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As I write, tomorrow is election day and though I’m not foolish enough to vote, I can’t help sharing the excitement. If you haven’t been listening to Rush Limbaugh, you have no excuse for acting surprised when the Republicans win by a landslide, contrary to what the drive-by media have been telling you. Rush really has his finger on the pulse. Also he takes a lot of drugs.

The big issue, of course, is the war in Iraq, which my old friend Fred Barnes of 每周标准 has called “the greatest act of benevolence one nation has ever performed for another.” I think I see his point. Not only have we given Iraq democracy; now that Saddam Hussein has been sentenced to hang, the Iraqis will have the satisfaction of watching their former ruler at the end of a rope, his feet kicking spasmodically for a few delicious seconds.

Even if the Democrats carry both houses of Congress, this is a spectacle we are unlikely to enjoy here in the Land of the Free. Instead, President Bush, like President Clinton before him, will probably be allowed to live out his term and then go into honorable retirement with as much White House furniture as he and his wife can carry off with them.

Under our form of government, Mrs. Bush will then be free to seek a seat in the U.S. Senate and run for the presidency herself. If so, one of her potential Republican rivals will probably have been eliminated: Senator George Allen of Virginia has already destroyed his own White House prospects in a novel way. He has come up with an entirely new ethnic slur, macaca, now delicately referred to here in Virginia as “the M-word.”

Allen blames his mother for teaching him this word and for not telling him that she is Jewish. This means that he is technically Jewish too, so he can always run for president of Israel. But he may not be too popular there either, since he reacted with indignation when a reporter asked him if he was Jewish. You’d have thought it was an accusation. As I write, Allen has only a few hours remaining to anger other ethnic groups.

Allen was supposed to win easy reelection this year, since this is a democracy and he has lots of money, but his challenger, James Webb, has pulled even with him through the simple but potent strategy of pointing out that he is not George Allen. Allen has retorted that this is a lie, and that Webb, moreover, writes dirty books demeaning to women, especially naked ones. Not only has Webb surged in the polls; his books are selling like crazy.

Allen’s ads run something like this: “James Webb is an even worse bigot than I am. I’m George Allen, and I was dumb enough to approve this message.” In fact, Allen has surpassed even President Bush for goofy gaffes. Only John Kerry can save him now.

But the election is still unpredictable because of another factor, or what Allen might call the macaca in the woodpile. CNN reports that many women aren’t exercising “their hard-won right to vote.” Sensible girls, if you ask me. “If voting could change anything,” someone has observed, “it would be illegal.” Amen.

I mean, think about it. The chance that your vote could change the result is minuscule minus. And even if it did, the U.S. Supreme Court would have to overrule it.

If the vote is so precious, then the penalty for not paying taxes would be simply to strip you of it. No need to put you in the clink. You’d appear at the polls, they’d tell you, “Sorry, you haven’t paid your taxes,” and you’d whimper, “You’re not really going to take away my franchise, my most precious freedom, are you?!”

If this were enforced — if the citizen were faced with the stark choice between paying taxes and being deprived of the vote — then either voters or taxpayers would cease to exist. Care to guess which? The big question facing the analysts every election day would be whether anyone would show up. (“NBC now projects that a couple of senior citizens in Florida may cast ballots.”) The cost of buying votes would soar astronomically.

But we can be sure of one thing: Rush Limbaugh would still vote Republican.

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