First, let me say that I pretty much loathe everything that the Republican party, as it’s currently formulated, stands for. I don’t appreciate the emphasis on the lowest common denominator (i.e., racism), the focus on religion (that if you’re not Christian, you’re unimportant) and the xenophobia (see common denominator, lowest) and isolationist tendency they have (unless it’s a Republican administration putting troops abroad). I also don’t like their spin on women’s rights and healthcare.
So, yeah, pretty much the whole package.
That said, some things that were said today I wholeheartedly agree with. And it almost kills me to say that. Until you dig deeper, plow a little bit to understand what was behind what was said.
First, I agree completely with Bobby Jindal’s comments on The Donald. He called him a “narcissist,” an “egomaniac” and portrayed the Trump campaign “a carnival act.” He further called Trump “shallow” and said that Trump has no understanding of policy and policy matters, and lacks intellectual curiosity.
Trump and his campaign is, without a doubt, all those things. Trump only cares about himself, doesn’t give a whit about anything that doesn’t affect his pocketbook, and truly doesn’t grasp a number of things (such as the fact that Obama’s birth certificate is, in fact, a birth certificate even though it reads “certificate of live birth” which is what every birth certificate I’ve ever seen says). Republicans should shudder at the idea of Trump being the party’s candidate in the general election, which is kind of Jindal’s point (as well as his attempt to raise his profile among likely Republican voters).
On the other hand, Jindal himself isn’t all that great stuff either. He supports Kim Davis (fine on its face, we can support whoever or whatever we want), saying that no one should have to choose between conscience and religion and her pay/job. Well, there he’s gone too far. That’s not the issue in l’affaire Davis: the issue is that in contravention of federal law she willfully has imposed her religious beliefs on others who legally seek a marriage license. Supporting her for her self-righteous rationale is supporting lawlessness and not becoming of someone who seeks public office.
The other thing I found myself agreeing with was Trump’s comments re: Carly the Carpetbagger. She criticized Trump recently and he responded (as you might expect him to do. He never lets criticism go unanswered). He pointed to her failure as head of HP, saying that she drove the company into the ground and nearly bankrupted them. Or something like that. He pointed out that in her role as CEO she was a disaster and almost destroyed the company. That’s absolutely true and amply documented: she utterly failed in the role, cost the company untold millions and thousands of people lost their jobs in her tenure as CEO.
On the other hand, Trump went after Fiorina’s appearance. He questioned whether anyone would want to vote for her, given those looks. He now denies that what it sounds like is what he meant (sort of like denying he meant his comments about Megyn Kelly referring to her being on her period), but he said what he said and have to presume those words mean what they clearly mean, particularly given the tone and attitude he evinced when saying them. And that comment about Fiorina’s appearance is simply beyond the pale.
Look, it’s important that voters know the background of people they are considering voting for for the highest office in the United States. Knowing Fiorina’s failures as CEO of HP is important to that end: people need to know that she failed in her primary role as CEO (maximizing shareholder value in terms of stock price and maximizing profits, along with outsourcing jobs and terminating however many thousands of HP employees in an ill-fated attempt to prime the earnings pump). Those failings reflect on her ability to run the country: if she failed on a smaller level, would she be likely to succeed on a grander scale?
But going after her looks of all things. And by someone who perpetually walks around like he’s just sucked a lemon and smelled someone’s flatulence at the same time is simply beneath anyone who aspires to lead the United States.
To her credit, Fiorina criticized Trump’s comments about Megyn Kelly, saying the comments were unacceptable. Good for her. Someone needed to say that. I don’t like Fiorina, think she would be horrible not just as President but in any public office/position, but when she does something like that, she’s got my stamp of approval, my imprimatur (for whatever that’s worth). She also seems to not have responded to Trump’s latest stupidity with regard to her appearance. Again, good on her. It shows that not everyone needs to respond to every nasty, small-minded comment made about them (But she’s still a carpet bagger).
So that’s where things stand with Republicans today. It’s a mixed bag. Sort of like their whole panel of candidates.