Weekend Political Rant

A few times in the past — to the consternation of almost everyone — your Curmudgeon has posted about his dissatisfaction with both political parties in the US. We wrote this one five years ago: American Politics: The Lady or the Tiger?, followed a month thereafter by America’s Future: The Worst Possible Scenario. Shortly before the 2010 elections we posted Creationism or Socialism: Which is Dumber? We’ve posted a few other rants since then, but links are unnecessary. We haven’t changed. Neither have the political parties — if anything, each of them has become more extreme (in our humble opinion).

Today, in the absence of news about The Controversy between evolution and creationism, we’re doing it again. This one is inspired by something we read in the New Orleans Times-Picayune. Their headline is Bobby Jindal criticizes Obama’s ‘ideologically extreme administration’ in Iowa speech. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:

DES MOINES, Iowa — Presidential hopefuls Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, Sen. Rand Paul, and former Sen. Rick Santorum were in Iowa Saturday to deliver their prescriptions for how to unite the Republican Party. The three were the most notable figures to speak at the Iowa Republican State Convention in Des Moines.

Aaaargh!! As long as we’re linking to old posts, here’s one of our first rants about Jindal, from 2008: Bobby Jindal: Ignorance is Strength. We wrote this one about Santorum in 2011: Rick Santorum: Proud To Be a Theocrat. As for Rand Paul, we haven’t paid any attention to him yet. If he starts to gain momentum, that will change. Okay, let’s get back to the Times-Picayune:

Jindal spent much of his time criticizing President Barack Obama. He accused Obama of presiding over “the most liberal, most ideologically extreme administration we’ve seen in our lifetimes.”

We think that’s true, but in rebuttal, an Obama supporter can point to Jindal and say: “BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Look who’s talking!” What else happened at the Iowa GOP convention? We’re told:

It is Paul’s third trip to Iowa since the 2012 election. The Kentucky senator says the GOP should maintain its core message but make the party more attractive to black and Hispanic voters. “There’s a way to expand the party, staying true to the core message, but finding parts of your message that attract new people,” he said in an interview.

Quite a challenge. We’ll be watching to see how he proposes to accomplish that. Let’s read on:

Santorum said the Republican message must focus on workers, if the party wants to win national elections. Too often the party talks about cutting taxes on higher income individuals to create growth and cut government benefits for welfare recipients and others to balance the budget, issues that do not resonate with average workers, he said.

“We can win every businessman’s vote and still lose elections by landslides,” he said. “We need workers if we’re going to win and we need to start talking to workers if we’re going to win.”

What does he have in mind — a theocratic workers paradise? Probably.

If the candidates spoke about anything else, it’s not mentioned in the news story. There’s nothing we can contribute that we haven’t said before, and we know our political posts upset you, so this is where we’ll leave it.

Whatever your reaction may be, dear reader, you must admit one thing: your Curmudgeon is grumpy about both parties. We are an equal-opportunity Curmudgeon.

Copyright © 2014. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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14 responses to “Weekend Political Rant

  1. Retired Prof

    No true curmudgeon would be reluctant to express opinions just because they might upset someone.

  2. A few times in the past — to the consternation of almost everyone — your Curmudgeon has posted about his dissatisfaction with both political parties in the US.

    At times in the past, I’ve agree with the statement (Wallace?), that there ain’t a dimes worth of difference between them.

    I no longer say that.

    Right now, I see the Republican party as completely unfit to govern. By contrast, the Dems are merely corrupt and hopelessly incompetent.

  3. So Rand Paul thinks the GOP should “[stay] true to the core message, but [find] parts of [its]message that attract new people,” does he?

    What new people? Expatriate Germans whose families have lived in Brazil or Paraguay since the latter 1940s? The GOP’s “core message” is the problem, given that it breaks down to “Screw you, you’re on your own” in economic matters (except when it comes to corporate business) and “Do as we tell you the Bible says, or effing else” on social issues.

  4. Sooner or later, you errant colonials are just going to have come right out and admit that George III wasn’t really such a bad chap after all (at least, not in his lucid moments), and opening fire on the Redcoats at Lexington was not only a tad rash, it was frightfully bad form.

    But–with Scotland possibly voting for independence from the UK in a referendum this autumn–this might be a propitious time for you to petition Elizabeth II for pardon, and humbly request return as repentant and obedient subjects of Her Britannic Majesty in a Reunited Kingdom.

    There are a few little outstanding issues to clear up–e.g., the tax is still unpaid and seriously overdue on the tea you wantonly tossed into Boston Harbour, and you have yet to cough up a single penny in royalties for all your unlicensed use of British place-names in New England–but such matters are hardly insurmountable if, on your side, you were to undertake a few token gestures of good-will: e.g. replace baseball with cricket in the World Series, switch over to driving on the left, learn how to queue in an orderly fashion, and do something about your inferior beers; civil servants from both sides can iron out the details.

    When an appropriate Treaty of Reunion is signed, it can be ratified by your Congress as its final action before its powers are subsumed by Parliament under the Prodigal Son (Return of) Act (2014). HM Government will then dispatch a team of crack advisers to your shores to teach you how to make a decent cup of tea as well as correct English orthography, decent manners, and a proper sense of fair play.

