Friday, April 08, 2016

New Brokered GOP Convention Savior Candidate:....Condoleeza Rice?

by JASmius

Sure, what the hell.  Let's make it the battle of be-skirted (or pant-suited) Foggy Bottom.  Except that our former SecState will be black!  Yeah, that's it!

Of course, Secretary Rice has never sought or held elective office, she's center-right at best, she's more of an insider than an outsider, and the thing that people tend to forget, an academic.  And she hasn't run or earned a single vote or delegate.  But at least we'd have a Rice in the White House who wasn't an inveterate liar, right?

Yeah, Michael Graham, THAT'll "unify the party":

Imagine it’s the day after the GOP convention, and across America voters who’ve spent months dreading the horror of a Hillary versus Trump election wake up to discover the GOP ticket is…Condi/Perry 2016!


Imagine the relief, the joy, the “holy crap, how did we escape?” elation the GOP electorate would feel over a Trump-free future. Now ask yourself: Are once-panicked Republicans really going to give a rip about Rule 40-b?

I tend to think the Trump and especially Cruz supporters, whose candidate has heroically done more than anybody else to ensure a Trump-free future, would, yeah.

I only picked Condi/Perry to make a point, not show a preference. It could be Ryan/Haley or Walker/Scott (Tim, senator of South Carolina) or, if you’re a old-time comics fan, Mitt and Jeff! (as in Romney and Sessions).

How about Crosby & Hope, Abbott & Costello, Laurel & Hardy, Rowan & Martin, Proctor & Gamble, Abercrombie & Stitch, and Ren & Stimpy while you're at it?

None of them have run or earned a single vote or delegate, either.

And, in case you hadn't noticed it, genius, Sessions is a Trumplican, so what would be his selling point for riding shotgun on this electoral suicide pact?

What people dismissing Karl Rove’s “clean slate” concept are missing is the old adage that nothing is good or bad except by comparison. Compared to “GOP nominee Donald Trump,” everything sounds good. Or at least not as bad.

That's true, as far as it goes.  But it's not as simple as that.  Let me remind one and all yet again that WE ALREADY HAVE AN ALTERNATIVE TO TRUMP IN TED CRUZ.  Who has collected over six million Republican votes and over five hundred delegates to date and is poising himself to capture the GOP nomination after the first convention ballot.  What is all this fantasy primary fecality about "Ryan-Haley" or "Rice-Perry" or "Walker-Scott" (very punny, Mr. Graham)?  As the late and legendary Seahawks head coach Chuck Knox used to say, "You have to play the hand you've been dealt".  That hand has now distilled down to Trump or Cruz.  So we do everything we can to put Cruz over the top for that Trump-free future.  Period.

And we do so knowing that Hillary Clinton is going to be the next POTUS regardless of what we do.  If Trump wins the nomination, we #NeverTrumpers just sit back and witness the historic November massacre.  If Cruz wins the nomination, Trumplicans bitch and moan and whine and complain and rage and riot and write in their cult leader's name on ballots across the country, as he'll be urging and advertising for them to do, and the Texas senator spirals down to defeat.  If an "establishment white knight" parachutes in, sweeps them both aside, and expects to "unify the party"....

....well, you get the idea.

In short, the Republican Party has met its Whiggy Kobayashi Maru.  Its Waterloo.  Its no-win scenario.  This campaign is no longer about November, it's about saving the GOP from becoming a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Democrat Party, the conservative movement from permanent exile, and the country from reverting back to something it hasn't been for a century and a half: a one-party state.

Donald Trump as GOP nominee would be an asteroid-strike extinction-level event.  "Condi-Perry" or Cheech & Chong or whatever would be a comet-strike extinction level event.  Only Cruz-Walker (as my friend Jennifer Crawford suggested on Facebook the other day) would salvage party survival from what has become an intolerable fiasco.

All that said, let's move on to the next fantasy round:

An anonymous group of conservative billionaires is ready to place their bets on a man dubbed “Mad Dog,” hoping to draft him into the presidential race to confront Donald Trump.

