Last week, I had limited success trying to balance my convention attention, not to be confused with conjunction junction. I honestly tried to catch the Democratsí playlist but simply couldnít force myself to listen to the more ridiculous noises coming out of Charlotte.

I guess I inhabit a different universe, where two plus two equals four. In their land, things donít have to add up and nobody seems to care. Oh well, thatís why they make so many ice cream flavors. Ask Ben and Jerry.

They donít deny the millions of unemployed but then insist theyíre successful in creating jobs. I guess they truly believe it because their speakers say it and those speakers are all honorable men and women. However paraphrasing Shakespeare, I think their party should be made of smarter stuff.

I cringed a little when they took credit for "saving" the automobile industry. Airlines go in and out of structured bankruptcies on almost a scheduled basis and their planes donít halt in mid-air.

Had GM flew the same route, production lines wouldnít have screeched to a halt but the company would have shed onerous union contracts and individual stockholders wouldíve still owned it. The president was a savior, but only of the United Auto Workers.

There was some humor. When they got to their "God and Jerusalem" floor vote, it was obvious the chairman was trying to herd goldfish. Truth be told, the "ayes" didnít have it.

I caught most of Bill Clintonís speech which ó as expected ó was excellent. Heís definitely a politicianís politician. Thereís no candidate from either party who couldnít learn from him.

I often disagree with his politics but completely respect his ability to function well in any environment. Itís a gift and his party obviously thinks likewise. Clinton competency canít be passed on, which is unfortunate for President Obama and, by extension, us.

Our debt just passed $16 trillion which was an "unmentionable" at the convention. In a weird sense I guess we should be thankful it isnít higher. Thereís no telling what the number would have been had the 2010 election not closed President Obamaís checkbook.

But the trajectory is pretty clear to all but the mathematically challenged. If this president has four more years, we very well could be dug into a hole from which thereís no escape.

As long as interest rates are at the present low, we can sustain. However, when they cycle to past rate averages, that debt mountain will simply eat our economy like mortgage interest eats your entire house payment.

Now the big dance is less than two months away. As a conservative, I know Iím in trouble. It isnít good enough to barely defeat Obama. Contrary to conventional poll wisdoms, Iím hoping for a blowout. It must be a ringing rejection of an insatiable Jabba the Hutt government.

Weíll hope and weíll see. I congratulate the Democrats on a successful convention and am looking so forward to return of regularly scheduled programming.

Otis Gardnerís column appears here weekly. He can be reached at