The Political Class and Assisted Suicide

I’ve been reading Clarice Feldman, albeit sporadically since Obama’s first term. What with one thing and another, I quit reading American Thinker, not because of anything they wrote, more of a time issue than anything else. But with all three Spectators behind a paywall, I needed something to fill that niche, and Thinker works admirably.

Clarice’s Pieces for this week is one of my favorites in a long time. As usual written in a fairly light, easygoing style, but making a solid point. It’s entitled, The Political Consultants Assisted Suicide Center. Enjoy!

My neighbor, E.Z. Ryder, fancies himself a farsighted entrepreneur and is always full of imaginative ideas. He was sitting on his front porch shuffling through a stack of blueprints as I pulled into my driveway. He waved and motioned me to join him, so I walked over.

“See these plans? This is by best idea ever — an assisted suicide center for political consultants.”

“What? Why?”

“I got this idea during the last presidential campaign, and this article in the Atlantic confirmed it,” Ryder said. “Political consultants burn through billions of dollars and have no idea what they’re doing except to enrich themselves.

“They do a number of things over and again of limited effect: TV and radio ads, direct mail, robocalls. And burn through money they do. Jeb Bush’s campaign famously spent $139 million and he dropped out early after having won only four delegates. Top men. Hillary’s campaign juggernaut was defeated by Donald Trump who had no super PAC, no traditional fundraising operation, no campaign pollster, speechwriter, or campaign strategist.”

I couldn’t help but agree. “He utilized Twitter and Facebook, mass rallies, and sold campaign gear like MAGA hats, didn’t he? And he spoke his own words, not something poll tested by his staff. He mapped his own strategy, paying attention to voter sentiment and things like the Electoral College.”

Ryder chuckled. “No one pays much attention to those annoying campaign robocalls and the TV ads help only those who sell snack foods or need bathroom breaks.”

“They do spew out slews of talking points for the media,” I pointed out. “If your candidate is a Democrat, that may be helpful, but it is of little use to Republicans. Media love stuff they only have to republish with minor changes — like the headers indicating the source, but first and foremost they are Democrat operatives.”

Keep reading.

I think she raises a valid point here. The consultants and other assorted wannabe wizards seemed to work for years, but those were the years when the electorate wasn’t paying much attention, cause things were pretty much going OK. But that isn’t really true anymore, is it? Actually, things are going quite well, but a fair proportion of the country hasn’t got over losing the last election and have continually thrown their toys out of their playpen, and so for a lot of us, well we’re bloody well tired of the damned noise. Personally, I’ve been an independent all my life, but for the life of me can see no reason at all to ever vote for a Democrat again. They’ve simply proved that they run the gamut from untrustworthy to seditious. So my choice of candidate will be in the primary, and to be honest, the more a candidate is like Donald Trump, the more he will appeal to me.

You see, I’m one of what is called a character voter, if you’re honest and fairly close to practical, preferably with some real-world experience, I don’t have a need for us to agree on every jot and tittle. Broadly, almost all of us who have earned a living tend to agree on the basic things. That is what I like about Trump, he’s worked hard, screwed up and more or less failed (like so many of us) got back up and started over. That my sort of guy or girl.

I used to know some Democrats like that, but they’re gone, all that’s left in that party are the grifters, that have legally or not made a living off the public purse all their life. The country is too screwed up now to take a chance on them as dogcatcher let alone what their overweening ambition makes them think they should be doing.

Corrupt Is as Corrupt Does

Thanks, Unit

I found this interesting but sadly not surprising. From Conservative Review.

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, is in trouble. He’s running for re-election in Texas, the race is closer than it has any right to be, and the Tea Party isn’t around to help him this time.

The latest polls conducted in August have Cruz leading his opponent, Rep. Beto O’Rourke, D-Texas, by just four points and then just one point. O’Rourke has consistently dwarfed Cruz’s fund-raising, building a national profile through glowing articles written to energize grassroots progressives. The Left is eager to show a blue wave is happening by defeating Cruz, the Senate’s highest-profile conservative in arguably the most conservative state in the union.

Conservatives aren’t matching the Democrats’ grassroots enthusiasm. The Star-Telegram reports that Cruz, on the campaign trail, is telling Texas voters he does not have enough money to compete with O’Rourke’s million-dollar TV ad assault.

“We’re seeing the airwaves flooded [with O’Rourke’s TV ads],” Cruz told a rally at The Colony, Texas. “We’ve got to save our resources to turn out and mobilize conservatives.”

The Tea Party grassroots groups that were instrumental to electing Cruz to the Senate in 2012, defeating an establishment Republican in the GOP primary, aren’t able to offer the same assistance as they did when the Tea Party was ascendent in 2010 and 2012. The money just isn’t there, as the Star-Telegram highlights:

OK, Cruz most likely will win, he’s a conservative in Texas and Beto is nearly beyond parody, but it highlights something.

The weak fund-raising showing from Tea Party grassroots groups isn’t a problem that affects only Ted Cruz. More broadly, these conservative organizations do not have the resources to defend conservative incumbents across the country and help conservative challengers defeat Democrats.

But blaming the focus on Trump as the sole reason conservatives are in trouble is misdiagnosing the problem. The fact of the matter is that the Tea Party and conservative political movement is dead. It was murdered.

It was murdered by greedy lawyers and political consultants who saw thousands of limited-government activists rise up in 2009 to oppose the Obama agenda and thought they could get rich by cheating these people. They created scam PACs, political action committees that promised to take on the Washington establishment if you would just open your pocketbook, while in reality they enriched their own operatives. As Politico reported in 2015, these PACs raised millions of dollars from earnest, well-intentioned grassroots conservatives and then flushed that money into the D.C. swamp:

A POLITICO analysis of reports filed with the Federal Election Commission covering the 2014 cycle found that 33 PACs that court small donors with tea party-oriented email and direct-mail appeals raised $43 million — 74 percent of which came from small donors. The PACs spent only $3 million on ads and contributions to boost the long-shot candidates often touted in the appeals, compared to $39.5 million on operating expenses, including $6 million to firms owned or managed by the operatives who run the PACs. POLITICO’s list is not all-inclusive, and some conservatives fret that it’s almost impossible to identify all the groups that are out there, let alone to rein them in.

Anybody really surprised we got played? Yeah, no. Disappointed, sure. But we saw many of our candidates who won get corrupted by Washington, so it is probably no wonder that these self-serving PACs did the same with our money.

The RNC is awash in cash, as you may know, but the RNC is the GOPe mostly, and all that that implies, in other words, the Uniparty.

The Tea Party was us, and it got sidetracked for the same greedy consultants that gave us McCain and Romney. Well, you saw their loyalties last week on display, and it ain’t to us. In fact, their only loyalty is to their wallet.

I have little spare cash to throw down toilets, so what I do, and I recommend others do as well, is to attempt to identify candidates who are strong enough to remain on side (like Ted Cruz, in fact) and then give directly to them. It ain’t perfect, you can end up with Ben Sasse, but its better than getting scammed by the consultant class.

Caveat Emptor! Do your due diligence, but our candidates need us.

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