Cattle Today

Cattle Today



by: Wes Ishmael

“I don't know what he knows about, but women sure ain't one of them,” said Lonnie Johnson, licking and sealing another envelope.

“You should have enough couth to understand the potential repercussions,” is how Peetie Womac summed it up, shaking his head in delight. “Say whatever you want, but even a mesquite stump knows enough to leave women and kids alone.”

Perhaps you heard Republican vice-presidential candidate, Sarah Palin, share her humor at the Republican National Convention when she asked delegates if they knew the difference between a hockey-mom and a pit-bull: lipstick.

Palin happens to be one of those self-described hockey-moms. She also happens to be gun-friendly and unimpressed by companies and people who try to spook her into doing what they want. She was serving as Alaska's governor when presidential candidate John McCain came calling.

Within a day or so of Palin's joke, opposing presidential candidate Barak Obama derided one of his opponent's plans by saying even if you put lipstick on a pig, it's still a pig.

“What would he know about pigs,” huffed Hooter. “A Chicago politician from Hawaii who sends a letter to a feedlot encouraging them to let union organizers force their employees to join the union rather than letting their employees decide for themselves whether or not they want to be part of one.”

Keep in mind, though members of the Rio Rojo Cattlemen's Association (RRCA) appreciated McCain for his well documented military service and subsequent civil service, they weren't agog with him—a record on agriculture policy shorter than a midget's bootjack, and more belief in government intervention than the boys thought necessary.

In fact, when the presidential candidates finally emerged, cousin Charlie pointed out, “It's a little like picking between drought and a tornado. At least with drought you've got some options, though, and the chance to come back to fight another day.”

But that lipstick remark changed everything.

Whether or not Obama was aiming at Palin directly with his remark, the boys were astounded by the lack of common sense.

“You alienate a big chunk of the nation you need to vote for you,” said Peetie. “Can you imagine what he'd do for us with the rest of the world through his foreign policy?”

“You mean his notion of sitting down for unconditional conversations with dictators, some of whom are linked to terrorist attacks on our country?” Hooter said. “I suppose he would have invited Stalin and Hitler to tea to visit about what was troubling them.”

Aunt Pinky was a mite more direct: “That youngster needs a whippin'.”

Grass-Roots Punkin' Chunkin

So it was that the RRCA had kicked off its Pigs for President Campaign. Basically, this involved sending fliers to every woman's group they could find an address for. The flier was simply a caricature of Obama with pig-shaped ears and over-sized lips painted with glistening bright red lipstick. “Pigs for President,” blazed across the top, and “Just Say No,” along the bottom.

Now, the RRCA was no stranger to political action. Some of the members knew Senators and Congressmen; more knew folks who knew them. They'd pooled their money over the years to support or oppose state and national efforts they believed diluted their freedom. They weren't above some good old-fashioned mud-slinging, either, if it was warranted. Especially Hooter.

Readers of this column might recall the notorious skirmish Hooter had with Eunice Nicklecock and the People for the Ethical Treatment of All Life (PETAL).

When PETAL said they had research proving that corn and soybeans had human feelings, too, Hooter enlisted Wild Bill Jimminez to load up the tanks of his crop duster with hog manure and dust the PETAL headquarters and parking lot. Wild Bill was doing loops in Canada before they knew what hit ‘em.

When PETAL took out an ad in a national newspaper railing against the senseless fire ant slaughter going on in the Southwest, Hooter had another friend—on a back-haul from the Big Apple—swing by in the dead of night to stuff wasps through PETAL's mail slot.

Ultimately, Hooter had sent Eunice over the edge, scaring the bejeebers out of her with his white armadillos and the legend surrounding them.

Self-Fulfilling Self-Destruction

None of those successes compared to the Pigs for President campaign, though. As more fliers went out, exponentially more phone calls came in from around the nation, offering names of groups that needed to receive the flier, requesting fliers to send out themselves, offering whatever support was needed.

“Apparently Mr. Obama struck a nerve,” said Peetie when some reporters came to see how it was that Apache Flats had become the epicenter of the effort. “Apparently some voters expect more decorum.”

“Have you done any straw polling so see what impact this effort is having on the campaign?” wondered a reporter.

“No, other than Aunt Pinky,” replied the RRCA president.

“Aunt who?”

“Aunt Pinky,” said Peetie, pointing to Hooter's aunt who was watching the interview take place with about half of the rest of Apache Flats.

“Ma'm, how do you think it's looking for candidate Obama?” asked another reporter, sticking a microphone in her face.

“See that cockroach there?” said Aunt Pinky, pointing to an oblivious intruder crawling across the wooden walkway. Aunt Pinky smashed it with a sudden, quick blow of her cane. “'Nuff said.”

(Any opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and in no way reflect the opinions of CATTLE TODAY.)


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