The greatest example of anticlimax in the English language, said William F. Buckley, was the final line in the unofficial anthem of his undergraduate college: “For God, for country, and for Yale.”
Buckley’s anticlimax now faces a challenge from an even shorter phrase: “The Obama Administration” is on the road to becoming the most anticlimactic expression known to man.
President Obama swept into office on a tide of Lincoln and FDR comparisons. A giddy press corps swooned every time he spoke; his cabinet was a ‘team of rivals’ like Lincoln’s. His mandate, the press said, was to be a transformative president, like FDR. The more sober said he would be a Democratic Reagan: just as the Californian led the country into a generation of conservative politics, so President Obama would lead Democrats into permanent majoritarian status.