The soulful folk song, born in the low country of South Carolina, has migrated from representing strength and power in togetherness to reflecting weakness and wimpiness. Somehow, it's morphed into a cynical code word.
Mitt Romney's campaign has a new TV ad meant to counter attacks on his career at private-equity firm Bain Capital, using the same defense it has ever since his rivals for the front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination started taking populist jabs at him.
Maybe even if it weren't a general-election year, President Obama would still be proposing that Congress give him the power to merge federal agencies to make the government smaller and more efficient. But it is an election year and the president's proposal gives him a way to counter GOP charges that he's a big-government Democrat.
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