September 29, 2011

Seven Reasons Why Chris Christie Won’t Be the GOP Nominee

1. He’s a Media Darling. Aside from the fact that Christie keeps saying ‘NO’ to a presidential run and the Beltway Punditocracy keeps looking at it upside-down and seeing ‘ON,’ the chattering classes apparently have missed one salient fact: they are not popular with the GOP base who regard them, at best, as the ‘liberal media’ and at worst as keepers of the black antichrist Obama’s socialist flame. Quick, think of a presidential candidate in the 2008 election who was beloved by the media. That’s right, it was former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, grandiloquently dubbed ‘America’s Mayor’ by the fawning habitués and sons of habitués that inhabit the glass-walled towers of Big Media Manhattan and the press cubicles of the crepuscular nation’s capital. The MSM loved themselves some heroic Rudy, almost as much as he loved himself, and were sure Republican primary voters could be persuaded to adore him as well. The stars in their eyes didn’t allow for Rudy reality to penetrate — he was a lisping, sweaty, East Coast quasi-liberal (he had supported abortion rights and funding for the arts, at one time), who gave tedious speeches and wasn’t popular on his home turf when he tossed his cookies in the ring. The fabled Giuliani ended up getting a single primary vote in Florida and is best remembered for Biden’s trenchant swipe, “A noun, a verb and 9/11” to sum up Rudy’s desperate attempt to outline a reason he should be president. Perhaps Christie’s smart enough to know that the Tony Soprano tough guy image being promulgated by the media is a fabrication neither he nor his record can live down to, and, like Rudy, he’s unpopular in his own backyard. Also like Giuliani, there are bumps and potholes in his past that will be highlighted in relief by a presidential bid; Rudy had Bernie Kerik and other curious financial entanglements; Christie has his record as a US Attorney and his pattern of caving in to corporate interests.

2. The Republican Elite Love Him. The Teabaggers and Christopublicans who make up what remains of the GOP out in Fly-Over Country aren’t enamored of the candidates endorsed by the various shills, operatives and Wall Street moneybags that occupy the skyboxes of the Republican Party. These are simple clodhoppers who melt at the sight of a crucifix held aloft by a guy in cowboy boots waving a pistol, not some slickster in a designer suit and Italian loafers waving down a cab. Multi-millionaire Mitt Romney, it should be pointed out, was ‘The Man’ to the GOP Elite until recently, but now his trail of pinball-machine flip-flopping on every issue and oleaginous persona, not to mention revealing to the rubes that he thinks ‘corporations are people too’ (Mitt, you’re supposed to hide that from the Proles), have left the USS Romney taking on water in open sea, vulnerable to the waterline torpedoes of every GOP flavor of the month and a clear sign the base distrusts the Chosen One as picked by the likes of a David Brooks or Bill Kristol. Romney may eventually stumble across the GOP primary finish line the winner, but he’ll be horribly damaged goods, ripe for the final landslide humiliation from Team Obama. Christie might also be politically savvy enough to envision this bleak future for himself, if he ran.

3. Christie Has Denounced the GOP Base: Perhaps the Pundits are too deeply entrenched in the redwoods of the inbred Washington conventional wisdom they help create to notice the forest of jabbering incoherent discontent beyond, but GOP primary voters this year are all as crazy as blind bus drivers and East Coaster Christie’s comment disparaging them will not endear him to the rural areas of the South, West and Midwest where these slack-jawed yokels and bitter bigots mostly reside. Christie said unequivocally, “I’m tired of dealing with the crazies.” So, why would Christie put himself through a process where he’ll have to deal with nothing but crazies for the next fourteen months? Moreover, once this remark makes the rounds, as his political opponents will ensure it does, the New Jersey Governor will sink to Michele Bachmann numbers in the polls.

4. ‘Liberal’ Viewpoints. If he becomes a candidate for president, Christie may very well change his positions ala Romney but, in the past, he’s taken decidedly unRepublican stances on issues important to the GOP base such as guns, immigration and hatred of Muslims. Here’s an exchange on gun control between Christie and Sean Hannity on Fox News:

HANNITY: “Should every — should every citizen in the state be allowed to get a licensed weapon if they want one?”

CHRISTIE: “In New Jersey, that’s not going to happen, Sean.”

Imagine that repartee repeatedly appearing in negative ads in GOP primary states, likely sponsored by the NRA. Christie has also shown insufficient passion in detesting illegal immigrants and catering to Islamophobia. Ideological apostasy on any one of these issues would lose the GOP base in 2012; Christie’s managed to hit a triple play.

