Tag Archives: herman cain

What I would like to see from the GOP (and the Democrats, too)

From the New Yorker

I am a Democrat (not a DINO, I have been working for Democratic campaigns since I was eight) but I  honestly like the idea of having two rational parties.  It behooves us all because we have real issues to tackle; the fiscal cliff, an increasingly unstable world, the Mets.

We need our leaders from both parties to start acting like adults and start working with each other.  We all need to stop demogoguing people who have different views from us.

In that spirit, I have some suggestions for the Republican Party:

1.  Stop proclaiming that compromise is horrible; it’s what made our country possible.  And special note to people like Congressman Ron Paul, we cannot fix problems of the past but we can try to deal with what’s going on now (he said recently that we have “already gone over the cliff” and warned against compromise).  Note to Speaker John Boehner: Thank you for showing some willingness to work with the White House.  I think you are reasonable but you cannot expect to please every member of your caucus if you want to get enough Democrats on board.)

2.  Vet your candidates better!  Seriously, listen to Stephen Colbert — anytime any of them want to talk about rape (unless it’s about stopping it) they should follow the advice and stab themselves in the eye with a pencil.   I say this not just because I know women can get pregnant from rape or that I don’t think a baby conceived this way is a “gift from God.”  It’s because these comments shift the focus from things that matter to things that don’t.

3.  Vet your surrogates better!  The ridiculous caricature that is Donald Trump has no place in the public discourse.  And concocting conspiracy theories to demonize the president makes reasonable people think you are anything but and then even if you have cogent points on other issues; we don’t notice because we’re too astounded by your claims that President Obama is a Kenyan born, Marxist, wanna-be-Hitler whose presidency has ushered in the end of days from the bible.

4. Remember that our Constitution was written to protect our rights from the government, not restrict them.  When you continue to oppose same sex marriage and try to demonize the LGBT community you show just how on the wrong side of history you are on.  A friend of mine calls this the civil rights issue of our time.  It is.  I cannot wait until everyone has the same rights and we can stop talking about this and get back to dealing with real issues.

5.  Try to remember, this is 2012, not 1955.

The part of me that writes satire and comedy loved the circus that was Herman Cain, Rick Santorum, Michele Bachmann et al (if Jon Huntsman had been nominated, and he was more conservative that the rest of them, you would have had a better chance) but the part of me that cares about the country was deeply saddened by the missed opportunity to get people thinking about real solutions to our problems.

I don’t think the Democrats are blameless.  I hate negative political ads and our side ran a ton.  They make everyone jaded about a process that should excite and inspire people.  Politics is also supposed to be “the art of the possible.”

Lest you think I only think Republicans field bad candidates remember, I refer you to– John Edwards, Elliot Spitzer, Anthony Weiner.  Neither side is perfect but that doesn’t mean they are evil either.

I’m melting, melting! Oh, what a world! What a world!

Where to start this week?

Maybe I can start with the most disturbing story since Jerry Sandusky.  WTF?  Can we all agree that no one should abuse children?  What thought process leads someone to think taking pictures of children with blindfolds, tape and/or mouths full of semen, which they thought was “magic candy” is appropriate?  Apparently LA educator Mark Berdt thought that was just fine.  I saw an official from the area say this on CNN, “They just thought they were being blindfolded and gagged as a game.”  There is so much wrong with that statement that I am not sure where to begin.  So, I’ll end my anti-child abuse rant there.

How about Mitt Romney’s compassionate nature? Recently he told a reporter, “I don’t care about the poor, there’s a safety net for that. If it’s broken, I’ll fix it.”  I am sure the nation’s poor — and some estimates have that number as being as high as 42 million Americans — will be greatly relieved to hear that.

Why do we still care what Donald Trump thinks about anything?  Rumor has it, he will endorse Newt Gingrich.  Why do we care?  Oh, right, we’re stupid.

(FYI, if you are not familiar with that quote it from The Wizard of Oz, a movie about which I have written before.  Side note: has anyone heard the story of the suicide on the set that is supposed to be in the film?  Used to scare the crap out of me.  And I was in college when said scaring took place.  Of course I am afraid of velociraptors, so clearly something is not right with me.)

The inexplicable Donald Trump

…or “Then they were down to two.”

Even Larry King was intrigued by the Donald's do.

First Newt Gingrich sais he would happily participate in the debate Donald Trump is hosting with NewsMax on December 27. Then the Donald did a round of interviews proclaiming himself the ultimate king-maker and representative of millions (Millions! Check his web sites if you don’t believe him!Note to Mr. Trump, oer your standards the cast of Jersey Shore is qualified to pick the nominee for a major party for the most important job in the country.) before things began to unravel. Rick Santorum agreed to take part but then, one by one, Jon Huntsman, Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, Rick Perry and the also inexplicable Michele Bachmann declined the invite. Reince Priebus, perhaps the first adult to emerge in a while, said that his support of this train wreck would amount to “malpractice” on his part. Well put, sir.

