This is not my culture of fear

Oh, there goes that Joe Biden, shootin’ off his mouth again. Just when we thought we democrats were in the clear, ole’ Joe lets off a doozy. And what a doozy it was, implying that an Obama nomination equaled a forthcoming “test” by the international community in the name of an unexpected war situation, terrorist bomb plot or nuclear missile launch by the North Koreans against America! The options are endless! Who knows what those crazy foreigners will think up if scary Obama is elected as the next most powerful man in the world. McCain and Palin’s act of jumping on Biden’s relatively mild remarks just demonstrates their attempt to reinforce the American culture of fear.

Biden’s comment wasn’t exactly the jumping off point for the republicans’ stabs at fear-mongering. We’ve all read the messages: Barack “Hussein” Obama, oh my! Obama is the anti-Christ! Don’t vote Obama, his name sounds like Osama – he must be a terrorist or a Muslim (heaven forbid)! Say no to the democrats – we wouldn’t want a president whose race represents a large majority of the world’s population!

What McCain and Palin seem not to have grasped yet is that the world is not afraid of Obama – they are afraid of McCain and Palin. Since my sojourn out of America, I have never once met a person rooting for McCain. His military experience does not inspire confidence but instead sends chills down peoples’ spines. Whenever I mentioned who I was going to vote for in the last few months, I always received a hardy, “I hope Obama!” Thus, threatening Americans with the prospect of a potentially “dangerous” Obama in the White House is not only preposterous, it is ignorant.

Speaking of ignorant, let’s take a quick look at the woman who is, as Jack Cafferty says, “one 73 year-old’s heartbeat away from becoming the next president.” Every syllable out of Palin’s tight lips is unintelligible, pathetic, uninformed blathering, most of which has been regurgitated from her disorganized notes, to which she is constantly making conspicuous glances during interviews and debates (I guess those republicans never thought what would come after that one winning speech at the RNC).

Never mind Palin’s embarrassing Midwestern accent (and I say this as a Minnesotan!), spewing things about Obama inciting the next bombing of America by the Iranians just for insinuating we have a conversation with a few of its lower-level leaders doesn’t even make logical sense. Calling him a socialist and saying that he’s going to take money out of blue collar worker’s pockets (some of whom aren’t even legally employed, as we now know) and throw it into the awaiting hands of the poor is an inaccurate manipulation of one sentence made on the campaign trail. And on that note, I would rather pay a little extra each month so that Joe the Plumber’s impoverished neighbor can put food on the table than to have Cindy McCain take all of my savings to pay for her yacht. But would the republicans ever admit that that is where your hard-earned money goes? As usual, the republican party is catering to the lowest common denominator, the most uneducated voters, the ones who will believe every soundbite out of context they hear on CNN.

But will the strategy work? What frightens me is that it already has in the past. Just look at President Bush, who can barely string five words together to form a cohesive sentence, much less to make a valid point. The dumbing down of America has been ever present for years, but throughout this campaign season, it seems to have reached new heights.

McCain and Palin’s grasping for straws this late in the game – blowing an innocent comment made by a notably blunt (and highly intelligent) speaker – shows that they are well behind in the polls and will do anything to win. This should be a warning sign to all to-be republican voters. Do we want a president who will capitalize on other people’s weaknesses, who will take those cheap shots just to get ahead? McCain and Palin must really be getting worried if they think one Joe Biden comment is going to swing all those electoral votes their way (oops, have they forgotten about that side of the game?)

I am already feeling a little pre-post-election depression. What will Americans talk about when this election is over? What will journalists and bloggers write about? And the bigger question, if McCain and Palin win, will they make those refrigerator magnets of the two with attachable clothing and machine guns like they did with Bush (or in this case, an oil rig, hockey stick and t-shirt reading, “I’m a Maverick!”)?

By then, of course, we’ll have the new president to complain about and I know we’ll enjoy the task heartily. The French may be known for their premier complaining skills, but I think this year, we Americans have got the title wrapped up.

Now where did that Bush magnet go? I think I dropped it under the fridge. It would so expertly complete my current image of Bush standing in white robes, a long black beard and holding a shotgun. Ah yes, here it is – a think bubble with the words, “Fermez la Bush.”

Yes, it’s decided. If McCain wins, I’m definitely staying in France. And if he dies in office and Palin starts running the show… I’m taking my friends and family with me.

2 responses to “This is not my culture of fear

  1. Andrew Woodall

    Sarah Palin scares me in new and interesting ways that G W Bush could never possibly hope to achieve. The fact that she’s irritating is a side issue (but boy she is irritating, if I hear here tell us she loves frakking hockey moms one more time!), its hear apparent lack of knowledge of even the magazines she reads is alarming.

    Although I don’t like his tactics, or his politics, I can see why some are draw to a figure like McCain, thankfully though, I suspect its already lost. But what do I know, I was convinced they were out last time and look how that turned out.

  2. Hey, I’m an ex-pat Minnesotan in France too…wanna chat?

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