The deep breath factor

Just about everything that could be said about today's election has already been proclaimed repetitively. But one imponderable remains: the last minute voting booth thoughts and reflections of citizens choosing a war time leader for a nation under continuous threat of attack.

The ritual of going to a polling place and entering the booth tends to invest a certain solemnity to the civic ritual of voting. If ever there were a moment to take a deep breath and let your heart (and gut) consider the action you are about to take, casting your vote today for president is it. Today's decision matters for ourselves, our children, and our grandchildren.

Call me a hopeless partisan, but I cannot imagine that the deep breath factor benefits John F. Kerry. There is nothing about him which inspires confidence or trust. Can anyone tell us what his plan is to win the War on Terror, other than to do a 'better job' than Bush? Can anyone tell us where his deepest convictions lie? Aside from the importance of accumulating his own wealth and power, that is.

When taking that one last moment of reflection before an important action, the mind does not work in strictly rational linear fashion. Images, sounds, and feelings all course through the conscious mind, and then resonate through the depths of our unconscious awareness. What kinds of fundamentals are likely to be resounding today?

Every age has its villains, and for us Osama bin Laden provides a convenient image of evil personified. The legacy media have done their best to ignore his implicit endorsement of Kerry in his latest Al Jazeera tape, and a poor initial translation blunted his threat to target those states which vote for Bush today, while sparing those which choose Kerry.

So it is true that some may see Osama in their mind's eye and blame President Bush for failing to apprehend or kill him. But can many of those who do so feel in their gut that John F. Kerry is the better choice to eliminate him from this plane of existence? The Senator's image as a Vietnam War hero has been deeply tarnished by the impassioned voices of the Swift Boat Veterans and his own betrayal of his comrades in Senate testimony and antiwar demonstrations.

John F. Kerry's image as a man of vigor and action (at least we are from now on to be spared the relentless photo—op tossing of footballs on the tarmacs of countless airports) has been undermined by the girly man outfits he favors for windsurfing and bicycling. President Bush, in contrast, is a man's man, fully comfortable in his own skin, and not overly troubled by the need to own Lycra—fiber outfits for effete sports. Plus, the President can throw a pitch all the way across home plate, and catches a ball without closing his eyes. I, for one, am more comforted by a man who wears jeans than by one who dons special designer duds for expensive sporting diversions.

Speaking of personal images, Michael Moore, who occupied the Presidential Box at the Democratic National Convention, sitting next to Jimmy Carter, is one we can expect to see much, much more of during a Kerry Presidency. A favorite of both John F. Kerry and Osama bin Laden (judging by his recitation of the main points of Fahrenheit 911 in his latest Al Jazeera tape), we can expect to spend a lot of time in his televised company if we punch the chad, hit the touch screen, or pull the lever for Kerry. How many of us find that an attractive prospect?

Then there is Teresa.

Mrs. Heinz has been completely invisible to the public for the last ten days or so, for good reason. She is an utter embarrassment to her husband's campaign, and as First Lady she would be both a source of amusement to the nation and the world — God's gift to comedians and talk radio hosts — and a walking disaster for America's ability to command respect in the world. Her Botox—paralyzed facial muscles lend her visage a slightly scary aspect, even when she has not been indulging in gin—fortified white raisins 'to cure arthritis.' Her perverse pride in her own intelligence, perceptiveness, and ability to be 'opinionated' ensures that unladylike suggestions that her antagonists 'shove it' and are 'idiots' will continue to flow our way for four...long...years.

America loves and honors its veterans. But are we ready to hear four years of references to John F. Kerry's three and a half months of service in Vietnam? War stories are great to hear. The first ten or twenty times, anyway. But a vote for John F. Kerry suggests that we will spend more time hearing him talk about Vietnam than he spent in theatre. When taking that deep breath, is that something you will eagerly anticipate?

For all these reasons, the deep breath factor favors President Bush by a wide margin. You can't measure it, poll it, or prove it. But I strongly suspect that it will make a real difference today.