And for the record, Jon Huntsman was the first to decline and for someone with as much experience dealing with criticism and being in the public eye, the Donald has an amazingly thin skin. Trump called Huntsman’s comments that he “will not kiss his ring or any part of his anatomy” “offensive.” Yeah, Donald, your circus is offensive. That you are still harping on President Obama’s birth certificate — after you said you would drop it once you saw the ‘long form’ version — is offensive. What’s really shameful (and I am part of the problem here but watching him crash and burn twice is truly delicious) is the attention you continue to get and the fact that you are using the job interview to be leader of the free world just another way to get publicity for your reality show. Even the Situation has more class (not much).

All of this leaves me a little perplexed.  Why do we care what the Donald thinks about anything?  We know he likes himself a lot.  A lot more than anyone should.  His official bio describes him this way:

“Donald J. Trump has become the most recognized businessman in the world, and the Trump brand is readily acknowledged as representing the gold standard around the globe. As the pre-eminent developer of quality real estate, his acumen is unrivaled, and the diversity of his interests has set a new paradigm in the world of business. His commitment to excellence is legendary, and his work as a philanthropist is an integral part of his ethos. He is the archetypal businessman, and an icon of New York.”  You can read more of this brilliant rewriting of history here.

I don’t dislike the Donald but when I was growing up in NY, his life was a sideshow for the bulk of the time I was there.  First of all, he didn’t start his business, he inherited a successful one from his family.  He has a remarkable talent for self-aggrandizement but inflates his net worth an downplays his failures (to his credit, a Trump bankrupcy looks very different from most other people’s).  He is great at self-promotion but does that make him qualified to do anything but promote his reality show?

 

Reality TV 2.0

Just when I was starting to get worried that season five of Jersey Shore is still a full six months away — how will I get through this rough time? — the GOP presidential candidates have come through.  I am not sure if this qualifies as a real progression from reality TV 1.0 to 2.0 but we have entered a new phase, that’s for sure.

The Cain TrainFor instance, Herman Cain is the newest gift that keeps on giving.  My personal issue with him isn’t his 13 year affair, the allegations of sexual harassment — although they are deplorable, or even his positions on policy.  Granted, the last in that list disqualified him immediately from being someone who would get my vote but he already knew that (did everyone catch him tell a reporter than he “doesn’t need 100 percent of the vote” ???). My real problem with Cain is that he thought he was qualified to run for president without doing even the slightest real prep for  it.  If he cannot read enough to know the issues — or even be able to accurately describe his own ideas, how could he ever govern?  I find it beyond arrogant that he thinks he can govern solely on the strength of his personality.  I met a candidate for the US Senate a few years ago who had never worked on a campaign or in government.  He volunteered on one in college.  He called the move to the US Senate a “lateral move.”  No, sir, it is not.

Campaigns are long job interviews.  If a job applicant answered any interview question with “I will listen to my advisors on that,” they would be laughed out of the interview.  Worse, they would have wasted the interviewers time.  That’s what bothers me about Herman Cain.  The farce of his campaign has hurt the level of discourse and wasted all of our time.

Having said all of that, I have found his train wreck campaign to be as delicious as any of Snooki’s adventures.  And I kind of love it that he is the last person in America to realize his campaign is over.  Love it.

The Cain Train goes off the rails

Herman Cain, we hardly knew yeI predict by the end of the week we will see a statement like this from the Cain Train:

“As you know, from my repeated and vociferous denials of every doing anything wrong, inappropriate or even less than brilliant — at any point, ever — that my candidacy for president has rattled some people.  They remain desperately afraid of a black, businessman moving into the White House.  They know I can win, and neither the Democratic machine, nor some of the other GOP campaign, can let that happen.  

“Both my wife, Gloria, and I remain convinced that Herman Cain is exactly what the doctor ordered to lead this great country at this time in history.  While the persistent rumors and allegations about me don’t bother me at all, as I know they are not true, the toll they are taking on my wife is another story.  I don’t want to give in to these fear mongerers and mud slingers but after meeting with the joint chiefs of my campaign, we determined these attacks will keep coming so I am ending my current campaign for the GOP nomination.

“Herman Cain will be back.  Maybe as soon as next year — I will base my decision to run as an Independent on whether I can get Donald Trump to run with me.  If that doesn’t work out, he is unpredictable and not nearly the handsome rascal Rick Perry is — or that I am — this is not the last presidential run for the Cain Train.

“Thank you for your support, God bless you, God bless America and God bless Godfather’s Pizza.”