Republican Presidential Candidates

Pres. Obama has already lost the next presidential election as far as thinking people right and left are judging. It does not mean that Republicans will win. The GOP has to run with an electable candidate.

The field of Republican presidential candidates is becoming more readable, I think. Here is my summary.

Herman Cain is very likable and he speaks clearly about his genuinely conservative program. Besides, he looks like a president and women will love his manly manners. That’s not enough to get him elected or to make him electable. Americans will not vote to make president anyone who was not previously elected to something. No amount of good business experience will make up for this. (And Cain, has plenty of that.)

Newt Gingrich is a completely clear conservative. No one explains better than he does the main practical points of a conservative programs for 2012. Unfortunately, no one likes him, I think. There are good reasons to, including his unprincipled flirtations with government support for ethanol.

Gov. Perry lost it all in the last presidential debate. There is no way he can make up for it. He was facing the test of his life with Gov. Romney and he came to the test without having studied. He was not prepared. It’s not a default of knowledge as some pretend, it’s a character fault.

Romney is equal to himself. He is reasonably likable in a sort of metrosexual way. He carries a lot of baggage, including his Mass. health program he has never either really defended nor apologized for. That’s a lot of baggage, especially in 2012 because Obamacare, cousin to the Mass. plan, will be a number one reason to reject Pres. Obama. No one knows for sure whether Gov. Romney is a conservative by today’s standard.

Note: If I turn out to be wrong, it’s going to be about Gov. Romney. He may just be the half-way candidate where the Republican Party voters meet. I sure hope not.

Congresswoman Bachman is another Great Woman’s Hope in the ring. She is clearly a conservative and she is likable in a weird sort of way. (Rearing all those foster children surely was not pretend work.) Politically, though, she is not serious. She said something big-time wrong on the occasion of the second debate, about vaccinations. She will never recover. Here is a the rule of thumb: You may stumble when someone else hands you a question, especially when it’s an enemy handing you a trap question. (I am reminded of Gov. Palin being asked perversely what she thought of the “Bush Doctrine.” I would have flunked too.) You may not, however, tell falsehoods on a topic you, yourself chose. It matters little whether you are lying or merely ignorant. I am not even sure which one I prefer.

Ron Paul sounds like he whines. It may not be his fault. I could be like Pres. Bush’s alleged smirk, just a physical thing with no intention behind it. Paul will always get some support because there are significant numbers of loyal Libertarians who wish to work within the Republican Party. He will never get much more support because they, the Libertarians, don’t dupe anyone. Their isolationism in foreign policy is perceived as a lack of patriotism. (Full disclosure: I am a libertarian – small “l” – who is a registered Republican. I am struggling with the inherent contradiction between libertarianism and the necessary American armed stance. See my recent essays on the topic: “Libertarian Military Isolationism: Forward All with Eyes Tightly Shut,” “The Libertarian Project and American Military Power.)

Congressman Paul declared in the second debate that the armed forces spend 20 billion dollars (US D 20,000,000,000) annually on air conditioning in Iraq and Afghanistan. See the rule of thumb above. Like many ideological purists, he will come to believe just about anything that seems to support his ideology.

Then, there is what’s his name who stated categorically in a debate that, “ 97 % of climate scientists” believe in man-made global warming. You can’t say that. It’s  dogmatically stupid. If it were true, we would not know it and therefore, no one can affirm it. The man sounds a little stupid, perhaps because he answers before he thinks. Bad trait for a president. Forget him.

And then, there is the other what’s his name whose sole contribution thus far is a good wisecrack about dogs and shovel-ready jobs.

Gov. Christie of New Jersey keeps insisting he is not running. He is not the mincing type. I think he is telling the truth.

It all does not ad up to much, so far. Time to get excited.

About jacquesdelacroix

I am a sociologist, a short-story writer, and a blogger (Facts Matter and Notes On Liberty) in Santa Cruz, California.
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8 Responses to Republican Presidential Candidates

  1. gary says:

    The distinctions you listed first about each supposed conservative wannabe
    is the very reason that we will not get a real conservative leader and also
    is the reason why Obama, even as bad as he has been, will not likely lose.

    The reasons you list that are most prominent are about the superficial and
    indicate the way that most people on the TVcoolaid think. They could care
    less about the reality of our decline and instead are looking for the tallest
    most official “good looking” smoothest talking politician. The reality of how
    they have voted as it relates to the constitution was not even mentioned.
    What I see ahead is virtually the same as what Ron Paul (and any other
    constitutional realist) sees.

    Earlier today I responded to an email that I think fits here:

    Most political pundits have bought into what I call the “correctness”, that
    we have gone too far, that there is no way to put the lid back on the moral
    financial “bottle”, that accountability cannot be re-achieved. In my way of
    thinking there is
    this “correctness”, or, there is truth. There is either a return to accountability a
    and accounting, or, there is a continuation of more of the same where the
    federal reserve who started this mess will be allowed to continue making the
    so called “correct” decisions designed to take us where they obviously have
    and are.

