Twit for tat

John McCaslin
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Posted: Nov 09, 2004 12:00 AM

It's been exactly one week since Election Day, and Americans who can't stomach four more years of President Bush are drawing blueprints for Canada - or Ireland, perhaps.

The electorate that decided to give this stupid, little twit four more years will get exactly what it deserves. No more can the American people hide behind the administration and point to its colossal ineptitude and vacuous foreign policies and claim innocence.

Wow, Tom Madigan, coordinator of media and press relations for the Irish American Unity Conference, tell us how you really feel.

The people have now chosen to put this chimp back in the White House for four more years in spite of the horror stories coming out of Iraq, the train wreck that used to be our economy and the almost complete gutting of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

If we're attacked again, it will be because the perception now is that the American people have deliberately chosen to continue the administration's policies. This last item is truly frightening and is no joke.

Given the number of phony documents circulating these days, we figured we'd better check with Madigan to confirm the above roasting is actually his doing.

"Yes . . . those are my words, and I stand behind them," Madigan states. "They are an attempt at expressing something deeply visceral; they were written from the heart, in the middle of the night, when I was trying to put my brain around something that even today, the morning after (Election Day), was too surreal and too bizarre to put into words, the notion that over 60 million people could be so wrong."

He concludes: "If George Bush and the Republican Party view this as anything other than a profoundly divided nation, then they're even bigger fools than I thought they were."

Given that the nationwide Irish American Unity Conference, which has its headquarters on Pennsylvania Avenue between the White House and Capitol Hill, touts itself as "nonpartisan" and striving "for justice and peace in Ireland . . . by working through the American democratic process," we didn't have to wait long for a senior conference official to comment on the spokesman labeling the president a twit.

"To Whom It May Concern," William Berardo says in a statement issued to The Beltway Beat. "As the vice president of the Irish American Unity Conference, we do not authorize nor do we condone the statements made by Tom Madigan. He has not gained clearance from the IAUC national officers to make any statements. He speaks only for himself and not the IAUC."

In a subsequent statement to this column, Madigan clarified that his remarks "were my own private thoughts and are categorically not any official statement by the IAUC."

BIGGER PICTURE

A prominent advocate for blacks in this country is warning the American Public Health Association - the nation's largest and oldest organization of public health professionals - that it's being overly influenced by environmental activists.

Exhibit A: Activist Erin Brockovich invited as keynote speaker - instead of a respected health authority - at the organization's meeting in Washington this week.

Exhibit B: Notable activists presenting abstracts at the meeting on such topics as avoiding pesticides by eating only organically grown fruits and vegetables.

Kevin Marchman, executive director of the National Organization for African Americans in Housing, sent letters to APHA and to members of the Congressional Black Caucus questioning whether the public health group is losing its way.

"Your organization should be highlighting only our nation's most pressing health concerns, such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, AIDS, alcohol abuse and cigarette use," Marchman wrote to the APHA. "Instead, the conference is allowing activists to focus on issues of little importance to average Americans."

A former official in the Department of Housing and Urban Development under President Clinton, Marchman concludes: "These activists are warning us about trace levels of chemicals while ignoring real concerns like heart disease. It's like worrying about a speck on your windshield while your car goes off a cliff."