Thursday, February 19, 2015


At The New Yorker, Amy Davidson parses Rudy Giuliani's McCarthyite smear of President Obama. She sees racism. I see something else as well:
“I do not believe, and I know this is a horrible thing to say, but I do not believe that the President loves America,” Giuliani said at an event for Scott Walker, in Manhattan, according to Politico’s Darren Samuelsohn. “He doesn’t love you. And he doesn’t love me.”

We know the weight of the “me” in there -- with Giuliani, it is always, in the end, about Giuliani.... But who is this “you” whom Obama also doesn’t love? Giuliani was speaking to, as Politico put it, “60 right-leaning business executives and conservative media types.” The President was less loving than all of them, Giuliani said, because, “He wasn’t brought up the way you were brought up and I was brought up through love of this country.”

What faces did Giuliani see -- or fail to see -- at the event that made him so sure of that assessment? ... was Giuliani just suggesting to the audience that there was something different about Obama? And what might that be?
Yes, I'm sure the crowd was full of native-born white guys who are the sons of native-born white guys -- but it's also significant that these are very rich people. This may be about race, but it's also, once again, about respect for the rich. Giuliani has it, in abundance. Obama? "He doesn't love you." And what could be worse than that? What could be a surer sign of Obama's disdain for America than the fat that he doesn't love these fat cats?

Meanwhile, at New York magazine, Jonathan Chait reminds us what was really significant about this gathering. It concerns the guy who was actually the main focus of the event. This was
Scott Walker’s semi-public confab with the leading lights, such as they are, of supply-side economics. Last night, the Wisconsin governor attended a dinner in New York hosted by Stephen Moore, Arthur Laffer, and Lawrence Kudlow. This is a strong indication of the policy leanings of a candidate who probably stands as strong a chance as anybody of capturing the nomination.
As Chait notes, a number of Republican presidential wannabes are flirting with reform-conservative ideas -- they want to seem like defenders of the 99%.
This has left a gaping void for a Republican candidate to defend the party’s traditional (and still-reigning) dogma. Plenty of candidates can and will do that -- Bobby Jindal, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Rick Perry -- but Walker is the candidate with the strongest standing. A twice-elected blue state governor who smashed his state’s public employee unions, Walker has mainstream electoral plausibility....

The supply-side ideology of Moore, Kudlow, and Laffer is a form of Reagan cultism. Supply-siders consider Reagan’s tax cuts a towering achievement, responsible for all the positive events (and none of the negative events) that have followed. They believe that cutting the top tax rate always ushers in massive prosperity, and that raising it dooms the economy to stagnation.
Maybe you believe that Bush or Rubio or Paul, if elected president, would leaven the usual GOP dogma with a little compassion -- I'm skeptical, but I suppose it's possible. Chait's point is that President Walker wouldn't. He's going to dispense Reaganism straight, no chaser. And if you think Jeb's a lock for the nomination because, like Romney, he's favored by the serious money boys and his challengers aren't, well, Walker is working very hard on currying the favor of the seriously moneyed.

Oh, and on the subject of Wslker's fealty to Reagan, Chait notes this:
Walker is also an ideal candidate to carry the banner of traditional Republicanism, having been married on Ronald Reagan’s birthday, and celebrating the occasion annually with a meal of the Gipper’s favorite foods, like macaroni-and-cheese casserole and red, white, and blue jelly beans.
Yikes. We simply cannot let this man be elected president.


mlbxxxxxx said...

Yeah, Walker is the real McCoy. Fortunately, he's not the establishment's guy. Yet. He does seem to have the inside track on the Koch cash which makes him formidable. He's got some problems, though. For one, his state's budget is fucked. It's going to be hard to run as the savior of the economy, since righties think the economy is just terrible, with his record.

I'm still betting on the establishment coming on strong for Jeb. It is certainly my fervent desire as the likely alternative is Walker and, as you say, he cannot be allowed to be president.

Jeb, however, needs to up his game. He's kind of slacking. May have a lazy streak; maybe thinks he's entitled. He's got some real competition with Walker and at least a couple of others. I hope he doesn't think it's going to be handed to him on a silver platter. Cause it ain't.

Ten Bears said...


Victor said...

No Vaseline for the anal-penetration for the rest of us - just straight broken glass, metal shards, and sand and small stones!