The Talking Stick Senators

Susan Collins shows off 'talking stick'

A good day for a writer is one in which a metaphor falls into his lap. That happened recently when I read a behind-the-scenes report on the government shutdown. During the Democrats’ brief and pointless exercise in immaturity, a bipartisan group of senators met regularly in the office of Susan Collins of Maine. Puzzled by what had brought them to this point, and desperate for a way to live up to their not-entirely-deserved reputations as moderate, clear-thinking, responsible statesmen, the Republicans and Democrats were looking for a way out.