January 19, 2012

Campaign Trail Mixology: Is This the Season of the Mitt?

Tumorous rumors and loose talk from unnamed sources speaking anonymously. (If it’s good enough for the NY Times and Washington Post, it’s good enough for me.) Candidates and poll numbers listed in the order of the Jan. 17, 2012 CNN/Time/ORC South Carolina poll:

33 percent: Mitt Romney. The only clueless Mormon left in the GOP race, and the candidate our Corporately-Owned Media has determined will be most accommodating to their demands of lower taxes on the 1 Percent and multi-national corporations and less regulation on the Kleptocracy for which they stand, the Mittster is so oblivious he continues to wear expensive $3K watches and pricey hand-tailored suits on the campaign trail, unlike the more savvy wealthy Republican ‘populists’ who sport a cheap Timex and a presidential-wannabe trousseau of off-the-rack wear when in campaign mode. (Presumably, a pair of Sansabelt slacks and a JC Penney sports shirt would induce a rash if in direct contact with Mitt’s pampered flesh.) Of course, Romney’s stiff Disney World animatronic awkwardness when interacting with members of the human race is the stuff of legend, but he’s also a walking compendium of Talking Points and as bad as the Bush Boy at the quick ad lib when he’s thrown off stride. As with Junior, such attempts at spontaneity inevitably end in disaster with inappropriate laughter and bizarre facial expressions. Weirder, though, is Romney’s odd notions of what constitutes an endearing anecdote, sure to elicit an indulgent chuckle and mist the eye. In this he reminds me of the rural farmer who told the sheriff that he shot one of his five sons in the ass with a .22 rifle to teach all of his kids to ‘lissen to their daddy’ when he told them daddy gets to read the morning newspaper first. Farmer Ding-Dong just couldn’t understand why the sheriff then arrested him instead of sharing a fatherly chortle over those ‘dang young ‘uns.’ He was even heard to shout in protest as he was being taken away, “Sheet, it were only a flesh wound!” This is Mitt Romney: he can’t comprehend that ‘funny’ family stories about tying his crated dog to the top of his car for a 10-hour trip that resulted in the frightened pet’s diarrhea running down the back of the station wagon aren’t warmly amusing to other people; he can’t see that his ‘adorable’ personal memories are hatched out of The Addams Family rather than the Swiss Family Robinson. While I’ll give him a thumb’s-up for being entertainingly strange, this tin-eared weirdo can’t be allowed anywhere near the Oval Office — imagine a President Romney greeting the Afghan ambassador with a goat to ride around Washington because he knows that’s what those Afghanis like or, perhaps, tying some low-level White House staffer to the top of the presidential limo. “He loves it up there! He got up there all by himself!”

23 Percent: Newt Gingrich. A couple of tidbits: first, the MSM has generally missed reporting on the helmet-haired blonde woman with the fixed, insincere smile and intense pinball eyes that is Callista Gingrich, Newtie’s mistress when he was married to No. 2 and eventual third and current wife. The former Washington lobbyist (what a match made in heaven…or wherever) is not just ‘Stepford Wives’ creepy; she’s all the way to ‘Whatever Happened to Baby Jane’ creepy with her ghostly skin, deep red lipstick and hawkish, slightly mad gaze, and ‘Mr. Speaker’ doesn’t use the toilet without her permission. Staff defections from the Gingrich campaign can be traced directly to Callista’s iron-fisted control and she’s the one addicted to Tiffany bling to the extent that’d she’d put hubby in deep, embarrassing debt to feed her 1950s ‘Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend’ lust for overpriced jewelry. She’s also the source for some of Newt’s crankier and more crackpot opinions, the same ones that may ultimately sabotage any chance he has of nabbing the GOP presidential nomination. Second, word is Callista’s taking a page from Elvis’ Col. Parker by stuffing debate audiences with ‘paid groovers’ who will applaud Newt’s wacky ‘dump child labor laws’ and ‘blacks should get a job instead of food stamps’ memes. Back in the early days of Presley’s career, ‘The Colonel’ used to hire young ladies to scream and cry at Elvis performances, noticing that other young women would do likewise if prompted by the hirelings; similarly, Callista revs up debate audiences — she knows most Republicans are born followers — by having her pay-to-play band start the applause and shouts of approval making it seem, to the viewing audience and more gullible members of the media, as if Newt’s insane ideas have actually attracted some adherents among the GOP base. This way, Newt doesn’t have to issue any apologies or clarifications — ‘hey, look at that applause, my ideas are popular’ — and the catcalls and booing help intimidate into silence anyone who might dare ask a follow-up question. However, The Ging-Thing Who Would Be King has a problem that must give him night-sweats; the follow-up questions that have yet to be asked, but will be one day, if he’s the nominee: “Sure, Speaker Gingrich, but that janitor you just put out of work and replaced with a low-paid child; what about his family and where does he find work to support them?” or “You have accused President Obama of being the ‘food stamp president’ saying he would rather give poor black people food stamps than jobs, yet your party in the Senate filibusters every job-creating bill that Obama and the Democrats submit to them. Tell me, would you support Obama’s jobs bill and, if not, then where exactly are these poor black folks supposed to find work?” or “So, as president, you would cut off food stamps to the poor and middle-class and, if they couldn’t find a job in your economy, then you’d just let them starve?” Newtie’s crass ‘big ideas’ can’t stand up to a feather duster of logic and he relies on the craven MSM aversion to asking the hard questions to keep his leaky campaign raft afloat but, with the kooky, creepy Callista at the helm (she should have sci-fi Theremin tones accompanying her everywhere she goes), it’s only a matter of time until it crashes up against the not-from-Tiffany rocks and disappears from view.