Thomas Lifson is the editor and publisher of The American Thinker

Just about everything that could be said about today's election has already been proclaimed repetitively. But one imponderable remains: the last minute voting booth thoughts and reflections of citizens choosing a war time leader for a nation under continuous threat of attack.

The ritual of going to a polling place and entering the booth tends to invest a certain solemnity to the civic ritual of voting. If ever there were a moment to take a deep breath and let your heart (and gut) consider the action you are about to take, casting your vote today for president is it. Today's decision matters for ourselves, our children, and our grandchildren.

Call me a hopeless partisan, but I cannot imagine that the deep breath factor benefits John F. Kerry. There is nothing about him which inspires confidence or trust. Can anyone tell us what his plan is to win the War on Terror, other than to do a 'better job' than Bush? Can anyone tell us where his deepest convictions lie? Aside from the importance of accumulating his own wealth and power, that is.

When taking that one last moment of reflection before an important action, the mind does not work in strictly rational linear fashion. Images, sounds, and feelings all course through the conscious mind, and then resonate through the depths of our unconscious awareness. What kinds of fundamentals are likely to be resounding today?

Every age has its villains, and for us Osama bin Laden provides a convenient image of evil personified. The legacy media have done their best to ignore his implicit endorsement of Kerry in his latest Al Jazeera tape, and a poor initial translation blunted his threat to target those states which vote for Bush today, while sparing those which choose Kerry.

So it is true that some may see Osama in their mind's eye and blame President Bush for failing to apprehend or kill him. But can many of those who do so feel in their gut that John F. Kerry is the better choice to eliminate him from this plane of existence? The Senator's image as a Vietnam War hero has been deeply tarnished by the impassioned voices of the Swift Boat Veterans and his own betrayal of his comrades in Senate testimony and antiwar demonstrations.

John F. Kerry's image as a man of vigor and action (at least we are from now on to be spared the relentless photo—op tossing of footballs on the tarmacs of countless airports) has been undermined by the girly man outfits he favors for windsurfing and bicycling. President Bush, in contrast, is a man's man, fully comfortable in his own skin, and not overly troubled by the need to own Lycra—fiber outfits for effete sports. Plus, the President can throw a pitch all the way across home plate, and catches a ball without closing his eyes. I, for one, am more comforted by a man who wears jeans than by one who dons special designer duds for expensive sporting diversions.

Speaking of personal images, Michael Moore, who occupied the Presidential Box at the Democratic National Convention, sitting next to Jimmy Carter, is one we can expect to see much, much more of during a Kerry Presidency. A favorite of both John F. Kerry and Osama bin Laden (judging by his recitation of the main points of Fahrenheit 911 in his latest Al Jazeera tape), we can expect to spend a lot of time in his televised company if we punch the chad, hit the touch screen, or pull the lever for Kerry. How many of us find that an attractive prospect?

Then there is Teresa.

Mrs. Heinz has been completely invisible to the public for the last ten days or so, for good reason. She is an utter embarrassment to her husband's campaign, and as First Lady she would be both a source of amusement to the nation and the world — God's gift to comedians and talk radio hosts — and a walking disaster for America's ability to command respect in the world. Her Botox—paralyzed facial muscles lend her visage a slightly scary aspect, even when she has not been indulging in gin—fortified white raisins 'to cure arthritis.' Her perverse pride in her own intelligence, perceptiveness, and ability to be 'opinionated' ensures that unladylike suggestions that her antagonists 'shove it' and are 'idiots' will continue to flow our way for four...long...years.

America loves and honors its veterans. But are we ready to hear four years of references to John F. Kerry's three and a half months of service in Vietnam? War stories are great to hear. The first ten or twenty times, anyway. But a vote for John F. Kerry suggests that we will spend more time hearing him talk about Vietnam than he spent in theatre. When taking that deep breath, is that something you will eagerly anticipate?

For all these reasons, the deep breath factor favors President Bush by a wide margin. You can't measure it, poll it, or prove it. But I strongly suspect that it will make a real difference today.

Thomas Lifson is the editor and publisher of The American Thinker