Newt Gingrich Is No Conservative

Republicans will have to look elsewhere for an anti-Romney candidate.

Editor's Note: This column is reprinted with permission of the Washington Examiner. Click here to read it at that site.

Has it really come to this? Newt Gingrich as the conservative alternative to Mitt Romney? That's what many in the punditocracy have proclaimed as the former speaker of the House has surged recently in the polls.

Yet a look at his record reveals that Newt is hardly the "anti-Mitt"—he's Mitt Romney with more baggage and bolder hand gestures.

Every Gingrich profile proclaims that he's a dazzling "ideas man," a "one-man think tank." It seems that, if you clamor long enough about "big ideas," people become convinced you actually have them.

But most of Gingrich's policy ideas over the last decade have been tepidly conventional and consistent with the Big Government, Beltway Consensus.

Gingrich's campaign nearly imploded this summer when he dismissed Rep. Paul Ryan's, R-Wis., Medicare reform plan as "right-wing social engineering." But that gaffe was a window into Gingrich's irresponsible approach toward entitlements.

In 2003, Gingrich stumped hard for President George W. Bush's prescription drug bill, which has added about $17 trillion to Medicare's unfunded liabilities. "Every conservative member of Congress should vote for this Medicare bill," Newt urged.

And in his 2008 book Real Change, he endorsed an individual mandate for health insurance.

In a 2006 piece for Human Events, Gingrich offered House Republicans "11 Ways to Say: 'We're Not Nancy Pelosi.'" Point seven proposed a Solyndra-on-steroids industrial policy devoted to "developing more clean coal solutions, investing in a conversion to a hydrogen economy" and more. It's not clear why the former madame speaker would complain.

It's also unclear why anybody looking to distance himself from Pelosi would plop down on a love seat with her to call for government action on climate change—as Gingrich did in a 2008 television commercial.

It was a season of bipartisan chumminess for Newt. "Kerry and Gingrich Hugging Trees—and (Almost) Each Other," is how the Washington Post described a 2007 global warming event Gingrich headlined with Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass.

On foreign affairs, Gingrich's ideas are a little less conventional, but his apocalyptic saber rattling hardly instills confidence. "We need a calm, reasoned dialogue about the genuine possibility of a second Holocaust," he told an American Enterprise Institute audience in 2007.

In 2009, he proposed zapping a North Korean missile site with laser weapons. ("Beam me up, Mr. Speaker!" as former Rep. James Traficant, D-Ohio, used to say in the '90s.)

There's no denying that Newt is smart, but there's a zany, Cliff Clavin aspect to his intellect. At times, Gingrich, who's written more than 150 book reviews on Amazon.com, sounds like a guy who read way too much during a long prison stretch.

The former speaker's immense self-regard is evident in one of the exhibits to a 1997 House Ethics Committee report on him. In a handwritten 1992 note to himself, he wrote: "Gingrich—primary mission, Advocate of civilization, definer of civilization, Teacher of the rules of civilization, arouser of those who fan civilization,...leader (possibly) of the civilizing forces." Whew!

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  • o3||

    nancy's longer no doupt

  • o3||

    derp

  • Lester Hunt||

    Newt also thinks that a suspected terrorist is not longer just a suspect if his assassin's lawyers say he's not.

  • Gojira||

    Entire article is irrelevant. I have been reliably assured by many commentators that not voting for the GOP nominee, no matter who it is, is a vote for Obama, therefore even though we're not republicans (tm) we should just vote straight-ticket GOP all the time anyway since it's the "lesser of two evils".

  • ||

    There's some problem with the LP being certified in Florida (I keep getting e-mails about it). If that actually holds true in the general, I'll probably end up voting GOP then, even if it isn't Paul.

  • libtoidz||

    and just dont caall me a republican...evah

  • ||

    The GOP path to disaster is slightly slower than the Democratic one, and it's just barely possible that they're willing to do something dramatic to reduce the scope of government--something the Democrats will never do as currently configured. If we still had a Democratic Congress and president, we'd be Wile E. Coyote, walking on air, fifty feet past the edge of the cliff. In fact, that's about the situation we're in now, only we may be close enough to the edge to cling on.

  • Joe M||

    In fact, that's about the situation we're in now, only we may be close enough to the edge to cling on.

    You're an incorrigible optimist.

  • ||

    It's funny, but these days that's what passes for optimism.

  • Realist||

    Newt is a god damn warmonger.

