MIA at convention: Anti-Bush swag

All the Obama memorabilia is great, but why so few jabs at our supremely unpopular president?

Published August 28, 2008 1:15PM (EDT)

DENVER -- OK, the smirker in chief is not totally absent.

But besides the Bush Legacy Tour Bus, a traveling museum of George W.'s failed policies, the pickings are surprisingly thin.

Among all the Barack Obama T-shirts, hats, buttons, mugs, key rings and teddy bears for sale from vendors on every street corner, I found only a few anti-Bush souvenirs -- all buttons, all pretty ho-hum.

There's a dumb-looking Bush with the words "Good Riddance," McCain and "McSame," and Bush, Cheney and Rummy dressed as the Three Stooges. Snore.

Don't get me wrong. I am a sucker for a lot of the Obama-wear and will pack my bags with a selection of fabulous T-shirts and other memorabilia. And there's some great Hillary Clinton swag, too.

My question is this: Where is the boogeyman? The lack of Bush swag on the streets is a metaphor for the relative lack of Bush-bashing in the campaign. This is a president with the worst approval ratings since Atilla the Hun, so why aren't the Dems taking better advantage of it?

Hillary Clinton's line from Tuesday night, "It makes sense that George Bush and John McCain will be together next week in the Twin Cities. Because these days they're awfully hard to tell apart," was one of the best lines of the convention so far. Where's the T-shirt? I want to buy it.

By Jeanne Carstensen

Jeanne Carstensen is a former managing editor of Salon and a member of the Castro Writers’ Cooperative in San Francisco. Her work has appeared in Nautilus, The New York Times, Religion Dispatches and other publications.

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