Raising Cain

Herman Cain is now the runaway frontrunner in the GOP field, leaving many in the Establishment to conclude, grumpily, that Mitt Romney is the inevitable nominee.

That says something about Republicans, doesn’t it?

So will the Establishment knives come out for Cain now, or will they let him ride the wave for awhile? And if the latter, how long will “awhile” be?

New Hampshire is threatening to move its primary to this December, and South Carolina, Florida, and Nevada are in January. That’s really not a lot of time. If Cain takes any two of those, it’s going to be harder to bump him off later. If he takes three, the GOP may have a runaway train on its hands that it cannot stop.

So I’m betting they knives will come out in the next few days; possibly as early as next week.

They may be hoping he will self-destruct as Perry has, but I’m guessing Cain possibly has one or two more working brain cells than Perry. You can say the same thing about shrubbery, of course. But just a little smarts goes a long, long way on the Right, as long as it’s not overdone.

Steve Kornacki provides reasons why Cain can’t win the nomination, but at least two of those — that he says stupid things and his policy proposals are ridiculous — is true of every candidate in America with an R after his name. I think he is less likely to stumble under the front-runner spotlight than Perry stumbled, as long as he continues to pretend racism is no longer a problem in America.

His being African American is part of his appeal, I’m sure. Righties have reached a point in their intellectual evolution at which they understand that racism is bad, even if they aren’t sure what it is. Today, “That he’s a black man who eagerly absolves the GOP’s Obama-era base of any suspicion of racial animus may have something to do with his appeal,” Kornacki writes.

Kornacki looks at Cain’s recent debate performance:

How would he have handled a sharp follow-up on, say, his claim that Alan Greenspan is a good model for a future Fed chairman? Or his claim that he has “secret” appointees in mind for key positions but that he won’t reveal their identities? Cain gives the impression that he has a few basic talking points but that he’s winging it otherwise. That’s a recipe for disaster.

It’s only a recipe for disaster if the bobbleheads on Faux and flapping mouths like Rush Limbaugh say it’s a disaster; otherwise, the baggers will be fine with it. They don’t understand any of it, so as long as they sense a general agreement that what Cain says is reasonable, then it’s reasonable. And from what I can tell from a Google search, Rush seems to like Cain.

Dougerhead writes,

I think Republicans like Cain because they feel have some idea of what he is talking about. Anytime anyone says something slightly specific that wingers like, Cain will say “that’s in my 999 plan”. When things get boring during the debates, he just starts yelling about his 999 plan. And it’s a simple, retro, un-focus-grouped name.

Cain doesn’t get drawn into discussions of HPV or QEII or Uz-beki-beki-stan-stan-stan or stuff his audience doesn’t understand. He doesn’t fall asleep on stage like Gingrich and Perry. He’s the only guy avoiding both of these traps, and that’s why he’s winning in a lot of polls.

All he has to do is (1) not say anything about racism, except that it isn’t a problem; and (2) give no hint that he might have a twinge of compassion for anybody who isn’t as wealthy as he is, and he could ride a big enough wave to get him through the early primaries. The Establishment has got to be nervous.

15 thoughts on “Raising Cain

  1. It would surprise me if Republicans voters weren’t confused.

    Maybe they like Cain because they think this “nice” old black man’s “9-9-9 Plan” is to sell them a 9 inch pizza with 9 toppings for 9 bucks?

    He will not be their Presidential candidate. But, to get that 27% to come out if Romney is their candidate, I can see a chance that he can be the VP candidate.
    After all, the “thinking” behind Palin in that spot was that she would siphon off women voters from Obama because of Hillary.
    Maybe Bill Kristol can convince Republicans that Cain will siphon off Black and Hispanic votes away from Obama?

    I still think if it’s Romney, Rubio’s his VP.
    Christie’s too “Liberal” for the knuckledraggers, as is pre-flip-flop-flip-flop-flip-flop-flippity-floppity Mitt, so they’ll want a real gibbering ‘moran’ as Mitt’s side-kick.
    Louis Gohmert?
    Nah, more likely Ryan, Walker, or Kasich.
    What’s really sad is that there is no shortage of true looney-tunes that they can find to be VP behind Mitt.

    I think what Cain really wants his own FOX News show, and that’s what he’s been auditioning for. In the meantime, he can make the racists feel inclusive.

  2. Re: working brain cells… have *you* ever wondered if you could make some money pretending to be a Republican? I’ve often wondered if it would really be as easy as it looks, assuming I didn’t have a conscience. Blame liberals for everything; never admit to being wrong; repeat the talking points du jour, and, if you’re going to disagree, try to find the “more crazy”statement as the real truth (“I agree that it was an impeachable offense for Obama to go after Libya, but since he was going to do so anyway, using such minimal force amounts to putting the US at risk, giving aid and comfort to Gaddafi! This is nothing less than treason!”)