5. He Believes in Climate Change and Agrees with Scientists That It’s Mainly Caused By Human Activity. Need I say more? To the Dark Agers who vote in GOP primaries, and the wealthy Republicans who keep them in the dark, Christie might as well be saying that if Jesus returned he’d be a Jewish liberal and denounce Israel for the way it treats Palestinians.

6. The Jersey Smart-Ass Act Only Works to a Point. Sure, the GOP base gets a giggle from tough guy Christie telling some poor voter it’s none of their business where his kids go to school, or shutting down questions by swatting some good-government type with an offhand insult, but then, these are Charles Addams caricatures who are so through-the-looking-glass mean-right that they cheer executions and young men dying from lack of medical insurance and boo Iraq War veterans. To the electorate at large, that act doesn’t have legs. Whatever Americans think of President Obama’s skill as president, most of them believe he cares about them and he tries to answer difficult questions fully; contrast that with Christie’s annoyed reactions and flippant or angry answers to any challenging query. After a while, voters in the rest of the country would join New Jersey residents in wondering why they should elect someone who obviously cares so little for most of his constituents, preferring to reward the rich and prosperous corporations at their expense.

7. His Health. I have nothing against chubby people; I myself am the caretaker of a prominent beer gut, and not enough of a hypocrite to criticize anyone else in similar shape. However, Chris Christie is bordering on the morbidly obese — he must have, at least, a 60-inch waistline — and he’s experiencing physical problems such as a recent asthma attack that landed him in the hospital. A presidential campaign is a grueling death march that requires the candidate be in good enough physical condition to withstand the congealed chicken dinners, cold coffee, rampant hand-pumping and lack of sleep required to hoodwink the public into voting for you. Despite his tough-talk front, I don’t think Christie has the stamina for such a run. Aside from that, we are a nation that loathes fat people, except for fictional gift-givers like Santa Claus. Not since one-term Republican William Howard Taft a century ago have we had a president who weighed in at over 250 lbs. Those who vote for a candidate based on their looks, and we have far too many of them, would not be marking the ballot for the bulbous Christie. It’s not fair, of course, but it’s our present reality.

There are those, like Jimmy Zuma at, who speculate Christie may be angling for a VP slot, but that doesn’t strike me as credible; I’d bet instead he’ll be defeated in his reelection bid for NJ governor and won’t mind a bit retiring to the comfortable life of a well-paid Wall Street lawyer or corporate board member or even Fox News host. Not everyone in politics actually enjoys the game once elected, and I think Christie’s one of them.

Copyright 2011 RS Janes

June 12, 2011

Mitt Romney, the Rudy Giuliani of 2012

Before the memory fades, let’s mentally trundle back to the early summer of 2007; Hillary Clinton had a wide lead in the polls over John Edwards and that jug-eared upstart from Illinois, Sen. Barack Obama; on the GOP side of the street, Rudy Giuliani was the clear favorite of Republicans, unless TV actor Fred Thompson decided to enter the race.

The cynical media successors to the Madmen that inhabit the glass-walled canyons of lower Manhattan, dispensing infotainment, gossip and opinion under the banner of ‘news’ — akin to telling us rubes with a straight face that Cheez Whiz is a healthy product of nature — and their even madder-men colleagues who toil in the shadow of Capitol Hill in Washington, had all but anointed Hillary Clinton and Rudy Giuliani as America’s Inevitable Choices for President at this time in the election cycle of 2007. Anyone with a television, access to cable news, and a strong stomach could hear the punditry burble day and night with omniscient assurance that the media-dubbed ‘America’s Mayor’ and certified Hero of 9/11 — mainly because he gave press conferences and didn’t cower in a bunker — was just so gosh-darned popular that no other candidates need apply except, maybe, Reaganesque actor Fred ‘The Craggy Gravitas of a President’ Thompson.

Some of us with the aforementioned TV, cable access, and a supply of airsickness bags, also drifted over to C-SPAN to catch the various candidates’ unfiltered speeches on the trail. This presented a different picture of Giuliani; in front of a live audience, the former mayor of New York City was sweaty, nervous, lisping and, worst of all for a politician, a clunking bore devoid of charisma. The response of the gawking civilians to his boilerplate GOP solutions stitched together by his frequent references to 9/11, as if Bush’s faltering economy could be tamed by War On Terror demagoguery, was tepid at best. At the end of Rudy’s tedious tirades, the C-SPAN cameras would draw back to reveal Giuliani’s politely-applauding potential voters as mostly unenthusiastic and weary — at least those not actually asleep on their feet. It did not take much, even for the rabble who are not on a first name basis with D.C. Insiders, to see that Rudy in the flesh, stripped of his cloak of media worship, really was the sad, awkward embodiment of Joe Biden’s later quip, “a noun, a verb and 9/11.” Our Big Media, in typical form, misdiagnosed that the election of 2008 would be all about protecting us from religion-inspired terrorists and who better to do that than a dull, peevish New Yorker who once wasted taxpayer money trying to have a painting banned because it offended his Catholic sensibilities? (Incidentally, the ‘Reaganesque’ Fred Thompson did run, wrapped like a corndog in media-conferred gravitas, and also turned into a shambling heap of sleep-inducing ho-hum, dropping out early with his numbers in the tank. Without a Hollywood script, old Fred was drowning in a sea of self-created monotony.)

