The artists became interested in the idea of nocturnes (in Latin, "of the night") as embodying an artistic threshold free of definition, a space where, as Keats put it, the artist "is capable of being in uncertainties, mysteries, doubts, without any irritable reaching after fact and reason." For many, this is an alien and even undesirable state to be in, but Wonk
and Sacabo are both comfortable there, or at least accustomed.
It's to WB that I owe some of my best ideas on why Obamacare is such a poor piece of legislation, and it's also to WB's credit that I laugh as the "wonks
" contort themselves while trying to explain why, actually, Obamacare is a great law, just misunderstood.
The great irony is that the political equilibrium of the nation's capital depends on both wonks
and hacks, but the two groups can't even communicate because the hack and wonk
dialects have so few words in common.
The first dealt with Molly Ivins's reference to Bill Clinton as "a closet policy wonk
." I'm told that a wonk
is, in recent collegiate slang, an earnest, hard-working student who is determined to master the arcane details of his or her discipline--a computer wonk
, for example, or an astrophysics wonk
Indeed, only a politician of Clinton's immense talents and equally unique political pedigree (Southern bubba, Rhodes Scholar McGovernik, New Democratic policy wonk
) may have been able to run and win the party's presidential nomination as a New Democrat.
BENJAMIN BARBER'S VERY NICE book offers insight into Bill Clinton, the wonk
. A Rutgers professor known for smart, interesting policy books like McWorld v.
He's a policy wonk
who mentions privatizing Social Security in nearly every speech.
Though no policy wonk
in the Hillary mold, Tipper passionately cares about her causes--expanding the acceptance and treatment of mental illness, and treating the homeless with respect.
The proper wonk
approach to this kind of book is to skip past the sex stuff to get to the policy discussion, but a few words about the former are to the point.
If the monologist Spalding Gray were a Washington policy wonk
, this is what he would sound like.
This perception might be discounted as the lament of a frustrated policy wonk
. But in contrast to legislative deliberations conducted in full public view, where facts and principles still count for something and are occasionally still decisive, stakeholder meetings are usually conducted behind closed doors without any public attention.
Williams loves policy development, but wonks
don't seem as valuable in D.C.