RANGER AGAINST WAR: How Much is That Doggy in the Window? <

Saturday, July 30, 2016

How Much is That Doggy in the Window?

--What was Mr. Cruz thinking?

That deaf, dumb and blind kid
Sure plays a mean pinball! 
--Pinball Wizard, 
The Who

 You gotta ask yourself a question:
"Do I feel lucky?" Well, do ya, punk?
--Dirty Harry (1971)

Jump, little doggie, 
better do what she say,
jump, jump jump 
--Jump. Jump, Jump,

So you get nothing!
You lose.
Good day, sir!
--Willy Wonka and 
The Chocolate Factory (1971)

Subtitle: Despicable Me. (Of course, Mr. Cruz is not the only one to qualify for that sobriquet.)

Watching the PBS News Hour last night, one would get a totally different perspective of the conventions than if one had actually watched them. Saith one of the panel members, the Democratic national Convention went off smoothly, save for a minor glitch: 

"That Debbie Wasserman Schultz [former DNC Chairwoman] has been a problem for awhile now. She had to go," thereby effectively dismissing with a fillip what should have been the biggest convention gotcha -- the behind the scenes machinations to shuttle the campaign of Mrs. Clinton's only viable contender, Bernie Sanders.

That story did not fit the press's agenda, sadly. Journalistic integrity has died a slow, lengthy death starting about 50 years ago with Walter Cronkite's decision to breech the journalistic posture of indifference in exchange for editorial comment on the Vietnam War. 

Nothing which transpired at the Republican National Convention -- a predominately orderly affair -- remotely compares, but since we peeked into the Democratic National Campaign Wednesday, it is only fitting to recognize a once-contender in the Republican posse who shall now be relegated to a footnote in malcontent convention history for his spectacularly ill-behaved, egotistic and churlish performance, Mr. Ted Cruz.

It was a surreal moment when Mr. Cruz announced that he would not be supporting his party's candidate, Mr. Trump, and moreover that he refused to play Mr. Trump's "puppy dog". Mr. Cruz had not been invited to do anything, really, beyond the formality of recognizing the Party's choice (i.e., someone not him), and welcoming Mr. Trump into the bosom of the Republican family.

He failed to recognize that -- like a couplet from Dr. Seuss's Green Eggs and Ham , They did not like you then / and they do not like you now, Sam-I-Am.  Or as megachurch pastor Rick Warren would say, it's not all about you.

In the South, they would say Mr. Cruz showed himself to be a dog that won't hunt for you. He was barking up the wrong tree if he thought to gain any positive regard for his sourpuss solipsism.

He may have defended his lady fair, but we saw the mess that George W. Bush created when he went after the man who "tried to kill [his] daddy". Politics is not the art of getting too personal, and of putting on a thicker skin.

At a certain point, one must put on one's Big Boy or Big Girl panties, suck it up and move on. It's called grace, and it's called integrity. A politician is part of Bernard Mandeville's hive, and should tame his ego for the larger good of the party. 

Sadly, this is truly the age of Mega Me, and Mr. Cruz mistook the microphone for a megaphone with which he could impugn the party's nominee and possibly earn some Facebook Likes for doing so. However, the press and the Democratic party has been lashing Mr. Trump for a year, and to no good effect. What good was he possibly thinking might result from his petty show?

Humans are nothing so much as emulative creatures, so perhaps by witnessing the the equally small behavior from certain party denizens who had boycotted the event via their glaring absence, Mr. Cruz got the idea that he was doing something praiseworthy.

Sadly, it was not comme il faut, and far from presidential. He found Old Mother Hubbard's cupboard bare.


No Milk Bones for you, Mr. Cruz.

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Blogger Nasreen Iqbal said...

So we end up with two unlikable nominees whose only saving grace is that they're each not the other one.

Saturday, July 30, 2016 at 7:04:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

In fairness(?) to Cruz, I would find it hard to endorse someone so unhinged that they'd claim my father was involved in the Kennedy assassination.

Of course the tactful thing in that situation would have therefore been not to speak at all, but there is no doubt in my mind that Cruz imagined this speech would be the "I told you so" moment that propels him back into the race in 2020. Presumably he is assuming Trump will lose and then trying to position himself to take personal advantage. He is, in short, acting like a cynical, calculating, career politician.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016 at 3:44:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

Careerist -- yes, David.

But what they all fail to realize is, Mr. Trump (and to a lesser degree, Mr. Sanders) signals a seismic shift in the electorate. This is the news story of the century, and it is being ignored, awash in a sea of bile.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016 at 1:02:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

I definitely think you're right that their success signals the shift. I'm still quite convinced that Trump will turn out to be nothing more than same old, same old at best and incompetently authoritarian at worst, but had Trump not run, the media would have been busily building a narrative about crazed left-wing Sanders supporters instead of crazed right-wing Trump supporters. The issue so far as I can tell is precisely the same, which is that a lot of people from both sides, all sides really, are so tired of being played for chumps that they are prepared to contemplate radical solutions.

Arguably the worst outcome if Clinton wins this fall wouldn't be anything she will do or not do in office, but that it would give the press an excuse to say that was fun, show's over, back to business as usual in Washington and forget all about 2016. Who knows what will happen in 2020 then, I suppose.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016 at 2:25:00 PM GMT-5  

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