I have to admit, I must be one of the, like, five people on this planet who found Clint Eastwood’s schtick yesterday to be kind of amusing.  And that even though I completely disagree with him politically.  Obviously, even the Republicans and the Romney campaign are busy running away from that incident like it was a bad sewage spill, so I’m in a tiny minority on this.

I think the reason why I enjoyed the empty chair conversation is precisely the same reason that everyone else considers it a mistake–the fact that it was off the cuff, unscripted.  The conventions–and politics in general–have become such a tightly controlled, artificial show.  This is probably why the parts of the Republican convention which got a positive reception–Ann Romney’s speech, the Romney promotional video–left me cold.  These were the moments which went exactly according to script.   Wasn’t there a time when conventions included brawls and fisticuffs on the convention floor?  If only we could go back to those days.  It would make for a lot better TV watching, at least.

Granted, debating an imaginary opponent will always make you look silly.  After all, you can put any words in their mouth…which Clint certainly did.  It’s easy to berate an invisible Obama.  As a supporter of the President, I can imagine he would have much more relevant responses if he were there in person.  I still thought the rambling conversation was pretty funny.  As far as the implied swearing, well, I can see why people would find it offensive.  I know the President doesn’t swear in public…but then again, I’m of the opinion that politicians, and the rest of us, would be a lot healthier if we would swear a little more often.

Maybe the problem is that a personality like Clint’s doesn’t fit into a setting like the convention, and maybe the people who invited him to participate should have known this.  The audience seemed to enjoy it, but these are the same people who enjoy being told that Medicare will be privatized, so the fact that I liked the same speech they did might just mean that I’m living in Crazytown too.

Whatever the case, I’m secretly hoping that at next week’s Democratic convention they will have Joy Behar or Oprah giving a stern chiding to an invisible Mitt in an empty chair.  Unfortunately, the Obama campaign is smarter than that.

Don’t mean to harp on this subject, but it feels like I’m having a new WTF moment every day:

 

*Republicans still divided on the Violence Against Women Act.  It looks like the re-authorization will just barely squeak by in the Senate, but with a lot of opposition from the Rs…because it’s going to extend protections to Indian tribes and same sex couples.  Really??  Mitt is now trying to send an anxious message out to his party:  “Please support this bill.  I want to have a chance in the general election…”

*Women’s wages are still about 77% of men’s wages, and this gap has not budged at all since 2001. 

*The Vatican is reprimanding American nuns for making statements which “disagree with or challenge the bishops”.  Oh noes!  The nuns in question are members of the Leadership Conference, an organization which supported the President’s health care law.  The Vatican has also criticized this group for focusing too much on poverty and economic injustice, and not enough on abortion and gay marriage. (The issues we all really care about…) 

*We now get to read lovely opinion columns like the one from SE Cupp in the New York Daily News (and she’s a Glenn Beck minion, so I should know better, but still) lecturing us about how the best choice Ann Romney ever made was marrying well.  According to SE, if we’re smart enough to find a good, rich husband, we’ll be able to afford health care and won’t have to go on welfare!  Now I know for sure that I’ve been teleported into the 1950’s.  (Or is it the 1850’s?)

*And to finish on a depressing note, a quote from one of the women in Colombia who allegedly had a good time with our Secret Service agents, arguing that she is an escort and not a prostitute:  “It’s the same, but it’s different…It’s like when you buy a fine rum or a BlackBerry or an iPhone.  They have a different price.”  Please, ladies, don’t think of yourselves as a phone or a bottle of alcohol.  We already get objectified.  Let’s not objectify ourselves.

But hey, I’m hallucinating this imaginary “war on women”, right?  Just another hysterical feminist.  Silver lining time:  I know there are other women out there getting as pissed off about this onslaught as I am.  Let’s see how far the misogynists can get without our votes…