WHEN FOXES POSE AS HEDGEHOGS

BILL CLINTON SPINS OUT MANY IDEAS, BOB DOLE CLAIMS TO HAVE ONE BIG ONE, BUT DOES EITHER MAN POSSESS AN OVERARCHING VISION?

The fox knows many things," wrote the ancient Greek poet Archilochus, "but the hedgehog knows one big thing." In his famous 1953 essay, the British philosopher Isaiah Berlin used that conceit to divide Russian writers into hedgehogs and foxes. Hedgehogs, he suggested, are individuals who relate everything to a single, all embracing principle, while foxes are those who see a multiplicity of things without fitting them into some universal system. (Dostoevsky was a hedgehog, Tolstoy a fox.) Berlin regarded this contrast as a profound philosophical difference that divided writers, thinkers and even politicians.

This election season, the Dole campaign is depicting...

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