October 30, 2004

The five items that came in the mail today.

1. An 8 1/2 x 11 inch glossy card addressed to me, from the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. One side of the card has a picture of John Kerry, dressed in an elegant suit, his eyes cast upward, his hand on his heart (just under a U.S. flag lapel pin), with the heading "The Direction of Our Nation in in Your Hands" and a 6-line quote under the picture that in includes the words "Wisconsin" (twice) and "Wisconsonites." The other side has a picture of Kerry, Edwards, and the two candidates' wives, all dressed in casual clothes and standing behind a rough hewn length of wood that is probably part of a split-rail fence, but for all I know is just one rail being held up by campaign aides standing outside the camera frame. The word Wisconsin appears four times on this side of the card.

2. Another copy of the card just described, but addressed to my sons. (I got the same card yesterday as well.)

3. A flyer from the Human Rights Campaign, addressed to one of my sons. It has a picture of Kerry and a picture of Bush with the question "Who can make a difference on discrimination?" and the answer "YOU." The inside of the flyer summarizes the two candidates positions on the Federal Marriage Amendment, "workplace fairness," hate crimes, and "fighting HIV/AIDS." According to this, Bush "has failed to advocate for the needed increases in federal spending for HIV prevention and care and treatment of people with HIV/AIDS." Well, that doesn't seem very fair! Hasn't Bush pushed for huge federal spending to fight AIDS? This organization makes some good points about gay rights, but then impairs its own credibility.

4. An 11 x 6" glossy card from the Republican Jewish Coalition addressed to the "Cohen Family" that has a picture of a heavy-set, middle-aged woman leaning over a porch railing. She is named, captioned as a "Registered Democrat," and quoted as saying "I feel safe with President Bush." On the other side of the card is a cropped version of the photograph and a longer version of her quote, including the statement "I disagree with President Bush on a lot of issues" and "I've always been a pro-choice Democrat, but party loyalties have no meaning when it comes to my family's safety." There is also a "Join the RJC" pitch, which notes "President Bush's unprecedented pro-Israel policies, his commitment to fighting global anti-Semitism and winning the War on Terror."

5. A postcard with a full color photograph of a man's head lying on a pillow. There is blood rolling down his face and spattered onto the pillow. He appears to be dead. There are green and orange stripes on either side of the photo, and on one of the stripes the words "The Flaming Lips" appear. Well, at least something isn't about the election! How refreshing! The other side of the card, which is addressed to one of my sons, has more blood spattering and the heading "Waking Up With a Placebo Headwound." It's an advertisement for a book of photographs.

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