The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Tuesday, October 02, 2007

An Object Lesson, Part II

All right, so the GOP is headed up by small-government proponents who expand the government and make it less efficient, and free-market proponents who manipulate markets and make them less efficient. At least they're still about honor, integrity and honest political debate (emphasis mine-- take note for the punchline):

STEPHANOPOULOS: Well if - but then if she has the best chance of getting the nomination, you're not running now, but how do you recommend that the Republican nominee takes on Senator Clinton?

GINGRICH: I think it's very simple. The left is fundamentally wrong from the standpoint of most Americans on issue after issue. Let me give you an example. A substantial plurality of Americans would abolish the capital gains tax. The Democrats would raise it. The substantial majority of Americans, like 70%, would actually provide a tax break for corporations that kept their corporate headquarters in the US the Democrats couldn't think of something like this. You go down a list of these things. Yeah, 91% of the American people want to keep the Pledge of Allegiance saying "one nation under God" and are actually very deeply offended by the current court system's attitudes. And so you go through all these things. If a Republican candidate slows the election down, does what Reagan did to Carter in '80, slows the election down, finds the three to five things - English is the official language of governments in 85% issue. Senator Clinton is opposed to it. I mean, don't get into this, you know, 2004 swift boat veterans -

STEPHANOPOULOS: So not a personal case, an ideological case?

GINGRICH: I think trying to beat Senator Clinton personally is just insane. Everybody in America who's ever going to vote against Senator Clinton knows everything that anyone's going to tell them. And everybody in America who's going to vote for her knows everything you can possibly tell them.

Sure, I could be way off base here, but here's my interpretation of the above exchange:

STEPHANOPOULOS: Thoughts on GOP strategy if Clinton is the nominee?

GINGRICH: Cut taxes for the rich. Shift the cost to the working class. Fabricate moral issues to divide the public. Encourage racial tension.

STEPHANOPOLOUS: So, not a personal smear campaign, but cheap demagoguery?

GINGRICH: After fifteen years, the smear campaign hasn't destroyed the Clinton family. It's time to focus on the other cheap shots at our disposal.

As author Paul Waldman observes, Gingrich is even disingenuous when describing how the Republican nominee should be disingenuous (that bold text I mentioned):

Not, as John Kerry proposed four years ago, penalizing corporations that move overseas to avoid paying their fair share of taxes, but taking tax money from ordinary people and giving it to corporations who don't move overseas, as a kind of blackmail payoff.

Yep. Still Bizarroworld.