Browsing the blog archivesfor the day Monday, May 4th, 2015.


The Wrong Kind of Diversity

Republican Party

A guy who writes for Tucker Carlson’s Daily Caller e-rag tells the UK Telegraph that the GOP’s “diverse” range of candidates will help them against Her Presumptiveness, Hillary Clinton. See, the GOP has a woman, too, Carly Fiorina; Dr. Ben Carson, an actual Black Person; a couple of Hispanics, Cruz and Rubio, although Cruz pretends he isn’t Hispanic; and even a WASP, Jeb Bush, who pretends he is Hispanic. Plus there’s whatever Mike Huckabee is.

Conservatives can’t see past the surface of things and persist in assuming that people elected Barack Obama just for the novelty of the thing. I keep going back to the hearings to confirm Sonia Sotomayor as a Supreme Court justice, and how the Republican senators kept whining that Dem senators had blocked confirmation of a Hispanic Bush appointee, Miguel Estrada. The fact that Estrada’s resume was thin and his record, um, alarming shouldn’t have been an issue, according to Republicans. One Hispanic is just like another, apparently.

Let’s just say thank goodness there were enough Dems in the Senate to block that guajolote. And Sotomayor rocks.

Dr. Ben Carson has announced his presidential intentions, and the Daily Caller writer assumes that African Americans will be inspired to vote for him. It appears, however, that Dr. Carson has gone from being a black role model to a black embarrassment. Given his impressive background, his wingnut positions make me sincerely wonder if he’s suffering some kind of age-related dementia. See also Ben Carson can’t attract Blacks for GOP.

And I don’t see any particular reason why Carly Fiorina would attract feminist votes. Fiorina’s big accomplishment was running Hewlett-Packard into the ground. Whoop-dee-doo. Her positions on most issues reveal she’d likely run America into the ground as well. She wants to overturn Roe v. Wade, for pity’s sake, as well as Obamacare. She’s also against net neutrality (naturally) and wants to scuttle the peace deal being negotiated with Iran.

Wingnuts never figured out feminism. They whine because lefties don’t support right-wing women politicians. But feminism was never about just supporting women politicians because they are women politicians. “However often this fact is obscured, movement feminism is about systematic gains for women—that is, using politics to change structures that make women less free than men,” writes Elizabeth Stoker Bruenig. I have issues with HRC, but I don’t doubt that she’d fiercely respect women’s rights in the workplace and in reproductive choice. Would Fiorina? Not that I can see from her record. Plus, Fiorina has never held elected office.

Likewise, Marco Rubio isn’t necessarily a shoo-in among Latino voters. Rubio, as is Cruz, is Cuban-American, and no end of analysts are saying that Cuban-Americans and other Latinos in the U.S. are on very different planets, politically. See also:

“There’s too much animosity from the Republican Party toward the Latinos, and in order for that to change you can’t just run a Latino last name,” said Norma Ruiz Guerrero, founder of Memes Media, a New York political advertising firm that helps candidates craft their message to Latino voters. “His last name should be Smith, really,” she said of Rubio. “He’s not anything like the majority of Latinos in this country.”

Rubio has a negative net favorability rating among Latinos who voted in the 2014 midterm elections, according to a survey conducted by the polling firm Latino Decisions. Only 31 percent of Latino voters had a favorable view of the Florida senator, while 36 percent held an unfavorable opinion. About a third either had no opinion of Rubio or had never heard of him.

And what can one say about Ted Cruz, but this:

And that brings us to Mike Huckabee, who IMO personifies genuine evil these days. He’s running a campaign that could appeal only to extremist culture-warrior Christians. He quit a gig on Fox News to run, so he’s not doing this to audition. He is either so genuinely demented he thinks he has a shot, or he’s running to pull the Republican Party further to the Right. Which is also demented.

Walker is a Koch sock puppet. Trump is a joke everybody gets but him. Christie is sinking. Jindal, Perry, Santorum and Graham apparently have no support in the base. John Kasich could be the dark horse who moves up when everyone else flames out, so keep an eye on him.

What you don’t see in the GOP is a diversity of thinking. Media talk about these clowns as if there were serious policy differences among them, or speak of some as “moderates” and others as more “conservative,” but the truth is they’re all pretty much on the same page on any issue you can name. Taxes, Israel, civil liberty, “entitlement” spending, marriage equality, workplace equality, reproductive rights, immigration, etc. etc. etc. The differences among them could be shoved into a matchbox. The GOP hasn’t had an original idea in at least a generation; they’ve all been sputtering along on the same old talking points for almost 40 years.

Some diversity.

Also, too: Krugman, “Race, Class and Neglect.”

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