Beyond the Cusp

February 14, 2012

The False Chimera of a Brokered Republican Convention

The idea of having the Republican Convention going well enough beyond the first ballot without producing consensus on a candidate appears to have increasing appeal to some conservative commentators. But would there be any advantage to having a brokered convention produce a compromise candidate drafted from some ephemeral list of alternate choices from those who will have endured over a year of the primary season with its travails, trials, exposure and disclosures. Granted a compromise candidate would have been spared the barbs and scorn from the press and thus may have the appearance of a clean slate. They would be able to take that magic combination of a base from Mitt Romney’s best policy positions, moderated by a smattering of Ron Paul financial and foreign policy restraint, with a moral spine from Rick Santorum, adding some spice and disdain for slanted posing of the press from Newt Gingrich’s arrogant ripostes and then fill in the gaps with Tea Party banter and smooth it all out with classic Republican rhetoric. Such a candidate would be a package of goods assembled a few short months before Election Day which may allow them the advantage of not being pinned down and fully vetted by an overly aggressive press. So, what could possibly be the problem of such a candidate? It appears on paper to be all benefit and little risk, a kind of the best of all worlds rolled neatly into one assembled package.

 

It is the best of all worlds rolled up into one neatly assembled package that would be the problem. Such a candidate would have all the appeal of a dress-up doll. Such a candidate would compare to President Obama in the same manner as a manikin shows off a clothing line compared to a model walking the runway. President Obama comes off well-spoken and relates well with the crowds when on the campaign. He may not be all that smooth when it comes to actually doing the job of President, but he can sound and appear very Presidential on the campaign. He will be as polished as polished can be. Hand-picking a candidate outside of those who endured the primary campaign and paid their dues to get the nomination will give the impression of a manufactured candidate which would be a grave misstep against President Obama. By the time the Republican Convention rolls around at the end of the summer the primary contest will present well vetted and known entities and the American people will expect one of these who have persevered and gained the support of at least a significant portion of the Republican electorate to be acknowledged and chosen to carry on to the election. To place somebody chosen in what we refer to as smoke-filled backrooms filled with faceless impersonal powerbrokers would be an insult to those who had toiled with their chosen candidate through the trials and tribulations to get to the convention. Such a move would be perceived as insult by many conservatives who have faith in a system which includes the votes and voices of the people. If we did not want to have a real influence in choosing the eventual candidate for President from our party, then we would not spend the time, effort, and wealth in a primary campaign season and would not even bother with a convention, we would just rent a conference room at a Motel 6 and be done with it.

 

But there is an even better argument against the brokered convention. Who? Simply, who? Give me the name of who it is that would be such a magnificent name that they would have the vast numbers of voters necessary to win the election and realize that this is the candidate of candidates. Bobby Jindal? Chris Christie? Paul Ryan? Sarah Palin? Glenn Beck? Rush Limbaugh? Clint Eastwood; after the Super Bowl commercial, why not? Really, who is there that would make such a wonderful candidate that it would be worth throwing all the toils and tribulations suffered by those who sweat and bled through the grueling primary endurance trial a wise and intelligent move. No, a brokered convention would be the closest thing to a disaster as the Republicans could pull. We need to continue with the people who have shown the willingness to ante-up and play the hand they are dealt. We need to choose from the warriors who have taken up their armor and survived the barbs and arrows of outrageous fortune and earned the right to represent the Republican voters on the ballot this fall, or is the plan to broker away the people’s trust and support. Note, they are the Republican Party candidate but they represent the voters who came out and supported them in the primaries. No brokered candidate can make that claim.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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October 6, 2011

What’s Not Going Totally Wrong in the World?

Sometimes you sit down to write an article on the day and your head simply starts spinning bouncing from one bad situation to the next and you just want it to slow down and pick just one to write about. Usually, I manage to find that one focal point which I find interesting, perplexing, intriguing, cogent, or simply needful of a coherent explanation. As you have probably guessed, today is not going to be one of those days. Today we are going to take that ride through my spinning thoughts and attempt to, at the very least, try to make an intelligent observation or two at each stop along the way. So, buckle your seatbelts as it is likely to be a rocky ride.