  • k2000k||

    If Paul or Johnson is not on the ticket then I will simply write in their names on the ballot. I'm not going to waste my vote for a white obama/not black bush.

  • ||

    +1. I did this in 2008 and still feel good about it.

    Verifiable action to restrain government, or no action at all. Wimps and posers, leave the hall!

  • Realist||

    Exactly

  • wareagle||

    so your principled stance includes another Obama term which, by any definition, would be worse than any of hte Repub contenders. How is that helpful, exactly?

  • Zeb||

    You really think it matters who you vote for?

  • Hank||

    This. In terms of "making a difference", putting up a yard sign does far more for your preferred candidate than voting.

    If you hold your nose to vote, but didn't spend even a nominal amount of time, money, or effort working for a candidate you actually support, then you are part of the problem.

  • Zeb||

    And in any case, a vote against Obama is still a vote against Obama. I will never again vote for someone just because I am against the other guy. As long as the only "serious" options are the two parties we have today, we are fucked.

  • Robert||

    That's all it ever can be in any democracy. The choice always has to be some kind of compromise.

  • ||

    ""so your principled stance includes another Obama term which, by any definition, would be worse than any of hte Repub contenders""

    Not necessarily true. If the republicans keep the house and take the senate, then another Obama term would be good. It's not good when one party holds 2/3 of government. R or D.

  • Realist||

    Wareagle...you can always vote for Paul!

  • Apatheist||

    There is no stituation in which I would vote for Romney.

  • ||

    I believe Tulpa has assured us that Romney is the man to vote for since he's not Obama because he's white. Or something like that. In any case, I have been assured that I must use my statistically insignificant vote to vote for a person I despise, as long as that person is a Republican.

    HitAndRunpublicans, unite!

  • Gojira||

    An astonishing number of H&R regulars seem to believe, like leftists, that only intentions matter.

    Sure I voted for the big-gov't statist GOP guy...but I actually mostly don't agree with him! And I'll tell you so...ON THE INTERNET!!!

    Newsflash: regardless of how little you may be down with them, a vote for one of them is sending exactly the same message as if you were an entheusiastic supporter. The vote doesn't count for less just because you have closet reservations.

  • ||

    At the end of the day, TEAM RED members are going to pull the lever for TEAM RED. It's how they work.

  • Hank||

    No True Scotsman would vote for Obama anyway.

  • T||

    Well, duh. He's not on the ballot in Scotland.

  • mostinterestingmanintheworld||

    drink

  • free2booze||

    Newt is as much of a planner, and big government lover as Obama. What makes Newt scarier than Obama, is that Newt would have also enjoy a Republican House of Representatives, and possibly Senate, that would be able to pass his agenda.

    A President Newt means the end of anything resembling limited government, for a generation, and will only make the left stronger in future elections.

    If Newt is the GOP nominee, my vote will be for gridlock. GOP for congress, Obama for President.

  • robc||

    You in one of those weird states where

    a: no 3rd parties make the ballot
    and
    2: 1 vote matters?

  • free2booze||

    That's a good point. My state does have third parties on the ballot. I have even voted third party before, but mostly for state and local races.

    It is something I will give more thought to as the election draws closer. Right now, I'm trying to remain mentally checked out from politics, at least for a few more months. Instead, I'm thinking about turning my attention to NASCAR, where going around in circles is considered a good thing.

  • ||

    One reason to vote 3d party is that it can help them with ballot access down the road.

    Just sayin'.

  • Joe M||

    It's like that old anti-drug commercial about cocaine. "I vote third party, so they can stay on the ballot, so I can... vote third party."

  • Tony||

    But in what possible way is the GOP the lesser of two evils? The only subject I can think of is if you care that much about tax rates for millionaires+. On deficits, they are all talk but by far the worse offenders. On civil liberties, they made torture and a denial of due process official policy. And they got thousands of American soldiers killed over invisible WMD. Lesser of two evils? Only if your assessment of the Dems was provided you by talk radio propaganda.

  • shorter Tony||

    Yay, Team Blue! Boo, Team Red!

  • Tony||

    shorter libertarians: I'm a misanthropic utopian, but please take me seriously!

  • shorter Tony||

    derp!

  • ||

    It's funny how they pretend there is a difference between the two TEAMs. By funny I mean fucking retarded.

  • shorter Tony||

    There ARE differences: one is RED and one is BLUE! Duh!

  • ||

    "You're black on one side and white on the other."

