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Ruthless sends in this latest column by Mark Helprin in The Wall Street Journal. With his work on the Dole campaign in 1996, Helprin demonstrated that he's the only Republican speechwriter with more than a half-pint of talent. Here he goes on to prove that the physical repulsiveness of John Kerry has displaced war, nature, and love as the muse that lifts all poets to new heights of phrasing and imagination:

We have watched the division of the country into two ineffective camps, something that is especially apparent in an electoral season. On the one hand is John Kerry, a humorless Boston scold, in appearance the love child of Abraham Lincoln and Bette Midler, who recites slogans that he understands but does not believe. And on the other is the president, proud of his aversion to making an argument for his own case, in appearance a denizen of the Pleistocene, who recites slogans that he believes but does not understand.