Thursday, September 02, 2004

Convention Thoughts

Zell! This time I did watch it, and man was Zell Miller fun. Stepanopholus dismissed the speech as red meat for the Red states, unlikely to sway any undecided voters, and he may have been right but for the obvious hook - that Miller is a lifelong Democrat. That matters to people - when they see a guy cross the aisle. When it happens the other way, be it the latest attempt of John McCain to out-liberal the liberals on domestic policy, or a nominally northeastern Republican Senator switching over to the Democrats, we are bombarded by stories of their courage from the national press. The carrot is out there for all Republicans - join the Dark Side, and we'll make a hero of you. But apparently the equation doesn't work the other way for Zell Miller.

I liked two things about his speech especially - the story of Wendell Wilkie, the 1940 Republican candidate for President against Roosevelt, who in bipartisan fashion voted for a war-related issue along with Roosevelt's desires, and in the process hurt his chances for election. It was a great contrast to the political opportunism of Kerry, who voted for the Iraq war, and then against the subsequent funding in order to prove to all those peace-loving Democrats who beat up NY cops at the Republican convention that he is as crazy as Howard Dean.

In line with that story, I love how he made a distinction between the patriotism of Democrats and their judgment. It is a distinction that Democrats have been trying to blur this entire campaign - you question Kerry's record in the Senate, and he comes out saying how dare you question his patriotism. Uhh, nobody did, John, but good luck trying to score points claiming we are.

I also liked the distinction between the US as a liberator versus an occupier. Michael Moore, for example, has referred to the terrorists in Iraq as freedom fighters trying to liberate their country from US occupation. And lots of people paid money to see his movie, including Terry McAuliffe and Tom Daschle, among other very prominent and powerful Democrats. Michael Moore is not alone in that view, but I suspect most undecided voters don't share it.

Zell Miller did a great job in my mind of associating the Democrats with the Michael Moore crowd. And my guess is that the undecideds vote based upon which extreme they fear most - the left or the right.

"Don't pay any attention to what those little shits on the campuses do. The great beast is the reactionary elements in the country. Those are the people that we have to fear." So said Jyndon Johnson to George Ball, explaining how he expected the challenge to his Vietnam policy to come from the political Right. He was wrong, of course, but notice how the anti-war movement, which quickly morphed into an anti-American movement, led to easy victories for Richard Nizon. I'll put my Swift Boat Vets for Truth as our extreme element up against the idiots who have populated NY to protest the convention any day.

My dad was a marine who served in Korea, two years Miller's senior. I wonder if they ever crossed paths. My dad is the oldest of seven; his brother Jim was in Korea as an Army private, Jack won the Silver Star in Vietnam as an Air Force man, and the youngest, Jerry, served in the Air National Guard as a pilot during Vietnam. All of them eventually became Republicans, a fact that would have made their Grandmother roll over in her grave. But my dad's three sisters ... all Democrats. They say things like "if only all the money that we spend on the military could go to the schools." Hopeless!


More evidence that Paul Krugman is going insane. Maybe he is just doing his John Nash imitation to try to get the Nobel prize in Economics. Nash, of Beautiful Mind fame, was schizophrenic, and espoused many Jewish conspiracy theories in his sickest days. Krugman, being a Jew himself, must look for something other than 7 Jewish bankers in Zurich who rule the world in surruptitious fashion to become his particular delusion. He's found it - the Republican Party, who conspiratorally have taken power. Over the timeline he considers the conspiracy to have spread, Government has only grown, which in my eyes makes it a much less than successful conspiracy, but you cannot expect a crazy man understand that.


The first time I ever heard of Ron Silver, it was inauguration day, 1993. He was quoted as saying something to the effect that when he saw the military jets in formation, he cursed their presence at the celebration of the swearing in of the new President (Clinton), but then he remembered that, with a Democrat now in power, "those were our planes now." As if the military had just switched sides in a civil war between Republicans and Democrats. Disgusting. So imagine my surprise when I am channel surfing on Tuesday night, and I come across Wolf Blitzer talking to somebody, with the convention in the backgroud. The conventioneers are cheering uproarously, and Blitzer explains that they are reacting to the remarks being made by Ron Silver up on stage. Beautiful - Ron Silver endorsing George Bush and hoping those same planes that flew over the capital in 1993 now stay in the hands of the adults.