    "I am black on the right side."

    "I fail to see the significant difference."

    "Lokai is white on the right side. All of his people are white on the right side."

  • ||

    McCoy then pumps Kirk's arm with Rigellian space-trucker speed.

  • ­||

    They're all pink on the inside.

  • Tony||

    It would be a staggering coincidence if there were no difference considering they believe in opposite things on most issues.

  • shorter Tony||

    By funny I mean fucking retarded.

    DERP!

  • Tony||

    Which is to say, the nauseatingly pervasive false equivalence of the parties that stands for cleverness among people who seriously overestimate their own intelligence is an intellectual crime that implicitly forgives the Republican party for the people it has killed and tortured, because, since you're above it all and hate all government, that's exactly as bad as a health insurance mandate. A person who actively supports torture and the empty death of thousands resulting from childish anti-intellectual dogmatic fantasies is at least honest. What kind of person supports torture and mass death because he likes the perpetrator's words (but not actions) on fiscal policy?

  • WTF||

    What kind of person supports torture and mass death because he likes the perpetrator's words

    Apparently you do, Toni, since you think Obama's extra-judicial assassinations and illegal wars in Libya and Uganda are just peachy.

  • Joe M||

    Okay, I'll bite. Explain a significant difference between:

    1) Bush and Obama foreign policy
    2) Bush and Obama budget policy
    3) Bush and Obama health care policy
    4) Bush and Obama drug policy
    5) Bush and Obama Gitmo policy
    6) Bush and Obama War on Terror policy
    7) Bush and Obama civil liberties policy

  • wareagle||

    joe,
    your list might make sense if Bush were running against Obama. But he's not. Where it falls short is that, in practically each case, Obama blasted Bush policy and vowed to change it, not perpetuate and even enhance it. So the difference, in a sense, is: the Repub told you what he was for and did that; the Dem told you what he was against, but lied.

  • ||

    ""So the difference, in a sense, is: the Repub told you what he was for and did that""

    Perhaps you need to review Bush's 2000 campaign. Bush ran on a limited, responsible federal government. Yet we got the P.A.T.R.I.O.T. Act, and Medicare part D.

  • Tony||

    1) Obama didn't start a war based on lies and get 4000 Americans and countless Iraqis killed for no reason.
    2) Obama pays for things.
    3) Obama pays for it and isn't just interested in giving the drug industry a welfare check.
    4) Nothing significant.
    5) Bush used gitmo to place political prisoners outside of the law and torture them. Obama wants to close it, but that has been prevented by Congress.
    6) Obama got bin Laden; Bush attacked Iraq over invisible WMD.
    7) Obama stopped torture as a policy.

  • ||

    Except, Tony, as a practical matter, it's not just on fiscal policy that I'm likely to have my personal interests undermined. And you folks in Team Blue are much more likely to be the underminers:
    * It's pricks like you, not the Republicans, who put a million and one roadblocks up should I want a gun.
    * It's pricks like you, not the Republicans, who have instituted college speech codes.
    * It's pricks like you, not the Republicans, who keep talking about bringing back the draft in the name of equity or making military action less popular.
    * It's pricks like you, not the Republicans, who want to bring back the Fairness Doctrine to silence your political opposition.
    * It's pricks like you, not the Republicans, who tell me I'm not allowed to light a cigarette in a bar.
    * It's pricks like you, not the Republicans, who tell me I've got to sort my garbage.
    * It's pricks like you, not the Republicans, who want to tell me whether or not I'm "allowed" to drive and SUV.
    * It's pricks like you, not the Republicans, who tell my nieces or nephews that they can't get a toy in their Happy Meal.
    So, yeah, asshole, maybe we should cut the false equivalence. The Republicans are eager to kill a bunch of people in some third world shithole. As Joe M and many others have pointed out, you pricks are delighted to go right on killing. But, on top of that, your near hard to impose a million little indignities on my daily life that your stereotyped right-wing preacher wouldn't have the imagination to concoct.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Then, address the analysis of Gingrich in the article, and explain what the difference is.

  • Realist||

    Yes, they are both full of shit on everything....how do they do it?

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Republicans are not less bad than democrats. I will not be voting for either. (Paul and Johnson are not republicans)

  • Hank||

    Nor are they True Scotsmen!

  • Robert||

    What possible way? It was a party line vote against Obamacare.

