Republicans Sweep

In the last week, there have been millions of words expended on the subject of the mass murders that occurred on the ninth day of September in 2001, most of it emotional pornography of the lowest sort. It’s been five years since a small group of fanatical assassins got together and perpetrated the ugliest crime in American history, excepting possibly Thomas Kinckaid’s gallery-opening franchise scheme. Roughly three thousand people died that day when passenger jets were highjacked and flown into buildings in Washington and Manhattan. Everybody knows this. The most powerful folks in America at that time announced that ‘9/11 changed everything’ (the crime is called 9/11 because that is its birthday). I said to myself, “No, it didn’t”, and for the first and only time on any subject, I was wrong. 9/11 did change everything, although not in the way I thought they meant. For one thing, the Democrats ceased to be a political party.

I will now make my predictions for the 2006 elections. There have been dozens of predictions made by all sorts of clever-boots Washington Watchers, mostly showing a rout on the Republican side, with them losing control of the Senate and possibly even the House, although which house they don’t say. I’m guessing the House of Representatives, because unlike most houses, it is capitalized. The general mood is that Republicans can’t hold on to power because they are hated by everybody except the looniest of the loons on the extreme ‘bring on the apocalypse’ right-wing fringe (a group comprising some 35% of Americans, which is why I have taken to carrying my passport, a Derringer, a Canadian phrase book, and a thousand dollars in gold coin wherever I go). I disagree with the general mood.

Pundits, by which I mean people getting paid to do what I am now doing entirely for free, all agree that the election will be a national referendum on the dismal performance of George W. Bush, the 109th Congress, and Republican radicalism. And they agree that this roistering roost of rectum rooters has done just about the worst job governing since Tomás de Torquemada took over the Segovia Rotary Club. The only imaginable good news is the Congress has worked fewer days than the famous ‘Do Nothing’ congress of 1948, so they haven’t done as much damage as they could have. There just wasn’t time. These pundits are all predicting hurricanes, landslides, pogroms, and double noogies for the Republicans in November.

Nonsense. The Republicans won’t gain any seats, but they’re not going to lose more than a handful, either. Why not? Because of three very important things, or possibly seven very important things, of which I will enumerate the three I can remember.

First (I always begin with the first thing) there’s FEAR. Bush and his big bad buddies are all pounding the fear and terror drums like orangutans on phencyclidine, and by some incredible coincidence we now see newly revealed 5-year-old videotape of Osama bin Laden handing out airline tickets to his pals on the World Trade Center Welcoming Committee, among many other reminders that America is under attack, more or less. Americans respond well to fear, because we are a nation of trembling little newborn kittens with all the valor and courage of freshly shucked oysters –even though God has personally chosen America to do His heavy lifting for Him.

Second (always next after first; I’m a traditionalist) we have GOOD NEWS. The Democrats have walked into a brilliant Karl Rove trap. They imagined the bad news would continue to rain down on the Bush parade all the way through the election, but they forgot an important fact. The Commercial Media are on Bush’s side. Or at least, the radical Republican side, seeing as those are the folks that will disband the FCC and see copyright legislation through Congress that allows Comcast to send dwarfs with cats o’ nine tails to your house to make sure you don’t make any illegal copies of those old videotaped episodes of Three’s Company you made back in the 1980s. So the Democrats find themselves finally and astonishingly acting just the tiniest bit oppositional to the war in Iraq, the planned war in Iran, the war on New Orleans, and so on, believing these are ironclad Bad News subjects for the Republicans, and meanwhile, instead of the actual bad news about all this stuff, the media are portraying (to the best of their limited abilities) this disastrous period as somewhat of a corner-turning time. It’s morning in America all of a sudden, with gas prices conveniently plummeting, the economy universally described as ‘strong’ (although it has all the strength of a spoonful of decaffeinated Nescafé in a trillion gallons of water), and hey, how about Tom Cruise’s baby? So all of a suddenlike, the Democrats look like the grumpy old worry-worts that, for reasons unknown to me and probably historians throughout the future of our species (if any), seems to be the label the Democrats fear more than any other. Democrats: the cheerful, mild party.

The second important thing got a little bit long because Uncle is just a little bit loquaxine in the volubility department, so I will make the third thing short, which it is, in any case. PErhaps the third thing lacked proper nutrition when it was small. I do not know. I only know that the third thing is sitting in the corner staring at me in a kind of weird, shifting shadow that cannot be explained by the room lighting; the third thing looks like one of those dead ghost children that is always crawling out of evil closets to kill unwitting Japanese people in horror movies with titles like Pulse and Ring and Never Leave A Drowned Schoolgirl In A Cistern. But I digress. The third all-important reason the Republicans will shake off modest losses this midterm election, and then beat the Democrats to death with their own severed legs, is ELECTION FRAUD.

See, nothing has been done to fix the problems (other than miserable candidates) that lost the Democrats the last two national elections. Au contraire, as John Kerry would say. The evil electronic voting machines have been installed far and wide, although it has now been revealed that a mongoloid penguin could break into these devices, reverse any election result it wished, and be gone inside of four minutes, leaving nothing behind but a stolen election and the faint aroma of herring. Let us remember the apocryphal quote attributed to Joe ‘Laughing Boy’ Stalin: “It’s not the people who vote that count, it’s the people that count the votes”. There are other problems, too. Gerrymandering has proceeded apace, sealing off entire slabs of the landscape from Democrats. Black people will find the nearest polling station is five hours from where they live (or used to live before the hurricane). And the whole anti-immigrant maneuver wasn’t just a Republican faux pas– it had a severe dampening effect on the desire to vote of persons of the recent immigrant persuasion, just as the anti-gay legislative efforts have a dampening effect on the desire to vote of homosexual queers. People don’t vote for revenge. They avoid voting for revenge. That’s why the elections are being decided by a tiny percentage of eligible voters.

So there is my reasoning for why the Republicans will enjoy a surprise resurgence at the polls this November. If one wanted to add a few categories, there’s the perennial favorite God, who will command millions of witless Americans to vote for Republicans. There’s hate, which will drive many Americans to vote against fags and macacas and towelheads, regardless of other factors. There’s misinformation, as what we consider to be ‘data’ is actually ‘balderdash’ (see The Path To 9/11I, et al). In the end, however, it will be an overarching failure of will on the part of the American people that accounts for the astonishing, last-minute surge the Republicans enjoy at the polls, leading them to what the utterly guileless news media will narrate as a ‘near-disaster-but-actually-almost-a- second-chance-referendum-to-continue-to-lead’, or ‘benefit of the doubt’ (it’s coming, and it will be mind-blowing).

Even a modest failure will be regarded as a mighty triumph for the Republicans this November. And if there’s one thing the Bush administration excels at, it’s making triumph and failure interchangeable. So look out, Democrats. You can’t win, even if you do– but not to worry, because you probably won’t.

BEN TRIPP, author of Square in the Nuts, is a hack in many mediums. He may be reached at



Ben Tripp is America’s leading pseudo-intellectual. His most recent book is The Fifth House of the Heart.