A continuing tale of life in the boonies

No. 204

Dolphins for Perot

FARMINGTON – With less than a week to go before the presidential election, Farmington is seething and bubbling with political intrigue. New parties, hitherto unknown factions, bizarre fronts and secret cabals are being hatched almost hourly, unprecedented even for a community like Puddledock, renowned for the diversity of its opinions.

This year, as never before, people are coming off the fence (before it is repossessed by the bank).

Just take the leader of Dolphins for Perot, Patty Benoit, for example. Previous voting history for presidents – none. Now she is the area coordinator for the Texas billionaire, and last Sunday, despite a bitter wind, managed to rally another four supporters – just enough for everybody to hold a letter of his name outside Rochester Mall. Passing motorists were honking support in heart-warming numbers, although this may have been in recognition of Patty’s past service to dolphins as much as for the Second Coming of Ross.

Patty, incidentally, apologizes that the hand-held letters comprising PEROT were constructed from paper, rather than her specialty quilting, but she only jumped into this thing a couple of weeks ago. Next rally scheduled for Ross is outside the Lilac Mall at 9 a.m. on Saturday. Call Houston, Texas for details at 1-800-685-7777 or alternatively Farmington at 755-3835.

But there are other fish in the sea, apart from dolphins and Perot. I have a hunch that Royce’s Stoves and Freezers will be throwing its weight (Get that weight down to Madbury Metals! – J. Scruton) behind John Hagelin, presidential candidate of the Natural Law Party.

Hagelin, like Royce, is a man of science, and as possessors of logical minds, they find it hard to be governed by a bunch of white collar bureaucrats who fail to grasp that most of the solutions to world problems are already at hand. Just take the modern fad for recycling, now touted as the planet’s salvation. Guess who has been doing it for decades, already?

Then there is the New Alliance Party of presidential hopeful Lenora Fulani, a woman well aware from her primary campaigning, that oppression exists in the forests of New Hampshire as well as the ghettos of New York City. Therefore, do not be surprised if Lenora’s candidacy appeals to the besieged Winding Path Guerillas, fighting to preserve a traditional life-style in one of the more remote jungle regions of Farmington, but now under threat from central town government forces, determined to drive an expressway through their midst.

The Libertarians, led by Andre Marrou, being in favor of getting all kinds of government out of people’s hair, must be an attractive proposition to anyone in town who wishes that growing and smoking marijuana was not treated as severely as selling state secrets to a foreign power. But actually getting the pothead vote motivated enough to amble groovily to the polling booth, could present an insurmountable problem.

Democrats in Farmington have long been split between the blue collar faction and the liberal wing. It’s complicated, believe me. The nicer the liberals try to be to the blue collars, the more the blue collars get feeling nauseous and rush off to vote for someone entirely different. But this year the Democrats are marching in what they hope passes for unity behind the Clinton banner.

And please don’t breathe the words "state income tax," liberals.

("Did somebody say STATE INCOME TAX? Yeah! Right on!" – Nick Gordon)

(Muffled sounds of choking and placards splintering, ensue)

Republicans, too, have their troubles. After the February primary, for the first time on record the town had more Democrats on the books than G.O.P. supporters. Seems the twin fears of job loss and home foreclosure have acted like an acid on the memory plate of President Bush’s Desert Storm triumph. Could it be that winning a war against Iraq seems a hollow victory to someone surrendering a job to Mexico, the Philippines or wherever shoes are made these days? Hmmm.

Full analysis of results next week. (But in a more respected part of the newspaper – Ed.)

October 29, 1992

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