Friday, December 02, 2011

Gingrich the Man - When the bar is set very low

Here's what Newt Gingrich says about himself:

"I don't claim to be the perfect candidate. I just claim to be a lot more conservative than Mitt Romney and a lot more electable than anyone else."

Wow, now that's truly inspiring, Newt. Not.

Mostly it just tells you how terrible the field of Republican candidates for President are, for 2012 - with Gingrich himself admitting it.

Isn't it strange that in a nation with the power and prestige of the United States, in a nation with just two parties competing for power, that the Republicans are left to choose between the likes of Bachman, Santorum, Gingrich, Paul, Cain, Romney and Huntsman? 

Of course, Huntsman seems lots more human, rational and sane than the others (except for the Mormon part, to which "rational" surely does not apply - as it does not apply to Catholicism, Judaism, Islam, etc. - by definition). But he doesn't stand a chance.


iudith said...

Hello Steven,
Though in a very far and different part of the world, it seems that our societies are facing the same problem: How is it possible that from among so many clever, wise and smart people, it is almost impossible to find a honorable list of candidates, regardless of the party they belong to, that is, a list in front of which the common sense of a mid-smart person not to feel spiritually offended ?

Well ... we are a small country,
though 7 million should still be enough to choose 120 "honorable" representatives ... but USA is HUGE !!!
Where is the world top-level wisdom of this big nation ?

I dare say that the problem relies in the incapacity of the system to promote real human values, it is only "able" to promote the economic interests of a very small layer of the entire population...
and that's why we have wars always awaiting behind the corner,
hunger, ilness, children labor (they unfortunately know very well the value of money, already at a very low age) and all the other sufferings ... and then the refuge
inside all those "...ism"-s that you have mentioned ...

I was grown up in a different system and, may everybody blame me,
I felt much more honourable as a human being, and never felt life as being a burden instead of enjoying it as a miracle gift.

I perfectly subscribe to your thoughts, like probably most common people do, however, we will probably never be strong enough to change this ill world into a better one ...

Best Regards,
Iudith Mentzel - Israel

Belly said...

Well, Steven, I think that if ever we (the voters) cab get ourselves to judge candidates on their views and abilities to properly do the job they wish to be elected for, in stead of judging them by the fact that they a) want to divorce their wife, b) smoked a funny cigarette in high-school, c) have a teenage kid who got drunk at a party last weekend, d) don't go to church regularly od (god forbid) e) are homosexual, then maybe the smart people will be willing to expose themselves to the criticism of the voter.

Steven Feuerstein said...

Great comment, Belly.

I was thinking the other day that while I believe Herman Cain would be an awful President, I am not terribly comfortable with him dropping out of the race because of charges of infidelity.

Generally, I don't think a person running for office should be judged by their personal life - certainly not their religion or sexual preferences - as long as it involves only non-coercive, consensual agreement between adults.

I do think that hypocrisy on such behaviors is relevant, though. That's why Gingrich is especially repulsive to me. Attacking Clinton for adultery while he adulterated, attacking politicians for accepting money from Freddie Mac while HE accepted money from them. That sort of thing is truly disgusting and frightening, because it shows that he has no moral fiber. He will do and say whatever it takes to get elected.

Joel Garry said...

It's worse - many of us think that the reason polarization is so bad in this country today is that Newt made it so. Back in the late '70s, starting in California, there was a "tax revolution." This came about, in a very small nutshell, because Nixon had freed the dollar from the gold standard, and Carter couldn't really do much about the "stagflation" that resulted. This meant that inflating property values (there was also a real estate bubble) meant more revenue for the state, which meant a huge surplus in revenues. Howard Jarvis led a group to limit property taxes - not a bad thing in itself, but even at the time many of us pointed out that in the long run, normal business cycles would lead to huge deficits (what has now come home to roost). Newt said, in so many words, in order for Republicans to take back Congress, they had to demonize Democrats. So Reagan rode that to the presidency, bringing in various forms of deregulation - which led to several phases of boom and bust increasing in amplitude, including loan crises in each subsequent decade.

And now people want to move towards more representative democracy through technology, making PR even more important.

At least we don't live in Syria.

word: chesc