    The reason the problem will not be addressed is our addiction to mammon,
    something carefully pre-contrived by those who steer the artificial money that
    enlists all entitlement and replaces reality with the “correctness”.
    It has removed the courage to be principled and logical and it is no less
    pronounced on either side of the ‘political polarization’ that could just as easily be
    called the ‘political correctness’. It has >causedby design >to distract FROM THE SOLUTION.<
    We are too busy hating each other (what envy does) to appeal for the only thing that
    can save our nation which is backing into a realization of right and wrong, the
    reinstallation of the intrinsic link that connects accounting to accountability.

    Its the morality that has vaporized and we are still too comfortable to wake up
    to that reality. That will change soon. We are heading quickly to that very painful
    awakening. Those that live through what is coming will find that the pendulum will
    swing from immorality to the "correctness" morphed into a new "morality" that will
    completely erase entitlements and we will enter an age where complete
    control will occur due to the digital replacement of currency among other things.

    The year I was born a great book came out that was 62 years ahead of its time.
    The author's name was Orwell. We today are living in what Orwell saw as "Newspeak".
    The slogans of the "correctness" are: War is Peace, Freedom is Slavery, Ignorance is Strength.
    To that end how many of you have heard conversations where the reality was carefully circled
    and the word "like" was used predominantly to keep from saying anything that might offend?

    Jacques, what you have delineated our conservative leadership to be is proof that
    truth is on its head and we are headed to the hell we collectively deserve.
    Does it sound like I have given up? I have not. I know who and what to vote for.
    But I am not afraid to see and point to reality and be its alarm.
    I don't substitute the word *feel* for *believe*, or the word *like* in places where
    offense might be taken. The evidence of the indoctrination in the young voters is a
    daily reminder of where we are headed and why. And they think *I* am
    (as you may too) completely nuts.

    BTW I have a first addition of 1984 and I believe that with out listing anything religious
    it delineates the complete collapse of morality and the resulting "correctness"
    in terms that the editor could culturally relay. A truly great mind.

    Gary Kimes

    • jacquesdelacroix says:

      GaRY: iF YOU ARE EVEN 25% RIGHT, WE NEED EITHER A COLLECTIVE BRAIN TRANSPLANT OR MASSIVE CONVERSION. I AM HOPING FOR NEITHER.

      • gary says:

        Oh my , please don’t yell..

        This is why I see you as part of the problem rather than a part of the solution. Freedom is not entitled. Freedom is a result.

      • jacquesdelacroix says:

        Sorry. I don’t yell. I was on caps and too tired to re-type. How can you hear me anyway?

  2. Bruce says:

    Good summary of the options. It’s too bad we can’t find a candidate with all the following:
    1. Knowledgeable like Gingrich.
    2. Had success in the private sector in running a business like Cain. Has a proven track record of fixing things the right way. Has been on the blister end of a shovel before. Someone who has earned what they have.
    3. From one of the 3 or 4 biggest states, Texas, California, Florida or New York like Perry.
    4. Physically attractive like, Bachman or Palin.
    5. Has a good grasp of the dangerous and complicated international political scene, but is not a head in the sand isolationist. Unlike Ron Paul.
    6. A solid debater who shows up prepared with facts like Romney. Can respond accuratly and effectively to unscripted questions.
    7. Someone who has been elected to office and did what he said he was going to do there, like maybe Gingrich and the contract with America.
    8. A main stream religious affiliation that does not attract immediate negative attention, unlike Romney.
    9. No major skeletons in the closet, affairs etc., that the media just has to dust off and use again, unlike Gingrich. Financial deals for buddies.
    10. Not a professional politician who feels compelled to “reach across the isle” like Cain or Palin. Unlike John McCain.
    11. Has a record of voting that is consistent with conservative social and economic principles. Has core values that drive decision making, but is not so rigid that
    he turns people off. Trys instead to convince them to consider his position and has some success..
    12. Is humble about the tremendous priviledge and responsibility being president means
    13. Will maintain the dignity of the office and be presidential at all times. Qualified for the toughest job in the world

    It’s also too bad that we have a President in office today that is none of the above. We have got to prevail in 2012.

    .

    • jacquesdelacroix says:

      An even better summary, Bruce, with one exception: Listing Herman Cain as good-looking, alongside Bachman and Palin would not make you necessarily gay!
      Now, it would be interesting to propose an order for retreat: Which of those desirable traits would you be most willing to give up?

      • Bruce says:

        Good question. I could do without the good looks trait, just not sure if the voters could get past it. Since none of the current candidates has all the traits I like, I would opt for the ones that would get the votes to beat Obama by the largest margin. Even though just about everyone has nearly counted him out, Obama still represents a clear and present danger. The media still loves him, and they are powerful opinion shapers. Minorities, while they may be disappointed with the total absence of having done anything to help their communities, will still vote based on their skin color and unfounded affection for the Democrats. Half of the people are fine with raising taxes, because they don’t pay any. I think we have the best chance of getting a solid conservative elected we have had in decades. I like the idea of a Herman Cain-Marco Rubio ticket. It will probably be more like Romney and some luke warm guy.

      • jacquesdelacroix says:

        Good analysis.

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