16 Percent: Rick Santorum. Reactionary Rick’s record is one of head-twisting inconsistencies and soft-shoe corruption: as a U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania, Santorum condemned Iran as an Islamo-fascist terrorist state while refusing to support laws that would ban corporations like Halliburton from doing business with them; he billed a cash-strapped Pennsylvania school district over $70,000 to pay for educating his children who were living in Virginia at the time; he took campaign contributions from AccuWeather, a PA-based private weather tracking company and supported legislation that would prevent the National Weather Service from issuing free weather reports if a private for-profit weather report was available; and he supports Gitmo, indefinite detentions, and Cheney’s torture policies. His perverse and ugly Dark Ages Catholic religious views opposing abortion, gay marriage, birth control, feminists and the theory of evolution are well known, as is his hilariously dumb ‘man-on-dog sex’ speech, his belief that Americans have no right to privacy, and his absurdly blaming Boston liberals for the Catholic Church’s pedophile scandal in a 2002 article, for which he has yet to apologize. No wonder he set a record in the 2006 senatorial election for the largest losing margin by a Republican incumbent in history. There is really no reason to probe for back-alley ‘dirt’ on Santorum — it’s all public. He’s the whole ball of crappy Christopublican conservatism that’s been pushed on the nation for the past 40 years but, this time around, the religiosity blew up in his face. Seems the fundamentalist Christians who just endorsed St. Santorum as a ‘unity’ candidate to beat Romney in South Carolina don’t have the clout they once had; hence, Gingrich is leading Rick in the polls with only days to go until the SC vote. Unless there’s a last minute transfusion from his Christopublican friends, Santorum’s out of money and will soon discover he must quit the race to spend more time at home annoying the wife and kiddies.

13 Percent: Ron Paul. The latest on Sen. Rand Paul’s 76-year-old daddy is that he’s not running for reelection to his Texas congressional seat and is going to devote himself full time to developing a ‘Paulist’ political movement to reflect his odd views of Libertarianism and even Ayn Rand’s Objectivism that is rooted in Ayn’s aggressive atheism while Paul is a Christian, a Baptist no less. While some of the more naïve on the left like his anti-war, less spending on the military, get rid of the Fed, and end the drug war policies, they have not yet discovered, or completely ignored, his less progressive stances on women’s rights, social programs and corporate regulation. Ron recently signed on to the ‘Personhood’ nonsense which would not only criminalize abortion, but stop the sale of birth control pills in this country; he also wants to kill off Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, unemployment compensation and any programs that help the needy; and he believes corporations should not have any regulations on their activities whatsoever, and that the government should subserviently work with business which, under the Mussolini definition, is essentially fascism. There is also the racial bigotry that Paul denies, but years of newsletters in his name and appearances before racist groups expose as a genuine problem. Moreover, behind the scenes, Paul is exhausted, often caught in private slumped and staring into space exhaustedly, looking every bit of his 76 years. Campaigning for the presidency is a drain on a man 20 years younger and some in his inner circle wonder how long he can keep this up. Rumor is, Ron plans to soldier on no matter how badly he does in the primaries; he hopes to collect enough delegates to commandeer a prime-time speaking spot at the Republican National Convention, at which he’ll supposedly announce his new movement. Will the GOP accede to keep the peace and not risk offending Paul supporters? Probably not; most of them won’t be voting for a Republican this year anyway.

6 Percent: Rick Perry. Word is, Rick either stinks of peppermint or whiskey, depending on what time of day you catch him. Whether he’s a self-hating gay man or not is an open question, but the Texas Governor shore do act a little grandiose an’ giddy when he’s got hissef a snoot-full, jes’ like some male dancer gittin’ an’ award fer a Broadway musical. But Rick’s biggest problem, to use the words of fellow Texan Ron White, is “you can’t fix stupid.” If you could, Perry would need a complete overhaul. The only two questions now are how long his Texas friends will continue to throw good money after bad and, if Romney gets the nod, whether he would name him VP since bumbling oaf Perry could make anyone look good by contrast, even a dull slice of processed white bread like Mitt.

The good news: It doesn’t really matter which of them is nominated; none of these wealthy bastinadoes of the far-right is fit to be carved into presidential furniture adaptable to more moderate voters by next November; they all sport more baggage than a Gilded Age Astor on the Titanic, an aquatic analogy the eventual GOP nominee might as well get comfortable with now.

Copyright 2012 RS Janes.

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