Similarly, Mitt Romney is a Godsend for insomniacs. Aside from the fact that he has flip-flopped more often than a Sea World attraction, Romney on C-Span is the same unsharpened pencil he was during the 2008 primaries, with a couple of important carry-over features that even Giuliani lacked: 1.) Mitt exudes insincerity as if he had soaked in musk oil. His one-cylinder ideology could fit on the back of a cereal box with room to spare for a cartoon character and full list of polysyllabic test tube ingredients, mostly the same GOP bumper-sticker nostrums that have already brought us to the brink of disaster, but his beady-eyed lack of authenticity in delivering the goods is significant. 2.) Romney is an unabashed Mormon in a party whose primaries are greatly controlled by born-again ‘Christians’ who think Unitarians consort with the devil and Methodists are destined for hell. To some of these Christopublicans, a Mormon is as exotically evil as a Rastafarian and worthy of the same fiery fate. Since they won’t be voting for Mitt, and the Tea Partiers recoil in disgust from his Taxachussetts liberal to wingnut firebrand hypocrisy, it’s hard to see who will vote for him in the primaries.

As with Giuliani, Romney has a recognizable name, bales of money, a constituency within the Pundit Class and Power Elite, and a temporary lead in the polls, but that’s not enough to secure him the GOP nomination this year. He’s a noun, a verb and it’s time for a nap, and won’t be the Republican nominee for president in 2012.

Copyright 2011 RS Janes.

February 1, 2010

President Scott ‘W.’ Brown in 2012?


“A couple of things are striking about the pro-[Scott] Brown spending. It’s always entertaining to watch someone self-described as an independent, political free operator getting so much support from national conservative groups. And it’s especially entertaining given that while many of these groups support ideological purges from their party, Brown is … a liberal, according political scientist Boris Shor. He is in fact more liberal than Dede Scozzafava, the unfortunate, erstwhile GOP nominee in the special House election in New York a few months back. Shor writes:

‘Brown’s score puts him at the 34th percentile of his party in Massachusetts over the 1995-2006 time period. In other words, two thirds of other Massachusetts Republican state legislators were more conservative than he was. This is evidence for my claim that he’s a liberal even in his own party. What’s remarkable about this is the fact that Massachusetts Republicans are the most, or nearly the most, liberal Republicans in the entire country.’”
– Robert Schlesinger, “Scott Brown Benefits From Late National Republican Money,” US News, Jan. 17, 2010.

October 27, 2009

Beltway Conventional Wisdom Wrong Again


September 9, 2008

The Tattlesnake – More GOP Goop: Deaf Con 3 Edition

Random Notes Summing Up the End of Summer Bummer in St. Paul

“Fight with me! Fight with me!”
– John McCain in his acceptance speech at the GOP Con, Sept. 4, 2008, so desperate for combat he invited the audience to throw a punch at him.

The 2008 Republican National Convention in St. Paul, Minnesota, was entertaining and credible if you happen to have that happy zealot’s mindset indistinguishable from serious brain damage, or you’re a member of the Inner Party with a large Memory Hole nearby and a strong stomach. Indeed, George Orwell could have written the script for this GOP Con and you could hear echoes of the boot-heel patriotism of Oceania ringing in its blaring signage and loudly repeated declarations – “Country First!” “Service!” “Character Counts!” “War Hero!” “Reformer!” “Maverick!” “USA!” “Surge Working!” “NO-bama!” — simple themes for simple minds marinated in the bottomless pit of Big Media Infotainment Newspeak and endless wars against shifting enemies, buttressed by increasingly irrational rationales.

