I had dinner with some friends in Zanesville last night, watched the President’s speech at the convention, then taped a panel discussion this morning on the convention for ONN for Sunday’s broadcast. Just got back to the office. Lot of driving, lot of thinking (with the help of my trusty satellite radio). The Democratic consultant (Why am I not a consultant, these guys all dress better?) who was my opponent on the show revealed a couple of things about how this campaign is going. Wouldn’t one normally say that the campaign is starting now, after the second convention? Rather, I think I’m going to argue that it is the start of the end of the campaign. Let me explain. This Demo consultant was in a tither. He was perspiring and nervous and ill at ease in this political world. I tried to engage him in pleasant small talk to get him to relax, and he wouldn’t have it. He was utterly incapable of saying anything interesting or analytical about what is going on with Bush and Kerry. He could only talk about the personal relationship between bin Laden and the Bush family and that’s why Bush didn’t mention bin Laden by name last night. Oil, money, Halliburton, deep, deep conspiracies. I was amazed because he did this both in public and in private. We are talking about black helicopters here folks! I noted this more quickly than I may have otherwise because I had heard pieces of Kerry’s midnight speech
in Springfield, Ohio (just down the road) on the radio, and also saw a bit of it on TV this morning. This is the talk in which Kerry--not even having heard Bush’s talk at the convention, I venture to suggest--says that Bush is not fit to command, and in which Kerry says something like, "All hat and no cattle." I have learned that recognizing extreme folly is often very difficult because it is (somehow) inexplicable; entirely unreasonable. Both Kerry and the Democratic consultant fall into this mode. Madness is surprising and you are inclined to say it ain’t so when you think you glimpse it. I kept saying it ain’t so when I heard Kerry, and said the same as I was sitting next to the Demo in Columbus. What is going on here? Maybe it is as simple as Mark Steyn’s understanding in the current paper National Review when he says that Kerry is a parody of himself: "Groucho Marx once observed that an audience will laugh at an actress playing an old lady pretending to fall downstairs, but for a professional comic to laugh, it has to be a real old lady." That is the Kerry campaign. Steyn says that watching Mondale or Dukakis fall down is not completely satisfying. These guys are average. But not John Kerry. He was made for the role: "a vain thin-skinned droning blueblood with an indestructible sense of his own status but none at all of his own ridiculousness." Bingo. The campaign is over, the outcome is a given. I kind of regret this because I was looking forward to it. By the way, I thought Bush’s speech was perfect. And one more thing, note this Time magazine poll. Time says that there is now a "clear leader" in the campaign. It shows that Bush has opened a double digit lead, Bush has 52% to Kerrys 41%. Im going home.