Dear Big Daddy,
As a Republican, I’m laughing at the Dems for running Doolittle out of town. Now they’re gonna be stuck with Tom McClintock, lol!
— Out of the Frying Pan
Dear Tittering for Tom,
Be it Three Card Monte, roller derby or curling, there always seems to be a game whose constant presence in editorial cartoons helps define a political era. And it says a lot about our own sorry political era that we’re defined by that old S&M arcade favorite, Whack-a-Mole (where is PETA on this?).
The cartoon I’ve been waiting for is Jack Bauer playing Whack-a-Mole. This time, the mole is wedged in his hole with his head sticking up, probably because he tried to take too many questionable campaign contributions down there with him and got stuck. Bauer is just whacking away, asking questions but not listening to the answers, whack-whack-whack, the bomb’s gone off and Los Angeles is destroyed and he just doesn’t care, it’s all about the whacking and whack-whack, then that bald fellow from The Shield shows up with some jumper cables and a car battery and starts asking if Whack-a-Moles have nipples and next thing you know you’re left with a pile of charred plastic and you forgot what the interrogation was about in the first place.
Because that’s basically what happened with the Democrats and John Doolittle. They thought they could just torture the mole as long as they wanted and it would just stick around and take it. In case any readers think this is starting to sound so much like their love lives it’s making them uncomfortable, I’ll move on.
Democrats warn that if you have a waterboard, everything looks like a bomb about to go off, but they may want to check out their own Web page at Human Rights Watch.
Because there they’ll find Mark Foley, Larry Craig, Doolittle and several other guys they wanted to hang around so they could keep poking them with sharp sticks. That’s how the game is played these days. Find someone on the other side with something to hide, and turn them into just enough of a liability that they cause problems but not enough of one that they step aside. In the blackjack of political embarrassment, the Dems finally went bust on the Auburn Albatross.
Worse, in McClintock, they have a mole who will whack back. McClintock’s a guy who was marching to the beat of his own drummer until he found out what the drummer was charging, fired him and started beating the damn thing himself to save money. Here’s hoping that his campaign brings back Angus McClintock — you know, his fictional Scottish cousin from the commercials for his 2002 controller campaign. I’m picturing a nice spot of them dumpster-diving together, talking about the federal budget deficit, then finding a perfectly good toaster and bringing it home. Added bonus: First-time voters may get confused and think they’re voting for that fellow who plays Shrek.
That is, if McClintock even needs to run a campaign. This may sound strange, but what’s most notable to me about McClintock is how Zen he is. Bear with me here, I’m not asking you to picture him omming away cross-legged on a mountaintop. But McClintock has mastered the political art of being without desire — or at least looking that way. You want to elect me to Congress? Well, I guess so. I only have to make the slightest nod toward pretending to live in the district? If you insist. You want to have a “Draft Tom” rally outside the Capitol? I’ll show up, but smiles cost extra.
Now I managed to have a few relationships with women that went this way, but I’ve never had that sort of flirtation with a political office. I’m telling you, Winnie the Pooh and The Matrix have nothing on this guy. Hell, the Buddha himself ought to be looking over his shoulder.
By re-electing Doolittle last time, the districts voters sent a clear signal that this is a Republican district until Jesus puts on a DNC pin and throws his hat in the ring — and even then only if the Big J says the right things about taxes. So what do California Dems really lose here? McClintock will be far, far away — and he actually drinks the fiscal Kool-Aid that all those borrow-and-spend Republicans in Washington like to talk about. If he goes to D.C. and crops some earmarks, this Dem won’t be crying too hard.