Yet never was heard a discouraging word against the Bush Administration and the avaricious corporate-Republican values for which it stands that have promulgated and prolonged the various disasters sinking us on every front – instead, Frank Luntz’s cheesy framing word “Washington” was employed so that the top-of-the-ticket ‘reformers’ had something to ‘change’ other than the guiding precepts of their own party and Sarah Palin’s prominently-displayed infant son. The unasked question that hung over the convention like a cloud from Hurricane Gustav: ‘Yes, Washington is even more corrupt than usual and we are descending into utter catastrophe – and who is responsible for causing all of this misery?’ He That Must Be Obliged But Otherwise Go Unmentioned appeared on the Jumbotron screen early in the evening on the first day, his embarrassing video endorsing McCain stuck into those hours of the evening when, presumably, small-town America was still having dinner and would never see the Bush Boy and think of his Unmentionable PNAC Partner-in-Crime Dick Cheney, the True Author of our rampant economic and global woes.

McCain and Palin both exhibited signs of having an out-of-party experience as they berated the soulless suppurating boils and abscesses populating the Potomac Swamplands in the form of Big Money lobbyists and Special Interests that have brought the country so low, without ever hinting that most of them had an RNC elephant logo on their money clips and the rapacious Jesus of Mammon in their born-again hearts. For that matter, most of the larger fish work in McCain’s own campaign. But perhaps the most comically surreal moment of the three nights came when Mitt Romney, formerly McCain’s dedicated primary foe, erupted from the podium with this public hallucination to the cheers of the damned and deranged:

“We need change, all right. Change from a liberal Washington to a conservative Washington. We have a prescription for every American who wants change in Washington — throw out the big-government liberals.”
– Mitt Romney, Sept. 3, 2008.

That’s the essence of the snake-eating-its-tail message emerging from St. Paul to unite the party – let’s toss out big-government liberals Bush and Cheney and start anew.

We’re Not Out of Touch – We’re Republicans Without Issues!

“This election is not about issues. This election is about a composite view of what people take away from these candidates.”
– Rick Davis, McCain’s campaign manager, quoted by the Washington Post’s The Fix blog.

To the party leaders and McCain’s campaign staff, ignorance is strength, and really the only strength McCain has left. If the public can be allayed by clever rhetoric, bamboozled by slick video bios, befuddled by down-is-up deceptions, or baffled by calculated bluster from determining the bitter truth about the Republican presidential candidate and his running mate for just two months, the GOP believes they can seize the White House for the third time in this new century.


August 23, 2008

MSNBC Says It’s Biden

MSNBC reported early Saturday morning that Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama has picked Sen. Joseph Biden, 65, to be his vice presidential running mate. There is an Obama rally planned in Springfield, Illinois, this afternoon to officially announce Biden’s addition to the Dem ticket.

Predictably, the half-crazed wingnuts aboard the sinking USS McCain and their allies, the 101st Keyboard Commandos, will be sharpening their pitchforks ready to stick it to the Delaware Senator and erstwhile presidential candidate in any spot that looks tender. Here are the soft places they’ll likely poke with glee:

1. Biden was once called the Senator from DuPont, and for good reason. Joe has been very chummy with the chemical giant, as well as other large corporations from his state, which has no corporate tax. These slings and arrows of outrageous fortune — considering they’re from the wholly-corporatized Republican Party — will be shamelessly slung at Biden for being too close to evil Big Bidness, probably via a strenuous Internet email campaign and multiple postings on some of the more frothing hoof-and-mouth neocon websites like Hind-Acher’s Powerline blog and Freeper Republic.

2. Joe will be endlessly drubbed for appropriating without attribution British Labour Party PM candidate Neil Kinnock’s “born the son of a coal miner, first in the family to attend college” bio that derailed Biden’s presidential run in 1988. That this might have been an innocent mistake won’t cut any mustard with the ravening wolves of the right — “Plagiarist!” “Liar!” will be sprinkled like salt on potato chips all over the right-wing Media Vomitorium, with Michelle Malkin no doubt inferring in a screechy nut-pile smackdown that perhaps Biden really is a liberal Brit, and therefore a foreigner not to be trusted. Next Sean Hannity will demand that Pennsylvania-born Biden produce his birth certificate and, when produced, will ignore it. I can see the Fox News splash now: “Is Joe Biden Really an American Citizen – How Can We Be Sure?”

3. Obama will take a hit for naming Biden since Joe has been in the US Senate for over 30 years, longer than John Sidney McBush III. “Some change you can believe in,” the Tighty-Righties will sneer without embarrassment while in the next paragraph they praise their sealed-in-amber candidate, trying to drag the country back to the Age of the Cold War and a victory in Vietnam – I mean, Iraq.

Also, look for McCainiac ads quoting Biden during the 2008 Dem primary debates wherein he called Obama too inexperienced to be president, and for his ‘yea’ vote on the Iraq invasion. I hope the Obama campaign has some quick short answers ready for these slaps up the side of the head.

Biden’s Good Points:


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