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Jewish World Review Nov. 30, 2000/ 3 Kislev, 5761

Suzanne Fields

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Consumer Reports

Winner vs. whiner -- THE REPUBLICANS have become the street fighters spoiling for a little action, and the Democrats the whiners. George W. has pinned Al Gore's shoulders to the playground asphalt. Look who turned the tables.

The Gore team introduced David Boies, understudy for Warren Christopher, as if he was Napoleon at the victory of Austerlitz. Not for long. Suddenly the mild-mannered Jim Baker looks like the Duke of Wellington at Waterloo.

Walk into any restaurant, coffee shop or bar overflowing with political junkies and a television set and it's the staid Republicans who are unruly and cheering, their fists in the air. The Democrats slink low in their chairs, timidly studying a map to the high road. It has to be satire when so many politicians of Bill Clinton's party accuse George W. of lacking the "moral authority'' to be president.

The greatest irony of all for Democrats, the party of the radical "feminists,'' is that Katherine Harris, the woman with true grit, who achieved power the old-fashioned way by getting elected to it, is dumped on by the sisterhood for, of all things, getting her makeup wrong.

Why wouldn't Gloria Steinem applaud Ms. Harris for standing up to the ruthless Gore team of white male patriarchs? Why isn't Betty Friedan cheering her for overcoming feminine stereotypes? Sisters-in-arms ought to be serenading the Florida secretary of state with a chorus or two of "I am woman, hear me roar.'' Instead they've joined the cowardly men who attack her with mean-spirited hyperbole, making the political personal, cattily calling her "Cruella de Vil.''

The Democrats, no doubt, would rather confront a Republican woman of a previous generation, the matron of the house whose activism moved her no further than a fund-raising tea at the country club or a bake sale at the DAR chapter. But feminism has radically changed Republican women, too.

Of course, there's one Democrat of the distaff persuasion who has got to be mightily pleased by the Florida certification of George W. even though she can't say so. There's been no love lost between Hillary Clinton and Al Gore since she competed with him for movie star money in Hollywood, and Hillary now has the strongest motivation for wanting Al Gore to lose. She would get a straight shot at the Democratic nomination for president in '04. Talk about "clear and president'' danger.

The Democratic Congressional leaders who have rallied around Al Gore won't remain unified if the public loses patience with Al, as polls now suggest. Sen. Tom Daschle, the minority leader who expressed his disappointment with Joe Lieberman for refusing to take himself out of his re-election race in Connecticut, isn't happy with the prospect that if Al prevails the Senate Democrats lose a seat. Mr. Lieberman, for his part, continues to diminish himself. He defends the Florida litigation as a fight on behalf of "every American's sacred right to vote'' but he and Al Gore have done everything to invalidate the absentee ballots from American soldiers and sailors abroad.

Republican outrage at Al Gore continues to be much greater than Democratic anger toward George W., and the personality of the candidates is responsible.

The Cuban Americans in Florida, still angry with Attorney General Janet Reno's middle-of-the-night snatch of Elian Gonzalez, weighed in with a very un-Republican protest in Dade County when they learned that the canvassing board would recount only votes from Democratic precincts. Portrayed as unruly brawlers in the media, they merely demonstrated in the noisy tradition of the Democratic protests of the Rev. Jesse Jackson.

The wimp award goes to the Democratic vote counters in Palm Beach County. With stakes so high, the canvassing board worked half days and took off all of Thanksgiving, missing by two hours the deadline set by the Florida Supreme Court. All for the love of turkey.

We've got a president-elect, but on hold. George W. is at work organizing an administration. Al Gore and Joe Lieberman say he is president-elect illegitimate, throwing into question "the integrity of our self-government.'' Old whine, new battles.


