Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Rick Perry is Unimpressive

Or perhaps he is simply made to sound that way by this brief interview posted at the Times.  Editors, of course, have the power to make an interview subject sound foolish simply by leaving in, unedited, his or her "ums" and "ahs."  So it is technically possible that Perry has some worthwhile ideas and expresses them clearly.  That is not, however, the impression he has given in the Republican debates, nor is it the impression one takes away from this interview.

On the contrary, Perry sounds desperate.  He is trying to steal some of Herman Cain's thunder by flogging a flat tax -- or, if you will, a massive tax break for the wealthy.  When goaded by the interviewer, he takes an obligatory swipe at Mitt Romney ("a fat cat" -- seriously, is it 1969 again already?).

But the most ludicrous exchange is certainly this one:

Q: Why did you choose to keep the birther issue alive?.
A: It’s a good issue to keep alive. You know, Donald [Trump] has got to have some fun. It’s fun to poke him a little bit and say “Hey, let’s see your grades and your birth certificate.” I don’t have a clue about where the president — and what this birth certificate says. But it’s also a great distraction. I’m not distracted by it.

Um .... what?  Apparently it's fun to "poke" the President rather than engage in substantive policy discussion; we understand that idea, even if we do not sympathize.  But "it's a good issue" about which he claims to have no clue?  It's "a distraction" by which he claims not to be distracted?  What do those sentences even pretend to mean?

The answer, of course, is nothing, in the sense of grammar and logic.  But, between the lines, they say something very clearly:  "I, Rick Perry, am a desperate man, willing to pander to any possible constituency, no matter how intellectually and morally irresponsible.  Please elect me, please please please."


PS (PSanafter-thought) said...

You nailed it.

And I guess people are watching the debates for sport, since the Repubs apparently eat their young. Sort of like the viewing was in the ancient Roman Colosseum. I get sick of just hearing about it.

I've never been gung ho rah rah for a certain candidate or party. We really need a healthy opposition to have a healthy democracy. But the candidates out there for the Repubs are pushing me more and more to want to say NEVER when asked if I would consider voting for a Republican.

What ever happened to caring, informed people suggesting that some certain qualified person run for President, rather than someone with an ego putting him(her)self forward? Maybe there are too many people with skeletons in their closets.

Father Anonymous said...

I am actually beginning to like Romney. He is currently pandering to the right, but the very things they keep picking on -- health care, most notably -- are the sort of non-ideological good-government things I admire. He strikes me as the sort of old-style Republican I grew up with -- rich people with a sense of civic duty.

If I could only be convinced he would govern like one of his own kind ....

Anonymous said...

Noblesse oblige? Paternalism?

Father Anonymous said...

You say those words like they're bad things. Frankly, I'll take an already-rich guy with public spirit over an up-and-comer trying to line his pockets any day.

Not that those are the only choices available, by any stretch of the imagination, but they both exist.

Noblesse oblige brought us both Roosevelts and Nelson Rockefeller, not to mention a number of the Founders. We could do worse.