August 31, 2004
RNC Day One: White, Straight America Gets Hoodwinked
You would think, judging from the speeches delivered at last night's Republican National Convention events, that one issue and one issue only faces America: terrorism. Here is a complete list of the topics addressed last night: September 11th, the War on Terror, and how John Kerry changes his mind a lot. Remember the DNC, and how the speakers there covered the war, the economy, health care, education, civil rights, race and class issues, and on and on? If I were sitting out there in the sea of white, straight, vanilla Republican delegates, I might get a little bored of hearing essentially the same message over and over again for three hours every night.
Let's look at McCain's speech. He talked about Iraq and the war on terror. Well honestly, what else could he talk about without drawing attention to his many divergences from the Bush platform? Could he talk about the economy? The environment? His military record? Stem cell research? Gay rights? The tax cuts? No way. He did, however, deliver some quotes that sounded like some kind of new hippie Republicanism that was all about love as a military value, a "love that is invincible" that will vanquish our enemies. During McCain's speech about how America is bringing the love and freedom of Democracy to those evil, backward Arabs, I couldn't help but think of a recent poll in Latin American countries in which more and more people in some countries say that Democracy hasn't worked out for them, and they might prefer an authoritarian government. But what do they know?
And now let's look at Giuliani, who proved once and for all that, even though people were glad to have him around after September 11th, he is still a gigantic asshole. He had a few problems getting the crowd on his side with his strong pro-New York attitude. Rudy, I've got some news for you: many Republicans hate New York and New Yorkers. Remember? When you open your speech with "Welcome to the capital of the world," and nobody cheers (well, actually, I cheered at home, but this was the only part of his speech that I liked) you might want to remember who you're talking to.
The strongest part of Giuliani's speech was probably when he characterized Bush as an unshakable leader who sticks to his beliefs even when they prove to be unpopular. This does seem to be something that people admire about Bush, but maybe Giuliani wasn't exactly the best person to wax on about this. Let's look at some of the unpopular beliefs that Giuliani held on to, even though they made him look like an insane jerk: jaywalking, dancing in bars, squeegees, Chris Ofili, and ferrets. You know, sometimes clinging to your beliefs and disregarding all other views just shows the world that you are a moron.
Another thing that Republican delegates seem to like is chanting. McCain looked like he was going to start telling the delegates to just shut UP already when they went on and on with the "Four More Years!" stuff. McCain, I am so sorry that your party is full of such embarrassing dorks, but you've done this to yourself. Even Dick Cheney looked irrate and disdainful during the second bout of chanting, even though these chants were inspired by Giuliani's praise of him as Vice President. But the saddest moment of all was Giuliani attempting to jump start his own round of chanting, this time by shaking his fist and saying "New York! New York!" until about 8 other people joined in.
Here's the first of Michael Moore's columns for USA Today. He notes that the delegates he talks to generally support socially progressive causes, and wonders how the Republican party has attracted so many supporters who do not share the party's views. Maybe that's why the party has invited so many in-name-only Republicans like Giuliani, Bloomberg, McCain, and Schwarzenegger to speak at their convention.