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Thursday, December 9, 2010

Perhaps too often politics lends itself to pop-culture references. It's a lazy tool that we media types love to use in order to make our copy, well, pop. And with all that stipulated, I'll beg your forgiveness as I offer another.

President Obama used the word "fight" or some variation thereof more than a dozen times at his Tuesday presser, mostly in the context of not fighting Republicans now, but promising to do so in the future. Witness this passage from the press conference:

I will be happy to see the Republicans test whether or not I'm itching for a fight on a whole range of issues. I suspect they will find I am.

Sen. Sherrod Brown of Ohio told Rachel this week that President Obama didn't fight hard enough, that it was presumed that Republicans would cave on unemployment benefits before Christmas. So why was the President was talking about fighting, over and over again? Cedric the Entertainer may hold the answer.

In the concert film "The Original Kings of Comedy," Cedric's set opens with a (somewhat profane) reference to what he calls the "wish" factor: that while some may hope things don't go wrong, some actively WISH for something bad to happen to give us an excuse to fight. Forget about "hope" -- it's now all about "wish." Translated for general audience, Cedric's wish creed goes something like:

"I wish [that nice human being] over there would [do something that give me cause for fisticuffs]."

This tax deal's far from done, so President Obama is asking for a fight that's already here. Will he keep on with his "wish" factor, or will he start scrapping for real this time? A lot of folks wish he would.

(Thanks to Will Femia for the image tweak.)


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