  • Brett L||

    As a rule, I vote against the incumbent no matter what the relative party affiliations are. I think the last time I broke my rule was when Katharine Harris ran against Bill Nelson. Senator Spacecadet was the less crazy (by a lot!) option.

  • Lord Humungus||

    well, there is the Supreme Court. More statists or more er, semi-statists.

  • Zeb||

    "not voting for the GOP nominee, no matter who it is, is a vote for Obama"

    God, I hate that crap. For one thing, even if you assume that the only real vote is for D or R, the math is wrong. It is 1/2 vote for Obama if you vote third party or write in. And that assumes that you would have voted for the Republican otherwise, which is a big assumption.
    Everyone should vote for whoever they think is the best candidate. Strategic voting is stupid.

  • Stormtrooper||

    And that thinking is why things will never change.

  • ||

    I don't think Newt is a RINO as much as he is kind of a nut. He seems in dire need of ADD medicine. If you look hard enough, you could probably find him advocating for virtually any side of an issue. He is just constantly thinking and coming up with ideas. And that is not a good thing.

  • robc||

    He is just constantly thinking and coming up with ideas. And that is not a good thing.

    Disagree. That is a good thing as long as you are just playing with ideas and dont go about trying to implement them.

  • Realist||

    Then what the fuck is the point? Newt is not very bright.

  • free2booze||

    Newt is a central planner. Enough said.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    I am someone who is constantly thinking and scheming about shit. I do not recognize Gingrich as being intelligent at all.

  • Robert||

    He seems in dire need of attention deficit disorder medicine.

  • robc||

    Shorter answer (I didnt read article): Because Newt is a fucking leftist.

  • ||

    He isn't coherent enough to be a leftist. Of all the candidates he is the most unpredictable. And probably the most dangerous if ever put in office.

  • robc||

    Leftists are incoherent too. He fits right in.

  • ||

    Didn't Newcular Titties once say his favorite president was FDR? Or am I libeling him?

  • ||

    Who knows. He probably did and then said it was Coolidge after he came out of his manic phase.

  • ||

    Newt is rectal?!?

  • ||

    It is a distinct possibility. If I am not mistaken Newt is always flacking bad fiction he has written.

    Coincidence?

  • ­||

    Oh, come on! The rebs winning Gettysburg? That shit is gold!

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Coherence? Where do you see any coherence?

  • Realist||

    Newt is as stupid as McCain, maybe not as crazy.

  • AlmightyJB||

    I agree Newt's a leftist. He's like McCain in that he loves being the center of the media's attention. That's not gonna happen espousing conservative ideas. Up until this point I had figured him further out of the race than Paul. As far as conservatives go, they really only have two possiblilities, Bachman and Santorum. Bachman seemss to be the lesser of those two evils. If they could ignore the socon agenda as Rush has suggested, and dropped their neocon agenda, as many have started to do, than I don't see why they shouldn't vote for the best candidate running which is of course Paul. I don't see Jonhson as a factor since he can't get any visibility.

  • ||

    Newt's a centrist (global warming, Medicare Part D) who embraces the absolute worst ideas of conservatism (Birtherism, sabre-rattling hawk stupidity, "mandatory executions for drug users" [in 1995], gay marriage as "aberration"). His only decent policy areas imho are comprehensive immigration reform and Obamacare (I'll give credit for welfare reform too).

    Add to his lack of libertarian stances his lack of character, and we have another awful candidate. In no way shape or form could I vote for just about any of the Republicans besides Johnson and Paul.

  • Realist||

    No one is further out of the race than Paul. The right wing warmongers will not tolerate him period.

  • ||

    It's been a long time since I voted "for" a presidential candidate. If Ron Paul is not at the top of the ticket for the R's - I'll be voting for the lesser of two evils....again.

    BTW... I'm in a toss-up state (OHIO) so I can't use an excuse like my vote doesn't matter.

  • robc||

    Im sure Ohio has more than two evils on the ballot. Vote for the lesser of six.

  • OhioOrrin||

    actually one less now that we've flushed issue 2

  • AlmightyJB||

    You good thing you idiots voted down issue two so you can protect teachers like this from getting fired:

    http://www2.nbc4i.com/news/201.....ar-829807/

  • robc||

    2008: 262,224
    2004: 118,601
    2000: 165,019

    I can go further back if you need me to...that is the vote difference in Ohio between 1st and 2nd. Your vote didnt matter a damn bit.

