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Monthly Archives: September 2008

HuffPo #4 – Let’s Be Blue – A Plea for Partisanship

Here’s my latest article on the Huffington Post, where I argue for Democrats to use the word “Democrat” again.  If you like it, please buzz it up.  After a few posts, I finally have my own login information at HuffPo, so I’ll now be able to post directly to the site whenever I choose. This will be much nicer than my old method of posting, which involved a long e-mail chain and sometimes meant significant delays between when an article was written and when it got posted.  This should mean more posts from me as well.  Very exciting.  Thanks to those who made this a reality.

If you happen to be reading my blog and have not yet read my book (a small demographic, I’m sure), you may suspect the book to be quite the polemic–particularly given my last two posts. Rest assured, this is not the case.  I take great pains to avoid beating anyone over the head with a political agenda in my fiction.  The book is meant to be enjoyable for readers of all political persuasions, and my goal as a satirist is to raise questions rather than answer them.  So please forgive me if I get a bit heated in my blog posts these days. We’ve reached that all-too-familiar moment in the political season where I start to fear the rest of the country is living in a different reality than I am, one in which facts are subjective, where up is down and down is up and who wears lipstick is more important than who lives or dies.  It’s crazy season.

Sarah Palin is Dick Cheney but Worse

My original title for this post was “Sarah Palin is Geraldine Ferraro but Worse,” but in the end, I decided to go with the Dick Cheney comparison in the name of symmetry (click to read my “Joe Biden is Dick Cheney but in a Good Way” post).  Either comparison is equally valid.

Walter Mondale’s pick of Geraldine Ferraro in 1984 was applauded by women but viewed with skepticism by many Republicans.  Ferraro was not the most experienced potential vice president, having served only three terms in the House of Representatives. Was this a gender-based affirmative action pick?  Was it stunt casting?  If the motives behind Mondale’s choice of Ferraro were at worst questionable, the motives behind McCain’s choice of Palin are at best transparently calculating and monstrously hypocritical.

Sarah Palin was not picked because John McCain thought she would make the best vice president.  Fact.  She was picked because he thought she could help him win the election, because John McCain cynically believed that Palin could get both the religious right and disaffected female Hillary supporters onto the big red bus.  She was picked because she had extreme right wing views, folksy charm, and a vagina.  That’s it. That’s the reason–and if you think otherwise, you are clearly drinking the Kool Aid.

The reasons behind McCain’s choice of Palin are so transparent as to be insulting.  Particularly, when one considers the first couple months of McCain’s campaign, during which time, all we heard from the senator was how critical it was to elect someone with experience to the Oval Office.  Experience!  Experience!  Experience!  And then he chooses an obscure governor with less than two years experience who has only traveled outside the continent one time as his pick to be the next potential leader of the free world?  Is your intelligence being insulted here, voter?  Does this bother you?  AND … have we started to notice a theme here with McCain’s hypocrisy?  One needn’t go back to 2000 to play the “let’s listen to old John McCain debate new John McCain” game.  One need only go back a month!

Which leads us to a new theme, one that should be the Democrats’ rallying cry for the next 50 days: “John McCain will say and do absolutely anything to get elected.”  His principles have left the building.  The dirty campaign ads, the flip flops on energy, on the Bush tax cuts, on …

But now I’ve gotten off track.  I was talking about Sarah Palin.  Oh, yes.  And how she is like Ferraro.  But much worse.  And Dick Cheney.  But much worse.

“Much worse than Dick Cheney?” you say, “Dick Cheney, evil overlord of the Bush presidency?  Surely, you must be joking. How can anyone be worse than Dick Cheney?”  Let’s look at what she believes.  Is she all that different from Dick Cheney?  Are her views any more moderate?   Would she be the slightest bit less trigger-happy as commander in chief than he?  Does she express any more enthusiasm toward the idea of diplomacy?  Is she at all less likely to be accused of cronyism?  Surely, his social views are more in the mainstream than hers.  When you look at the issues, Sarah Palin is every bit as extreme as Dick Cheney, but with less experience to back up those convictions on almost every count.

And here’s how she’s worse: she’s likable.  Dick Cheney’s bad judgement and underhandedness may be colossal, but I’ll say this for him: at least he looks the part.  His exterior is a caricature of his interior.  This makes him, on some level, less dangerous. As the movies teach us, the most frightening characters are not those with fangs and a cape; they’re easy to avoid.  No, the scariest ones are those who look and talk just like us, those with appealing exteriors, those who know how to charm us, even as they trick us into privatizing social security and fighting made-up wars.

In fact, maybe I’ve made a mistake in my Sarah Palin comparisons.  I’ve over-looked the most obvious and frightening of them all.  Now who was that inexperienced governor they called a reformer?  You know, the one who held grudges and tried to make us believe his lies even after they were proved false …

I think I’ve blocked the name.

So then I got married …

Bill & Carin\'s Wedding - sunflowers

You may have noticed it has been a while since I’ve written. Funny thing, really. I went and got myself married. Trust me, I have no shortage of opinions about everything that’s been going on in the country lately. I’ve just been too busy to write.

As for the wedding, it was perfect: truly, the best day of our lives. And let me tell you, we were not shooting for “best day of our lives.” We just wanted to make it a good day. We wanted to make sure we didn’t to get so caught up in last-minute crises or minutiae that we didn’t enjoy ourselves. We also didn’t want to spend so much time worrying about pleasing everyone else that we didn’t get to enjoy the amazing food or spend time on the dance floor. Mission accomplished.

I felt like a very lucky man on my wedding day: lucky to be marrying the girl I was, lucky to have such amazing friends, lucky to come from (and be marrying into) such a loving family. I felt very rich. The people in my life make me a wealthy man (even when my book sales do not).

But I’ll spare you any more gushing. Here is photographic evidence:

Awesome Wedding Picture

carinbill-noses-willow

To see more pics by our amazing photographers, you can check out this slideshow.