    Pip pip!

  5. There’s only one way to resolve this, Megalonyx. It should be decided by the only people who really matter in this world — government bureaucrats. Ours against yours. Let them meet on the field of honor (or honour, if you prefer) where they can battle it out by flinging stacks of regulations and tax forms at each other. I’m confident that America’s bureaucrats are more corrupt, worthless, mendacious, and meddlesome than yours. Not only that, but we have far more of them, so it will be no contest.

    Afterwards, when you have been thoroughly thrashed, we will grant your island some kind of quasi-independent status, like we do with Guam.

  6. Megs, don’t you dare bring up tea. The fact that Americans don’t drink tea is entirely the fault of the Brits. The Empire kept the best tea for themselves, but before they did that, they scraped the dirt off the leaves, put it in a can, called it “Lipton” and sold it to the colonials. You owe us reparations for 250 years of $&!+ tea. And you wonder why we drink coffee.

  7. Curm, have you blogged on Eric Cantor’s primary defeat to a theocratic radical member of the Tealiban? You said GOP primaries would suppress the Republican fringe, leaving us with the ordinary extremist radicals.

  8. Diogenes reminds me: “You said GOP primaries would suppress the Republican fringe, leaving us with the ordinary extremist radicals.”

    I didn’t promise. All that I did — which you have taken as some kind of guarantee — was report on one encouraging batch of primaries for Senate nominees. Nevertheless, it’s a certainty that the GOP will nominate some extremists — as will the Dems. Speaking of the Dems, do they even have a moderate wing any more? It’s true, the GOP no longer has Cantor as majority leader in the House. But the Dems still have Pelosi.

  9. BlackWatch

    The United (soon to be not so United perhaps) Kingdom’s government provides its citizen’s with the following in exchange for 36% of their paycheck plus VAT. The National Health Service…..an annual Austin Powers teeth (tooth?) cleaning and examination (takes about ten minutes). The right not to bear arms. Baked beans on toast for an upscale brunch Vauxhalls and four quid for a beer in the local pub.(IONe can have six pack of microbrew beer in the US for that price). First you guys need to ditch the monarch . I’ll take Eric Cantor, Ken Ham, Joe Biden and good ole pork barrel politics. And no, smashing your food into a lump on the back of your fork is not good manners. If the UK has to keep doing that, why not convert all your recipes into casseroles and be done with it.

  10. docbill1351

    Cantor simply lost to Not-Cantor. He would have lost to the Gerb or Klingernotcantor. Cantor didn’t give a rat’s about his district and his approval rating was in the 30’s, about the same margin he got trounced. Second, his polling company relied on data from people with land-line telephones and, yeah, probably 66% of that demographic is old, white people, but that group represents a fractional overall percentage, and they don’t vote in primaries.

    The only thing certain is that Cantor is out. Brat is not a dead cert to win in November. So far he has shown himself to be a shallow, mostly ignorant, knucklehead and even the Right-Right-Amirite-or-Amirite-Right are starting to wonder what they’ve unleashed.

    But, Texas elected Asparagus Gohmert so anything can happen

  11. “his dissatisfaction with both political parties in the US”
    We have something in common. I probably wouldn’t go voting at all. What kind of choice is that, between very right wing and extremely right wing?

    @Mega: “do something about your inferior beers”
    While this is technically correct it’s very peculiar coming from a Briton, given the fact that the beer brewed on that island is hardly better.
    Any tourist contemplating a beer tour across Europe I recommend the following route:
    1. skip the British islands;
    2. enter the continent at Antwerpen for De Koninck;
    3. go eastward to Maastricht, sit down on a sidewalk cafe where they serve Gulpener;
    4. travel eastward some more to Cologne and try Kölsch beer;
    5. go upstream the Rhine, stop wherever you like and taste all locally brewed beers as long as they are brewed according to the Reinheitsgebot;
    6. turn eastward again at Stuttgart to Munich and change over half liters. In Munich the beer can be combined with bratwurst;
    7. go north to Regensburg for the Regensburger Schatzkiste Beer;
    8. head northeast to Marienbad (Marianske Lazne) and take a beer bath;
    9. the beer quest may end at the source of all good beer, the city Plzen with a liter glass of Pilsner Urquell, consumed of course in a proper beer garden.
    10. especially Americans should contemplate, as an afterthought, visiting Ceske Budojevice, to learn what the brand “Budweiser” means.


    Every Anglo-American beer barbarian will emerge from this journey a bit more civilized, especially beer wise.

  12. jimroberts

    Kölsch? – no thanks, I pass.

  13. Don’t diss American beer until you’ve tried anything that doesn’t have “Bud,” “Miller,” or “Coors” in the name. I hate Budweiser. Not because it’s bland and tasteless, but because it’s bland and tasteless AND is the face of American beer to the rest of the world.

  14. Mark Joseph

    The Kentucky senator says the GOP should maintain its core message but make the party more attractive to black and Hispanic voters.

    Respectfully suggest that the gentleman from Kentucky make up his mind as to which of these two mutually exclusive options he wishes to pursue.