  • robc||

    I checked back to 1900. Ohio has had 3 close races, the 2nd and 3rd (1976, 1944) where 11k votes different. In 1948, it was only 7107. So guess what, one vote still didnt matter a bit.

    Also, in 1964, Goldwater lost Ohio by more than 1 million votes. So fuck Ohio.

  • ||

    That's how I always look at voting. With a couple exceptions, your presidential vote doesn't count unless you vote for the winner of your state. Even then, it doesn't matter unless it came down to your tiebreaking vote. So why settle for evil? Writing in someone is not throwing away a vote any more than voting for any other candidate.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Its almost appears as if there was an entire group of people who didn't give a shit about voting until they suddenly decided to for some reason.

  • Zeb||

    Those are differential numbers, so there is no information to be gleaned about how many people voted in any election.

  • ||

    "Your vote didnt matter a damn bit."

    I've never understood this mentality. Isn't 262,224 made up of a whole bunch of ones?

  • ||

    What do you think the odds are that Ohio ends up in a tie minus your vote?

  • Lord Humungus||

    wait, wasn't this idea made into a really shitty movie?

  • Joe M||

    Yes. Let's never speak of it again.

  • free2booze||

    What about the lesser of three evils? Divided government equals gridlock.

  • ||

    Thus why an Obama reelection might actually be preferable to Romney/Gingrich with a GOP Congress.

  • k2000k||

    then use the write in on the ballot. I mean it is highly, highly unlikely but if enough people did so then its concievable someone else would win. Either way I just don't see the point in voting someone based off party when there is fundementally no difference between the two.

  • free2booze||

    Even if "someone else" didn't win, if he/she got enough support to make a statistical difference, it would encourage more people to work outside of the two party system in future elections.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    There is no lesser of evils. Your vote doesn't matter. Vote or write in for who you want, or don't vote. If Obama gets four or more years, that's just more napalm in the (my) garage. The sooner we get the collapse out of the way, the better.

  • Arcaster||

    Exactly. Let's get this shit over with.

  • ||

    Newt Gingrich is No Conservative

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RFZrzg62Zj0

  • free2booze||

    Are those girls in the background, Newt's ex-wives, or his mistresses?

  • ||

    I think heller has summed it up quite nicely.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    "Conservative", and the modern misuse of "liberal", are ambiguous terms.

  • Richard Head||

    ^^^ this ^^^

    Any 'ideology' is a crutch

  • Colin||

    He's leading right now by default.

    Everyone else is even worse.

  • ||

    So who the hell is the Conservative alternative to Mittens? I don't think Ron Paul has a chance. Jindal, Daniels, etc.. are sitting this one out.

  • ||

    There isn't one. That is why the race is so fucked up. The fact that Romney isn't 25 points up shows what a horrible candidate he is. All these people are getting traction because people are desparate to vote for anyone but Romney.

  • robc||

    Paul is the conservative alternative. I think he is the only one in the race.

  • ||

    I'm pretty desperate to vote for somebody other than Romney.

  • kinnath||

    I still have about 7 weeks to maintain my fantasy that Ron takes the Iowa caucuses by a small margin and then the anybody-but-mittens voting block settles on Ron.

  • ||

    At this point anything is possible. All these candidates just keep flaming out. And Paul keeps on. Hell let Willard be the VP candidate just to make the establishment happy.

  • kinnath||

    Ron has absolutely no reason to drop out before the convention. His funding comes from the grass roots, so he is not dependent upon instititional players.

    I expect that if mittens comes in 3rd or better, the party machine will keep him funded. I don't see any other candidate that continues to get big bucks without placing first in Iowa or New Hampshire.

    So after New Hampshire it will be Ron and mittens and who else?

  • Supreme Generalissimo Fluffy||

    We need as many players in for as long as possible.

    Ron's support hits a solid cap somewhere well below 30%. So you need enough candidates for that to be a winning number.

  • ||

    Paul's support would cap at 30% in a two way race against anyone but Willard Romney. I think people would swallow their foreign policy objections and vote for Paul if that is what it took to stop Romney.

  • ||

    Ron's support hits a solid cap somewhere well below 30%.

    So does ROMNIAC's.

    Its weird, isn't it, that the Official Frontrunner in the primaries has only rarely and interminently led in the polls.

    If it wasn't for the media/establishment narrative, he'd be a nobody. Whipped last time, a cap on his support this time, can't establish and hold a lead.

  • ||

    Yup. that is why he is not going to win. Eventually, people will say "fuck it I will vote for this guy just to make sure Romney doesn't win".

