That distinctive presidential conduct is now gone forever, banished to the snows of yesteryear by Barack Obama. From the beginning of his presidency to the present, he has spoken specifically and in unprecedented fashion of Republicans as his rivals, his stumbling blocks, the primary cause of his troubles.
You want a political culture that works to create conditions under which an economy can thrive? Since signing the Oslo Accords with the Palestinians, Israel has spent two decades working to unshackle its economy from its socialist roots, with remarkable results.
Vice presidents are at times tasked with issuing direct broadsides against enemies while the top guy stays above the fray. But never before has a vice president served as an attack dog against his own party's voters.
Aside from being bad sportsmanship - Romney basically said Obama won by cheating - he was displaying the same obtuseness about the wants and needs of ordinary people that did more to torpedo his campaign than any goodies Obama might have had to dole out.
Conservatives have long been suspicious that Romney isn't truly one of them. The release of his tax returns should settle the matter once and for all: He's not only to be accepted, but admired and emulated - and by liberals as well as conservatives.
Our compulsive hunger always to know first, speak first and decide first has only been amplified by the fact that we can now all participate instantly in a virtual version of a national cocktail-party conversation on Twitter, Facebook and blogs.
The Middle East Media Research Institute has spent decades detailing the diseased messages emanating from Palestinian TV and textbooks, instructing children in the glories of suicide terrorism against innocent Israelis.
Christopher Nolan's astounding third Batman feature, 'The Dark Knight Rises,' represents the true maturation of the superhero movie - and provides the key to understanding the bottomless craving moviegoers have for these films, 34 years after the Christopher Reeve Superman gave birth to the genre.
You want a culture where citizens are free to express themselves and so live in the openness necessary to the functioning of a successful economy? Israel has a free press, much of it openly hostile to the parties in power.
As a member of the Mormon church, Romney is instructed to tithe 10 percent of his income. That's in keeping with most charitable giving: Religious institutions get about one-third of all contributions, according to 'The American' magazine.
Romney has adopted almost every position conservatives want their candidate to espouse: He's pro-life, he wants to repeal ObamaCare, he wants to cut taxes and cut the federal budget, and he wants an unapologetic foreign policy dedicated to the proposition that this too will be the American century.
The most passionately anti-Obama Republican politicians and activists consider themselves the truest and purest of conservatives, and often unleash their scorn and fury on others who also call themselves conservative but differ on strategy and tactics.
Nixon was an awful president in many ways, including in some of his foreign-policy choices. But he left no doubt that foreign policy and America's leadership in the world outside its borders was of paramount importance to him.
The United States established itself as a trustworthy new nation in its first two decades after the Revolutionary War by paying its debts, even when many in the country believed it had no obligation to do so. Alexander Hamilton, the founder of this newspaper, insisted on it.
In the Democratic primary in 2008, the Obama team devised a strategy to use the caucuses and a complicated system of awarding delegates in the state primaries to sneak up on Hillary Clinton and establish a lead Obama never surrendered.
As a matter of policy, increasing taxes on the most economically productive group, which already generates 60 percent of the nation's federal revenues, during a sustained period of economic doldrums is a wretched idea.
While in Israel, Mitt Romney said something every sane person knows to be true: There is great cultural and political meaning in the fact that Israel has prospered while the Palestinians have festered.
Over the next decade, cities and states across America will be compelled to tighten their belts as the really big bills - the pension bills they cannot afford - come due. They'll have to go after existing contracts with current workers.
Obama is talking to voters as though he is their boss, or their principal, or their father. He is not any of those things. He is their employee. And employers don't like it when their employees yell at them - even if their employees have it right.
Political folk talk a lot these days about 'messaging' - a neologism designed to describe the way in which parties and politicians consciously characterize their efforts. It is only intended to be positive - i.e., 'Our messaging is designed to show we care.'
Making recess appointments when the Senate isn't in recess is neither rational nor moderate. It's a raw misuse of executive power by a president whose love of government is his most vulnerable spot with the electorate.
But like a born actor who only really wants to direct, Gingrich has always been unsatisfied with what he's brilliant at. He can't still his hunger to deliver grand pronouncements on life, liberalism, conservatism, religion and whatever else swims into his consciousness.
As the Republican nominee, it was Romney's job to find a way to speak to some of those groups of voters and offer practical solutions to their difficulties that both resonated with them and sounded plausible to them.