John's sister, Alice, just purchased Asher B. Durand's "Kindred Spirits" (1849), which depicts Thomas Cole, the founder of the Hudson River School of painting, with the poet William Cullen Bryant. The two stand along a rock ledge, a tree arching above, a river tumbling below and a hilly vista stretching to the horizon. It's as if, looking out on the scene and imagining America's great potential, they can almost see a Wal-Mart rising in the distance.
And then, one must presume, they jump. Seriously, I wouldn't expect the Wall Street Journal to have anything but an affirmative view of Wal-Mart, and I'm not at all upset at Alice Walton building herself the best museum money can buy. But do we have to pretend that the idea of America is so narrow as that? Or that it was to Thomas Cole, of all people? Really. (Via Roy Edroso.)