  • kinnath||

    The real question is who the So-Cons (that dominate the caucuses) will vote for. It won't be mittens. I don't see newcular titties getting that voting block. The morals charges against the herminator will have some impact. Bachman, Perry, and Santorum are toast. That leaves only Ron. He does not campaign as a So-Con, but his personal life is a So-Con dream come true.

  • Richard Head||

    Even if he wins the nomination, will they let him speak at the convention. I mean sheee-it, they let fckn Lieberman speak while Paul was shakin it up in a tent outside... Not enough hate in RP for the modern Repub party.

  • ||

    You may get your wish. As of today Ron is at 19% to Cain 20% in Iowa! And you know who has the only ground game there!

  • kinnath||

    In 2008, Paul put all his eggs in the New Hampshire basket. It was only in the last couple of weeks before the caucuses that the campaign made any effort at all to organize. He still managed to get nearly 10%.

    The campaign has been active in Iowa since last spring. I fully expect him to get 20% or better in January. I don't think it matters whether that's 1st, 2nd, or 3rd. What matters is the also-rans will have to drop out very quickly (right after New Hampshire if they can even make it that far).

    So maybe only three candidates still in the game after New Hampshire.

  • robc||

    According to the poll that Dave referenced, Paul leads big amongst likely caucusers who have made up their mind, with 32% of them.

  • kinnath||

    Makes sense. There was never a doubt that I would either caucus for Paul or stay home.

  • kinnath||

    I look forward to the mass media explaining that the straw poll held at the Republican causcuses has no real meaning or any direct influence on the election of delegates at the state convention.

  • Joe M||

    After Iowa, Perry, Santorum, and Bachmann drop out. After New Hampshire, Huntsman drops out. The other four will battle it out for a long time, I think, with wins getting spread around quite a bit. I could easily see the first four states going:
    IA: Paul
    NH: Romney
    SC: Gingrich
    FL: Cain

    Then what? Brokered convention baby.

  • Joe M||

    For the people actually in Iowa keeping up with things, Paul is the favorite to win. He has been for weeks now.

  • Joe M||

    And those power rankings came out before today's news saying he was in a tie for first.

  • Lord Humungus||

    this line up of Repub candidates is (almost?) as bad as 2008, where McCain took 'the prize'. (Minus RP and GJ, whose traction is limited).

    At this rate, I'm beginning to think that Obama will just win by default, since the Republican nominee will be damaged goods, based on 'anyone but Romney'.

  • Robert||

    Nobody is even going to look at the Republican nominee. It's Obama vs. Anti-Obama, and anyone the Republicans nominate will be just as much electable, and just as little electable, as anyone else they could've nominated.

  • ||

    I feel bad for Pawlenty. He's no archconservative, but he's vanilla/harmless enough that he would have been the frontrunner by now just as the alternative to Romney.

  • Joe M||

    He frontloaded too hard on the Iowa straw poll, and had no money left. Otherwise, yeah, he would've had his turn as flavor of the month, and everybody loves vanilla.

  • ||

    I think the Iowa straw poll's complete irrelevancy this time around will change its future impact. Michelle Bachmann dropped like a rock after winning (due to Perry, but still). Pawlenty could have been the nominee if he hadn't taken the results so seriously.

  • Stormtrooper||

    Ron paul doesn't have a chance? Only because you believe what they tell you.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Gingrich knows that there is no problem that cannot be solved by his federal government. He loves the idea of the individual mandate. He knows he has the answer to questions you haven't even posed.

    He might as fucking well be Barack Obama.

  • 0x90||

    Newck O'Gingra?

  • ChrisO||

    Newt is essentially a Republican version of Bill Clinton. The only thing he truly believes in is advancing the career of Newt Gingrich.

    Since the furor around Cain and Gingrich has been driven entirely by media-sponsored polls that I consider highly suspect, my guess is that the actual votes in the early states are going to surprise us all. I'm not even going to make a prediction.

  • ||

    ^this

  • ||

    Why vote for the lesser evil?

    Cthulhu 2012!!

    no hugs for thugs,
    Shirley Knott

  • ||

    I am voting for the slightly lesser evil: Nyarlathotep.

  • 0x90||

    I will vote for the evil eviler than even the evilest: Codethulhu.

