Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Kerry Takes Supporters for a Ride

Apparently there was a small SNAFU in the Kerry Campaign's whistle-stop in Lawrence Kansas late-Friday-Night/early-Saturday-Morning.

Admittedly, there are few counties in Kansas that have any significant amount of Democrats. Besides Douglas, best known as the home of the University of Kansas, Wyandotte County/Kansas City, KS (now a unified City/County government) and Sedgwick County (Wichita) come to mind. And in Sedgwick it is probably only certain precincts.

So, the idea was to make a brief stop and talk to the faithful on the way out West.

According to the Kerry people, nobody told the conductor...

Personally, I can hardly blame the man, it is his job to keep the train on schedule, but more importantly, to minimize the train's interference with the railway's real bread-and-butter FREIGHT.

We know a lot about freight here in KC. Kansas City itself owes it's very existence to railroads and we are still one of the major freight hubs in the US. In fact, the company I work for has two major divisions. The financial-services arm that employs me and the Kansas City Southern Railroad.

In this case, the Kerry-Edwards Express, or whatever they are calling it, was the only passenger train traveling from Kansas City to Denver. I know this because there is no direct train West from here. I know, because I looked into a train passage back in October 2001 when I needed to travel to Denver to complete some work originally scheduled to occur September 13th. The only routing at that time was through Omaha. In fact, according to the Amtrak site, the only way I can travel from Kansas City to Denver riding exclusively on trains is via Galesburg, Illinois! I could take a bus up to Omaha, Nebraska and ride a train to Denver from there.

Given the circumstances, and given the apparent chronically late nature of the Kerry schedule, at least when her appears here in MO/KS, one can hardly blame the poor rail-man for pushing on.

The Kerry train had already caused other passenger service to be delayed, much to the chagrin of another conductor, who was chastised for pointing out the reason for the delay to his passengers.

They sent back the Breck-Girl to make amends. Too little, too late, if you can judge by the callers to the local talk-show stations on Monday. These people were pissed.

apparently, even when the train does stop, there is no actual mixing with the crowd. In addition, according to press reports, reporters here in KC were informed that any questioning of the candidate during his rail-stop rally would result in their expulsion from Union Station.

One begins to wonder exactly what DOES happen, when the stops do occur.

All I know is, the Vice President of the United States flies into the Downtown KC airport, his motorcade drives up the very street I work on and I never suffer the slightest inconvenience.

Kerry comes into town, makes no difference, train or plane, and downtown KC traffic is screwed-up something awful. According to the press reports, not a group given to giving Cheney any breaks, the crowds involved at there speeches are comparable. I guess all those drivers of Democrat vehicles I mentioned yesterday are incapable of navigating properly with there rear views obscured by Anti-Bush propaganda...

In the how-much-do-they-screw-up-my-commute-home index, Kerry just keeps pissing me off as badly as his proto-supporters in Lawrence were after the drive-by wave.

Between the traffic jams, the delays at previous KC rallies and alienating his base with mis-cues like Lawrence, one wonders if the man has any idea how to hire campaign consultants.

As to his qualifications for handling more complex matters...


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