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These people are presidential candidates?

 

Mitt Romney and Michel Bachmann are side by side by in Iowa's presidential polls. Newt Gingrich and the backmarkers are waving goodbye as they circle the drain. This duo's opponents ridicule them as the "Aqua Velva Man" and "Foster Care Mom." Supporters see different images. The implied picture metaphor is "Dad's at work — mom too! The kids are safe and dinner's at six." Prosaic and even fatuous? Maybe, candidates send a package and we accept or reject.

Romney or Bachmann as winners? Their foes predict a dark and atavistic era, "Father Knows Best" remade as a horror flick. We can expect candle lit "take back the night" pitchfork vigils. Their loyalists hope for a soothing 21st century Donna Reed Show. They visualize a set piece traditional family watching a Perry Como holiday special on television before bedtime and innocent repose.

Both scenarios are frontloaded with creepy and false premises. Smash both delusions together, and we'll get the usual result: chaos and complexity, our daily sum.

 

Gary Wilson

Des Moines

 

Why skip Iowa?

 

Jon Huntsman is too near-sighted to be president. Skipping the Iowa caucuses because he opposes ethanol subsidies shows that he reduces Iowa to a one-issue state, and we are so much more. His viewpoint is like thinking Hawaii is only about sugarcane and ignoring the tourism and native issues; or that North Carolina is only about pigs, especially barbecue, when other states also have animal husbandry and local cuisines. He would gain so much respect if he came and explained his opposition to the subsidies, but also those issues he promotes that we might agree with.

 

Jeni Nosbisch

Des Moines

 

Correction: The photo of an artist featured on page 20 in a recent cover story ("A Village Within a Village," June 23) had the wrong name in the caption. It should read Bryan Sanford of Funk Shui.

 

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