Τρίτη, 2 Φεβρουαρίου 2016

Iowa










There is a lot I like about the Republican party. I agree government should be small, it should stick to the Federal level, international affairs and defense looking outward from our borders, not inward (some Republicans may overlook the difference on that last one). It should best act as the coordinator and symbol of the Union, the Supreme Court being the constitution-interpreting crown jewel and the Fed the great facilitator. It should stay out of State affairs, stay out of our pockets and leave our personal freedoms alone, except when we arbitrarily take liberties.

In fact the only thing I disagree with, when it comes to Libertarians for instance, is that they leave the safety net for the weak to be provided at will by those who might choose to do so, and afford it. Not very wise, leaving the foundation and health of the labor force to the magnanimity of the rich. Point of order: Libertarianism is not to the right of the Republican camp. It is somewhere above the spectrum. Just as socialism is not the left of the Democrats but somewhere below; you see, the spectrum, me thinks, is not a one-dimensional line but a two-dimensional circle with North, South, East and West. Libertarians being the North, Socialists the South, Democrats the West and Republicans the East.

So, yes, on the whole I am drawn to Republican philosophy and it is only that lack of a constitutionalized State-as-well-as-Federal safety net for the weak that keeps me the hell away from, say, Libertarianism. As for the true-right-wing of the Republicans, the Tea Party, well… as far as I am concerned they can go make themselves some Mussolini-brand tea and let the rest of us get on with the business of being Americans.

And yet, I am a staunch, dyed-in-the-wool registered Democrat. I guess that’s because on one hand, every social progress ever achieved in America was accomplished under a Democratic leadership –Reagan was the exception, not the rule for the Republicans (and the benefits our society might have reaped from his tenure are debatable), and, on the other hand there’s hardly a choice seeing that the Republican party no longer exists, or, rather, it has lapsed into a state of delusion and fanaticism. To be a Republican these days you have to hate gays, you have to refuse women the right to choose, you need to count how many times somebody goes to a Christian church (and not look to them very kindly if they go to some old-world Christian church)… You need to doubt science, celebrate ignorance, cringe at the idea of evolution, and pander to the Evangelicals shrouding one’s self in xenophobia and isolationism. Not my cup of tea.

We need to stop expecting the next front-runner to be another Ronald Reagan or another Bill Clinton. Their kind comes around once every a very blue moon and most of the time, like right now, we’re stuck with who we got. We got Clinton’s ambitious, secretive wife, who we wish was the power behind the throne in the 90ies and will bring Camelot-Next-Gen back, and we got a slimy Texan and a kid from Miami, not forgetting old-man-socialism who would try to turn America into everything it is not.

Whether Iowa and New Hampshire are representative of the State of the Union these days is debatable, but they are seen as such, so there you go. Trump came a distinct second to Cruz, a “loser” by his former rhetoric, “honored“ if judging by today’s turn of phrase. Cruz painted, for the next few days at least, the image of a Republican body still awake enough to be scared of Trump, but with no choice other than to go fringe. Hillary was given her wake-up call in a dead-heat with Bernie –but Bernie knows his all-but-victorious show was nothing more than a good-will gesture, a pat on the back, before he goes the way of the Dodo.

Looks like Cruz or Hillary in November. The Game will be called in the last seconds by those Republicans who might be too informed to vote for Cruz and will find the strength to shut their eyes in disdain and vote for Hillary to save the Union from an adventure with far-reaching ramifications. It's gonna be a close call with no true-blue choice but plenty of compromise.






Dateline Iowa: Shoeless Joe ain't gonna walk out of the corn. Not this time.









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