“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."
Saturday, November 19, 2011
The GOP Fields its “B” Team
November 19, 2011
The Party's Over
By Robert J. Mack
As that famous philosopher and grammarian, Professor Henry Higgins, bellowed in the musical My Fair Lady when he heard that Eliza Doolittle was going to marry Freddy Einsford-Hill: "It's doomed before they even take the vow." That exclamation popped into my head just recently when I thought about all of the candidates for the Republican presidential nomination. Not only have many of these candidates been sniping at one another, but because there are so many debates, the news media (the PR arm of the White House) is able to dig up all kinds of dirt about every one of them. Along with that is the revelation involving some of them, punctuated by the debates, that they are not ready for prime time when it comes to foreign policy -- or even debating, for God's sake.
Americans have been down the unqualified and incompetence roads before when it comes to presidential candidates and presidents. Do we need to go there again? It is painful to list below the gaffes that the Republican candidates have made, but one of them will go against the great campaigner in 2012, and that one had better be prepared.
-He has so many flip-flops on issues in his career, including abortion, that he is out-John Kerrying John Kerry, whom the term flip-flop was used effectively against in 2004. The Democrats will obviously use those against Romney, but, of course, Obama outright lies also, so they will have to tread carefully. Nevertheless, Romney will be weak against the Democrats' anointed one because he has been so duplicitous in the past, which Obama and crew will exploit relentlessly.
-Talk about baggage. Even if this guy is totally innocent of all the sexual harassment charges leveled against him, which he may very well be, just the accusations are enough to turn a large number of female voters against him. He is toast based on that alone. Plus his ignorance of foreign affairs is appalling. Not knowing the Palestinian position on right of return? Come on! Someone vying for the presidency, where he might have to negotiate with those Palestinians, has to know their positions. He is unqualified simply based on his lack of knowledge and experience regarding foreign affairs.
-Who knew until just the other day that he accepted between 1.6 and 1.8 million dollars over eight years from Freddie Mac to act as a consultant for them? Meanwhile, after he left their employ and during and after the financial crisis, he was castigating that organization and Fannie Mae -- rightfully so -- for contributing to the mortgage disaster that led to the financial meltdown. Is there a smoking gun there regarding hypocrisy, or was he trying to warn Freddie Mac about the mortgage bubble they were creating? We'll have to see, but it sure smells funny. Gingrich is the smartest guy in a room full of any politicians you could name. But he is also a rogue when it comes to issues. For example, that image of him and Nancy Pelosi on the couch talking about the threat of global warming is indelible in the minds of Republicans.
-She started out like a house on fire in the Iowa straw poll in Ames, Iowa, back in August, and then she fell off a cliff. Her gaffe about the actor John Wayne being born in Waterloo, Iowa was classic. It turns out the only "John Wayne" born in Waterloo was John Wayne Gacy, the infamous serial killer. Bachmann comes originally from Waterloo, Iowa, having moved to Minnesota when she was thirteen years old. She should have known that the actor wasn't born there, but she didn't. The media crucified her for the gaffe (they can't stand conservative women) and will continue to do so if she gets some traction after the Iowa caucuses. However, she lacks the resources to go much farther.
-How can you go up against Obama in possibly three seminal debates in October 2012 when you can't name the three government agencies you want to eliminate? These are from your own talking points and literature. How did this guy win in Texas? He is sinking like a stone in the polls and will hopefully drop out soon.
-This libertarian candidate wants to legalize drugs and make nice-nice with Iran because they have every right to build a nuclear weapon according to his painful logic. So, America, circle the wagons when it comes to foreign policy according to Ron Paul. As John McEnroe used to say whenever he questioned a line judge's call on the tennis court: "You can't be serious!" Unfortunately, Ron is serious and also dangerous to America's and Israel's security.
-See Ron Paul above.
-This guy should run as a Democrat challenger to Obama in the Democrat primary. The fact that he worked under Obama as part of his diplomatic team is a huge albatross around his neck. Enough said.
-How can anyone who lost his Senate seat by 18 points think that he can actually overcome that shameful campaign and win the Republican nomination, let alone the general election? Especially in an important swing state like Pennsylvania. The loss was the largest margin of defeat ever for an incumbent Republican senator in Pennsylvania. Why would anyone dis the homosexual community like he did in that campaign? Santorum hasn't discovered yet that he has lost his 2012 run for Republican presidential candidate.
All of this would be hilarious if we weren't talking about electing the political leader of the free world, the economic leader of America's fiscal future, and the moral leader of Western civilization. It's that serious. There are dark forces in the world committed to the destruction of our Western civilization and its Judeo-Christian heritage. There are also other totalitarian forces committed to world economic dominance and eventually world military dominance at the expense of the United States and its allies. It's obvious who those dark, totalitarian forces are. And we thought the Cold War was long and tough. It was. But these two wars are tougher and may get white-hot real soon. In short, it's dangerous to be living as an American right now.
And many Americans are clueless about those struggles. There is a myopia involving economic issues in the country because the politicians and the media don't want to really talk about those macro-forces that threaten our liberty. All they want to discuss is the unemployment rate and jobs. They feel they can get a better handle, however sloppily, around those bread-and-butter issues versus the larger issues of our era.
So, even though the macro-forces are alive and well and deadly, in the upcoming election, it will again be about the economy, stupid. And the Republican field of primary candidates is pathetically second-shelf, even on the economic front. Where is Marco Rubio when you need him? Obama, in full campaign mode, has used the class warfare card effectively to trash the Republicans, with not one of them mounting a direct emotional attack on that dishonesty that would resonate with the American people. This is why Obama, barring a major catastrophe, has already won. Sadly, the election party is over for the Grand Old Party.