The Republican Who Can Win …The candidate would know Americans are more worried about their jobs and their savings than abstractions like 'big government.' To win the presidency in 2012, the Republican candidate will require certain strengths. Among them, a credible passion for ideas other than cost-cutting and small government. He or she will have to speak in the voice of Americans who know in their bones the extraordinary character of their democracy, and that voice will have to ring out steadily. That Republican candidate will need, no less, the ability to talk about matters like Medicare and Social Security without terrorizing the electorate. Americans already have plenty of cause for fear. – Dorothy Rabinowitz/Wall Street Journal
Dominant Social Theme: America needs strong leaders who do not scare the public about complex issues better debated behind close doors. Wise leaders can shepperd us through the uncertainty.
Free-Market Analysis: We are longtime fans of Dorothy Rabinowitz. This courageous women wrote a serious of articles some 25 years ago that thoroughly debunked the mania that swept the US having to do with accusations that nursery school teachers were sexually exploiting the children under their care.
Yes, we remember well how she operated at the highest level of serious journalism to expose the corrupt and vicious prosecutors that were putting adults in jail based on the coerced testimony of three-year-old children. She single-handedly stopped a kind of dominant social theme, a social hysteria that cost many innocent men (and a few women) much of their lives.
How long ago that seems. Today's version of Dorothy Rabinowitz seems to have turned into a cheerleader for the America's modern "terrorism" psychosis, a dominant social theme that is far worse and more deadly to civil society than the sociopathy she diagnosed and exposed in the 1980s.
But don't take our word for it. We shall analyze an article by Ms. Rabinowitz (see excerpt above) entitled "The Republican Who Can Win." She begins with the excerpt above and then continues the article by listing other issues that such a Republican would focus on. One, obviously, is the Obama healthcare plan. "A plan that entails huge cuts in health care – $500 billion cut from Medicare – that will nevertheless cause no pain, according to its architects."
Despite her advice to focus on Obamacare, she warns that the "Republican who wants to win" will not want to unduly provoke fear in voters by emphasizing America's "spendthrift ways." The Republican will avoid speaking about the shortfalls in Social Security and how America's older voters are burdening their children and grandchildren with debt. The Republican who wins, she writes, will have to know, and show that he knows, that most Americans aren't sitting around worried to death about big government – they're worried about jobs and what they have in savings.
She is concerned that the Republican focus instead on the Obama administration's overly solicitous treatment of those terrorists who seek to attack it. "That vision, still alive and well two and a half years into his administration, has been nowhere clearer than in Attorney General Eric Holder's determined effort to give 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed the benefit of a trial in an American court, with full constitutional protections." Ms. Rabinowitz disapproves.
The Republican candidate, she writes, "would have to make clear just how far removed from reality, how alien to the consciousness of most Americans, is this reflexive view of the nation as morally suspect, ever obliged to prove its respectability to a watching world."
She would also like the attorney general to cease prosecuting CIA employees who used "enhanced interrogation techniques" (torture, it would seem) to extract certain information from terrorists. She would like to see the Republican speak to the issue of the "overnight" cancellation of a planned missile defense system to be installed in both Poland and the Czech Republic. Here is some more from the article:
The Republican who wins the presidency will have to have more than a command of the reasons the Obama administration must go. He will have to have a vision of this nation, and its place in the world, that voters recognize, that speaks to a sense of America they can see and take pride in. He can look at the film of the crowds, mostly of young people, who gathered at the White House to wave the flag of the United States when bin Laden was captured and killed. Faces of blacks, whites, Asians—of every ethnic group.
At Louisiana State University not long after that, a student who planned to burn an American flag had to be rushed from the campus for his safety, much to his shock. Students by the hundreds had descended on him in rage, waving their own banners and roaring "USA! USA!" at the top of their lungs. It was a shout that spoke for more than they could say.
After all the years of instruction, all the textbooks on U.S. rapacity and greed, all the college lectures on the evil and injustice the U.S. had supposedly visited on the world, something inside these young rose up to tell them they were Americans. That something lies in the hearts of Americans across the land and it is those hearts to which the candidate will have to speak.
This Ms. Rabinowitz, the courageous defender of those wrongly imprisoned by false US prosecutions of the most malevolent kind is new to us. We want the old Ms. Rabinowitz back. This new version apparently believes entirely in the concoction of 9/11 even though those who sat on the commission itself have disavowed it and believe they were lied to serially by the Pentagon, the administration and America's manifold spy agencies.
The new version believes that "terrorists" should be prosecuted extra-judicially and even seems to mount a defense of waterboarding. The new version wants the US to build nuclear weapons systems in Poland; the new version believes that bin Laden was shot on May 1, 2011 by Intrepid SEALS when bin Laden was apparently dying of Marfan's Syndrome in 2001 (his kidneys were failing). The new version believes a young man, apparently planning a protest against US behavior abroad, got what he deserved when other students chased him off campus shouting USA, USA.
In fact, the USA's behavior in the past decade has been fairly reprehensible. Leaving aside that 9/11 needs an investigation by an independent committee now that it has been disavowed by former commission members, one must ask why the US invaded Afghanistan (when the Taliban had nothing to do with 9/11) and why the US invaded Iraq when Iraqis had nothing to do with 9/11 either?
The result of these wars is perhaps over a million dead, vast regions of Iraq and Afghanistan irradiated with depleted uranium, birth defects and cancer spread throughout both countries. In the meantime, America itself, like Britain, is turning into a kind of police state, with a plethora of checkpoints and public cameras. The economies of both countries have been virtually ruined by a war against a phantom enemy Al Qaeda and equally phantom leader, Osama bin Laden. Europe has not escape either.
The old Dorothy Rabinowitz, we like to believe, would not have taken the entire mythos of the modern, US mainstream media at face value. She would have done some digging and pointed out some of the obvious irregularities in the dominant social themes she espouses in this article.
In any event, we believe she gets much of it wrong. From what we can tell, libertarian Congressman Ron Paul of Texas (pictured above left) may be the man to beat, the man that fulfills the real criteria of current US concerns. These may not be the ones that Ms. Rabinowitz thinks they are. Americans are concerned about keeping their Social Security, sure, but she may underestimate how sick and tired Americans are of war, nearly endless war, overseas, and of talk of CIA "renditions," and of the myriad ways that Washington (and even Ms. Rabinowitz) seems to justify torture and "waterboarding."
If the economy itself doesn't improve Ron Paul may have a shot not just against the current Republican field; he might be well positioned to win against Barack Obama. Contrary to Ms. Rabinowitz's perceptions, Americans WANT budget cuts and they are coming around to Ron Paul's idea that they ought to come from the bloated and inefficient Pentagon … an entity that mislaid US$2 trillion just before 9/11 (and never found it).
Yes, the electorate is far more in tune with Ron Paul today than they were even in 2008 in our view. His attacks on central banking and imperial, military overreach ring true today even more than in 2008. Ms. Rabinowitz's profile of the Republican to beat sounds a lot like Mitt Romney. We believe his time has come and gone. Perhaps hers as well? We hope not. She was "a someone" once, not for her position at the Journal, but for what she did, and wrote. Thanks for the memories.