He set his elbows on the table, steepled his hands, and said "Good question. An understandable one being you have been out in the Badlands for quite a while I think."
I didn't say anything. I just stared at him and waited for him to talk. It didn't faze him. He liked to talk. I was starting to wonder if he sold cars or real estate on the side.
"It's like this. I 'm sorry. I didn't get your name?"
"Okay Mr. Gardener. It's like this. You and I both know things were falling part long before the lights went out. It doesn't matter what your political beliefs were. It was all messed up. I'm not going to go off on a political tangent here." He waved his hand in the air. "That's history now. What is important is the General has us unified. We don't need political parties right now. We need purpose. We need leadership. We need to unite and rebuild this country."
I interrupted him "Is this the same General that called in the air strike on the crowds storming the White House?"
It barely made a dent in the flow. It wasn't until later that I realized that I wasn't the first person who had asked him that question. Hell, it was probably covered in his first indoctrination class.
"Yes...Yes....I know. I had problems with it too but Gardener its all about order. We have to have order to survive." He was a hundred percent sincere. He really believed in what he was saying. This was a first for me really. I mean I listened to a few "Leaders" who believed their own bullshit. Every fundie did or at least was able to do a good imitation of a true believer. This guy, Sheriff Smiley, was as much of a believer as any "Get Baptized or Die" I had run into. What he was saying made sense to me too. That was even weirder.