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The media typically begins any Presidential campaign with comparisons to Harry Truman. The Reagan re-election in 1984 had the comparison. The Bush re-election in 1992 had the comparison. The Clinton re-election in 1996 had the comparison. Humorously, the off year election of 2002 used the Truman comparison too, as did 2004.
The media does this not only because a lot of them are lazy and not only because a lot of them talk with each other at beltway soirees where they infect each other with their various often contrived narratives and talking points, but also because they really do want to help put the election in some historic context.
Whenever a President is embattled, the media falls back to Truman.
But there is something else the media does — and typically does because of a leftward bias, a reliance on both establishment Republicans in Washington as their chief GOP sources and their Democratic friends as Democratic sources— they compare the Republican Primary to 1964.
Every conservative candidate must withstand the “Is he Barry Goldwater” question. Never mind that Barry Goldwater has been tried repeatedly by the Democrats and the only person it ever worked against was Barry Goldwater.
The Democrats have made clear, and the media is seizing on, President Obama’s campaign statements that if Rick Perry is the nominee, they’ll go with Goldwater 1964 and if Mitt Romney is the nominee, they’ll go with John Kerry 2004 as the flip flopping opportunist. Neither of these will work this year and all you have to do is follow along as I step in the way back machine and take you back to the news as it existed on the campaign trail of 1979 and 1980.
“Is defeat probable for GOP if Reagan wins nomination?” blared the headline of the Christian Science Monitor on March 5, 1980. That was just the start of it.
So, Wednesday – while campaigning in Illinois, although I understand that we’re supposed to pretend that Obama isn’t actually campaigning, for some bizarre reason – the President of the United States faced with a technical question (the effects of new EPA’s soil and dust regulations on Illinois farmers) by a technical expert (an Illinois farmer). Despite the fact that the technical question is in fact supposedly within Barack Obama’s level of expertise, the President decided instead to make slight fun of the probably-not-voting-for-him-anyway technical expert by chiding him about believing rumors and suggesting that the technical expert call the Department of Agriculture.
Jon Huntsman tweeted yesterday:
“To be clear. I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming. Call me crazy.”
Um. These scientists you trust, some of them at least, are accused of data manipulation and standing the peer-review process on its head. Call me crazy, but I don’t trust them.
In related news, The Guardian brings us:
“Aliens may destroy humanity to protect other civilisations, say scientists”
The referenced scientists are a meteorologist and a geographer from Penn State and another researcher from NASA’s Planetary Science Division.
“Everything administered as remedy to the public complaint, if it did not produce, was at least followed by, an heightening of the distemper; until, by a variety of experiments, that important country has been brought into her present situation–a situation which I will not miscall, which I dare not name, which I scarcely know how to comprehend in the terms of any description.”
In light of recent events and long standing policies, I could forgive someone for thinking the above comment came from the lips of some perspective 2012 Tea Party Candidate. Of course this isn’t one of the many 2012 hopefuls, this is Sir Edmund Burke in his Speech on Conciliation with America. This speech was given in 1775 in the House of Commons, prior to our Declaration of Independence.
Having witnessed the many changes in sentiment and conduct of Parliament, the ever changing ground put beneath America’s feet, and the continued failure to produce results, it is no wonder that Burke concluded that ‘under them the state of America has been kept in continual agitation.’
Rick Perry once tried to get out of a speeding ticket.
Rick Perry once owned stock in a chain of video stores competing against Blockbuster, some of which also rented adult movies.
Rick Perry once was a Democrat.
The attacks have come fast and furious against him. But most of the attacks take on a peculiar and very telling strain.
A reporter on television or in print will utter a sentence like this, “Privately many Republican consultants suggest Rick Perry may be too Texas or shoot from the hip too much and might turn off necessary independent voters and women.”
It sounds so serious. As Alex Castellanos said on CNN the other night on John King USA, some fear Rick Perry might have “Mad Cowboy Disease.”
Let me sum this all up for you into what Rick Perry’s biggest problem is.
Whether you are talking about Alex (Team Carole Strayhorn 2006) or Karl Rove (Team Kay Bailey Hutchison 2010) or a host of other national Republican consultants, Rick Perry and his Texas team have beaten a significant portion of them.
But they did not just beat them. In many cases, Team Perry then shut the consultants who opposed him out of future business with him.
So there are scores and scores of Republican consultants who have scores to settle with Rick Perry and his team. And for guys like Karl Rove, if Perry were to win the White House, Karl and a few others would see themselves shut out of White House business for at least four years.
Rick Perry may be the only guy in America to have beaten both Karl Rove and also Obama’s own consultant, David Axelrod.
After two weeks of striking, it appears that the red shirts at the Communications Workers of America (CWA) and International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) are heading back to work without a contract in hand. . . .
This back to work agreement comes just before the CWA would begin paying up to $300 per week in strike benefits to its striking members, saving the union up to $10 million per week out of its union treasury.
Over a year ago, the president of the United Auto Workers, Bob King, announced a campaign to ‘shame’ foreign automakers with plants here in the U.S. into allowing his union to unionize them–the details of which would be released at a later point in time.
Earlier this year, when King finally released his new manifesto on what he expected the automakers to agree to, it was met with well-deserved derision.