  • RedDragon6009||

    All hail the Woodland Critters!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/W....._Christmas

  • Supreme Generalissimo Fluffy||

    It would be hard for me to support Gingrich because many years ago he briefly tricked me into thinking he supported liberty by putting out all those fucking lecture videos with his history lessons about the GLORAH OF AMERICAH and such.

    Now every time I hear him speak I think of how those videos are still out there, playing somewhere, and every time the little video Newt pushes words about liberty and the American project through his foul lying lips it's a fresh outrage.

  • ||

    Newt supporter big government while he was the speaker. He is just one of those people that will change faces to get more power. He is not a true constitutionalist or limited government candidate.

  • ¢||

    He might as fucking well be Barack Obama.

    In a way he's worse, because Newt can generate a rational-sounding case for whatever Winning The Future* state-expanding fad he's latched onto this week. Obama can't persuade anybody of anything (because he doesn't even persuade himself); he just stimulates various TEAM!/identity reflexes.

    So, for example, if Obamacare were "repealed and replaced" with Newtcare, the exact same -care with different salesman, support for it wouldn't be capped at the 40% or so for whom support (or non-non-support) of Obama-whatever is a TEAM! duty. The "middle" would have a presidential argument to weigh, and they'd split on it.

    That's bad for several reasons, but the big one to me is that people shouldn't operate under the delusion that they're in conversation with the government. They should know it's a thing being used by some people against other people.

    Obama highlights that, because he can't do otherwise. Gingrich can hide it.

    *Obama stole that slogan from Newt. Really.

  • Gojira||

    I often disagree with various posts you make, but this is an excellent analysis that deserves consideration by everyone thinking of voting for him.

  • RedDragon6009||

    Yeah but with such an adorable name like "Newt" (remember the little blond girl in Aliens?), how bad could he be?

  • ||

    Tony|11.15.11 @ 2:09PM|#
    It would be a staggering coincidence if there were no difference considering they believe in opposite things on most issues.

    And yet in office they give us exactly the same thing.

    Here's the difference between Republicans and Democrats.

    I know Republicans are not going to keep their promises and that the Democrats are going to keep theirs.

  • Yet another Dave||

    I may be a libertarian (lower-case "L"), but I'm not quite ready yet to "throw away" my vote on a third party candidate. Not to mention, so frequently the official Libertarian candidates give me the creeps.

    I usually vote Republican, as I see them is the lesser of two evils. I mean, I don't think outlawing abortion is the way to go, and I do think gays should be able to marry, but since I'm neither gay nor a woman looking to have an abortion, these are issues that don't affect me personally. On the other hand, Obamacare affects me, and not in a good way, as do most of the other Democrat-inspired social programs that really the government has no business being involved in. So I vote GOP.

  • ||

    There really needs to be a moderate, pragmatist libertarian/reformist party that seeks votes from Left and Right at equal measure. It needs to be completely unique, avoid being either overly radical or lukewarm centrist mush, avoid being single-issue, avoid being a spoiler of one party or the other, and avoid nominating crappy candidates.

    Third parties always fail because they neglect any of the above principles: Either there is too much overlap with a major party/MOR mush [the "Third Way" idea], they are perceived as being overly radical [the LP, the CPUSA], as a spoiler attracting one major party's base [the Green Party], as single issue/ideologically amorphous [the Reform Party, the Pot Party], or as nominating whack jobs [LaRouche]. They all thus fail or become counterproductive because the media has a very convenient excuse to ignore them, and their issues become marginalized.

  • ||

    That is nice in theory. But to make that work you would have to get Democrats to give up on economic central planning and both sides to give up on social issues. I can't see it happening. I would love to think there is a sizable chunk of liberals out there who would vote for a third party candidate for the sake of imporving civil rights and rolling back the police state. But fat chance. Dems love the police state as long as they run it.

    I think you could get libertarians and a fair number of Republicans and independents to go for it. But that wouldn't be good enough. All you would do is split the vote and put Democrats in charge without any adult supervision.

  • ||

    Libertarianism has never been marketed to the Left effectively. I think there a hell of a lot of Leftists open to libertarian ideas. I know because I was one at one point. In fact I was first introduced to libertarianism, not by a conservative, but by my friend's Green Party/socialist aunt talking appreciatively of them during the early Bush years.

    The beauty of libertarianism is that a voluntary society allows individuals to organize themselves however they desire, whether that's living in a consumerist system, forsaking consumerism and living in a voluntary commune where everything is shared/cooperative, living out in the woods by oneself and being self-sufficient, or gamboling through the woods with a tribe. As long as you own your property and do not violate the rights of others to do the same, how you choose to live on that property is up to you, not the government.

