Continuing on with my point about the John Edwards Town Hall Meeting. I was able to catch the Rush Limbaugh Show on Thursday when Jenny Ballentine was on with the host. Ballentine, you'll recall, was the college senior who, like just about every other self-absorbed Xbox American at one of these Town Hall Meetings, was curious as to what Democrat Presidential Candidate John Edwards was going to do "to make her feel like she mattered," and that it was "all about her". Or, in other words, Mr. Politician, what are you going to do for me?
Limbaugh didn't disappoint on a couple of parts of his conversation with her. Overall, his exchange with Ballentine was laced with her wandering all over the board, hardly forming a coherent statement. His best comment to her was one that I was shouting when I first heard her question of Edwards. "Jenny," he said to her, "if you hang around and wait for a president or any politician to do anything for you, you're going to be waiting when they bury you. It's up to you." Amen to that.
Democrats seeking elected office aren't of that mindset, and they relish questions like Ballentine's, hence, the applause Elizabeth Edwards solicited from the audience for her. Had Ballentine asked that question of me in this town hall meeting, I'd first have to get over my shock that she had the audacity to ask a politician this. Once I was over the shock, I'd probably torpedo my candidacy by ridiculing her for expecting me to live up to life's expectations for her. Headlines the next day would read "Heartless Republican Presidential Candidate Drops Out Of Race, Gives Up On The Next Generation."
I have more fun, however, kicking around in my mind what I would have asked Edwards, had I had the microphone. I can assure you Elizabeth wouldn't have asked for the audience to applaud.
"Mr. Edwards, currently, this nation, and all of Western Civilization is under an assault by a band of 7th Century thugs who will not stop until they have squashed our way of life, the life that you enjoy, the life that I enjoy, the freedom to worship the God of our choice. The freedom to dress as we see fit, the freedom in your case to spend as much time on your hair as you want. The freedom to earn large cash settlements in your case, in my case the freedom to earn a living that allows me to live as comfortably as most US Senators. These people hate George W Bush as much as you and your party do, Mr. Edwards, but they still want you dead as much as they do him, unless of course you are willing to bow to Mecca five times a day and surrender your personal wealth to their coffers. So my question to you is, will you take a pledge today, if not your party, but you: will you pledge to begin to fight the war on terror against Islamofascism with the same veracity that you fight George W. Bush with? Will you and your party, henceforth, begin to realize that this is an all out war, a clash of civilizations and not just a recurring law enforcement issue drummed up to catastrophe by 'power hungry' Republicans? Will you and you organs such as the NY Times stop exposing the means with which we defeat this enemy, ie foreign wiretapping and the monitoring financial records of our enemies, all the while acting like you are providing a service to the American People?
Also, Mr. Edwards, we do live in Two America's. The best way for those in the poorer America to have the lifestyle that you enjoy, sir, is for you to allow as many taxpayers as possible to keep more of the money that they invest and grow the economy with. Mr. Edwards, will you pledge today to stop exploiting the poor for your own political gain and allow them the opportunity to move out of the Poor America by letting those who grow the economy with their investments to keep more of what they invest with? Thank you for taking my question."
Addendum April 11th:
Have to respectfully disagree with WSJ's James Taranto here:
April 6th: "We were too hasty to mock Jenny Ballantine yesterday. What seemed a show of self-absorption was really a sincere if clumsy attempt by a confused young woman to connect with the real world. Three cheers to Rush Limbaugh for helping her along the way."
Can't say I agree, James. The ridicule is well founded. Jenny is a 22 year old, "independent" adult. She's not a child anymore. Sixty years ago, members of the greatest generation at her age (or even the equivalent age) would have never asked this question. We have conditioned this current generation to think this way. It's disappointing.