So Herman Cain is out; no surprise there. There is, I think, a moral to be drawn from his demise. Cain was a hit with Republican voters because of his relentless focus on the economy. He didn’t get personal in his attacks on the Obama administration, but focused on how to create jobs and spur economic growth. His 9-9-9 plan may or may not have been the best solution, but it was a creative and credible contribution to the debate.
That’s certainly one reason why SABR Matt and I were initially interested in Cain. I think, though, that his outsider status also had something to do with his meteoric rise. Speaking for myself, I’m sick of the GOP establishment, and I’m sick of the career politicians who people its ranks. They don’t keep their promises most of the time, and they have no cajones when it comes to the media.
Actually, with regards to the aforementioned establishment, my attitude right now can best be summed up this way:
YOU GUYS ARE WUSSES,
AND YOUR ESTABLISHMENT DESERVES TO DIE.
Harsh words, I know, but think about it: People have been cataloging the waste and duplication that exists at every level of the government for years, yet the GOP has utterly failed to tell the crybaby left to piss off and actually trim the fat. At best, it’s made tiny cuts with a pair of rusty kiddy scissors. At worst, it’s resorted to BS accounting tricks to maintain the mere appearance of fiscal responsibility. And here’s what even more galling: The GOP has allowed the Democrats and their shills in the mainstream media to maintain 100% control over how the debate in re: government spending is framed. It has allowed the Democrats’ blatant and craven appeals to emotion to win the day time and time again. And that makes me angry. That makes me very angry. As far as I’m concerned, whenever the Democrats cry “Think of the children!” the GOP should come back with a logical assault so devastating that the Democrats can only whimper impotently in response. To quote from Conan the Barbarian:
“Conan! What is best in life?”
“To crush your enemies, see them driven before you, and to hear the lamentation of their women.”
(Metaphorically, of course.)
But that’s enough ranting for now. Let’s get back to Hinderaker’s post (the entirety of which can be found here):
Whether the accusations were true or not (and it is hard to believe that there was no fire anywhere in all that smoke), Cain’s effectiveness as a candidate was destroyed.
What happened to Herman Cain is what the Democrats intend to do to whoever the Republican nominee turns out to be. They know they can’t win a debate on the economy or on President Obama’s record, so they will do everything they can to distract the voters’ attention from those matters, which should be decisive, and instead turn the focus to the GOP candidate and his or her alleged foibles. If Republican voters allow that to happen by nominating a candidate with baggage that permits the Democrats to turn him into the next Herman Cain, it is all too likely that President Obama will be re-elected, with consequences that can hardly be overestimated.
This is all true. My only question is, can we come up with a “baggage-free” candidate who is also capable of standing up to Obama and enduring the hurricane-force media headwinds? I worry, given the incompetence of the GOP, that we cannot. And that means our nation is hosed.