Monday Night Wrap-Up….Some final thoughts on the first night of the GOP Convention, in no particular order:

? In the midst of his half-hour ad lib of kicking back and telling stories, Giuliani talked about the fireman who used profane language when describing to Bush what should be done to al-Qaeda. “I can’t repeat what he said,” Giuliani told the audience. “This is a Republican Convention, after all.” Oh, the laughs and chuckles that received. Please tell me that some television producer thought to cut to Dick “Go F*** Yourself” Cheney at that moment.

? I’ll admit it–I was one of those people who thought Democrats made the right decision by taking the high road at their Convention, that keeping the focus mainly on their agenda and not on slamming their opponents made them look like a responsible, ready-for-primetime-governing party. I didn’t expect Republicans to do the same, particularly after they told the New York Times that their Convention would “feature Mr. Kerry as an object of humor and calculated derision”. But, ouch.

What would happen if Democrats sent someone out to give Bush the kind of ass-kicking Giuliani delivered to Kerry last night? I’m not referring to the substance of his remarks–most of the former mayor’s criticisms were ridiculous. But I’m betting the general “Hey, I’m just tellin’ it like it is–the guy’s a jerk” tone plays well with some as-yet-undecided voters. So what about it? Is it too late for Democrats? Do they have it in them to just start making stuff up, whether it’s true or not? Or are there two different standards for the two parties?

? McCain may have singled out Michael Moore for ridicule last night, but there was more than enough evidence on display to support Moore’s theory that, when in doubt, Republicans will try to win by scaring the hell out of all of us. I tried to keep track of all of the times I heard “dangerous world”, “terrorists”, “evil”, “attack”, “bombing”, etc. and I lost count. But I sure am frightened now.

? Did you know that until George W. Bush came along, terrorists did “not face any consequences”? Giuliani might want to stop in for a chat with Ramzi Yousef and friends, who I believe were captured, tried, and convicted for the 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center.

? Finally, just when you thought the Christian Right’s reputation couldn’t get any worse, the Family Research Council has shown up at the Convention to distribute some delightful fortune cookies they had made, containing slogans such as: “Real Men Marry Women” (may I assume, then, that they’re fans of Gov. McGreevey?), “Save the Constitution! Impeach an Activist Judge” (I’m guessing they don’t mean conservative activist judges…), and my favorite, “#1 Reason to Ban Human Cloning: Hillary Clinton.” Wow, that’s some good Christian love right there, folks.

Amy Sullivan

Amy Sullivan is a Chicago-based journalist who has written about religion, politics, and culture as a senior editor for Time, National Journal, and Yahoo. She was an editor at the Washington Monthly from 2004 to 2006.