From Timothy Noah’s NYT review of a new biography of Nelson Rockefeller*:
“Impressed by a Thomas Aquinas quote he came across in a newspaper editorial, Rockefeller asked a staff aide to arrange a meeting with this astute theologian. Rockefeller’s grasp of science didn’t inspire much confidence either. After being briefed on the harm aerosol products were doing to the ozone layer, he asked: ‘How do all those spray cans get up there?'”
And you thought Dan Quayle was our dumbest Veep.
* On His Own Terms: A Life of Nelson Rockefeller, Richard Norton Smith
NEW RULE You can’t run for president if you don’t know how old the world is. Quizzed recently, Marco Rubio answered, “I’m not a scientist, man.” As if you have to be Galileo to Google, “How old is the earth?” And when asked his thoughts on evolution, Chris Christie said, “None of your business!” Which is what you say when someone asks you if you made a baby with the maid. Fellas, if you and your party want to be taken seriously, you don’t have to recite the collected works of Stephen Hawking — just stop regurgitating the Facebook page of Sarah Palin.
“One of the drawbacks of working in a bookstore, something I did for many years, is that it can be like working in a small-town pharmacy. You learn things about people you might rather not know. What sort of face do you put on when your new girlfriend’s mother comes to the counter with a Newt Gingrich novel, a scented candle and a copy of ‘The Herpes Survival Guide’?”