    Voluntary cooperatives can replace many of the roles of government, as proven by the way OWS has attempted to self-organize and self-govern.

    Corporatism and free markets are inherently contradictory concepts, and politically latching our movement to right-wing corporatists and rent seekers has naturally led the Left to avoid us. I understand the logical political mentality for the alliance, but it is causal to the Left's higher widespread rejection of libertarianism in comparison to the Right's.

    I don't see an inherent repulsion to liberty on their part (many leftists are thoroughly anti-authoritarian, but politically homeless). It took decades of explicit courtship to nurture libertarian sentiments on the Right, so why we assume the Left would be different?

  • ||

    One way your idea could work is if you created a forth party. Have the two existing parties, your party and then a hardcore green Ralph Nader old time liberal party. That way you would split both sides of the vote and force the major parties to work with their counterpart third party. That would be interesting and might change things.

    But a single third party like the one you describe would just put the Dems in charge of everything. You might try it at the state level in a place like New York where Republicans never win anyway. And just do it as a replacement for the GOP. But at the national level, forget it.

  • ||

    The Libertarian Party is not a spoiler for the Republicans the way the Green Party is for Democrats, so there's not really equivalency there. The Green Party sears off the top-Left section of the Democratic base. The Libertarian Party base does not really reflect the base of the GOP at all on most social or foreign policy issues - in fact, they more closely reflect the Democratic base on those policies. Corporatism and right-wing economic engineering are at best perversions of libertarian economics, but we can assume a Ron Paul independent run would pull from the GOP base on this right now only because the economy is the biggest issue.

    No, if you see politics as a Nolan Chart instead of a Left-Right line, there needs to be a party on the upper half centered across both left and right but not at the extreme top like the LP.

  • Robert||

    How could this get started in today's USA? (We can consider other countries separately.) The 1st thing the Moderate Libertarian Party (which would not go by that name) would have to do is repudiate the Libertarian Party. They would have to gain voters' confidence that they were not principled/radical, and so would never try to take their ideas to the extreme. Somehow they would have to present liberty as so something not to be striven for per se, but just as a coincidental collection of wonk-bits that happen to be more libertarian than authoritarian. Tough to do. I think mostly they would have to sell themselves as per se centrists, and then once they got some power from rejection of the extremes, quietly and stealthily slide their positions toward freedom.

  • ||

    "The 1st thing the Moderate Libertarian Party (which would not go by that name) would have to do is repudiate the Libertarian Party."

    Not really. I think a better strategy might be avoiding the libertarian label and coming up with something different. Obviously the party would be libertarian leaning, but would not come with the baggage associated with the LP or past right-centric ideology: something like Freedom Party, Free Liberal Party, etc.

    "They would have to gain voters' confidence that they were not principled/radical, and so would never try to take their ideas to the extreme."

    More than anything, they have to present a viable libertarian platform. It would have to be politically rational and incrementalist, unlike the LP, but would always lean on the side of liberty, and market itself to both Left and Right. Until you get the country moving on the right track, there's no point in advocating near-anarchocapitalism. Something along the lines of Gary Johnson's campaign would be a good start - according to reactions I've seen, it seems the Left finds him far preferable to the rest of the field.

    "Somehow they would have to present liberty as so something not to be striven for per se, but just as a coincidental collection of wonk-bits that happen to be more libertarian than authoritarian"

    Not true. Present liberty as a consistent means allows everyone to exercise their own value systems and coexist, as opposed to an unimpeachable and nonnegotiable utopian end state.

    "I think mostly they would have to sell themselves as per se centrists, and then once they got some power from rejection of the extremes, quietly and stealthily slide their positions toward freedom."

    Sure. It worked wonders for the Socialist Party in the 1930s. Now they have just about all their planks fulfilled except state provided healthcare for all, and even that's close. Stopping the debt, increasing liberty and shrinking government gradually is far preferable to demanding next to no government while everyone else takes advantage of our political weakness to grow it as much as possible.

  • Tony||

    Fuck women, gays, immigrants, and just about anyone who's not wealthy, because Obamacare? What exactly do you think it's gonna do to you?

  • JackC||

    No, just fuck you.

  • ||

    "I served with a true Scotsman, I knew a true Scotsman and Newt, you are no true Scotsman." Antony "Lloyd Benson" Flew

  • dentist amarillo tx||

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