Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The monkey and the US Constitution

There is an expression in Russian: "the monkey and the glasses". It comes from a fable by Ivan Krylov about a monkey that had poor eyesight and heard that glasses can provide a cure. It bought a few pairs of glasses and was doing everything with them (putting them on its head, balancing them on its tail, etc.) except the one thing that was required.

The expression is used for someone who is trying to use some object or concept, but doing a terrible job at it due to incompetence. For instance, one of the episodes of Boondocks criticizes nouveau riche African American rappers who, once they "make it", buy houses, whose yards they fill with all kinds of junk, for example, classical statues and columns, regardless of the architectural styles of the houses.

This is another example:

Watching a liberal trying to be a constitutional originalist is like watching a whale spin. Or French rap.

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