Yesterday, I reached a tipping point in my frustration with the rapid decay of our political discourse and by the fact that we appear to have wandered into a long-lost Joseph Heller or George Orwell novel. Seeing that things were turning ugly (and ridiculous) quickly, and that Obama seemed to be painted into a corner, I used my lunchbreak to take a stab at figuring out how Obama could possibly respond. This is what I came up with.
Though maybe I should have saved my lunchtime and read what Paul Krugman wrote which made the same points. But he makes those points with facial hair, which gives him a decided edge... that and the fact that he writes for the New York Times.
Okay then, now that my brief foray as imaginary speechwriter is over, it's back to picture books for me!
Flashback to: 24 February 2008
Author/Illustrator: Tom Tierney
Anyone following the election knows that every Republican nominee had been desperately trying stake claim as the heir apparent to Ronald Reagan. Mitt Romney had the looks, but not the soul. Fred Thompson had the acting chops, but not the stamina. Mike Huckabee had the charm, but not the stature. (I'm not even going to bother with Giuliani and Ron Paul... the rest of the country isn't, why should I?)
Now, for all intents and purposes, there is one GOP candidate left standing: John McCain. And now, thanks to Tierney's book, McCain can actually put on Reagan's clothes and try to convince America that he is Reagan's true successor.
Though I don't see it happening. Reagan's greatest asset was his gift as an orator--he was such a great speaker that he fooled the country into thinking that a silly idea like Trickle-down economics made sense. As for McCain, his speeches sound about as convincing as a 4th grader reading the book report that his mom wrote for him.
But still, let's take a look at how McCain might conjure the spirit of Reagan to convince America that he is as paper-thin as the Gipper himself.
Straight Shootin' John McCain
I am the candidate that is not afraid to tell it like it is. I shoot straight from the hip. I drive the Straight Talk Express. And the straight truth is that despite my better judgment, I have no choice but to pander to my party's base in order to secure the Republican nomination.
If that means supporting the Bush tax cuts, so be it. If it means fudging my stance on torture, why not? If it means denouncing evolution, bring it on! In fact, if I did see a dinosaur, I would shoot it dead and serve it at my next fundraiser to prove just how straight I can shoot... at whatever it is the base wants me to take aim at.
Damage Control McCain
What, this picture? I've told you already that Ms. Iseman and I are merely acquaintances. I am saddened and frustrated by the obvious liberal media bias being perpetuated by the New York Times.
I also find it comical--if a bit flattering--that anyone would believe that a man of my age would still have any sexual impulses left. Because my friends, let me assure you... when it comes to little John McCain, he's been little John McCan't for some time now.
Bedtime for Bonzo McCain
My friends, we live in dangerous times. We must take care not to let our guard down lest we allow the terrorists to win. Just like Ronald Reagan held firm when caring for an unruly chimpanzee named Bonzo, I, as your Commander In Chief vow to accept the challenge and stare the great ape of terrorism in the eye. And trust me my friends, I won't be the first to blink.
The Democrats don't have the backbone to put Bonzo to bed. But I assure you, the American people, that when I am President, I will not rest until we get the monkey of terror off our backs and we put the issue to bed once and for all.
When I consider the prospect of another neglectful Democratically-led country, I think back to something the great Ronald Reagan once told me. He told me, "Johnny, whether you're babysitting a chimp or battling terrorists, you can be sure of one thing: If you turn your back for even one second, you are going to get feces thrown at you." So America, the choice is yours: do you want to get feces thrown at you? I didn't think so.