Some surprises for me in Texas concerning the political landscape.
You’d think that in Texas, things are pretty bleak for Obama. Or you might think a lot of things about the States when it comes to this presidential race. Two things surprised me.
The NAS Ft. Worth military base sells books in the main exchange, the main shopping center on a base. It caters to mostly military personnel. You can only get on the base with a military ID, which my dad carries. (He’s a retired Senior Chief Petty Officer. ) So, the book section is roughly the size of a Walmart’s book section. In this base, on the shelves were three books by Obama, one from Nancy Pelosi, one each from Hillary Clinton, Tom Brokaw, Joe Biden, a bio on Michelle Obama. There was one small paperback for McCain, Faith of my Fathers. No Bush books, no conservative books, nothing I expected. I assumed Military bases would be bastions of right wing conservatives, and that their bookstore would look like a Rush Limbaugh’s list of quotes. Where was the Coulter? Where was Cheney? Rove? Any books condemning the Democrats? Nope. Here, in addition to the ones listed above, three books condemned the war in Iraq; one condemned a too powerful presidency. I was amazed. What does this mean?
“It means nothing,” my dad said. “Liberals work on the staff, and they are usually civilian. The military is all conservative.”
I argued that the staff would have to buy books that would sell, not books that stay on shelves. They obviously know their market.
“Those are the books that didn’t sell. All the conservative ones got picked up.”
I told him the bookshelf was full–these weren’t remainders. They were the books for sale.
“Most of the clientele there are civilians.”
You can’t get on base without an ID!! He refused to believe that military personnel might be turning away from Bush and towards Obama. In Walmarts across America you will at least see The Faith of George Bush or several books condemning Democrats or Obama…but not one positive book about Bush.
I think conservatives are losing ground in the military. People want change. And a failed war, broken promises to veterans, and no exit strategy is straining an otherwise conservative base….well, it’s straining this one at least in Ft. Worth. Who knows what other bases are like?
The second striking thing: Wish I’d had a camera on the highway as we passed out of Ft. Worth Texas. Some one had bought a billboard and put the American Flag and the head of an eagle on it with the words, “There’s only one God-loving American patriot running for President.” It left you to assume who it was. And forced you to think that only one man could qualify under that description. I know two men who qualify.
People will buy a billboard, or rent one, and put up one lie after another. You can’t say your opinion loudly enough down here. The landscape is littered with homemade propaganda: “If you have morals, vote McCain.”
It’s crazy. But then conservatives still hold more power than they should. Witness the latest muscle-flexing of the religious right. The boycott on McDonald’s for supporting “the gay agenda.” The only time they seem to care about their health is when they’re trying to take away the rights of other people. Now that McDonald’s caved in to their demands, they will go back to eating the fries….
Democrats could never do the same damage to McDonald’s. Mickey D’s would never feel the pain of our ban.
We’re smart enough not to eat there.