NEW YORK – October 5, 2012 – The two titans of American politics, President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney, locked horns this week in the first televised debate of the election season.

Romney managed to show that he was still a viable candidate in spite of a barrage of recent criticism and increasingly negative polls.   Obama spoke with his usual oratorical mastery and projected an air of deep thought and calm.  But to many, the president appeared rather tired and lacking in his usual pep.  Being president and campaigning at the same time is exhausting.

The first debate alleviated some of the gloom previously felt by Republicans and slightly lifted Romney’s poll standing.   Yet neither candidate generated much emotion, unlike the waves of hysterical adulation for Obama in 2008.  Instead of being the Expected One, Obama turned out to be another typical politician mouthing platitudes and making promises that are not kept.

Even so, the underlying arithmetic of the election was still against the Republicans – known as the Grand Old Party, or GOP.

White, middle-aged men are Romney’s key supporters, along with Bible Belt Republicans, farmers and ardent supporters of Israel.  Say “Republican” and up pops the image of an angry, overweight, 60-something male golfer, shaking his putter in fury at the “socialist”  “Muslim” president.

Problem is, there are not enough angry overweight white men and religious fundamentalists to give Romney a decisive victory.   Evangelical Protestant fundamentalists voted 78% for George Bush in 2004 and 74% for John McCain in 2008.

But many of these “born-again” Christians, who make up 45% of Republican voters, are leery of Romney’s Mormon faith which is regarded as weird and heretical by mainstream Christians.   Many may simply not vote for Romney.

American women, particularly younger ones,  are totally turned off by the wooden Romney and his deer-slaughtering vice presidential running mate,  Paul Ryan.  Polls show women 40 to 60 against Romney – a potential kiss of death in the race.

I suspect that Romney reminds many American women of all the things they didn’t like about their fathers.  Obama reminds them of the kind of fast-talking cool cat that their fathers warned them against. The GOP’s jihad against abortion, public health care,  and benefits for poor blacks has further angered many women.

Polls show 93% of black Americans will vote for Obama – provided they vote at all. Obama mania has cooled among blacks.  Latinos, the most important new voter group, back Obama by 68% to 26% for Romney.

Independents will prove vital in key “battleground” states that determine the election: Florida, Ohio, Colorado, Pennsylvania,  and Arizona.   Many of these better-educated voters are turned off by Romney’s warlike bluster and by Obama’s continuation of Bush policies.

America has rapidly turned brown and yellow.  The days of white supremacy are over.  There are 2 million Muslims living in the great melting pot of America.  East Asians top all the educational surveys.   Latinos have the fastest growing families.  For the first time, whites have become a minority in California, the 11th biggest economy on earth.

Unless there is an unexpected revival,  the Republican Party seems destined to become a fringe party of the far right and religious fundamentalists.   GOP leaders loudly advocate war against all sorts of enemies,  assassinations around the globe,  torture and indefinite jailing of suspected anti-Americans, and the endless growth of military spending – without raising taxes.  As the party shrinks, it will likely grow more extreme.

I have been a card-carrying Republican all my life.  A signed picture of President Dwight Eisenhower hangs over my desk.  I’m a veteran of the regular US army.

But today’s Republican party is no longer my Republican party.  Back in the day, the GOP was run by East Coast elite of well-educated, sophisticated internationalists who exercised America’s great power with restraint.

Alas, they have been replaced by rural politicians from the deep south and west with no knowledge of the outside world and no sense of history or culture.   America’s closet fascist neocons write the GOP’s foreign policies.

Dr. Ron Paul was the last chance for the GOP to reform, redefine and renew itself.   Paul was sidelined and ignored.  As a result,  Republicans may be marching towards irrelevance and unimportance.

 

This post is in: USA

8 Responses to “ROGUE REPUBLICAN”

  1. - “Obama’s continuation of Bush policies”
    - “Neocons write the GOP’s foreign policies.”

    In other words, the neocons still run the US’s foreign policy and military, regardless of whether it’s Bush, McCain, Romney, or Obama in office.

    They also run Canada’s foreign policy and military, and that would have been the case regardless of whether it was Ignatieff or Harper in office.

