So what might Ms. MacLaine have said if given 20 minutes as a lead-in to President Obama’s acceptance speech? Shirley is known for her views on spirituality, especially reincarnation.
First of all, she could have told us that Charlotte wasn’t her first convention.
“I remember the summer of ‘44 in Baltimore. 1844, that is. Big battle that year between Marty Van Buren, Jimmy Buchanan and the eventual nominee, James K. Polk. They wouldn’t let women into the hall of course. We couldn’t vote, so why bother? A couple of us burned some hoop skirts in protest but the mainstream media ignored us.”
Taking a page out of Eastwood’s playbook, I could see MacLaine talking to an empty stool. Once again, it would represent a President, but in this case, the absentee participant in question would be George W. Bush.
“So, Bushie, you know this mess is all your fault, right?
“No answer for that, eh? Doesn’t surprise me.
“I may have to go back to work because of you. I had all my money in bank stocks and real estate. Do you have any idea how many parts in movies there are for older women these days? I’ll tell ya, not many. And even if there were, that Helen Mirren Dame gets all the good ones.
“By the way, did you know my brother is Warren Beatty?
“He doesn’t like you either.
“What was the deal with the wars, Bushie? I mean, yeah, we were all ticked off after 9/11, but didn’t you learn anything from Vietnam? Oh, yeah, I forgot, you sat that one out.
“The way I see it, you had six years of total control of the country and all we got for it was a big bill for a bunch of bombs and a rampant recession. You were supposed to be a compassionate conservative.
“It wasn’t until we got real leadership like Nancy Pelosi — where is she? Over there? You go, girl — that things really started to happen. By the way, how come she didn’t get one of the prime speaking spots at this convention? Oh, well, at least I do.
“And here’s what I’d really like to say. Thank you, Bushie. Because no matter who came after you had to do a better job. I know Obama appreciates the comparison.
“Did I mention my brother is Warren Beatty? Did I tell you he doesn’t like you either? Okay, just wanted to make sure. He’s slept in the Lincoln bedroom you know.
“What’s that? Why am I talking about you instead of Mitt Romney? Well, why should I bring him up? He didn’t make the mess. You did. And Barack Obama has spent three years trying to fix things. He may not have won an Oscar for his performance (I did though), but he’s got a Nobel Peace Prize. How many of those are in your scrapbook?
“Americans need to wake up and smell the money. Obama knows it takes money to make money. This is the land of plenty. Everyone’s entitled to get all they can. And everybody needs to pay a fair share.
“What? Whattaya mean why don’t we start with my money? That’s not what I meant. Romney’s money. That’s more like it. He’s the one getting all the government handouts with the tax breaks.
“How’s that? Oh, yeah, well I guess it is getting kind of late. Past your bedtime, is it, Bushie? All this trouble you caused and I’ll bet you sleep like a baby. Well, so do the rest of us — we cry ourselves to sleep every night.
“That’s why I’m voting for Barack Obama. Thanks and I’ll see you in another life.”
Bill Lewis is a writer in Marietta.