the Beltway to say momentum on gun reforms have “stalled,” but the fact remains that some centrist Democrats have begun to embrace the centerpiece of their party’s efforts. Take Sen. Joe Donnelly (D) of Indiana, for example.

  13. rikyrah says:

    ‘Irate’ Gohmert in incident with Park Police

    By Steve Benen
    Wed Mar 27, 2013 4:43 PM EDT

    If you’ve ever seen Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-Texas) in an interview or during one of his strange, late-night speeches on the House floor, you’ve probably noticed that he’s an excitable sort of guy. In fact, if you’re like me, you may have wondered, “Is Gohmert like that all the time? Even when there are no cameras around?”

    As it happens, we may have a good answer to that question. Politico reports today on a “late-night verbal altercation” between the far-right congressman and U.S. Park Police, following a parking ticket at the Lincoln Memorial.

    Shortly after 11 p.m. on March 13, officers wrote Rep. Louie Gohmert a citation for parking his black Ford SUV in a spot reserved for National Park Service vehicles, according to a Park Police report obtained by POLITICO.

    But Gohmert wasn’t having it: He told the Park Police that his congressional parking placard allows him to park in that spot, and he’s on the committee that oversees the agency.

    Gohmert took the ticket off his windshield and placed it on a police car along with his business card with a written message: “Oversight of Park Service is my job! Natural Resources Thus the Congressional Plate in window

    One officer reported that the Republican congressman was “ranting,” while another said the congressman was “rude and irate.”

    Louie Gohmert? Ranging and irate? You don’t say.

    All of this, incidentally, was over a parking ticket that carried a fine totaling just $25. What’s more, according to the Politico article, Gohmert’s congressional plate would not allow a lawmaker to park in a reserved spot near the Lincoln Memorial.

  14. rikyrah says:

    Nelson Mandela in Hospital With Lung Infection
    March 28, 2013

    Former South African President Nelson Mandela was admitted to the
    hospital just before midnight Wednesday because of his recurring lung
    infection, the South African president’s office said today.

    “Doctors are attending to him, ensuring that he has the best possible expert medical treatment and comfort,” the government’s statement said.

    Mandela, 94, spent 18 days in the hospital in December for a lung infection and gallstones.

    “We appeal to the people of South Africa and the world to pray for our beloved Madiba and his family and to keep them in their thoughts,” South African President Jacob Zuma said in the statement. “We have full confidence in the medical team and know that they will do everything possible to ensure recovery.”

  15. Mandela hospitalized again, South Africa leader asks world to pray for him

    Nelson Mandela suffered a recurrence of his lung infection and was taken to a hospital late Wednesday.

    In a statement, the current South African President Jacob Zuma said “we appeal to the people of South Africa and the world to pray for our beloved Madiba [a nickname for Mandela] and his family and to keep them in their thoughts.”

    “We have full confidence in the medical team and know that they will do everything possible to ensure recovery,” he added. “The Presidency appeals once again for understanding and privacy in order to allow space to the doctors to do their work.”

    Prayers for Mr. Mandela.

  16. rikyrah says:

    From The

    NYPD officer says he taunted boy, 13, during stop

    by Adam Howard | March 27, 2013 at 2:07 PM

    Police officers are being grilled about the New York Police Department’s practice of stopping, questioning and frisking people on the street.

    Lawyers questioned two officers on Wednesday about stopping an innocent 13-year-old boy in Harlem in 2010. One admitted taunting the teen by telling him to stop “crying like a little girl.”

    The testimony came at a federal civil rights trial in Manhattan that began last week. A judge could order major changes to the nation’s largest police force.

    The case is based on stories from a dozen black and Hispanic men who say they were targeted because of their race. It’s being heard by a judge who’s already indicated in earlier rulings that she is deeply concerned about the tactic.

  17. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone at 3CHICS!

  18. Ametia says:

    Obama appeals to Israel’s conscience
    By Fareed Zakaria,
    Published: March 27

    As a piece of rhetoric, Barack Obama’s speech to college students in Jerusalem was a triumph. He finally convinced Israel and its supporters that “HE GETS US,” as one of them e-mailed me. “In his Kishkas [gut], he gets us!” But Obama also spoke more bluntly about Israel’s occupation and the case for a Palestinian state than any U.S. president has in the past. Oratory aside, Obama has recognized and employed the strongest — and perhaps only — path toward peace and a Palestinian state: an appeal to Israel’s conscience.

    For 40 years, those who have tried to push Israel toward making concessions have pointed to dangers and threats. Israel is surrounded by enemies, the argument goes, and the only way to ease that hostility is to give the Palestinians a state. Palestinian terrorism will make daily life in Israel unbearable, another variant explained, and Israel will have to settle this problem politically. These assumptions undergirded the peace process and Obama’s approach in his first term.

  19. Ametia says:

    Good Morning, Everyone! :-)

    Love Planes, Trains, & Automobiles. Terrific series this week, Rik. Thank you!

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