    Alas, I *do* have a conscience, and I don’t think there’s that much money to be made via amateur punditry, but I still sometimes feel cheated, because I try to think of good, important things to say that people might want to read. That’s so much harder than what the right wing does.

  3. I was pretty close to Godfather’s when they got started, built up to some 1200 stores domestically, went public and eventually sold to Pillsbury, over some six or more years.

    A few of the executives from Pillsbury (Cain was one) then bought it from Pillsbury and promptly ran it into the ground.

    My few interactions with Cain left me thinking that this person is pretty naive and “full of himself”.

  4. It would be a hell of a thing if both parties nominated black men. I’ve gotten the impression before that the Republicans were sort of looking for their own Obama, like when they were trying to promote Bobby Jindal.

    Which is fine with me. Normally we see Democrats trying to beat Republicans by pretending to be Republicans. I don’t think the Republicans are going to have any more success trying to beat the real Obama with a fake one.

  5. Candide,
    That’s awesome! Frightening, but awesome!

    The older I get, the less I understand the human race.

  6. Candide, ‘The Landover Baptist Church” is a parody site put together by Miss Betty Bowers.
    Check out the gift shop. She has a bunch of real funny videos also.

  7. The key question is whether the evangelicals can support a presidential candidate who belongs to a ‘cult’. My gut says the scorched-earth philosophy of the Tea Party will prevail and they will run a Tea Party evangelical to deny Romney the White House and punish the GOP for not selecting a candidate anointed by Tea. If I am right, we will start to hear threats of a 3rd party Christian candidate if Romney wins.

  8. …have *you* ever wondered if you could make some money pretending to be a Republican?

    Steven Colbert does a pretty good job of it, and makes (I presume) tons of money, and has a blast doing so. But it’s a joke that everyone is in on. He’s not exactly undercover, although he says he’s told his (too young to understand) children that he’s a podiatrist.

    James O’Keefe likes to dress up, play-act, and infiltrate the opposition (us), but the meanness and lack of consciousness is no act.

    If you only hung around the sheep, you could easily pass yourself off as one of them, until they got to know you personally. To prevent that, you’d find yourself spouting a lot of stuff you didn’t believe in, mean stuff, simply as a way to reassure your fellow sheep you were one of them. The constant lying and putting on a front (which, if you think about it, is an energy-wasting activity required of anyone who has worked for a corporation they really didn’t believe in) would eventually wear you down.

    All of this low-level pretending is a pre-requisite to stepping out in front of the sheep and putting yourself in a position to take money from them. This requires a whole higher level of play-acting and con-artistry that I am unqualifed to even talk about.

    I believe Cain has this mastered to some degree. I’ve read an analysis of his 999 tax proposal (thanks Maha), which if any working person would make the effort to understand, would instantly doom Cain. But he has the amazing ability to sell sh$t sandwiches to the masses who believe him. At least for a little while, anyway.

  9. Doug, I think Romney will pair up with someone who has evangelical cred, to stave off the scenario you outlined. McCain tried it with Palin; Romney just needs to be a little more careful about who he picks.

  10. Well, one positive quality about Cain is that he’s not offensive aside from the fact of him being a repug. Bachmann makes my skin crawl every time she opens her mouth and belts out an “Obama’s failed blah blah blah”. And that’s because she doesn’t stand on a foundation of credibility or accomplishment from which to issue such lame accussations. She’s just an airhead and an opportunist who’s got no business even being in the race..

  11. Candide: Awesome, check out the “Staff” link and see the fun they are having at the “lighting of the cross” celebration. Classic. I think it comes under the it’s-funny-because-it’s-true category. I had to think a little to see if it might actually be a real site.

    To the topic at hand, Cain is much smarter than Perry, so is able to debate and articulate his crazy mucho bettero. With Rush coming out yesterday and claiming that Romney isn’t really conservative, I’d say that Cain has a legit shot. Wouldn’t that be something, two African Americans running for the presidency.

  12. Moonbat – you are suggesting a compromise where the Tea Party will ride in the back of the bus if the popular decision of the GOP makes Romney the nominee. Makes good sense but ‘compromise’ doesn’t play well in the Tea Party. As Romney consolidates his position before the primaries, I expect the threats to fracture the party if Romney prevails to be direct and loud. This will make it difficult for Romney to offer an olive branch – end even more difficult for any of the current Tea Party candidates to accept.

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