We have the Take-Over Wall Street demonstrations breaking out in places outside of New York City. Occupy Oklahoma City and Occupy Tulsa movements have Facebook pages with more than 1,000 fans. Yea, that’s right, Tulsa, Oklahoma, the first place I think of when it comes to all things Wall Street and financial matters. Well, OK; actually I think of oil wells, steaks still on the hoof, toll turnpikes, and Indian Tribes. Weren’t the Indians supposed to own Oklahoma? You remember, right before they discovered oil bubbling to the surface in pools, then came the oil and land rush. Anyway, back to the Wall Street fiascoes. It seems that they are a strange brew mixing retread 1960s revolutionaries and students and current revolutionaries. They have a small but vocal segment decrying the Jewish bankers, the requisite blame George Bush and the Republicans, and a vast number who do not seem to have any idea other than it is the happening place to be. Brings back memories, not very nice ones, but memories.

The United Nations is rounding out the Wall Street protesters by bringing even more crazies to New York for the annual opening of the new General Assembly session where we get to hear from every little dictator how Israel and the United States are destroying their country and denying them from achieving progress and steeling their wealth. We can expect wild cheers for the likes of Mahmoud Abbas as he blames Israel for all the world’s ills and the United States for destroying Israel so there can be a Palestinian state, the same Palestinian Arab State the Arabs League refused to accept right before they attacked the nascent state of Israel with six or seven Arab countries’ armies; and somehow managed to lose. He was even outdone by our annual favorite, Iranian midget Ahmadinejad and his usual rant against the gross unfairness of the world that the United States has nuclear weapons and Israel exists and it is so unfair that Iran doesn’t have nuclear weapons to remove Israel from the map, yet. At least this year we were spared the dapper appearance of Colonel Gadhafi with the latest style in neo-modern military tyrannical attire. Meanwhile, the result this year will be the great debate on how to address the Palestinian demand for statehood. This show will be a three ring circus, the United Nations Security Council as one ring, the United Nations General Assembly as another ring, and the Quartet meeting throughout Europe as the last ring. The big question is which one will have the little car with the forty clowns streaming out of it?

Then there are the Republican pre-primary spasms as the electorate is polled from week to week to determine who has suffered and survived the week with the least gaffs drawn out by the ever-pressing media and their round-robin game of gotcha. I think this week we have Herman Cain ascending, Rick Perry descending, and Mitt Romney still available should nobody else be found to take charge. Also, this week we had two monumental decisions, in a really big decision, Chris Christie will not be running, and on the lighter side, Sarah Palin also will not be running. Still hanging around are Rick Santorum, Michelle Bachmann, and our favorite extremist, Ron Paul, who is starting to sound more reasonable each election cycle. No, he has not changed his message; the country is closing in on being that far gone.

Then there are the crazy little quirks in the news that we get every so often. The big problem being addressed now is the gruesome facts that approximately 3,500 fingers and other appendages are cut off each year in the United States in table-saw accidents. This is despite the fact that there exists a system that is capable of stopping a saw within thousandths of a second when it senses the saw contacting skin. The system would only cost around $100 per saw according to studies. Of course, that price is before the do-gooders get a Federal mandate requiring these systems to be installed on all future table-saws sold, then the system will jump in price to $2,500 overnight. Nothing pushes up the price faster than government regulations requiring something. Well, seems my brain has spun enough for now.

