(And for the record, it was support for Johnson's handling of the war--I'm using a lot of parenthesis these days for some reason--and not for the war itself which fell after Uncle Walter told us Tet meant we'd lost, though it had begun falling a year earlier.)
Forty years later a candidate has to have been an opponent of the current quagmire from the start (read: crackpot, traitor, crackpottraitor) to tell the public it once again suffers from Mass Directed Confabulation Syndrome; otherwise one insists that it's all
Which I didn't mean to spring on you, there, and I trust you were sitting down. It's just that yesterday's Okay Now It's Huckabee! fest (example), predicated on the idea that it potentially could mean something if he does well in a once-totally-ignored straw poll in a state whose second major import, not coincidentally, is straw, made me nostalgic for that Bygone Era--three weeks ago--when It! was Fred Dumbo Thompson. How well I remember Craig Crawford--he's the Olbermann guest who sounds like Bill Clinton with an undisclosed brain injury--informing me that Fred's extraordinary first debate performance, the one where he successfully avoided accidentally setting fire to his own tie, had doomed the Huckabee campaign. Now it turns out that Iowans are increasingly smitten by the way the former Arkansas governor tells that same homily about his preacher over and over. Or at least 24% of the something like 400 who told a voice identifying itself on the phone as a political pollster that they're likely to participate in the caucuses provided there's pie are.
I don't mind telling you I found the news cheering, since I'd begun to suspect that Republicans had gone nuts.
The euphoria was short-lived. Further research (this is why I'm a committed dilettante, by the way) revealed that 9% of respondents told Parents magazine that Rudy Giuliani is the Presidential candidate they'd most trust to babysit their children.
Still, hope springs eternal, and another round of fascinating YouTube debates, with attendant Hey, A Hillary Supporter Got To Ask A Question! scandal, has perhaps hastened the day when we'll choose a Chief Executive by having randomly-selected citizens pick from an onstage selection of luggage. Besides, whoever wins this time will likely be hated right off the bat, thus ending all speculation about when David Broder will write his first "Is the Honeymoon Over?" column.
1 Kennedy sends combat advisors, beginning military build-up.
2 With U.S. backing, Diem announces Republic of Vietnam product roll-out.
3 In the wake of Dien Bien Phu, CIA establishes military mission, protecting the investment, as it were.
4 U.S. money and U.S. Military Assistance Advisory Group arrive to aid the heroic French struggle. Note that it is only government/military organizations which find the need to specify their Advice constitutes Assistance.
5 Despite having been bankrupted through standing alone against Hitler, the United Kingdom in the Pacific Ltd., by this point a wholly-owned subsidiary of Uncle Sammy's Postwar Trans-Pacific Ricebowl, Inc., sends troops into Indochina to preserve the French Empire, the French at the time being otherwise occupied in skedaddling. Bolstered by two-hundred years of the sort of Sahib wisdom that permitted them to look upon the Americans a blithering idiots with a bank account, and unable to raise the cab fare to send their own people, the Brits send mostly Gurkhas, thus endearing themselves to the Chinese.
6 The Wilson administration ignores Ho's pleas for a end to French colonialism.