    • solum temptare possumus says:

      PM Chretien said NO to Herbert Walker Bush, and he was no lover of the military or Washington!
      I agree that Ignatieff was too Americanised from years within their culture to withstand a political onslaught, and PM Harper gazes into the future; his political acumen put upon one goal…. to be the longest serving PM in Canadian History and suplicate to the President of whatever Political persuasion is in office.
      .
      ad iudicium

  2. What the GOP has become, is a sick and warped caricature of its glorious past.
    A country, in which a man of Dr. Ron Paul`s caliber, cannot be included in a critical public debate, cannot claim to be a democratic one not even in the widest sense. Something I have personally suspected for some time.
    Check the definitions of both fascist and dictatorship and see, if the present US qualifies and to what degree.
    A fascist is defined as follows: “An adherent of fascism or other right-wing authoritarian views”. In this respect the present US government seems to qualify for that definition.
    A dictatorship is defined as follows: “A form of government in which the ruler is an absolute dictator (not restricted by a constitution or laws or opposition etc.)”
    With the total disregard for its own Constitution and sneering disrespect of international laws and agreements, this description also fits the bill.
    What evil entity has replaced the will of the people with its own sinister agenda?
    If capitalism is supposed to be an economic system based on private ownership of capital, does that then automatically mean, that that private capital can be abused to make robbery on a large scale legal?
    If so, then we should seriously consider socialism, because it is in comparison far more equitable.

  3. George Rizk says:

    The Republican Party has been hijacked by the evangelicals war mongers, and the typical joe-six-packs don’t even know it. A typical republican has suffered for many generations from the biased liberal media, which never allowed no voices for the right. Then comes Reagan, and Rush Limbaugh, who introduced a new common sense voice of reason to the national single liberal perspective on things. As listeners on the right were starving for a voice and got it from Rush, many copy cats followed and ALL became war mongers, and the old Republican Party was usurped.

    Pat Buchanan, and Ron Paul attempted to redirect the GOP back to small government, and constitutional approach to the issues rather than gunship diplomacy, and failed miserably because they got attacked from both the right and the left. To this end, I concluded that even the Tea Party movement was usurped by the foaming at the mouth war mongers. Right now we have two war monger parties, one with welfare, and the other with less tax!

    • solum temptare possumus says:

      Either approach has only about 5% of the Fiscal Dollars to play with. Until a solution to the entitlements of the retired federal and state and city and county and municipal employees is found, nothing will get done; except insolvency by borrowing more from the private shareholders of the Central…er… Federal Reserve which is least painful for Washington.
      Life expectancy was 67 when FDR signed into law the Social Security Act. Your pension started at 65 (if you lived that long). Well the pension still begins at 65 but women are expected to live to 86 and men 82. Nothing has been done and now the outflow is set with no room for improvement; save a change that would be political suicide.
      .
      Regional factions will form eventually, leading to a first regional party. When the people of these group of states realize the power they wield, there will be no turning back. The people will have to engage in the messy details of democracy and learn the art of COMPROMISE. Coalitions will form with perhaps great agendas like bringing to the floors of the House and Senate a Vote to Disband the Federal Reserve. Once this happens the story will be in the news and the true battle wil begin.
      .
      I still believe in the United States of America. The Constitution and Declaration of Independence stand the test of 200+ years, and still they are a beacon to the world. Perhaps a Constitutional Convention can add or change a few things to make it more relevant. A Regional Party would have a platform to talk to the nation on some of the peoples ideas. How about banning lobbyists in Washington. No Super PACs etc. Allow all people who want to run for office a podium to debate. Regional TV must show the debates or lose their license.
      The possibilities are limited only by the peoples imagination.
      .
      ad iudicium

  4. Some Canadian says:

    What I took away from the debate was that Romney was just going all over the place spewing half-truths and lies in a supremely confident manner. And somehow, he’s proclaimed the winner. I wonder where this world has gone to.

    I am no fan of Obama either, but this is easily a media buzz to create a “close race” and it is so shamefully done because this is just plain obvious.

  5. solum temptare possumus says:

    Alas, I cannot add to Eric’s analysis. It is complete!
    .
    Like the Walrus and the Carpenter in Lewis Carroll’s “Through the Looking Glass”, I shed a bitter tear.
    .
    The Future is in regional third, fourth and maybe fifth parties; if the American people can ignore the main stream media and the talking heads inside the Beltway.
    .
    ad iudicium

  6. I, too, mourn the “death” of the ole’ GOP and had my fingers crossed for Dr Paul – the most sensible voice in North American politics.
    As a Canadian, I’ve voted Conservative from the time I could vote, but stopped doing so in our last two elections. Corporations have now completely taken over the political process. We in the West think we are “free”, but in reality, we are not much better off than those who live in other countries – the difference is our leashes are a little longer.

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