Of course Ideas Hatched has sent its own press envoy to the convention, who guys by the name Wall Street G. Actually he doesn't go by that name at all, but why should rap stars be the only ones who get to go by really cool nicknames even in their adulthood. From the sounds of his first report, he did not meet this woman while trying to go to work. If you read that link, send me your guess as to how long it will take for that young woman to become a conservative. Anyway, Wall Street G:

Yesterday, I was walking to the Path station at the WTC site. (I work across the street from the former WFC. And yes, I was there on 9/11...and exactly a year later, my daughter was born on 9/11. So, I tend to relate 9/11 with the happier of the two memories. But I digress...) Either way, I was walking to the Path station. I encountered one of the many groups of protestors in front of the station. Secretly, I wanted someone to start with me now that I've been working out with a boxing trainer for four months. You know, almost middle aged guy getting harrassed by a liberal punk who has all the answers. I'd deal with it the way any almost middle aged guy would...pop the kid in the mouth. But I digress again. Either way, seeing these kids made me ask a few questions:
1. Why are most of the protestors white, seemingly middle-class kids who likely went to reputable institutions of higher learning? (Probably self-exlpanatory situation.) As an aside, I've always contended liberalism is a "barbell trade" (to use jargon from Wall St.). In other words, poor people who feel they have no other means seek government bail out, or wealthy people who have the luxury to not care what happens with their property and livelyhood are the two ends of the "barbell".
2. Don't these people have jobs? Thousands of commuters were walking to and fro getting to work or home. We, the commuters, are the real population. We're the people who keep the country running.
3. Maybe I have this all wrong, but inherent in liberalism is the idea that other peoples opinions matter. That there is some base respect for others, despite percieved differenences. Well then, why is a conservative view immediately discounted. I could elaborate this idea more clearly, but I am lazy.
4. Anarchists...I love them. On Sunday, the CBS program "Sunday Morning" was on, a self-described anarchist was spouting off about a society without instutionalized government. Come on, without goverment, more guys like the one who beat up a NYC cop yesterday on TV, would come and bonk the anarchist on the head and take his lunch. And refer back to item 1., this kid likely grew up in Evanston, IL or Princeton, NJ or some other up-scale community...he was clearly educated, well fed, clothed...where does the money and support come from?

Long story short...I think conventions, republican or democrat, have lost all relevance as have the politicians who participate in them. Protestors, don't like 'em, they mess up my commute and annoy me because they aren't old enough to really have figured anything out. Liberalism, when I am wealthy enough to just hand stuff out, without regard for my family or their well being, maybe I join Ted Kennedy or Theresa Heinz. Untill then, I worked hard for what I have, I'd like to keep as much as possible for my family.

There you have it folks, the inside scoop from Wall Street G. As far as the protest crowd being upper middle class whities, twas always thus, going right back to the Bolshevik revolution of 1917. They'll tell you that the lumpen proletariat is too oppressed to carry the banner of revolution, so the task falls to them. In the old days, of course, the proletariat was too busy working for a living. Now they are busy auditioning for Jerry Springer, so they still need upper middle class whities to save them. Eventually these people will go on for their PhDs in post-feminist Women's Studies, or some such absurd topic, get tenure in three years, and start training the next group of upper middle class whities on how to break stuff in large groups.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like the story of the Weathermen, many of whom are now "educators" and still self-righteously proclaiming the murders they committed to have been in the name of justice...

12:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like the story of the Weathermen, many of whom are now "educators" and still self-righteously proclaiming the murders they committed to have been in the name of justice...

12:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it is always a question of semantics; liberator or occupier; pro choice or anti choice or pro abortions as if anyone is actually for abortion as opposed to the right to chose. I have discovered after many years of republican witch hunting who they truly are, they are people who travel to resort areas in third world countries and proclaim the success of americanization although they never make if past their pina coladas and the resort doors to see utter poverty that lies with in well hidden areas.
My favorite item about the republicans is their utter and total faith in Jesus and are more than willing to send others to liberate, I say to their death and to kill innocent civilians, like I said all semantics.

9:54 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is that last post-er talking about a foreign country, or Atlantic City NJ? Cause it sounds alot like he's talkin about Atlantic City NJ.

And what, Dems don't go to resorts in third world countries? I think John Kerry's wife OWNS a few resorts in third world countries. That kind of lifestyle does not differ between the R's and D's -- it differs between the rich and the non-rich.

The funniest part about Ron Silver is that he played a highly-paid "re-election strategist" for the fictional liberal president played by Martin Sheen on The West Wing

11:10 AM  

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