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Opening Arguments

Wanting power

Awww, I was hoping it was Ronald Reagan:

What do Barack Obama, Thomas Jefferson, George W. Bush and the other past U.S. presidents have in common? Besides holding the coveted title of commander-in-chief, it appears that all of them but one are cousins.

The remarkable discovery was made by 12-year-old BridgeAnne d’Avignon, of Salinas, California, who created a ground-breaking family tree that connected 42 of 43 U.S. presidents to one common, and rather unexpected, ancestor: King John of England.

‘They all have the trait of wanting power,’ d’Avignon told the station WFMY.

King John, also known as John ‘Lackland’, is renowned for signing the Magna Carta in 1215, which limited the monarch’s power and helped form the British Parliament.

[. . .]

The only former commander-in-chief not linked to King John is the eighth president, Martin Van Buren, who had Dutch roots. 

This account lacked one important detail -- quoting a reputable genealogist saying the girl has it right or wrong -- but what the hell. It's one of those stories that should be true even if it isn't. I mean, come on -- all of them traced back to the King John whose signing of the Magna Carta got the whole democracy thing started, and the girl being astute enough to know all our presidents had the "wanting power" gene? I won't even hold it against her that she seems to be excited by the possibility she is President Obama's 18th cousin. Genealogy can make you crazy -- Daniel Boone and Jesse James are both in my family tree somewhere, and I'm not sure which one I'm proudest of.

Just kidding. Jesse was a murderous bastard, and anybody who doesn't believe that probably wouldn't understand the difference between the "new transcendent politics" and plain old Chicago-style thuggery.


tim zank
Mon, 08/06/2012 - 4:41pm

" the difference between the "new transcendent politics" and plain old Chicago-style thuggery."

Nicely done Sir, nicely done.