Think of it as a Plan B should Trump be nominated by the Republican Party in Cleveland: swing behind retired U.S. Marine Corps General James Mattis and press him into service yet again as a third-party candidate.

Mattis is the former commander of Central Command, which includes the strife-afflicted conflict zones of the Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia, and has developed a reputation among troops as a general officer who cares about the little guy. This reputation blossomed into the political realm during the 2012 presidential contest, when a Marine Corps veteran started an online campaign to write-in Mattis on presidential ballots—it ultimately lacked the backing to take off.

But this situation involves far bigger players: Close to a dozen influential donors — involving politically-involved billionaires with deep pockets and conservative leanings — are ready to put their resources behind Mattis. At their request, a small group of political operatives have taken the first steps in the strategic legwork needed for a bid: a package of six strategic memos outlining how Mattis could win the race, in hopes of coaxing him in.

That's nice, I guess.  Has General Mattis ever sought or held elective office?  No, although there is some precedent for generals serving as POTUS (William Henry Harrison, Zachary Taylor, Dwight Eisenhower).  Only Ike didn't croak in office, and his presidency was, shall we say, underrated.  But in all three instances the Whigs and Republicans, respectively, went with the "war hero" because they had no other viable candidates, and in Eisenhower's case, the country was in a de facto state of war with both the Soviet Union and Red China, so it made a great deal of sense to have the man who led Western Allied forces to victory over Nazi Germany just a decade earlier leading the country.

None of those circumstances exist or apply to the present day.  The world situation is far more similar to the 1930s, with several regional powers making bids for global control (this time with nuclear weapons).  The GOP has a viable Trump-stopper in Ted Cruz.  And here's a nifty question: What does General Mattis stand for?  What does he believe?  Does anybody know what his issue platform would be?  The other major reason why the Whigs and Republicans, respectively, went with the "war hero" is because they were all ciphers, blank slates, and in the Whigs' two cracks at it, they thought that General Harrison and General Taylor could be molded and shaped and "guided" - i.e. controlled - by the legendary, and notorious, Daniel Webster and Henry Clay.  The generals would be their puppets, but they would be pulling the strings.

So....who would be pulling General Mattis's strings?  What would he do as POTUS?  Does anybody know?  Does anybody care?

And what does it matter since he wouldn't even be a blip on the electoral radar screen?  Denying any general election candidate an Electoral College majority and throwing the election into the House of Representatives, which is the stated goal of the Mattis candidacy, hasn't been pulled off in almost two centuries.  That was the 1824 election (i.e. "the corrupt bargain") that put John Quincy Adams in the White House and launched Andrew Jackson to "populist" fame and the Democrat Party on its long, downward, leftward spiral.  Winning the battle but losing the war, as it were.  The best any third-party run has done since then (not counting the Civil War elections) was 1912, where Teddy Roosevelt managed 27.4% of the popular vote and eighty-eight Electoral Votes, and 1992 and 1996, where Ross Perot captured 18.9% and 8.4% of the popular vote and zero Electoral Votes.  And Perot had more resources and had long since already started his bid by this point twenty-four years ago.  What on Earth do these "anonymous conservative billionaires" think this Mattis nonsense is possibly going to accomplish?

It reminds me of this picture:

And now I have yet another reason to despise it, because that isn't how politics and how our electoral system works.  We have two major parties, and that's that.  Period.  There are no end-around plays, no short-cuts, no "white knights," no "draftees".  This is what we've got.

There's an old saying that teaches that in a democracy, the people get the kind of government they deserve.  A republic is supposed to prevent, or at least maximally minimize, that disastrous eventuality, but in historical practice, the only real difference between the two is that republics just take longer to erode into mob excess.  And now we have arrived at the dismal point in our country's degeneration in which both parties have succumbed to fascist personality cults, and the nation has passed the democracy Rubicon and is speeding off the socialist cliff.

But we already have a white knight.  His name is Ted Cruz.  And he is the only card we have left to play.

So let's cut out all this fantasist wanking and play it.

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