Connect with us

Thai Life

Land of smiles: Recapping the conventions

Published

 on 

PHUKET: Here are some highlights of the recent US political conventions for readers who may have missed them on TV:

The main thrust of the Republican convention was to emphasize Mitt Romney’s warm humanity. Mitt reminds people of one of those wooden statues of American Indians that used to stand outside cigar stores. To humanize him, they brought out his wife Ann, a warm and vivacious woman who stole the show. Many viewers must have wondered why they didn’t nominate Ann, and send Mitt back to stand outside a cigar store.

Mitt gave a speech that revealed his warm humanity. He reminisced that his father used to give his mother a fresh rose every morning. He neglected to tell us whether he had ever given Ann so much as a dandelion.

CNN political guru David Gergen opined that Mitt evoked Norman Rockwell America. That could be a problem for Mitt. Norman Rockwell was a popular artist who portrayed an idealized version of small-town America around the 1940s. Rockwell is dead. His America may also be dead. And there are no cigar stores left.

Mitt missed a bet by not bringing out one of his ‘house slaves’ to testify to his warm humanity. “Mr. Mitt is so sensitive to our feelings,” the slave might have emoted. “Why, when they take us outside to flog us, Mr. Mitt can’t bear to watch. He stays inside to re-itemize his tax deductions and keeps the door closed to shut out our screams.”

The Republicans suffered a major disaster when they let revered movie icon Clint Eastwood give a rambling, quavering speech to an empty chair. I’ve been a big fan of Clint ever since the spaghetti westerns of the 1960s, and it nearly killed me to see this shambling old guy, now white-haired, wrinkled, and 82, unwittingly torpedo his own legacy. They should never let you speak in public after you’re 65.

The Democratic convention was much livelier than the Republican one. Bill Clinton gave the best speech of both conventions: “We say, ‘We’re all in this together.’ The Republicans say, ‘You’re on your own.'” Even Obama couldn’t top that. Unfortunately Bill’s speech was too long (it always is), at 48 minutes. If you can’t say it in 20 minutes, you’re not doing your job.

Obama didn’t need to emphasize his warm humanity, but he did anyway. He affirmed that he tried to be home for dinner every night at 6:30 to help his daughters with their homework. That made me wonder. Wouldn’t the country be better off if he let Michelle handle the homework while he stayed in the Oval Office burning the midnight oil and struggling to reduce the deficit?

Both conventions were marred by American jingoism, with delegates chanting “USA all the way” and the usual gush about the greatest nation on Earth. But if you didn’t take it too seriously, it was a lot of fun. Primates acting like primates. Just like a circus.

Ye Olde Curmudgeon, who plans to vote for George Washington, can be scolded for his cynicism c/o s.tsow@ymail.com.

— Ye Olde Curmudgeon

 

Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand35 mins ago

CCSA to consider extending Thailand tourist visa to 45 days | GMT

Visa16 hours ago

CCSA to consider extending Thailand tourist visa to 45 days

Bangkok16 hours ago

Man caught taking drugs inside a Bangkok police booth didn’t give a crap

Sponsored1 day ago

Enjoy a splashing time and immerse yourself in Thai Mythology in Andamanda Phuket

Thailand16 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Thailand no longer considers Covid “dangerous infectious disease” 

Crime16 hours ago

Wife says boss of Mountain B in Pattaya is ‘not a villain’

Crime17 hours ago

Policeman poses as Buddhist monk to trick drug dealers in central Thailand

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Travel17 hours ago

Stress-free travel with AXA Travel Insurance

Guides17 hours ago

Mother’s Day in Thailand 2022: 5 fun ways to pamper your mom

Thailand17 hours ago

Thai minister insists minimum wage increase is not electioneering

Bangkok18 hours ago

Swedish Embassy hailed for giving 6-month parental leave to Thai staff

Travel19 hours ago

Everything you need to know about the Bangkok Skytrain (BTS)

Environment19 hours ago

PM warns Thailand to brace itself for potential flooding

Travel20 hours ago

Watch Koh Samui’s magical sunset from these sunset bars

Thailand20 hours ago

Local hero predicts building collapse, saves countless lives in eastern Thailand

Phuket20 hours ago

9 year old boy kills a 7 year old girl with a police pistol in Phuket

Thailand11 months ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism1 year ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism1 year ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand1 year ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism1 year ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending