Group Hug in Philly

In which our man Durst hits the ground in the City of Brotherly Love, and finds a virtual conservative be-in.

Let our journalists help you make sense of the noise: Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter and get a recap of news that matters.


You, like me, might be curious as to why the Republicans picked Philadelphia as the site for their Millennium Convention, considering that this city sits a little to the left of Fidel Castro. But remember that this is “The City of Brotherly Love,” and it all becomes as clear as a Tanqueray bottle at the bottom of a kidney-shaped swimming pool: Love is exactly what you’re going to hear spewed, firehose-like, from the podium at the First Union Center all week.

Love and peace and brotherhood. Not one tiny little word about abortion — even though the party’s platform still calls for a constitutional amendment outlawing it. Cultural warriors need not apply, even though Lynne Cheney makes Marilyn Quayle look like Mister Rogers’ benign third-grade sister with pigtails. No sir, not this time around. It’s all going to be sunshine and seashells and balloons. Red, white, and blue of course.

You’re going to hear so much harmony, you’d not be faulted for thinking the presumptive ticket was Simon and Garfunkel. If Reagan’s nomination theme was “Morning In America,” George W. Bush’s is going to be “Waking Up After A Nap On The Beach With Two Cold Beers in Your Hands in America.”

Surprise, surprise, but as it turns out, Bush isn’t really a Republican. No, no, no. That was all just a misunderstanding. He’s just a guy who happens to belong to the Republican Party. And Dick Cheney? Not a Republican either, he. That whole anti-ERA vote? It was his sleepless nights spent worrying about women who would be drafted which caused him to take such a compassionate stance. And sure, he voted against the clean water bill and opposed recommending the release of Nelson Mandela. And perhaps he did vote against bills designed to outlaw “cop killer” bullets and the manufacture of plastic guns able to defy metal detectors.

But Cheney’s not really a traditional Republican either. See, those were the 1980s. A different time altogether. And he represented Wyoming for crum’s sake. What did you expect? Him to vote his conscience? He can do that now. Thank God he had the opportunity to go through that extended public learning period. Not to denigrate George W.’s experience, or lack thereof. At least he doesn’t have to unlearn bad habits. Not that Cheney has any.

Anyhow, with the way these two Texas oil men have orchestrated their hap-hap-happy-talk convention, full of MTV-meets-Disney, short-attention-span politics with puppies wearing crocheted sweaters, I’m nominating as theme song that old Western classic:

Home, home on the range
Where the deer and the antelope play
Where seldom is heard a discouraging word
And the skies are not cloudy all day.

Only problem? Local forecast is for heavy thunderstorms to continue all week.

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate