The Rand Corp. in Santa Monica, where the nation's nuclear strategy is hatched, has a bit of egg on its face. Every year for the last 23 years Rand has produced and distributed a first-rate calendar well known for the inspiring and provocative quotations from famous people that grace each month's page.
This year the calendar contains a mistake. January's quotation is from Martin Luther King Jr., but the calendar lists the national holiday honoring King's birthday as Jan. 13 (last Monday) instead of Jan. 20 (next Monday), which is correct. "It's a terrible boo-boo," said Paul Weeks, Rand's spokesman. "We're very apologetic about it." The error wasn't discovered until after the calendars were mailed out, and has confused some people when they planned their schedules.
It's no big deal, probably, except that it makes you wonder whether the people who put the calendars together have anything to do with putting nuclear strategy together. It makes you hope not.