The brilliant and legendary Barry Crimmins, one of the great political satirists in the country, has an end of year retrospective in the Boston Phoenix. As always, it’s full of little gems. Like this one:
The Dems took their seats with specific instructions from voters to get us the hell out of Iraq. They responded with a non-binding resolution — a concoction consisting of equal parts Kaopectate and Milk of Magnesia. It was meant to sort of, um, suggest, if it wasn’t too much trouble or anything, that the president perhaps think about reducing troop levels in a war that two-thirds of the American people opposed. After several weeks of decisive Democratic language readjustments, the measure failed.
Throughout the year, the party of the donkey stubbornly nuanced its stances, leaving the Bush-Cheney White House no choice but to do exactly whatever the heck it wanted.
And this one:
Also from Iraq came the story of the brave men and men of a “private security firm” called Blackwater USA — the vision of all-American entrepreneur Erik Prince. A few years back, Prince realized that what this country needed was a way for the private sector to simultaneously profiteer on both temp workers and war. Before long, his troops, trained in North Carolina but welcome in health-care facilities nowhere, were drinking and shooting their way into the hearts of America and its swell new super embassy in Baghdad. Oh sure, they massacred their share of innocent Iraqis, but who at the State Department was about to complain about the drunk guys with the automatic weapons?
Perhaps the most significant departure was that of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. Politically eulogizing Gonzales, Bush said, “He has aggressively and successfully pursued public corruption.” No argument here.
But the fact that Obama could stop Clinton does amplify his appeal. The idea that the New York senator was the most electable Dem drove many to resign themselves to supporting her. These folks didn’t ask, why is someone who is reviled by half the country a “sure thing” in what is likely to be a two-candidate general election?
Outside of the fact that she will bring all the rabid anti-Clinton crackpots out of hiding, she’ll also drive a measurable portion of progressives into political hibernation. Clinton is feminist in name only — concerning the war she’s voted almost the straight fatherland ticket. She exudes all the sincerity of Nigerian spam.
That last sentence may be the line of the year. On Giuliani:
Clinton’s a bargain compared with fellow New Yorker Rudolph Giuliani, a natural-born fascist who is drooling over the chance to take over an Oval Office replete with über powers vested in it by our current unitary executive. Giuliani has a lot in common with Bush. Between the two of them there isn’t a single qualm about politically exploiting the innocents massacred on their watch on September 11, 2001. Giuliani claimed he spent more time at Ground Zero than anyone else. The truth is, he spent more time feeding off it than anyone else.
And on Romney:
Mitt Romney wrote enough checks dated 2007 to keep the economies of both Iowa and New Hampshire afloat. While pursuing the Oval Office, Romney won’t be answering any of those MTV questions about boxers or briefs, because he wears a special one-piece Jesus: the Sequel affair. In early December, he made a stirring plea for all religions to unite in hatred for atheists and agnostics. Don’t get me wrong, a man’s cult is a matter that should be between him and the people deciding whether or not he should run their country.
And he sums up the other candidates in a single sentence:
John Edwards? In a pinch, and this sure is one.
Dennis Kucinich? Absolutely, if anyone would give him a chance.
Joe Biden? The difference between a neolib and a neocon is the neolib pays lip service to you before he fucks you over.
Chris Dodd? See Biden.
Bill Richardson? See Biden and Dodd.
And the R’s:
Fred Thompson? All the charisma of Deputy Dawg but none of the intellectual acumen.
John McCain? Could gain steam from new Iraq fictions bolstering his jingoistic position, but he’s older than the dirt Bush threw at him in 2000.
Ron Paul? Against the war but also opposes reproductive rights for women and the human right of health care. Thanks just the same.
Tom Tancredo? See Millard Fillmore.
Duncan Hunter: See Birth of a Nation.