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RNC, Night One -- the view from Cow Hampshire

Well, it's 9:30 and I'm watching the RNC on C-SPAN. First one I noticed, was former NYC Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik, who praised President Bush's reactions to 9/11 and stuck in a few veiled cheap shots at Kerry. That was followed by a couple Bush union endorsements -- one from firefighters, one by NYPD Sergeants. The unions have always been considered strong forces behind the Democrats, but there have always been a few, relatively powerless, unions that have sided with the GOP. Police and firefighters are among them. That those unions are endorsing Bush should come as no surprise to anyone.

First impression: the roving "correspondents" supplied by the RNC are trying to appear like journalists covering some major event. To me, at least, they're coming across like 4:30 a.m. informercial shillers trying to imitate journalists -- and doing poorly at that.

Robert Khuzami, former assistant U.S. attorney from New York, just spent a couple minutes praising the Patriot Act and lambasting some of the false perceptions behind it. Again, no great shakes, but way too much applause.

I'm starting to realize why nobody but C-SPAN is skipping the first couple of hours of the convention. It's a lot like the halftime show of a college football game. If you're there, you might as well watch it; nothing else is going on. If you're watching on TV, why not go surfing for something else to watch until the game starts up again?

(Updates as they move me)


(Updates moved to below the fold)

9:45: An actress and a football player are giving a tribute to Congressional Medal Of Honor winners who are endorsing President Bush. Subtext 1: The Dems may have most of the celebrities, but we've got the REAL heroes. Subtext 2: If Kerry wants to keep waving his Bronze Star and Silver Star and three Purple Hearts, we'll bury him in bigger medals.

Question 1: Why were both of the CMOH winners wearing "1-800-CALL IDT" lanyards around their necks? Of all the things that should be free from crass commercialism, the Medal of Honor oughta be at the top of the list...

9:55: My bad. It appears lots of people are wearing those stupid IDT lanyards. I think it's for delegate credentials. They're still ugly and distracting. But then again, the GOP is supposed to be the party of NASCAR...

Oh, dear God, Republicans trying to dance and clap to funk. Come on, people, you're supposed to be moving AWAY from the label of "Party of Rich White Guys," not EMBRACING it... and nobody can dance as badly (especially to funk) as conservative white people. Go back to line dancing or something...

10:01 John McCain comes on stage to the "Indiana Jones" theme. Well, I guess they couldn't get the "Superman" theme rights...

10:06: McCain starts off by trying to kidnap FDR for the GOP. Good move: wartime president in great struggle against evil; commander in chief with no significant personal military career. Expect howls of outrage from Democrats in 3...2...1...

10:13: I think this is the third recitation of 9/11 and the war in Afghanistan I've heard since 9:00. It's almost like listening about Kerry's 4 1/2 months in Viet Nam, but more recent and much more relevant.

And now McCain is dismantling the argument that Bush "destabilized" the Middle East and destroyed the "status quo." Preserving a bad situation isn't a good thing...

Oh, YEAH... Michael Moore gets bitch-slapped! McCain just bitch-slapped Moore! He's acknowledging and waving to the booing crowds... well, I guess there's not much else that particular lying sack COULD do...

And he does it yet again! I could almost forgive him for the Campaign Finance mess he gave us for that moment alone...

10:23: Hmm... McCain has plenty of praise for Bush on the war on terror, but isn't saying anything about any other issues. I might be in deep tea-leaves-reading mode here, but it is striking me as a bit odd... the "dog barking in the night" element is making my political radar buzz a little.

10:27: I was right. McCain just alluded to having differences with Bush. He wouldn't give details, but he sneaked it in nonetheless. And a rousing finish. But why did he rush off the stage? He probably coulda had a lengthy applause...

10:35: Damn, I'm tearing up again. Bastards. Bastards. Bastards. Every now and then we NEED these reminders of that day, to remind us of just just what happened then, and what we've been forced to do since. And what is almost certain to happen again if we dare relent.

