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James Bond has nothing on agent Pat Robertson

Bond, James Bond. Three words that just exuded international cool and identified the man who was licensed to kill - even if only on the silver screen.

For three generations, Bond has provided the ultimate in machismo

Bond was suave and sophisticated. Who else could take on dozens of bad guys with his Walther PPK, defeat them all and come out of the adventure looking perfect in his freshly pressed tuxedo? Then, just to cap it off, Bond would cruise over to the bar, order a vodka martini -"shaken, not stirred" - and then charm any woman within eyeshot.

At least that's the vision one gets watching Bond from the movie seats.

The reality?

Well, first, Bond's amazing ability to shoot and kill anyone who is a threat and never getting much more than a scratch is just darned near impossible.

Bond's Walther PPK, while quite concealable beneath a tuxedo jacket, isn't the gun most folks would choose to carry into battle.

His choice of drink-making style, shaken not stirred, seems a bit manly. But in reality, shaking the drink melts the ice quicker than stirring it and thus creates a more watered down martini.

So the suave cat is out of the bag.

Bond is a wussy.

We need a real hero on the silver screen. We need a new international man of mystery, a new hero.

We need Pat Robertson.

Last week, Robertson took a lot of flak for suggesting that the United States get rid of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez by using our ability to "take him out." After intense media pressure, Roberson later softened his original comments.

OK, so Robertson suggested the U.S. government kill someone to protect its interests. So what's the problem?

Chavez is a thug. Unlike Bond's foes from SPECTRE, Chavez is real. Robertson knows that. Actually, lots of others know that, too, they just aren't comfortable talking about it.

Going to war is OK in many people's minds, but assassination is wrong. The logic is lost on would-be international spies like Pat Robertson.

Lots of folks have said, "Calling for an assassination is not Christian."

Maybe they went to a more politically correct Sunday school class than Robertson.

Perhaps the most famous was the assassination of Goliath at the hands of David. But Mr. David also "smote" a few others as well.

And didn't Solomon have a couple of people murdered, too?

Anyway, few argue Robertson's faith. He's obviously devoted his life to the church, which is more than Bond ever did.

So who's the bigger hero? Simple: it's Robertson. He says what he thinks without a script.

And, if he was the drinking sort, he'd certainly take his martini stirred not shaken and he'd have a big .45-caliber strapped to his side, not a compact Walther PPK.

Robertson, Pat Robertson. Licensed to kill or be killed talking about it.

Kevin Cooper is publisher of The Ironton Tribune. He can be reached at (740) 532-1441, ext. 12 or by e-mail to kevin.cooper@irontontribune.com.