Avoiding The Cuckoo’s Nest

The GOP’s South Carolina primaries take place on Saturday, January 21st. It’s the third primary but first in the south — a fact that is not lost on the candidates.  *Fanning myself* Mmmmm…. I can smell it in the air.  All of that evangelical Christian bible belt social conservatism tradition steeped in hospitable mendacity and intolerance….*breathing deeply*  Aaaahhh…Dixie. Ooh…my, oh my!! The candidates have SO much sucking up to do, and so little time… 

This event is quite early in what is likely to feel like an endless period of debates, campaigning, attack ads, PACs and Super PACs that are carefully focusing their attention and messages based on the geography and traditions of the voters. While citizens should always appreciate democracy at work, it seems that something (*hell, anything!*) should be done to minimise the suffering nominating contest process. Last night’s debates are a great example of that; the evasiveness and/or anger on display when asked questions by the moderator proves that these candidates have nothing new to offer. Newt Gingrich, the guy who shut down the federal government (during the Clinton administration) in a hissy fit of anger, accusing the media of negativity was the best most hypocritical moment of the night.

The smartest guy in their room, Jon Hunstman, flew over the cuckoo’s nest and left the clown show race. As a social conservative, Hunstman would never have earned my vote but, among his fellow candidates, he stood head and shoulders above the rest in basic areas such as civility, ability to listen to others’ points of view and his unwillingness to toss science and book learnin’ under the bus.

What are we left with?

Inmates…every last one of them…residents of an insane asylum. Batshit crazies. People who sincerely believe that they have what it takes to run a nation into the ground using the same failed politics and policies of their predecessors. We don’t need no stinkin’ education OR drinkable water, do we?

Newt Gingrich is, according to many of those who worked with him when he was Speaker of the House, unreliable and unstable as a man, husband, human life form political leader. And now Newt has Rick Perry‘s support since he, too, has bowed out of the race so that a “true conservative” can take over ‘steering the ship’ like the Titanic to correct its course. Is that a blessing or a curse? I’m not sure but having those two combine forces should be as amusing as the impending team-up of Stephen Colbert and Herman Cain. At this (still early) stage, poor filthy rich with a disproportionately low tax rate Mitt Romney must stay up at night wondering how someone like Newt could be right on his heels. Afterall, there are only so many times that Mitt can change his stories and versions of himself to suit the easily duped voters. And how long are voters going to stand for Mitt avoiding the issue of his taxes and off-shore assets?

Based on last night’s debates I say good for you, Jon Hunstman. Leaving the race was the right thing to do; your voice and the voice of reason can’t be heard above all of the bar room brawling noise. Come back at another time; for now, make a difference where it will count and when it will be appreciated. It doesn’t make sense to run for office when the GOP’s base isn’t ready to hear what their candidates will do for the country — and the debates make it clear that the candidates are interested in telling their base only what they want to hear. Shall we get back to talking about the budget, Social Security and the number of military bases we have overseas?

Well, we’re off to South Carolina!

*Fanning myself… Yikes! Clutch the pearls!*