10:45: Guiliani's up. He's praising the Republicans for bringing the convention to the Big Apple. He gets points for class for not mentioning that the initial idea was for BOTH parties to have their conventions in New York to show support for the city and as an "in-your-face" move to the terrorists, but the Democrats nixed that when they said they'd only come to New York if the Republicans were uninvited. It was a very Lucy Van Pelt moment, and for once Charlie Brown didn't get screwed.

10:53: Now Germany gets bitch-slapped, over letting the Palestinians who committed the Munich Olympics massacre go free within months. I think now I understand a little more why they're siding with France so much.

10:55: The first four examples of terrorism and appeasement were the Munich massacre, the Achille Lauro hijacking (and Leon Klinghoffer murder), Yassir Arafat, and pre-1939 Nazi Germany. I think Rudy Guiliani subscribes to the "Jews as canaries" theory -- when things start getting bad for the Jews, it's gonna get real bad for everyone else real soon.

11:00: "This is not a personal criticism of John Kerry." But bend over, Waffle King -- Rudy's snapping on the rubber gloves and about to give you the Mother Of All Colonoscopies.

11:08: Yeah, Mother Of All Colonoscopies. John F'n Kerry, if he was watching, will NOT be walking very well for a few days. OH, YEAH, Rudy! ROO-DEE! ROO-DEE! ROO-DEE!

11:18: Rudy keeps stressing "free and accountable" governments. It's a common theme. Spider-Man had "with great power comes great responsibility." Paul Harvey says "self-government without self-control is self-defeating." I've often harped on the concept of personal responsibility, but I haven't ever managed to capture it as well and as succintly as these people.

And as Rudy takes his leave, so shall I. I'm about 2 hours past my normal bedtime.

All in all, a pretty good first night, once things got rolling properly.

Until tomorrow, folks.



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Comments (13)

In response to Question 1, ... (Below threshold)

In response to Question 1, no idea but I am disgusted that they allowed themselves to be used as billboards for some phone company. If they need a couple bucks, ask for it. Heck, I'd buy any MOH recipient a beer any time they were thirsty.

J are you live blogging McC... (Below threshold)

J are you live blogging McCain? Perhaps we should have had this discussion last week in email. lol

Paul, Kevin drafted US last... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

Paul, Kevin drafted US last week, and left no plans. I'm just firing away as it hits me. You wanna join in, don't let me slow ya down.

"We don't need no stinkin' coordination!"


"An actress and a football ... (Below threshold)

"An actress and a football player?" Are you kidding me, Jay? That's not "an actress." That's Angie Harmon, my girlfriend. She and Jason have a house just a few miles from here. I know where all the good places to hide are.

What's that? Stalking is illegal? Shush. I'm just a fan.

My apologies to the MOH guy... (Below threshold)

My apologies to the MOH guys. Scanning the crowd I see many of those IDT things. Maybe they gave them out for security badges. Still if the "big shots" didn't need them then the MOH recipients should didn't.

ROTFLMAO!!!Jews as... (Below threshold)


Jews as canaries!

True and sad but very funny.


Jay,As OLD as I am... (Below threshold)


As OLD as I am, and also from "cow Hampshire" (God I hate that expression!!) that was the BEST convention night I have ever seen. Hat tip to Frank Sinatra's "I love NY" at the end. It was a really great night!!!

ps Don't move too fast, you might hurt yourself!! :-)


ALSO I watched it on CSPAN ... (Below threshold)

ALSO I watched it on CSPAN so I didn't have to put up with any anchors or journalists and could analyze it myself, thank you. Gosh, they really know how to ruin an event. So I'll stick with cspan, I actually get to see the entire event with no commercials, no journalists, no anchors and I don't miss a thing!! Sure wish I was there blogging for you guys tho - it really was a great night. I hope David Rodriquez sings God Bless America at the end on Thursday night. His Amazing Grace gave me chills. My son, 20, was with me, not paying much attention to what's actually going on in the world, actually watched it - and I turned around for one second and heard all this booing when John McCain was talking, so I asked him why and he answered "you know that ugly fat guy who made that true movie?" AH - TRUE?? Too funny. John McCain putting his hands down after mentioning that name and the place booing him..well not him, but the name of MOORE. Like if there was any MOORE of him, their wouldn't be any room for the rest of us!! hehe Now I'm off to watch Jay Leno, have some laughs, so you have a good night, Jay!

