I did it. I survived watching what sounds like it could be the lead in for a joke - eight Republicans walk into a presidential library...
I could have used some Valium, or alcohol...or Valium and alcohol, but alas I had neither, and so I was forced to listen to eight Republican contenders for their party's nomination for president mix it up for just shy of two hours whilst being stone cold sober. It wasn't pretty. If one was looking for levity, there was none to be found, not that there weren't a couple of attempts at it. But let's face it, there is nothing funny about Republicans, at least not this crop of them.
No, instead we heard words like failure, and crisis with unadulterated disdain for our current president, the likes of which were simultaneously dismissive and disturbing. We heard words of doom, gloom, and defeat, but what we did not hear was a plan on how to fix anything - except from the pizza guy (Herman Cain) who gave us his 9/9/9 plan, which I'm sure was derivative of an offer that previously included mushrooms and anchovies instead of taxes.
Mitt Romney proudly offered proof that he was qualified to fix things because he came up with 59 ways in which to do it. What he didn't offer was an explanation of any one of those 59 steps toward economic recovery. But Mitt looked splendid to me compared to the craziest of the crazy, a distinction previously held by Michele Bachmann. But last night, the award went to Rick Perry, a man who prefers we be uneducated, uninsured, and minus Social Security. Yes, Social Security, according to the man who has had 234 people executed in his state, is a Ponzi scheme. And though their words were not nearly as extreme as Perry's, rest assured the rest of the lot would dismantle Social Security and Medicare just as soon as they could get their rich little hands on it to do so.
I would love to go into great detail about the subtle differences between candidates, but my eyes glazed over when Michele Bachmann spoke, and I might have actually dozed through the few seconds allotted Rick Santorum. Ron Paul, bless his heart, is so anti-government that I'm not quite sure why he thinks there should even be a president, let alone why it should be him. Jon Huntsman, for my money, not only had a tan that rivals John Boehner's, but he actually seemed the most qualified, having been an ambassador to China and a governor. He also scored the biggest points of the night for me by actually citing where he got his statistics from. I'm convinced that the others just made up numbers to try to persuade us that they knew things that, minus the source of their numbers, we could never confirm.
It was clear from the moderators that the media considers the two front runners to be Romney and Perry. Romney came across the most self assured and (gulp) presidential, if I could use that term loosely. Perry...well, I'm fairly certain that he was armed and more than certain that he is dangerous. We should all be very afraid of him. He makes Newt Gingrich look centrist.
Yes, the games have begun, and those of us who have been disillusioned must cast that aside, suck it up, and go with our guy. There is no youthful enthusiasm this go around for us, but it's time we act like the responsible adults we are and "dance with the one who brung us."
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