My old buddy John McCain called the other afternoon. Really was a really good conversation. I hadn't heard from John since... since... well, I guess I'd never heard from him before. But it was still thoughtful of him to call, what with all that campaigning and the Republican Convention just about to get underway.
He told me he was making this call to his fellow veterans and would be honored to have my support and would I please watch the convention on television if I weren't going to be there in person.
Well, no John, I won't be able to make it to St. Paul in person. And, yes, I'll watch as much of it as time permits. And thanks for asking. And for the absentee ballot, even though I fully expect to be at my polling place (it's in a church, which it shouldn't be, but that's another story for another day) so I won't be needing that absentee ballot. But a thoughtful gesture, nonetheless.
Um, Senator? I'm not a "fellow veteran." But I AM a fellow geezer. And geezer-to-geezer, would you mind if I gave you some advice? I know you didn't have time during our phone date. But, really...
First off, the terrible hurricane in the gulf gave your convention reasons to do some "tweaking" as we call it in the TV business.
The best tweak of all is having to play host to Bush and Cheney, who apparently will be spending the week in the bunker or making high-altitude inspection of the damage -- after there IS damage. Leaving these guys out of the lineup is probably the best thing that's happened to a political convention since the form was invented.
So, now about that advice, or really a question -- about what's her name Palin. WHAT WERE YOU THINKING?
A gun moll who opposes freedom of choice, wants to creationism taught in the public schools and has no experience in anything but popping out babies? a bear hunter who married her high school sweetheart who, in turn, married the oil business?
John, wake up. This woman does not know Thing One about anything a potential President has to.
Are you trying to woo the Conservatives? Ain't gonna work. Are you trying to hook the disaffected Hillary voters? Most of them voted for Hillary -- not for some generic woman.
The war? The economy? Who've you got on board besides Phil Gram and his ilk? You think these guys can fix what's broken? The only thing they can fix is a basketball game.
This is cheap politics. Cheap and cynical.
Any way, guy, thanks for the phone call. I'll be watching for that absentee ballot you promised. Might vote ahead of time, relax on election day. Call any time.
--There are no greeters in China's Wal-Marts. Maybe that's because "greeters" are really anti theft devices. And we all know no one in China steals.
--China's Wal-Mart employees have health insurance. Which shows great progress. Maybe some day, the US division will catch up with those Asian primitives.
--Some guys never learn. That said, note that friend of many decades and frequent colleague Mitch Lebe has just observed his 50th anniversary in radio. No bigger talent and no finer fella has ever graced an air-wave or a newsroom.
I'm Wes Richards. My opinions are my own, but you're welcome to them.(R)