Sunday, May 14, 2006

Overheard at a Cancer Meeting

Last month we attended the annual meeting of the AACR, a large scientific conference devoted to cancer research. Not surprisingly, there's a strong concensus among cancer researchers that much more federal spending should be directed at cancer research.

One day at lunch with a group of strangers the others were talking about a campaign for US Senate in a southern state. One candidate was a distant relative of one of my companions. "Is the candidate conservative?" asked another companion with obvious concern. "No," responded the original speaker, reassuringly, the candidate is a "sensible liberal." It was clear the entire group regarded "sensible liberal" as practically redundant. We were reluctant to assert that if "sensible liberal" is not an oxymoron, the species is nearly as rare as the jackalope.

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