Not the smirker 

One of my domino acquaintances asked me the other day if I could give him a list of reasons why he ought to vote for John Kerry. I couldn’t think of but one reason. That was the one cited to me by the legendary Pops C., just before the election of 1980, exactly 24 years ago. Pops was the longtime proprietor, racker and ragger at the House of Dominoes. I’ve mentioned him here before, as the only one who could get the Coke box to work. Pops knew just about all there was to know about politics and religion. He was a Democrat. But when I took one of my informal presidential polls there in the domino parlor, he said, "I don’t know the first thing about this Reagan whorehopper, except he’s bound to be better than what we’ve got in there now." He meant Jimmy Carter, of course, who was presiding at the time over those 22 per cent, interest rates. I could’ve beat Jimmy Carter at that point. Harold Stassen could’ve beat him if he’d got the Republican nomination. If he could go back in time from now, Ralph Nader could’ve beat him. My least favorite in-law, a hateful smart-aleck sot , possibly the sorriest person in the United States at the time, now deceased, would’ve beat him in a landslide. So that’s what I told this guy the other day: I know next to nothing about this Kerry whorehopper, but he couldn’t help being an improvement. The only list I could give him was not why he should vote for Kerry but against what we’ve got in there now. He said he’d take it under advisement, whatever that means. Here’s my list. It wasn’t John Kerry who came up with that weapons of mass destruction crock. It wasn’t John Kerry who brought forth all that color-coded duct-tape-and-plastic-sheeting hunker-in-the-bunker Homeland Security nonsense. It wasn’t John Kerry who had the bright idea that pounding those Afghan goatherds was a good way to avenge the 9/11 victims. It wasn’t John Kerry who made America the country that starts wars rather than ending them. It’s not John Kerry who’s the smirker. It wasn’t John Kerry who ignored the warning by a president with the same name about invading Iraq with no exit stragtegy. It’s not John Kerry who thinks the job of being president is just too hard and, in his own case, is undoubtedly right about that. It wasn’t John Kerry who brought aboard the squirreliest politician in America and put him in charge of maintaining the integrity of the legal system and the sanctity of the Constitution. Or who searched out and elevated the spookiest judges in the land. John Kerry isn’t the candidate who cozies up to these talk radio blowhards. John Kerry isn’t the candidate that God has told all these blowhard preachers to promote. The Enron types aren’t lined up behind John Kerry. It wasn’t John Kerry who thought up letting Pat Robertson’s ilk give away your money as federal charity to the wretched. There’d be no Dr. Strangerove running a Kerry White House. There aren’t likely to be whole books of Kerryisms. It’s not John Kerry who would let genuine, fully developed human beings die for lack of new therapies on the chance that a microscopic glob of cells that’s never going to be anything more than a microscopic glob of cells might have a soul. It’s not John Kerry who’d just give Halliburton the mint. It’s not John Kerry whomping on the poor old gays. It’s not John Kerry who doesn’t read. It wasn’t under John Kerry that the record surpluses became record deficits. It wasn’t under John Kerry that job growth became an oxymoron. It wasn’t under John Kerry that gasoline moved into the category of a luxury. It wasn’t John Kerry who, when called, found a way not to go. Can’t see John Kerry mugging in the flyboy suit under the Mission Accomplished banner. It wasn’t John Kerry who said earlier this year, "…the illiteracy level of our children are appalling." Or that he was opposed to terrorists "who kill at the whim of a hat." The fake bulge in the pants doesn’t sound like John Kerry. It’s not John Kerry who sees the sunny side of outsourcing. It’s not John Kerry who does that disgusting hawking and spitting thing. It’s not John Kerry whose whole bunch just gives you the creeps. It’s not John Kerry whose running mate will tell you to go eff yourself. It’s not John Kerry who requires you to sign a loyalty oath to attend one of his rallies. It wasn’t John Kerry who dropped the dog. It wasn’t John Kerry who got his adolescent rocks off blowing up frogs with firecrackers. It wasn’t John Kerry who thought the prescription drug benefit meant giving it to the drug companies. It wasn’t John Kerry who thought up a public education policy called No Child Left Behind as another way of saying None of Them Get Anywhere. It wasn’t John Kerry who once dated Nixon’s daughter, raising a prospect of familial conjunction that’s just too horrible to contemplate. Etc. A list almost too easy of compilation. Sad, though. Pretty quickly depressing.

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