I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised that Karl Rove is–like me and many of my friends–mourning the closing of Furin’s, a Georgetown landmark at the intersection of Pennsylvania and M Steet NW. Furin’s has been dispensing distinctive salads, paper-thin pancakes, and delicious sandwiches from that spot for 27 years.
It would be difficult to say that Furin’s was affected by one single factor. There were many reasons this popular place is gone, including the decline in the number of conventions coming to Washington. But a key issue was the lousy economy. Fourteen people will become unemployed as a result of the closing of Furin’s, adding to the gloomy economic picture.
With our debt ceiling crisis scaring the daylights out of us right now, as politicians risk our very wellbeing, Rove suggests that the demise of Furin’s can be tied to what is going on at the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue:
This latest chapter of Obama-era high drama comes amid high unemployment, anemic growth, exploding deficits and collapsing public confidence. Americans deeply want a change. They’ve given the president time for his experiment in spending the country’s way to prosperity, and they have concluded that his course has failed.
In the debt-ceiling debate, Mr. Obama had his best and last moment to restrain federal spending and thereby change the trajectory of his profligate presidency. But he let it pass.
He will come to regret his decision….
Bernie Furin’s son, Chris, will try his hand at an Internet-based specialty cake business, a sideline at the restaurant that has developed a fanatical following. But when the restaurant closes Sunday, 14 people will lose their jobs. Its patrons will lose a favorite joint, and the neighborhood will lose some sense of community.
There are worse hardship cases in America, but this one is bad enough. It is in large part the result of the economy that Mr. Obama owns. The 2012 election will have many twists and turns, many story lines and subplots as candidates rise and fall. But in the end, a large part of the contest will be about Mr. Obama’s stewardship of the economy-and what happened as a result to the Bernie Furins of America, their hard work, and the enterprises they built.
Meanwhile, I treasure the memory of those perfect pimiento cheese finger sandwiches Furin’s prepared for a book party for me in 2005.