Tuesday, March 29, 2011

american right trapped in hyperbole and hypocrisy

Video - Newt Gingrich on Fox News Sunday.

Guardian | The tension between appealing to the base and to moderates is the perennial test of any successful candidate in national United States politics. To win the party nomination you must appeal to your motivated base. To take the country as a whole you generally must engage the wavering centre.

What is relatively new, however, is the level of logical dysfunction and hyperbole within the American right, trapped in a fetid media ecosystem where all the Kool-Aid has been spiked. In short, what you need to say and do to be credible within the Republican party essentially deprives you of credibility outside it. The Republicans seem to realise this, but like an obese glutton at an all-you-can-eat buffet, they just can't seem to help themselves.

When asked which of their possible contenders they believe to be qualified for the job they can think of one, Mitt Romney, and even then barely 50% believe so. The person they say they like the most, Sarah Palin, is also the one they believe is least qualified: only 29% believe she can actually do the job.

This was evident in Iowa, the state that holds the first caucuses in theprimary process next year, where many of the possible candidates converged over the weekend. On Friday, at a forum for Iowa pastors called "Rediscovering God in America", Mississippi governor Haley Barbour, an outsider, vowed to do "everything that we can to stop abortion". The next day at the Conservative Principles Conference, where Barbour spoke, abortion didn't come up. "It is absolutely critical that we elect a new president," he said. "I think the best way, perhaps the only way, is for us to make sure the 2012 campaign is focused on policy." He added: "The American people agree with us on policy."

When it comes to Libya, Newt Gingrich has vacillated from "Exercise a no-fly zone this evening", on Fox News 12 days before bombing started, to "I would not have intervened" four days afterwards. Meanwhile, congresswoman Michele Bachmann, who once called for an investigation of "anti-American" lawmakers, told the conference: "It can't just be a Republican. Do you hear me? It can't just be a Republican." She urged Iowa conservatives to set the tone for the nation, saying: "We need to have people who have guts, who you won't see melt like wax when they get there."


nanakwame said...

Send in the Clowns

Don't you love farce?
My fault I fear.
I thought that you'd want what I want.
Sorry, my dear.
But where are the clowns?
Quick, send in the clowns.
Don't bother, they're here.

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