BARACK Obama moves his family to a luxury hotel in Washington this weekend to begin a life very different from the crime-ridden neighbourhoods and Aids-infested housing projects a stone's throw from the White House.
This was one of those years. Relieved only by the appearance in the West of an apparent (secular) messiah by the name of Barack Obama.
The shoe-throwing suggests one Iraqi man is mightily pissed off; the wild reaction to it suggests the world has gone mad. This is a shoe-in for the most bizarre debate of 2008.
It may be that modern terrorism is not so much the emergence of non-state actors on to the strategic field but, rather, the latest refinement of state power, giving the option of state military and terrorist action with plausible, or at least politically useful, deniability.
the looming Christmas-New Year season threatens to create uncertainty, and a formal Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing presents unique problems for the car companies.
The scandal will spiral out of control, throwing up myriad questions, including the big one: how is it that Obama can be so ignorant of the political quagmire from which he hails?