The Smallest Things Come in the Largest Packages

I'd like to discuss the latest Clinton campaign commercial. You know the one. Hillary wrapping presents by the tree and sliding tags under the ribbons with bumper sticker slogans like "Universal Health Care," "Alternative Energy," "Bring Troops Home," and "Middle Class Tax Breaks" on them. She then pauses in the stilted way only she can, strokes her chin and muses aloud, "Hmm, Where did I put Universal Pre-K?" She finds the name tag - probably being used as a bookmark in her copy of the Communist Manifesto - and exclaims, "Ah! There it is!" As she tucks the card beneath the bow on the package you can almost feel your wallet lose thickness.

If you're like me, and I know I am, then perhaps you were bothered by the arrogance of Clinton: taking credit for giving expensive gifts to other people using your money. How magnanimous of her! Hillary is giving the store away, and all you have to do to get on her list is vote for her. On one hand, I have to admire the first show of honest campaigning to come from any of the presidential camps. This is a white elephant gift exchange if I ever saw one, and the taxpayer ends up with a gag item.

But this got me thinking. Since the Democratic candidates are in such a "Merry Christmas-Happy Holidays-Happy Hanukah-Happy Kwanza" mood and would love to shower us with gifts, I think we should return the favor. If I had to play secret Santa with this cast of characters, these are the presents I would buy.

Right off, each candidate gets the board game Clue. I believe they are all clueless, and in an effort to remedy that situation this is as good a way as any.

JOHN EDWARDS. What do you give a man who has had everything handed to him through the court system? This son of a mill worker complains about there being two Americas, the one where you pay $12.00 for a haircut, and his America where the same cut costs $1200. I will be buying him a Flowbee Home Hair Trimming System. I'm sure he can find a place for a shop-vac and a barber chair in his 28,000 square foot home. The money he saves on haircuts can go to the other America. (That would be me).

CHRIS DODD will be receiving an altered version of the video game Guitar Hero. This game allows the player to fantasize that he is really playing some of the most difficult guitar riffs every composed. The fake plastic instrument that comes with it gives you something to hold, but it doesn't really do anything. My altered version is called Presidential Hero. It makes you think you are the President, but you are really in your basement staring into a phony teleprompter.

JOE BIDEN will be happy to finally receive a karaoke machine. Since Joe-the-Plagiarist loves to use other people's words, this may be the most perfect gift I give this year. I had a little work done on this one, though. Instead of songs, this one has every famous political speech every written or delivered.

Dennis Kucinich probably already has the gift I picked up for him, but my guess is, he would welcome a second one. He will be all-smiles as he unwraps the complete Twilight Zone DVD set and the home companion book. I'm certain he will recognize some of his fellow travelers along the way.

BARACK OBAMA is not easy to buy for. He claims to stand for change, but never tells you what that change is. And people are buying it. It reminds me of when I was a kid and I got my first Johnson Smith novelty catalog. They offered thousands of gag items - most of which would make suitable gifts for any of these contenders - but there was one that stuck in my mind the most, and it is perfect for Obama: the surprise package. To get this, you sent in some money and the company would send you a mixed bag of items, supposedly worth more than the amount you sent in. The catch was you didn't get to know what was inside until your check was cashed. You won't be surprised to learn that the junk inside was worthless.

Which brings us to the woman who got this whole process started...Hillary. What could she possibly need? We know she wants to be President, but like most kids who want a pony, she doesn't really deserve it. Still, I'd like to help her with her campaign. And where she needs the most help is with Bill. He can draw quite a crowd at her campaign appearances. But when he speaks he struggles to remember that he is there for her and not himself. So, to guarantee that he is seen and not heard, I picked up one of those sound-proof booths that were so prevalent in 80's game shows. Also, since Hillary uses her mother and daughter as props at most appearances, I've included a family-four-pack to every state fair where there is a primary. (I have a feeling Bill will be happy to use that sound-proof booth with these three women around.)

