Tag Archive for 'Presidential election'


GREENPOINT, Bklyn, Oct. 30…Jaws dropped and eyes bulged last night when a Navigator stretch pulled up in front of the national headquarters of the Gambler’s Rights Party at Golubchik’s Tavern in Greenpoint, and John McCain stepped out.

“Where’s my friend Efraim?” he demanded. “Take me to that great American.”

Efraim Durg, presidential candidate of the Gambler’s Rights party, jagging on Amaretto and Aterol after a forty-three hour poker game came to the door, snarling, “Okay, who’s tryin’ to punk me…?” But gaped in amazement as McCain rushed up and clasped his hand, declaiming:

“I just want to shake the hand of the courageous warrior who has waged a lonely battle to guarantee that, in this time of crisis, every American has the right to gamble him or herself out of–or into– poverty. And yes, to fuddle his- or her- brain with marijuana…Because this is America and no tax and spend socialist is going to spoil our fun.”

Meanwhile, halfway across the country, Anarcho-Feminist Party , presidential candidate Leah Schildkraut got an unexpected boost when a contingent of prominent women, among them Maya Angelou, Betty White, Madeline Albright and Samantha Ronson, swept into her campaign headquarters at the Foxhole Tavern in downtown Madison, Wisconsin.

“The mainstream is reaching out to the babbling brook,” Ms. Angelou intoned as Schildkraut boosters blinked in bafflement. “Flowing deep into the forest of idealism to form a mighty tide that will flood the banks of intolerance with the clangety-clang of the righteous hammer…”

Betty White jumped up. “Chill, Maya…” And appealed to Schildkraut: “Obama needs your endorsement, Leah. Whaddya say?”

As this hotly contested presidential race nears the finish line, both sides are reaching out to fringe candidates for support.

“We’re trying to get everybody under the tent,” an Obama staffer says.

The parties are going after the rebels and dissidents on their extreme flanks. Ralph Nader and Green Party Cynthia McKinney on the left, Libertarian Bob Barr and Constitution Party candidate Chuck Baldwin on the right.

Barr has been described as “John McCain’s worst nightmare” because his staunch anti-immigration position has siphoned off a number of far right votes. At a secret peace parley at his headquarters in Atlanta, the former Georgia Congressman made his point, bluntly. “John, it’s hard to find an issue on which you don’t want bigger government.”

McCain squinted and reddened as he thought hard. Then snapped his fingers.

“Aluminum bats, Bob!” he said. “I’ve been a staunch opponent of Federal regulations against the use of aluminum bats…”

“You sponsored a law that would have allowed illegal immigrants to apply for citizenship,” said Barr.

McCain got a cagey look “But I also added a stipulation that this could only begin once we had secured our borders,” he said. He prodded Barr with a wink. “And that’ll never happen because as soon as some liberal says the borders are safe I’ll just say, no they’re not. Get it?”

Obama-Nader relations have been fractious since Nader accused Obama of “being a corporate taker” and “talking white” to calm the fears of white voters. Still, mindful of the fact that in 2000 Nader won 97,000 votes in battleground Florida an Obama delegation visited Nader’s headquarters, five blocks from the White House.

To their surprise they were greeted cordially and offered a sumptuous lunch of Nader’s favorite foods–hummus and stuffed eggplant with pignoli nuts. When they broached the subject of an endorsement, Nader responded enthusiastically.

“I’m so glad you guys finally came to your senses,” he said. “You tell Senator Obama I accept his endorsement whole-heartedly. I promise I will be the greatest President this country has ever seen.”

Constitution Party candidate and Minister of the Crossroads Church Chuck Baldwin has strong right wing support for his program to eliminate every program that is not provided for in the Constitution. At his Grand Rapids, Michigan headquarters, he lectured McCain.

“We believe in the abolition of IRS and the Federal Reserve…”

McCain nodded vigorously. “That’ll be my first official act as President. Bernanke’s a socialist, anyway.”

“Also, we want to repeal Roe v. Wade,” Baldwin said.

“And I’ll go you a step further, Chuck,” McCain said. ” Pro-Life for animals. No more neutering or spaying of pets. We’ll make it a national priority to find homes for every cute little puppy and kitten, God bless ‘em.”

Green Party candidate Cynthia Mickinney has denied accusations that she was a stalking horse for Obama. At her Atlanta headquarters she laid out the conditions under which she might endorse his candidacy.

“Repeal of the Patriot Act, repeal of Bush tax cuts, repeal of FISA, immediate withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan…”

The Obama rep nodded. “We can live with that.”

McKinney raised a fist, her eyes flashing. “And an immediate declaration of war against the apartheid state of Israel to be followed by an invasion code-named Operation Palestinian Freedom…”

The Obama man shook his head with a pained look. “That might not go down so well with the old Jews in Boca…How about we wait until after the election…?”

Secret polls show that previously obscure candidates Durg and Schildkraut have gained surprising strength in the last few months.

Durg has a catchy two issue platform: “A casino on every corner…A bong in every basement..” At last count he had collected over a million signatures and was on the ballot in four states.

McCain turned down a toke, saying “I’m on antibiotics,” but stressed his support for universal gambling. “I’ll give tax breaks to any casino that opens in an inner city neighborhood,” he said “I’ll allow gamblers to write off their losses and charge them a 15% capital gains tax on their winnings. I”m a crapshooter myself,” he added. “That’s how I’ll run the country.”

