18 July 2004

Bumper Stickers: A (small) sign of hope

So anyway,  The Missus and the kids and I were out and about the other evening, and she wanted to swing by the bookstore to pick up a book she wanted.  I dropped her at the door of B.Noble-WaldenBarnes and went cruising the parking lot for a parking spot.  Now, this particular bookstore is in AnnArbor (aka Moscow on the Huron) and shares a parking lot with Whole Foods, a hippy grocer of the first order.  Being semi-observant, I started to take note of the bumper stickers on the cars parked in the lot.  Discounting the "local" and "music" themed bumper stickers and focusing only on the political, there was a lot of what you'd expect for Moscow on the Huron: NARAL, NORML, GreenPeace, World Wildlife Fund, "No Blank Check For Endless War", "Not In My Name", Sierra Club, etc.  I saw two cars with Howard "Screamer" Dean stickers, two with "GWB-04" type stickers, five with anti-GWB slogans, but only one car out of several hundred (500? more?) that had a john kerry bumper sticker.
Only one. 
Only one kerry sticker, on the quintessential AnnArbor 12 year old Volvo.  Two GWB bumper stickers (both on late model SUVs, I'm happy to report).  In AnnArbor.  I have to tell you, I was quite relieved.  I mean, there I was, in the heart of liberal-ville, where sloganism via bumper sticker is required.  Relieved, indeed.
For the past several weeks I have been knocking about the notion that GWB might actually lose in November.  (Read it correctly, not that "kerry would win", because he can't win without GWB managing to lose the election).  Polls, schmolls.  I've long held the theory that in politics hatred is un-sustainable, eventually you have to come to the marketplace with ideas and vision.  Your platform can't be simply "I'm not Him".  And that's exactly what the left has been running on.  Jebeezus, I can tell you more about algore's platform and positions on the issues than I know about FATAC's.  The only time that pure hatred of a candidate or a Party has worked (for either side) was in 1976; when Gerald Ford died for Nixon's sins.
What's my point, you may ask?  Call me crazy, but I'm interpreting this as good news, from a "boots in the dirt" perspective.  Say what you will about AnnArbor liberals (don't get me started), but they're not complete idiots.  The fact that there aren't more kerry / edwards bumper stickers out there, in what is arguably one of, if not the most liberal of cities in this country, speaks volumes about the left's resolve and search for substance.  Now if I could only find the link for the "Ralph Nader for President in 04" campaign, maybe we could swing this.....


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