Finally, as for the gifts Hillary is offering in her commercial, she can keep them. I know I'm not getting them anyway. When I was a kid, I gave Santa six page lists of all the things I desired. On Christmas morning, maybe one or two of those items showed up. I'm not falling for that again. She has said there are a million things she'd like to give us, we just can't afford them all. I'd settle for just one item: a nice pair of Bose noise-canceling headphones.
I'd like to discuss the latest Clinton campaign commercial. You know the one. Hillary wrapping presents by the tree and sliding tags under the ribbons with bumper sticker slogans like "Universal Health Care," "Alternative Energy," "Bring Troops Home," and "Middle Class Tax Breaks" on them. She then pauses in the stilted way only she can, strokes her chin and muses aloud, "Hmm, Where did I put Universal Pre-K?" She finds the name tag - probably being used as a bookmark in her copy of the Communist Manifesto - and exclaims, "Ah! There it is!" As she tucks the card beneath the bow on the package you can almost feel your wallet lose thickness.

If you're like me, and I know I am, then perhaps you were bothered by the arrogance of Clinton: taking credit for giving expensive gifts to other people using your money. How magnanimous of her! Hillary is giving the store away, and all you have to do to get on her list is vote for her. On one hand, I have to admire the first show of honest campaigning to come from any of the presidential camps. This is a white elephant gift exchange if I ever saw one, and the taxpayer ends up with a gag item.

But this got me thinking. Since the Democratic candidates are in such a "Merry Christmas-Happy Holidays-Happy Hanukah-Happy Kwanza" mood and would love to shower us with gifts, I think we should return the favor. If I had to play secret Santa with this cast of characters, these are the presents I would buy.

Right off, each candidate gets the board game Clue. I believe they are all clueless, and in an effort to remedy that situation this is as good a way as any.

JOHN EDWARDS. What do you give a man who has had everything handed to him through the court system? This son of a mill worker complains about there being two Americas, the one where you pay $12.00 for a haircut, and his America where the same cut costs $1200. I will be buying him a Flowbee Home Hair Trimming System. I'm sure he can find a place for a shop-vac and a barber chair in his 28,000 square foot home. The money he saves on haircuts can go to the other America. (That would be me).

CHRIS DODD will be receiving an altered version of the video game Guitar Hero. This game allows the player to fantasize that he is really playing some of the most difficult guitar riffs every composed. The fake plastic instrument that comes with it gives you something to hold, but it doesn't really do anything. My altered version is called Presidential Hero. It makes you think you are the President, but you are really in your basement staring into a phony teleprompter.

JOE BIDEN will be happy to finally receive a karaoke machine. Since Joe-the-Plagiarist loves to use other people's words, this may be the most perfect gift I give this year. I had a little work done on this one, though. Instead of songs, this one has every famous political speech every written or delivered.

Dennis Kucinich probably already has the gift I picked up for him, but my guess is, he would welcome a second one. He will be all-smiles as he unwraps the complete Twilight Zone DVD set and the home companion book. I'm certain he will recognize some of his fellow travelers along the way.

BARACK OBAMA is not easy to buy for. He claims to stand for change, but never tells you what that change is. And people are buying it. It reminds me of when I was a kid and I got my first Johnson Smith novelty catalog. They offered thousands of gag items - most of which would make suitable gifts for any of these contenders - but there was one that stuck in my mind the most, and it is perfect for Obama: the surprise package. To get this, you sent in some money and the company would send you a mixed bag of items, supposedly worth more than the amount you sent in. The catch was you didn't get to know what was inside until your check was cashed. You won't be surprised to learn that the junk inside was worthless.

Which brings us to the woman who got this whole process started...Hillary. What could she possibly need? We know she wants to be President, but like most kids who want a pony, she doesn't really deserve it. Still, I'd like to help her with her campaign. And where she needs the most help is with Bill. He can draw quite a crowd at her campaign appearances. But when he speaks he struggles to remember that he is there for her and not himself. So, to guarantee that he is seen and not heard, I picked up one of those sound-proof booths that were so prevalent in 80's game shows. Also, since Hillary uses her mother and daughter as props at most appearances, I've included a family-four-pack to every state fair where there is a primary. (I have a feeling Bill will be happy to use that sound-proof booth with these three women around.)

Finally, as for the gifts Hillary is offering in her commercial, she can keep them. I know I'm not getting them anyway. When I was a kid, I gave Santa six page lists of all the things I desired. On Christmas morning, maybe one or two of those items showed up. I'm not falling for that again. She has said there are a million things she'd like to give us, we just can't afford them all. I'd settle for just one item: a nice pair of Bose noise-canceling headphones.