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1960s

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For the last several years, the word has been hanging around backstage on the national television talk-show circuit waiting for somebody, anybody -- visionary poet, unemployed automobile worker, late-night comedian -- to cue its appearance on camera.

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Mitt Romney clearly has no idea what his party stands for and is running against. To put it in Rick Santorum's words, "It comes down to sex. That's what it's all about."

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Is there no more convincing proof that there is nothing like a presidential campaign to demonstrate just how profoundly detached we are as a nation from recognizing why ours is a functioning democracy in reputation alone?Mitt Romney, speaking from beneath a hairdo assembled at the Fortress of Sophistry by GM robots: “Don’t try to stop the foreclosure process. Let it run its course and hit the bottom.”

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Carl Oglesby, one of the most influential figures of the 1960s counterculture, died Tuesday at his home in Montclair, N.J., after a short illness.

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I suddenly started to worry that the only threat hippies might pose to the dominant culture nowadays was the personal-injury lawsuits they were likely to file from accidental falls due to uneven pavement. “I’m gathering my wa,” he said, his eyes closed like he was Charlie Parker listening to the bebop rhythms of the universe, his mind awash in Gravy.

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