Author focuses a satirical eye on political party platforms
By Arthur Lightbourn
ContributorBusiness consultant and former litigation attorney T.J. (Terry) O’Hara began writing satirical political blogs two years ago, just about the time that Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich was first indicted for allegedly trying to auction off Barack Obama’s vacated U.S. Senate seat.
His blog was titled “All I Want for Christmas is a Senate Seat.”
His friends, who represent a broad spectrum of political views from across the country, were delighted.
“So it started like that,” O’Hara recalled, “and over a year I randomly wrote the occasional political satire blog. Then beginning in January this past year I was going to do a blog on The State of the Union Address. And I noticed that there were 32 different czars at that time, so I thought I’d have some fun with that.
“I’ll create the only czar we didn’t have, but we probably needed, which was the Common Sense Czar.”
He appointed himself to the position and fired all the other czars, “with the exception of the faith-based czar, because you can’t be too careful. You want to hedge your bets.”
The blogs triggered suggestions from readers that he should collect the blogs into a book, but O’Hara, after thinking it over, decided if he was going to take the time to do a book, he wanted to do one that would be “more socially significant.”
As a result, this week, blogger O’Hara, alias the Common Sense Czar, becomes the author of not one, not two, but three new books: “The Left isn’t Right,” and its flip-book, two-in-one print version companion, “The Right is Wrong,” plus another volume, “The National Platform of Common Sense.”
(Note: In addition to the print flip-book version, ''The Left isn’t Right” and “The Right is Wrong” are also available separately in e-Book versions.)
All three books, published by the digital private press publisher Telemachus Press, Sarasota, Florida, are or will soon be available in their print versions from Amazon and as e-Books from Amazon Kindle.
“‘The Left isn’t Right’ is a satirical overview of the actual text of the Democratic National Committee’s national platform and the second book, ‘The Right is Wrong,’ is the Common Sense Czar’s review of the Republican National Committee’s national platform,” O’Hara said.
“People complain about who we have in office, but to paraphrase Will Rogers on the weather, ‘Nobody ever does anything about it.’ And,” O’Hara added, politically, we not only don’t do anything about it, we don’t inform ourselves.”
O’Hara contends that after reading his first two books, his readers “will have joined a rather elite group of Americans who have actually read the text of both parties; and, perhaps against their will, may become what I call ‘informed voters’.”
In his third book, “The National Platform of Common Sense,” he explores that question, “What would happen if someone based a platform based on the tenets of the Declaration of Independence and the law as it is structured within the context of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights with a little common sense thrown in?”
He argues those three approaches based on the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights are “missing in action” in the platforms of the major political parties’ national platforms.
O’Hara, 58, was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. He holds a B.S. degree in industrial management/electrical engineering from the University of Cincinnati, 1975; a law degree from the University of Cincinnati, College of Law, 1978; and executive M.B.A. studies from Northwestern, Kellogg School of Management.
Corporately, he worked for The Reynolds and Reynolds Company of Dayton, Ohio, in a variety of positions as head of acquisitions, divestitures, strategic planning and as head of sales/marketing for one of their divisions. He subsequently launched a consulting boutique, eventually specializing in corporate turn-arounds.
Politically, O’Hara describes himself as an Independent.
He is the outgoing board chairman of Morgan Run Club and Resort. He lives with his wife of one year, Kimberly, in Rancho Santa Fe.