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The Guilfoile-Warner Papers

October 29

I voted yesterday. On the surface early voting seemed very Eastern Bloc. There were forms to fill out followed by a long wait in an uncomfortable chair. Most of the other people in the room were elderly and female and frequently babushka'd. It just felt like I was waiting to trade a government voucher for a used humidifier in 1978 Poland. But the wait was only about half an hour and they have these touch screens here now, which are way better than those old chadmakers we used to vote with in Chicago. A lot of people are calling John McCain a socialist this morning for accepting government financing for his campaign, and they're calling Barack Obama a "maverick" for turning it down and trusting millions of mostly small donors--the free market--to decide which candidate to support. Anyway I assume that's what they must be saying. I was only half-listening. Also something about a dinner Obama attended years ago at the University of Chicago where he made some rather rational comments about finding common ground between Israelis and Palestinians but then added that he didn't totally hate another professor who happens to be Palestinian. The McCain diaper is getting ripe with desperation, man. The LA Times reported this story six months ago and McCain did nothing with it because it was weak. Now the bullets are all out of his gun and they're trying to play it like an October surprise. The only surprise here is how the right continues to allow America to be defined by our enemies. To them a patriot is someone who refuses to even acknowledge the humanity of people who disagree with us. With these guys it's always, "Speak rudely and wave the stick around like a lunatic." We're sending Barack Obama in to vanquish the bully on Tuesday. And that's not just John McCain, that's the whole arrogant lot of them who've been running the executive the last eight years. They've been the smug, snarling face of a country that's really neither smug nor snarling for as long as I can stand it. The thing that still has me nervous, though: bullies never fight fair.
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