We all have our own ideas of the big winners and losers of 2010 in politics. Here is my choice:
1. Barack Obama. Written off after the mid-term elections, a few weeks later he glides, if not exactly walks, on water. Has triangulated faster than Bill Clinton and didn't need the obnoxious Dick Morris to do it, either.
2. Joe Biden. Have you noticed how successful Obama has suddenly become since he designated Biden his go-to guy down at the Senate? That old Irish style of glad-handing really works better than policy wonks pontificating.
3. Chris Christie. Big, fat and in total control. Has struck a chord as the only plain-spoken Republican in the game. He has a quick and lively wit and isn't one of those prune-faced cookie cutter ideologues.
4. Martin O'Malley. Maryland governor had a runaway election victory despite being a Democrat and is now head of the Democratic Governors Association, the same route Bill Clinton took. 2016 anyone?
5. Andrew Cuomo. I mean, how lucky can you get? Strolls into office after the two worst governors in New York history -- and that is saying something. Basic competency will make him look papabile when it come to 2016.
Top Losers 2010
1. Rahm Emanuel. Departs White House and suddenly Obama starts hitting 'em out of the park. Was it Rahm or just bad timing? We'll see when he becomes Chicago mayor.
2. John McCain. Can someone please expose the Manchurian candidate who took over soon after his encounter with Barack Obama? The real John McCain is clearly being held by gay drug smugglers at the Arizona border. His performance on DADT was dreadful.
3. Nancy Pelosi. Historic first woman speaker. Passed health care, lost midterm election (no surprise there). But deciding to come back as Dems leader? Cling, fingernails and power come to mind. Move over, it's over, you're over 70, Nancy.
4. Mitch McConnell. See "prune-faced ideologue," above. Tried to rally troops against DADT and arms treaty, but they deserted him. It must have been his sense of humor.
5. Haley Barbour. Old paradigm: avuncular, folksy, fun guy, great shot in 2012. New paradigm? Nothing but the same old southern code black story.
Moving to Ireland
After living in Ireland for almost one year, this is what I’ve learned