Canute was making a point about the limits of kingly powers and expressing humility. When he moved court to the beach and made his proclamation, he didn't actually expect the tide to obey him.
Meanwhile... someone else did promise that the Sea Levels would fall caused tried to order the markets to not recede.
Dow Finishes Down 634 Points. Obama’s speech certainly did nothing to slow the drop, though I suppose the White House will argue that it would have been 734 without the speech, meaning that Obama saved or created 100 Dow points . . . .
Speaking of those who issue royal proclamations...
From an essay in the Sunday New York Times: "The public was desperate for a leader who would speak with confidence, and they were ready to follow wherever the president led." No, that isn't an historian explaining the rise of Mussolini. It's the Emory psychologist Drew Westen, writing wistfully about the leader he wishes Obama would be.
Yes, because what this country needs is a President and a government with less checks on his and its power.
Via Glen Reynolds who also mentions
Hey, they blamed the Tea Party for Jared Loughner, too. They always blame the Tea Party, because they don’t like the Tea Party, and they want Americans to dislike it, too, so they can continue with business as usual until the last possible moment. And if Greece had had a Tea Party, all the apparatchiks would have called it crazy and destructive too, because it would have threatened their short-term interests, which, as has become clear, is all apparatchiks think about . . .
Dreaming for a Ceaser-like man on a white horse is certainly short-sighted.
And what does it all mean?
Well interesting times are a' comin'. Very interesting.
Especially when you consider a meme that's forming is: Debate hurts Democracy.
Even though Debate has been sorely lacking and is desperately needed.
More on that thinking here and here.
Though this is all fully expected given the President's past statements.