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"It is better to be drunk with loss and to beat the ground, than to let the deeper things gradually escape."

- I. Compton-Burnett, letter to Francis King (1969)

"Cynical realism – it is the intelligent man’s best excuse for doing nothing in an intolerable situation."

- Aldous Huxley, "Time Must Have a Stop"

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Friday, 13 August 2004

Topic: Election Notes

Questions from our man in Paris to Americans over here....

I've been trading a lot of email with Ric Erickson, editor of MetropoleParis, on the topics that have appeared this week on this web log.

In regard to this week's posts he asks some questions.
I can't believe how confused potential voters are. A dozen times I've heard something like, "Uh, I guess I'll have to vote for Kerry." It almost sounds like they're thinking of voting for Goering to stop Hitler from getting elected.

What is supposed to be wrong with Kerry? Why is it worse to marry nice rich ladies than to suck up to the Saudis? Why is it worse to have gone to Vietnam, gotten shot, gotten medals and promotions, than to have bugged out from a bug-out unit? Why is it worse to have a French cousin than to fake 'cleaning the yard' on a turn-key ranch? Why is it worse to have army buddies who've lost arms and legs than to have a buncha buds in the Houston Petroleum Club?

Why is it that Americans can't remember who got them into the mess they're in? Why should they trust the guy who dunnit, rather than a guy with clean hands? Is it because he can pronounce words with seven letters?

And then there's this recent talk about Americans loving to have a dodo for president in time of war. How many thought Professor Woodrow Wilson was a dodo? How many thought Franklin Roosevelt was a dodo? Or Harry Truman? Or Ike? Or did it change with Nixon? Not a dodo either, but a liar. Well, a politician. Maybe needs to be a liar. But if you've got a worldwide conspiracy of terrorists on your ass, do you want a dodo as leader? Or are you so terrified that you need one? It's all nonsense. Nonsensical.

Same goes for that macho shit. Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman and Ike WON wars. The Russians collapsed, ran out of steam, so Reagan doesn't count. He, run by Nancy, trail-driven by Nancy; he wasn't a second-rate drugstore cowboy? The only war he really won was the wreckage of the University of California. It was Berliners who tore the Wall down, not Reagan's cunning. He beat up the professors. He would not have lasted a minute up against Woodrow Wilson.

California is a crazy place. Americans shouldn't be blamed for it.

But if people can't figure out who is causing the trouble, then they're not likely to pick the right guy to fix it.

The place is about one ballot away from being a banana republic.
Feel free to respond in the comment area below, or drop a line to - and Ric and I will get back to you.

Posted by Alan at 17:10 PDT | Post Comment | Permalink

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