Skeptik Spars with His Mailbag And Launches A Few Punches of His Own

It’s been a somewhat of a slow news week–so bear with me as I take care of some housekeeping issues and sift through my mailbag. Each week I inevitably receive responses to my column. Some will praise–some will criticize–and some will just want someone to hear their point of view. In my desk–I keep a piece of paper with a quote on it; a friend gave it to me many years ago. It reads "Never explain–your friends do not need it and your enemies will not believe it anyhow." After receiving dozens of letters from readers last week for my retrospective glance at late President Ronald Reagan’s legacy–I decided to pull out this tattered piece of paper and gaze at it for inspiration. I–in fact–expected to receive more letters berating my views than letters of praise after last week. I suppose I should be happy that most folks enjoyed reading my opinion. But the letters that lingered with me were the few critical ones that called the Asbarez a "liberal pinko rag" and such. First of all–say what you want about Skeptik. After all–I have developed thick skin. But please–leave innocent Asbarez out of this. I didn’t take offense to anything in the letters–per say. What I was upset about was that anyone would take the time to write such well-written and thorough letters defending Reagan’s legacy as President. One person wrote me a four page letter and signed it "A Grateful Armenian Immigrant!" What’s the thought process behind a 1800 word manifesto/letter to someone defending a dead President’s record? I’m assuming its someone with a very short checklist of things to do. Some even made valid points–and I wasn’t irked that someone who made sense disagreed with me. Reading the letters–I couldn’t help but wonder if the folks who took the time to write to me took as much time to write letters to each of the goons in Congress who were holding up any number of Armenian bills from being voted on. It bothered me to no end to think that there are fellow Armenian Americans who will spend 5 to 20 minutes penning a letter praising a mediocre President–but may not put the same effort in writing to the White House–Senate Leadership office–or House Leadership to demand justice or fairness in the name of democracy. I wish the Muse of Pestering would inspire them to write such opinionated letters to the likes of Hastert–Daschle–and others. But alas–my compatriots elect to forward explanations to me on why Reagan was the greatest thing for Armenia’s since Zankou Chicken’s secret garlic sauce (shaking my head in disappointment). That’s pretty much all I’ll say about that. Let’s move on to some more serious issues like the "so-called" Presidential race. I call it the "so-called" race because there are no real issues being discussed in this election cycle–and if there are–someone forgot to tell the news agencies to cover them. I read an article on Friday stating that Bush’s approval ratings are back on the rise in the wake of President Reagan’s death. I didn’t realize that the death of 837 U.S. military personnel could be cancelled out by the death of one former President. And to think that after only a few hundred Americans died in Lebanon while Reagan was President–his approval ratings sunk so fast–he canceled the invasion. I’m just wondering how hopeless a state the President is in–that the only thing that causes a small lift in his dismal approval ratings is the death of Ronald Reagan? The only thing more pathetic? The state of the Kerry campaign. Kerry’s folks can’t even figure out how to define a message or platform–even while the throngs of people who are ready to support anyone but Bush for the Presidency continues to grow each day. The Kerry campaign is showing about as much excitement and enthusiasm as a wax museum display. My Skept-o-meter says that if the election were held today–contrary to what the MSNBC–CNN–or other polls say–George W. Bush and the Ghost of Reagan would beat Kerry’s Comatose Campaign– without event flinching. This doesn’t mean that the election is over; it just means that the Democrats have to find some real issues that blue-collar Americans care about–other than wedding bells for folks who left their hearts in San Francisco. Also in the news this week–adrift in the sea of political malaise–we saw Bubba Clinton on the horizon–sailing along in his boat of cash–promoting his new book–apparently his long awaited memoirs. I just want to know if this is going to be suitable reading for young adults or whether it will be in the back corner of the bookstore with all the other "adult" publications. Did Clinton really need to write a book? Is there anything about this man’s life that we DON’T know? I think I speak for most Americans when I say that after his impeachment hearings–I know more about Bill Clinton than his own mother. In fact–Clinton’s greatest legacy is going to be that his memoirs will be used in schools across the United States to simultaneously teach children global politics and sex education. OK–I’ll stop. But he started it! It’s true that Bush’s Armenian policies make Clinton seem like a godsend–but that’s not saying much. But Clinton and Bush share similar views on Armenia and the Caucasus. The only difference is that Clinton wasn’t so blatant in his pro-oil–pro-Azeri policies–and Bush isn’t smart enough to be more discrete about his greed. Let’s hope that the election picks up soon and that we have something exciting to talk about next week. But until that happens (and I’m not holding my breath)–I’ll brace myself for all the pro-Clinton letters I’m going to receive this week. A word of caution to anyone writing to me this week–if its about how great Clinton was or how much of a adulterous swine he was? save your ink or your keystrokes. I’m not going to respond to your letter unless you also copy me on a letter you’ve sent to a public official on any Armenian issue. Deal? SKEPTIK SINIKIAN IS NOT A POLITICAL ANALYST. HIS COMMENTS ARE MERELY OPINIONS. HE IS NOT IN THE MARKET TO LEASE NOR BUY ANYONE ELSE’S OPINIONS–BUT ON OCCASION–WILL TAKE ONE OUT FOR A TEST DRIVE. HE CAN BE REACHED AT SKEPTIKSINIKIAN@AOL.COM.

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