Mr. Sheldon and Mrs. Elton

During the spring, summer, and fall of 2012, the philanthropist Sheldon Adelson donated several tens of millions of dollars to the presidential campaigns of the now forgotten conservative intellectuals Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney. In the aftermath of the election, Mr. Adelson compared his unsuccessful investment to a marital strategy.
Mr. Adelson’s giving to super PACs and other outside groups came to more than $60 million, though in public Mr. Adelson did not seem overly concerned about the paltry returns on his investment.

“Paying bills,” Mr. Adelson said on Tuesday night when asked by a Norwegian reporter how he thought his donations had been spent. “That’s how you spend money. Either that or become a Jewish husband — you spend a lot of money.”

— Nicholas Confessore and Jeff Bidgood, “Little to Show for Cash Flood by Big Donors,” New York Times 7 November 2012,


In Emma, a small crisis ensues when Mrs. Elton learns that Jane, for a pre-marital reason of her own, has just walked all the way to the post office and back in the rain.

“Oh! she shall not do such a thing again,” eagerly rejoined Mrs. Elton. “We will not allow her to do such a thing again:” — and nodding significantly — “there must be some arrangements made, there must indeed. I shall speak to Mr. E. The man who fetches our letters every morning (one of our men, I forget his name) shall inquire for your’s too and bring them to you. That will obviate all difficulties you know; and from us I really think, my dear Jane, you can have no scruple to accept such an accommodation.”   (II.xvi)


Some vulgarities are immortal. Others aren’t, even though they cost more.