The Pink Republicans

New York City. Republicans. About as suitable a combination as milk shakes and uranium tailings. Like a tricked out '78 Buick Deuce and a Quarter and a Papal motorcade. Like banana slugs and oatmeal. Okay, you get the idea. But the natural antipathy of the two could explain why the Republicans who showed up here in the Big Apple this week are making so nice. These aren't actual conservatives, these are the stunt Republicans. Not the fierce ideological warriors determined to energize and reward their base in the red states, this fabulously moderate group of blow dried teeth they're trotting out on our TVs are the watered down pastel version of the GOP. The Pink Republicans.

You remember them. These are the ones who showed up in Philadelphia four years ago. The inclusive, big tent, we're-all-in-this-together, can't-we-just-get- along, and aren't-those-minorities-talented Republicans. Always wondered what happened to them. Seem to have disappeared for awhile. Must be cousins to those cicadas that burrow in the ground and emerge to feed on a set cycle years later. Like quadrennial insects, the masked Republicans have crawled out of their holes to infest the American airwaves again.

Those of you who have read the party platform could be forgiven your confusion. This is a different land. Welcome to: Home on the Strange, where not a discouraging word will be heard. No mention of discrimination to gays or decimations to Head Start programs or Constitutional amendments outlawing abortion. You will hear happy smiley red white and blue pap. But the sheep's clothing strategy worked last time and smart campaign managers don't abandon good things. But if you expect to see the crazed zealots who have been running the country for the last four years, forget about it. You got a better chance of seeing New York City impose a midnight curfew so its citizens are guaranteed a good night's sleep.

Does anybody besides me wonder where the red Republicans are this week? The strutting Enrons, arrogant Lotts, environment raping, screw the poor, Constitution stripping, war mongering rich white guy Republicans. Where the hell are they spending their convention? Holed up in a Cayman Islands corporate condo planning more pre- emptive strikes on countries with nothing to do with 9-11 and without ties to al Qaeda or possessing any Weapons of Mass Destruction?

The Pink Republicans are a lot like the menu at Denny's. Smack dab in the middle of the mainstream and sometimes all a family can afford. And the tight focus glossy pictures of the food do look delicious, and you think to yourself, "How can they screw up bacon and eggs?" But when a soggy skimpy wilted mess arrives at your table, you discover how. And you don't even bother complaining, only blaming yourself, "Hey, it's Denny's for crum's sake. What was I thinking?"

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