What the Hell Is Maureen Dowd Talking About?

I have no idea what Maureen Dowd is talking about:

America seemed to have lost her ingenuity, her quickness, her man-on-the-moon bravura, her Bugs Bunny panache.

Were we clever and inventive enough to protect ourselves from the new breed of Flintstones-hardy yet Facebook-savvy terrorists?


Even before a Nigerian with Al Qaeda links tried to blow up a Northwest Airlines jet headed to Detroit, travelers could see we had made no progress toward a technologically wondrous Philip K. Dick universe.


Before he left for vacation, Obama tried to shed his Spock mien and juice up the empathy quotient on jobs.


Given that every utterance of the president is usually televised, it was a throwback to radio days - just at the moment we sought reassurance that our security has finally caught up to "Total Recall."


In his detached way, Spock was letting us know that our besieged starship was not speeding into a safer new future, and that we still have to be scared.

Bugs Bunny?  "Flinstones-hardy"?  "Technologically wondrous Philip K. Dick universe"?  "Total Recall"?  Spock?  What in the world is Dowd going on about?  Does she really think "Total Recall" is something we aspire to?  

I can only assume that this disjointed overdose of unexplained cartoon/book/film references is nothing more than an attempt to make clear that she's engaging in theater criticism rather than offering an actual assessment of any sort of policy.  But there was never much danger that would have gone unnoticed -- not with passages like this:

But in a mystifying moment that was not technically or emotionally reassuring, there was no live video and it looked as though the Obama operation was flying by the seat of its pants.

Given that every utterance of the president is usually televised, it was a throwback to radio days...

Anyway, as far as I can tell, Dowd wants Obama to be more like Bugs Bunny.  And Arnold Schwarzenegger.  You know, so he can keep us safe from Barney Rubble.

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