Like much of the South and Midwest, I feel that I am just beginning to recover from the swirl of events of the last week of August. For me, the Alice in Wonderland, through the looking glass experiences was based on my immersion into the alternate world of the Republican Party. The Republican-speak assured us that there was no war to concern ourselves with, but instead our arch-nemesis was a mythical (and sometimes invisible) being who, Thor-like, could raise and lower the oceans, cast hurricanes upon the Republican convention and was single-handedly responsible for all of our social and economic ills – from homosexuality to a stagnant economy, high gas prices, droughts and much more. If only, they told us repeatedly, we could cast the evil Barack Obama spirit from our land, all would be well. Gone was Obama the Muslim, Marxist, terrorist, socialist. After a mere four years, Obama had morphed into a swirling, nearly invincible (and sometimes invisible) super-villain. Meanwhile, Republicans portray themselves as the faithful remnant fighting valiantly for the restoration of a Thomas Kincaid America where everyone has – and knows – their place. They want their America back. And they mean it. Ann Coulter and Rush Limbaugh, before the convention, told us that America would be better off if women did not have the right to vote. U.S. Representative Todd Akin was eager to give us biology lessons on “legitimate rape” and U.S. Representative Paul Ryan’s speech won accolades from Fox News for packing in the most lies and deceptions in a single speech. And his speech was not only accepted – it was cheered. If you saw the convention, you could not miss the “We built this” banners everywhere. They obviously did not apply to the ice hockey arena itself – which was built with more than 60 percent federal funds and union labor. And one unfortunate lapse into unintentional honesty was the placement of a “We built this” banner directly under the constantly ticking debt clock. This convention, like Hurricane Isaac, has dissipated and spun off a series of tornadoes and collateral damage. We will all be cleaning up and recovering for years to come.