Durg was doubtful. “You’ve been quoted as saying: I don’t think marijuana is good for people and you’ve repeatedly expressed opposition to medical marijuana laws…”

McCain looked around warily, then whispered. “C’mon man, stoners always lie, you know that. I’m on a cocktail right now–claritin, Ambien, simivastin, flomax, ciallis. I’m seein’ colors, dude…And Cindy is a 24 hour party person. Percoet, Vicoden with a Stoli chaser. See how frozen she is when I’m making a speech. Sometimes I’m scared the bitch is gonna fall off the platform…”

“I don’t know,” Durg said. “Sarah Palin seems pretty square…”

“You joking?” McCain asked with feigned incredulity. “What do you think those people do up there in Alaska when it’s 20 below? Wasilla is Inuit for “miracle herb growing under permafrost…”

In Madison, Leah Schildkraut was still not convinced.

“Obama has moved to the center,” she said. “He’s waffled on choice and separation of church and state and supported the Supreme Court decision on gun control. He supports tort reform, which is just another way of denying the poor due process. He voted to give immunity to large telecoms who turn over private information to the government…”

“Hold it girl,” Maya Angelou said.

Everybody braced themselves for another round of poetry.

“Close your eyes and imagine McCain with his finger on that red button and Putin calls him an idiot,” she said. “Got that image? Now imagine Sarah Palin, gavel in hand, about to cast the deciding vote in the Senate of the United States of America…”

Schildkraut opened her eyes and looked around at the circle of avid faces.

“Obama ’08,” she said.


GREENPOINT, Brooklyn, Sept. 3…Does size matter? “Maybe not in sex and basketball,” Efraim Durg says, ” but in geopolitics it’s the only thing that counts.”

Durg, CEO of Durgometrics, a hedge fund that specializes in high risk bets, is advising his clients to back John McCain to win the Presidency for one reason only—he’s short.

“Issues come and go, but over the last ten years one variable has remained constant throughout the world —the winner is always short.”

An informal survey shows that no elected world leader is over 5 ft. 9 in. and most are hovering around 5t.6.

Russian Prime Minister Putin is 5:5. His anointed heir apparent Dmitry Medvedev is exactly the same height. French President Sarkozy is 5:6. German Prime MInister Angela Merkel is 5:6 in her “practical” shoes. Former Japanese Prime Minister Fukuda is 5:6. Italian Prime Minister Berlusconi is so short that he actually brags about being 5:7. British PM Gordon Brown claims 5:10, but often looks shorter than former PM Blair, who seems no more than an inch taller than President George W. Bush, who is hovering around the 5:9 mark depending on his shoes, but in photographs with Putin seems to be closer to the Russian’s 5:5.

“The G8 meeting this year looked like a Munchkin call for
“The Wizard of Oz,” Durg says.

At the cocktail reception, the leaders spent a lot of time on their toes, measuring themselves against each other and trying to rise to new heights.

“Have you noticed, I’m the little guy in my family,” Bush told Berlusconi. “And I’m 5:11.”

Berlusconi repressed a sneer at this obvious exaggeration. “Satirists describe me as a dwarf,” he said. “But I’m 5:7 without lifts.”

Bush smiled down at the top of his head.

“Well. I’m taller than Putin or Sarkozy,” Berlusconi said.

In the group photo all avoided Chinese President Hu Jintao, a virtual giant at 5:10.

McCain at five-seven. with broad shoulders and short arms fits the winner’s profile to a tee, Durg says. But there are more amazing similarities.

McCain is the shortest person in his immediate family, several inches below his dad and grand dad and only an inch or two above his 94 year old mom. He is the same height at his wife Cindy, but she towers over him in her heels, which may be why she is always photographed sitting down.

President Bush is dwarfed by his dad and brother at 6:3. Even his mom, Babs, looks down on him. His wife Laura has to wear flats and stand on the bottom step to look him in the eye.

Sarkozy’s wife, singer-model Carla Bruni, plooms over him at 5:9 and 1/2.

Putin has never been photographed with his wife, but rumors link him with a diminutive Russian gymnast, who hits the mark at 4:11.

“Power is trending short,” Durg says. “In every election we studied, the little guy won over a much taller opponent-Bush-Kerry, Sarkozy-Segolene Royal, his taller female rival, Berlusconi over Prodi, etc.”

The US was founded and led by tall men for most of its history. George Washington was measured at 6:3 and 1/2 on his death bed, which made him a pituitary oddity in Colonial America. Andrew Jackson was 6:1 and 1/2. Abe Lincoln was 6:4, more than a foot taller than his opponent, Stephen Douglas.

“If that election were held today the short, fat, rich, political insider Douglas would win in a landslide,” Durg says.

Durg doubts that the trend will reversed in 2008. “Look at Julius Caesar, Napoleon, Mussolini, Hitler, Stalin,,,Short men tend to hold on to power once they get it.”

Barrack Obama at 6:2 is well-aware that his height is the biggest hurdle he faces to the Presidency,” Durg says, and he has been trying to lower the bar. Recent statements from his campaign had him at 6:1/ and 1/2. “Expect that to shrink to 6 feet even by election night,” Durg says. At the upcoming debates his podium will be raised to his chin to make him look shorter.

Michelle has gone below the 6 foot mark to 5:11. But she still has to double over to speak to the ladies on “The View.”

“This isn’t the year of the tall person,” Durg says. “If the Democrats really wanted to make history they should have nominated Gary Coleman.”