WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Republican National Convention in New York City was a swell show. There were some fine speeches and pleasant political pageantry inside Madison Square Garden. Outside, we were treated to occasional glimpses of the New Left anarchist freak show.
There were some warm moments when a radiant Laura talked about her husband, and the twins, Jenna and Barbara, made us laugh at their dad. Vice President Dick Cheney, in his calm and competent way, outlined the administration's defense of America. And President Bush, though not the smoothest talker, proved once again that he is a chronically optimistic Texan with a strong faith in God and the people of his country -- and has a resolute commitment to stand up for both. That was all well and good -- but it was all so, well ... consistent, so expected, so predictable. There was no real EXCITEMENT!
Now, I know that my GOP friends tried to be stimulating. But was anyone really surprised when Ed Koch, the former Democrat mayor of New York City, castigated his party and its candidate for their flaccid stand on combating terrorism and endorsed George Bush for president? Was anyone stunned when fiery Georgia Democrat Sen. Zell Miller rebuked his party's standard-bearer by saying, "Nothing makes this Marine madder than when someone calls our troops ?occupiers' rather than liberators!"?
Was anyone startled that after Maryland's black lieutenant governor, Michael Steele, called on people of color to vote Republican, the so-called mainstream media denigrated his effort by pointing out that "96 percent of Republican delegates are white"? Of course not. All of this was so very predictable and UN-exciting.
For those of us who crave thrills with our politics, there is only one place to turn: the Kerry campaign. The Republicans offered a recitation of policies that they have consistently applied to cut taxes, create jobs, improve education, bolster home ownership and protect the homeland. Then they talked about personal responsibility, private compassion and plans to bring U.S. troops home from places where they are not needed so that we're better prepared to defend the American people. But for sheer excitement, there's nothing like the Kerry campaign.
Oliver North is a nationally syndicated columnist, the host of War Stories on the Fox News Channel, the author of the new novel Heroes Proved and the co-founder of Freedom Alliance, an organization that provides college scholarships to the children of U.S. military personnel killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Join Oliver North in Israel by going to www.olivernorthisrael.com.