I have attempted in recent years as America's two major political parties have taken turns going off the rails-I think it's the party of Lincoln's turn (again; hope you saved those Goldwater/Miller campaign posters) to draw out Republican friends who are now 'conservative' (and yet don't practice recycling) on their assessment of the chances of The Rail Splitter being admitted into the party tracing its lineage back to him.
I am being ironic, to a degree, but since Faux News' Sean Hannity hasn't yet reported on metals, precious and otherwise, the concept escapes them. Their loss, as I'm here for my own amusement most days. I must point out they are surprisingly (to me) comfortable in their desire to be right rather than be President and I'm fervently hoping, come Election Day, that remains the case.
The Democrats are such a train wreck, one is tempted to look away but I have no idea what happens when you're not watching them, as their bad behavior when we are watching is astounding. I don't mean just their morality--what kind of boob sees the outcome of the John Edwards trial as a victory? And do we mention Anthony Weiner and his well, you know what or Charles Rangel and his elastic ethics? They are, however, and however flawed, closer to being 'The Big Tent' their-across-the-aisle colleagues were when I was a kid.
Today's Republican party has purged itself of its Nelson Rockefellers, Charles Percys, Bill Scrantons, John Chafees, Edward Brookes, Clifford Cases, Millicent Fenwicks and Peter Freylinghausens (those three, I'm proud to say, are Jerseyans with Case a fellow Scarlet Knight ) and is about to push Olympia Snowe onto an ice floe and cheer while shouting 'good riddance.' If Mitt Romney is too liberal for your base, as a wiser and hairier creature concluded many years ago, it's probably time for new head gear.
Earlier this week my brother Adam, known in some parts of the Kenny Klan as 'Finally! A Son with Brains!' offered his own Election 2012 Prayer of Assisi. As a statement of intent, it's a fine place to start and an even better place to end up. We won't, because we love the dirt and the hurt and shame on us.
We have two plus wars bleeding us dry, literally and figuratively-an economic recovery that may well have been designed by the Terrier sitting in the Wheelbarrow out of the Monopoly game with a concomitant concentration of wealth and power last seen just before the French Revolution, and just as obscene. I suspect the futures market for knitting needles is at all-time highs and nobody at Smith-Barney has any idea why.
So let's see how close we get to calling Romney the "M" word and Obama the "N" word. I still think if the President inserts an apostrophe between the first and second letter of his last name, he's looking at a five point bump in the polls. As for Mitt, short of dragging out a brother named Bat and a cousin Glove, you have to dance with the one that brung ya.
The Lincoln-Douglas debates set a standard, since then we've had Laurel and Hardy, as well as Stiller and Meara. We are selecting the most powerful person on earth, NOT electing the next Prom King, and if we don't start to realize this we'll pass from the stages and pages of history faster than we may already be doing.
We get the government we deserve-sounds more ominous than optimistic. There's just so many times we can dodge that bullet and this November we may find out we've exhausted our good fortune. Stop voting for bumper stickers and voice bytes (yeah, I mean Linda McMahon and all the flying monkeys like her)-insist on debates of meaning and merit. Each of us, our time, our talent and our treasure, is worth the world-make the man who wishes to be our next President treat us with the respect and intelligence we have earned.