Election 2004

Follow That Mofo

Kerry will let house cool after rousing night with Clintons; meanwhile, a new campaign slogan – "shove it!"
It's a good thing John Kerry doesn't have to grace the Convention stage until Thursday, because that will give the party faithful 72 whole hours to recover from Monday's rousing speeches by the holy triumvirate of the Democrat's Hall of Fame: Bill, Hillary and Al. And oh yeah, Jimmy Carter spoke too. Transported back to the good old days of stock market tech bubbles and Dan Rather stumbling over the word "penis" in his national newscast, this lefty gathering of political groupies wept openly at the soaring rhetoric of familiar comets flashing by for what may be the last time. There was nary a dry greying pony tail in the bunch, but there were multiple scuffed blue jean knees from repeated genuflection.

Not that anybody outside the Fleet Center without cable saw it, since our big three major networks plan less coverage of the conventions than Al Jeezera. No, really. The Arab news network has its own skybox in the hall (and will most likely be more temperate in their criticism than Fox News) and plans on covering the event for an hour and a half a day, airing 50% more of the proceedings than NBC, CBS and ABC. I'm not totally sure about this, but I think I read where the Home Shopping Network plans more coverage than the big three. Or was it Animal Planet?

Of course with the vice presidential choice already choosed, and the party platform hammered out back in '03, there ain't what you call a whole lot of news to cover. Then throw into the mix credentialed media types outnumbering the delegates by about 4-to-1, and how surprising is it to find most of the stories coming out of Boston are interviews with other journalists? I saw a camera crew filming a radio guy being interviewed by a newspaper columnist. It's so incestuous, I'm convinced half of us are going to fly out of Boston with an advanced case of hemophilia.

Exacerbating the lack of news is the rumored semi-gag order placed on all podium speakers. Whoopi Goldberg wannabees are not welcome here. And yes, I imagine that edict will also be dropped into Teresa Heinz Kerry's mailbox as well, based on her "shove it" admonition to a combative Pittsburgh reporter. Although one school of thought holds her outburst might not be such a bad thing, as it humanizes the family by demonstrating an actual emotion. Besides, it was a reporter, and who hasn't secretly wanted to snarl "shove it" to the media?

Come to think of it, that should be John Kerry's response when his Cape Canaveral spacesuit photo invites the inevitable comparison to Michael Dukakis' unfortunate tank helmet shot. "Shove it." Or turn the lemon into lemonade by running with it and replacing the Convention Theme with: "Hey Bush: Shove It." Much more succinct a slogan than "Stronger At Home and Playing Nicer with Others in Foreign Lands Where the Women Don't Shave Their Legs and the Men Wear Way Too Much Perfume" or whatever it is now.
Will Durst thinks Teresa Heinz Kerry should challenge Dick Cheney to a winner-take-all cage match on pay-per-view.
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