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Just what John McCain and Barack Obama need: Better “chi” through feng shui

By this stage of the game, I’m guessing that you’re probably as tired of the 2008 Presidential race as I am. Too bad there are still nearly three months of this nonsense to go, and, although John McCain has gone deep into the stupid with ads featuring comparisons of his opponent with Paris Hilton, even Barack Obama doesn’t seem entirely immune from attacks of pandering himself, proposing as he has, to eliminate income taxes on seniors. Of course, this being August, and all, the slowest news month of the year, coupled with the–heh–traditional wisdom that no one really pays attention to the Presidential race in earnest until after Labor Day, there’s plenty of time for some serious silliness. For example, it’s being suggested that both McCain and Obama could benefit from some feng shui applied to their offices:

WASHINGTON — With a few simple changes in their Senate offices, both presidential candidates could improve their health, relationships and maybe even get a few more votes, says Taylor Vance, a Feng Shui consultant.

John McCain’s Senate office is eclectic and cluttered.

Barack Obama’s is clean and modern.

Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese philosophy that examines how a person’s environment affects his life.

I asked myself: How on earth did this very silly article manage to be published by the Associated Press, and then I remembered: It’s August. Worse, it’s August, and the Summer Olympics are in China, making any sort of Chinese-themed silliness even more attractive. So what is this “expert’s” advice? For John McCain:

The first thing Vance would do to make McCain’s office more Feng Shui-friendly is get rid of the clutter.

“He’s barricaded in there with so many things,” she said. “I got a feeling that he wasn’t really as available as he could be.”

Uh-oh. Given the level of clutter in my office, I shudder to think what Vance would think. Well, actually I don’t. I don’t really care. Still, let’s see the rest of his advice for McCain:

Step two would be unblocking a set of large double doors. Doors are where energy enters and opportunities flow in, Vance said. But these doors are unused, and blocked by a plant and a chair.

“He may not be getting the advantage of all the opportunities that he might if he unbarricaded them,” she said.

McCain made a smart Feng Shui decision by putting his desk at the back of his office, giving him a long, expansive view that Vance said will help him expand his thoughts.

Or maybe McCain just likes the impression from sitting behind his that his office is really large. But what about Obama:

What is in the office is well-placed. To the left of the door, an area that represents knowledge, Obama has a photograph of former South African president Nelson Mandela and a portrait of former Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall.

“That tells me he’s drawing on their wisdom,” Vance said.

But Obama could enhance his office leadership by moving his desk so it doesn’t have a door behind it.

Yeah, that’ll work. Of course, maybe Obama’s just waiting a few months to occupy a different, more prestigious office, you know, one without all the pointy corners and such. (I wonder what the feng shui of an oval shape is.)

Be that as it may, this recommendation to both candidates is what really cracked me up:

There’s one suggestion Vance thinks both candidates would benefit from _ adding a small fountain in the back left corner of their offices, the area that relates to money and opportunities.

“That would help bring in more campaign contributions,” Vance said.

I wonder if putting a small fountain in the back left corner of my office would help bring in more NIH grant money. Off to Home Depot forthwith!

By Orac

Orac is the nom de blog of a humble surgeon/scientist who has an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent's posterior about his copious verbal meanderings, but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few probably will. That surgeon is otherwise known as David Gorski.

That this particular surgeon has chosen his nom de blog based on a rather cranky and arrogant computer shaped like a clear box of blinking lights that he originally encountered when he became a fan of a 35 year old British SF television show whose special effects were renowned for their BBC/Doctor Who-style low budget look, but whose stories nonetheless resulted in some of the best, most innovative science fiction ever televised, should tell you nearly all that you need to know about Orac. (That, and the length of the preceding sentence.)

DISCLAIMER:: The various written meanderings here are the opinions of Orac and Orac alone, written on his own time. They should never be construed as representing the opinions of any other person or entity, especially Orac's cancer center, department of surgery, medical school, or university. Also note that Orac is nonpartisan; he is more than willing to criticize the statements of anyone, regardless of of political leanings, if that anyone advocates pseudoscience or quackery. Finally, medical commentary is not to be construed in any way as medical advice.

To contact Orac: [email protected]

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