11/27/00: Measuring against history
11/23/00: Memories of Thanksgiving past
11/17/00: In defense of the Electoral College
11/16/00: More than one way to win an election
11/13/00: Sexual politics squared
11/09/00: A Middle East legacy
11/06/00: Filling in the dots at campaign's end
11/02/00: His own man in full
10/30/00: The Oval Office, through a glass brightly
10/23/00: There'll always be an England. Maybe.
10/19/00: The celebrity candidate
10/16/00: 'Ladies night' at the second debate
10/12/00: Gore vs. Bush: Volvo vs. Maserati
10/10/00: We weep for Rami for he is dead
10/05/00: Looking at Lieberman from inside the 'ghetto'
10/02/00: Campaigns, candidates, and kissy-face
09/28/00: Laughing and crying over Joe Lieberman
09/21/00: Targeting teenagers for money
09/21/00: Sexual politics in New York
09/18/00: Surviving the stereotypes and debates
09/14/00: Gloria Steinem runs cheerfully into captivity
09/12/00: Sex in the eye of the partisan
09/07/00: 'Sex and death' on the college campus
09/05/00: Joe Lieberman as a 'Menorah Man'
08/31/00: Rising suns of the conventions
08/17/00: Changing icons: From Loretta Young to Hillary Clinton
08/14/00: The Creator returns to the public square
08/10/00: Bursting with pride, but caution too
08/07/00: Brains, beauty and beastly politics
08/03/00: A candidate with a superego
07/31/00: The sizzling Lynne Cheney
07/27/00: The party of the aging Playboys
07/24/00 Hillary drives the Jewish wagon into a ditch
07/20/00 Conservatives gone fishin'
07/17/00: Snoop Doggy Dogg was a founding father, wasn't he?
07/13/00: When a teenager doesn't need a prime minister
07/10/00: Abortion as cruel and unusual punishment
07/06/00: Surviving 'survivor' TV
07/03/00: Independence Day with Norman Rockwell
06/29/00: Here comes 'something old'
06/26/00: Waiting too long for the baby
06/22/00: Good teachers, curious students and oxymorons
06/19/00: Wanted: Some ants for Gore's pants
06/15/00: Like father, like daughter
06/12/00: Culture wars and conservative warriors
06/08/00: Return of the housewife
06/05/00: Hillary and Al -- playing against type
05/31/00: The sexual revolution confronts the SUV
05/25/00: Waiting for the movie
05/22/00: Pistol packin' mamas
05/18/00: Journalists and the 'new time' religion
05/15/00: There's nothing like a (military) dame
05/11/00: 'The Human Stain' on campus
05/09/00: We've come a long way, Betty Friedan
05/04/00: From George Washington to Mansa Masu
05/01/00: Gore's ruthless doublespeak
04/28/00: Doing it Castro's way
04/24/00: Women's studies beget narrow minds
04/17/00: The slippery slope of anti-Semitism
04/13/00: A villain larger than life
04/10/00: When mourning becomes an economic tragedy
04/03/00: The last permissible bigotry
03/30/00: Seeking the political Oscar
03/23/00: The gaying of America
03/20/00: Pointy-eared quadrupeds on campus
03/16/00: The shocking art of the establishment
03/13/00: Sawdust on the campaign trail
03/10/00: Campaign rhetoric of manhood
03/06/00: The Amphetamine of the People
03/02/00: Elegy for Amadou
02/29/00: With only a million, what's a poor girl to do?
02/24/00: The changing politics of change
02/16/00: Tip from Hillary: 'Let 'em eat eggs'
02/10/00: No seances with Eleanor
02/07/00: Campaigning like our founding fathers
02/03/00: When neo-Nazis have short memories
01/31/00: George W. -- 'Ladies man' and 'man's man'
01/27/00: Dead white males and live white politicians
01/25/00: Smarting over presidential smarts
01/21/00: A post-modern song for `The Sopranos'
01/19/00: When personality is a long-distance plus
01/13/00: French lessons in amour --- and marriage
01/10/00: Reaching for the Big Golden Apple
01/07/00: Liddy Dole as the face of feminism
01/04/00: Hillary: From victim to victor
12/30/99: 'Dream catchers' for the millennium
12/27/99: In search of a candidate with strength and eloquence
12/21/99: The president as First Lady
12/16/99: Columbine with blurred hindsight
12/09/99: Homeless deserve discriminating attention
12/07/99: Casual censors and deadly know-nothings
12/02/99: Why mom didn't make general: A reality tale
11/30/99: Potholes on the road to the Promised Land
11/25/99: A feast for the spirit and the stomach
11/23/99: Fathers need to say 'I (can) do'
11/18/99: Adventures of a conservative pundit
11/15/99: Traveling with Jefferson on the information highway
11/11/99: Wanted: 'Foliage of forbiddinness' for the oval office
11/09/99: Eggs, art and rotten commerce
11/05/99: Al Gore, 'Alpha Male'. Bow wow.
11/01/99: Gay love
10/28/99: Lose one Dole, lose two
10/26/99: Rebels with a violent cause
10/21/99: Reforming parents, reforming schools
10/19/99: The male mystique -- he shops
10/13/99:The campaign of the Teletubbies
10/08/99: Money is in the eye of the art dealer
10/01/99: Lincoln's 'Almost Chosen People'
09/29/99: Introducing Bill and Hillary Bickerson
09/27/99: Must we wait for the next massacre?
09/24/99: Miss America meets Miss'd America
09/21/99: Princeton's 'professor death'
09/16/99: The Cisneros lesson
09/13/99: No clemency for personal politics
09/08/99: M-M-M is for manhood
08/30/99: Blocking the schoolhouse door
08/27/99: No kick from cocaine
08/23/99: Movies don't kill people
08/19/99: A rude awakening
08/16/99: Dubyah and that 'language' thing
08/09/99: Chauvinist sows -- oink oink

©1999, Suzanne Fields. Distributed by Los Angeles Times Syndicate