You forgot Ed Koch this aft... (Below threshold)

You forgot Ed Koch this afternoon when it actually did start and all the country singers. Koch was a riot for a staunch Democrat! So if you're doing the nights, who's doing the afternoons???

Think of it this way Jay - ... (Below threshold)

Think of it this way Jay - the convention is in New York City - aka Ground Zero - and this was the defining moment that made Rudy Guiliana a hero and George Bush a president worth watching and I watched 24 hours a day! I am not kidding. There's no way to avoid the issue; first of all they are in the city that got devastated, secondly it was the moment that made Pres Bush what and who he is after just being in office for 8 months!! Give the guy some credit. So of course they have to talk about that day and the following days because this is what defined George Bush as a leader. Hell, this country would have fallen apart if it were not for Bush, and Rudy and the people of New York, among the others who suffered horrendous losses and he kept it together. I cannot imagine anyone else doing what he did in keeping this country together and under control as President Bush did and I thank God for him every day of my life, even up here in "cow hampshire." God Bless him, this had to be the worst 4 year administration of ANY president and he handled it with grace under fire. He deserved everything that was said tonight - for none of it was false. They just repeated what he's said himself and what he has done as a true leader. We'd be in really bad shape if someone else were in office. I especially liked the nod to Dick Cheney, a dignified man of great skill and lots of experience who deserved that applause for doing what he did on 9/11. People might get sick of hearing about it, but it is what changed our world and our lives forever and how it was handled was what made such a catastrophe into something so heartbreakingly special. Who could have done it better? NO ONE.

This was an exciting fun and real night and my hat is off to those who put this convention together. I couldn't handle more than five minutes of the DNC but this one had me glued to my seat since early this afternoon when it started. I'm so thrilled I watched it - on cspan no less. Funk music?? Dancing?? People were actually enjoying this - also some tears. It's the best convention I have ever seen (again) and I'm sure glad I didn't miss it. It was worth watching.

Now go to sleep and see you tomorrow.

Not to nitpick, Cindy (ever... (Below threshold)

Not to nitpick, Cindy (ever notice how that preface is unfailingly followed by a nitpick?), but 1861-65 was no walk in the park, either. In fact, in my humble estimation, it had to have been tougher than GWB's first term by a factor of several, although Bush's four years would definitely have to rate as one of the toughest in American history. Oddly, there are many similarities between GWB's first term and Lincoln's experience with respect to the challenges he faced, the enemies he made, the criticism and ridicule he received, and the way in which many (most?) of his contemporaries failed to recognize his value as a leader. Anyone who truly tries to lead and make policy based on a higher set of values will always be a polarizing figure in their own time. Time and distance lends a much better perspective when viewing the big picture, and I firmly believe Bush will be judged, like Lincoln, as the right man at the right time. However, let's hope GWB's second term goes much better than AL's...

B2vet: I'm not THAT old! 18... (Below threshold)

B2vet: I'm not THAT old! 1861 to 1865 - don't think even my parents were a gleam in anyone's eyes! :-) so can't compare to Abe Lincoln - it was quite a different war time then. But it is amazing how far this country has come in such a short time.

Did Al Jazeera show up at the convention, Kevin? (They were in Boston for the DNC).

Greetings from another Cow ... (Below threshold)

Greetings from another Cow Hampshire-ite... I never minded it, since it's mostly TRUE. And now I'm grown up and have horses, goats, chickens, turkeys, rabbits. And that's just outside the house!

That's all I wanted to say. Enjoyed McCain and Giuliani last night - wrote about it here.







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