We’re ignoring the opening joke about a legal firm.
We can’t ignore the action of the past ten days taking place on the Republican Candidate Front.
Rick’s jump for safety, and solvency, came earlier than expected. Nothing he could do or say in 2015 overtook the impression he made in 2012. That single “oops!” sank his career. What it led us to was the impression that while he may have been a satisfactory Texas governor, held aloft by his legislature, he really didn’t have “the right stuff.” He looked terrific. He sounded fine. But he was, in fact, a “bear of very little brain” whose best friends, Eeyore and Christopher, couldn’t put him back together again. He himself broke the egg and fell shattered. At the conclusion of his last term, he had nowhere to go and nothing to do but pray. We’re all for devotion, but we also believe in action. He just didn’t do anything. He traveled not, neither did he spin. He met few foreign leaders, spent little time studying the world and its conditions. He seemed content to hunker at home, waiting to be called for his second chance in 2015. That was a mistake.
As for Scott, he really wasn’t smart. With a biography that leaned heavily on being able to take advantage of social welfare as a child and student, what perversity made him seek to wipe unions off the face of Wisconsin’s map? What, after all, is Medicare but the union of people who need the same thing: healthcare, and who, as a unit, can in fact get it. Unions were born in Wisconsin and made it largely as successful as it ever was. That Scott was able to withstand a recall came less from the good will of his citizens than the deep pockets of his out-of-state pals. Better yet, Scott was the fair-haired child of the Koch brothers. That he didn’t know up from down even with their millions certainly wasn’t their fault. It was, however, a view into the interior of their minds: the idea that they could, together or separately, take a handful of clay and mold it into something that could withstand the fire of the ovens, coming out glazed and shiny and ready to be either decorative or seriously artistic caused the artists to drop the scalding piece of earth and step on it in disgust. Scott seemed to think he could pick up what he needed to know after he was elected. The Koch boys dropped him flat.
But it was Carly who was the big surprise of the debating week.
Her appearance at the first undercard made waves, but her second caused a tsunami. Here was an articulate woman, able too obviously to think on her feet, able to defend herself (whether or not her facts were accurate), and whose drive put the ambitions of the boys around her to shame.
Then, without warning, Carly decided she needed to play real politics. She swallowed whole the entire Republican anti-Planned Parenthood diatribe and went even further, drawing from her own imagination a scenario of a child on an examining table, his body parts ready to be auctioned off.
This was a scurrilous lie. Worse, no one caught her up in it, neither the press at the scene nor the men standing on either side. No one mentioned that the tapes being discussed had been doctored and edited to make a horrendous and vicious point. Her regurgitation of the Republican brief against Planned Parenthood was a lie from the beginning. And it will haunt her horribly. Middle-class and poor women who do know about the work of Planned Parenthood will neither forget nor forgive Carly for pandering to a male Republican base. What elegance she may once have had, the brain power and the determination to elevate herself rather than the country at large will not soon disappear.
The week’s tally: two men who didn’t lift a finger to prepare for the heaviest job in the world, and one woman who overshot the runway screeching into the big time.
Who knows what October will bring?