Beyond the Cusp

August 18, 2011

Texas Governor Rick Perry Vaults to the Top of the Heap in Republican Race

Not surprisingly, Texan Governor Rick Perry has taken the lead position in the Republican Primary race for nomination to run for President in November of 2012. The reason this is not surprising is that Governor Perry has not been in a debate, is a fresh face, and has yet to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, or the barbs and banal criticism from the mainstream media for as long as the rest of the field. Adding this to the newness bounce a candidate gets from not only being the new name but also that the majority of news in those first few days is mostly controlled by their own people supplying the positive side information before the “gotcha gangs” that pass for reporters have a chance to sink their teeth and claws into him. Give the Republican loving mainstream media a few weeks of critiquing his every utterance, facial expression, and clothing choices, especially if he dares to wear them cowboy boots and Stetson cowboy hat, which will have at least one asking, “What no spurs?” I expect we will be hearing every sordid imagined story and anecdote casting the Texas Governor as nothing more than a Will Rogers wanna-be whose stock line should be, “I never met an intellectual I didn’t hate.” Before long the press coverage will have bludgeoned Gov. Perry back into second or third place tied with what they will refer to as the also-rans. But, until he trails Mitt Romney, the presumed and approved Republican Presidential Candidate the press has already knighted as they call for the cancellation of the primaries and caucuses as they are no longer necessary, Gov. Perry will have a bullseye tattooed onto his forehead making their cheap shots easier to target.

What has yet to be seen is whether or not the electorate will fall for having the media choose the Republican presidential candidate once more. It seems that the press has been choosing the republican candidate for President with great accuracy for quite some time. They chose Bob Dole as the worst possible Republican candidate in 1996, were in error when choosing George W Bush who was thought would lose to Mr. Personality, the wooden man, Al Gore in 2000. And who thought that Sen. McCain was the strongest candidate the republicans could have run against President Obama last election? And this time they appear to have decided it should be Mitt Romney who will best allow President Obama to repeat and win a second term, and I find it hard to disagree with that analysis. Either that or I am way too paranoid and seeing conspiracy where none exist. It just so often appears that the Republican candidate that the mainstream press touts ends up being the weakest and most liberal of the choices and still gets the nomination. Is asking for a real true conservative Constitutionalist all that impossible a request to make? Gov. Perry strikes me as just such a candidate and we have not had anyone even close to being a Constitutionalist since Ronald Reagan, though I have heard people propose that even Reagan strayed too far from the strict constructionist mold for their liking. I might be a tad less demanding as I doubt we will get another President James Madison or anybody who understood the Constitution as well as he knew our framing document.

We have already seen the press use their long knives on Michelle Bachman and using long swords to skewer former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin who has not even announced any intention of running, let alone a candidacy. So, I guess we need to wait a couple of weeks or until another fresh face appears before we can give an more measured and honest appraisal of the probabilities for a Perry candidacy for President as gauged against the rest of the field. We will probably be looking at a front end loaded primary season once again which in many ways favors whoever has the most efficient national staff assembled. This will always place those who have run before but not been the chosen candidate an advantage as they have been here before and probably still retain many of their people in place across the country. This is something that has always made me somewhat uneasy as in the Republican field there are often more strictly conservative candidates than liberal northeast style Republicans. Each of the more conservative candidates have their particular strength, be it gun ownership, pro-life, state’s rights, individual freedoms and responsibilities, foreign affairs, and the like.

I have always judged candidates initially on their foreign policy outlooks as I feel that is where the President holds the ultimate power and then I have my couple of favorite domestic issues such as gun ownership. For those who do not believe a President hold the ultimate power over foreign policies and affairs need look no further than President Obama. No matter how much harm he has done on the home front, which was accomplished more due to Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, just look at the strewn wreckage of the American foreign relations and policies. I doubt there is a single country left on Earth that either trusts or believes in what was the American promise to the world any longer. This is going to be job one for the next President. Whoever becomes President after President Obama will have a full time job simply restoring any shred of honor to the reputation of the United States in the World and that work will rival anything else on their plate, including the repeal of Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, also known as Obama Care. I will leave it to minds that actually get paid to make these judgments to decide which of these areas poses the greatest threat to the United States, though I will continue to favor repairing the disgrace we have faced internationally as possibly the most urgent. Hopefully, as we hear more from those seeking the Republican nomination to run against President Obama in his bid for reelection, one will rise above the rest in their knowledge of world affairs and also manage to win the hearts and minds here at home. It is probably my emphasis on the foreign affairs duties and foreign policy formation that belongs to the President that has me still hoping for a John Bolton candidacy, but until then I will carefully watch the rest.

Beyond the Cusp

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