Howcome SOTU and Groundhog Day occur in the same week?

Yesterday was the State of the Union. Tomorrow is Groundhog Day.

Curious, isn’t it? Two national rituals, both built around the theme of frustrating, meaningless repetition, only two days apart.

One ritual involves our pretending to trust a stupid little rodent to tell us about the future.

The other involves a groundhog.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: