Conversations With A Mad Man

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Not Thinking It Through

Posted by Tsach Gilboa on October 25, 2011 at 8:05 PM

Not Thinking It Through!

One would expect that people who run for the US Presidency-highest office in the land and possibly the world-would think things through.  However, in this age of rudeness and mediocrity, nothing can be further from the truth.  Months ago, when discussing politics with a republican friend, I was somewhat surprised to hear this smart and attractive woman seriously argue that the “President does not need to be smart, just have smart people around him”.

The obvious question, of course, is how would a person that is not smart able to choose and attract smart people to work for him, and then is also smart enough to listen to them and follow their advice, when it is good?  Equally clear is that the last republican president failed on both counts, resulting in disastrous results (two unpaid for wars, unpaid for drug prescription bill, financial meltdown etc.) we are all, the few at the top excepted, suffering the consequences and probably will for the foreseeable future.

Now we have the Republican primaries and it is a scary sight indeed.  Setting aside those that will never be King, including the only one that actually has the experience and smarts to do it (Huntsman) we are left with the trio at the top of this pitiful heap–Romney, Perry and Cain. 

Romney, who has been campaigning for the Republican nomination since 2008, lost to McCain and is now running again.  With a built in handicap in conservative and evangelical circles of being a Mormon, Romney also suffers from the reputation of being bland, boring, and a flip-flopper on the issues.  His very successful healthcare reform in Massachusetts while Governor there, while an asset in the general election, is a serious obstacle to getting the Republican nomination due to the inexplicable and frankly insane position that party has on this critical issue.

Perry and Cain are in a class by themselves.  On the one hand we have Cain with his 9-9-9 tax plan–the most regressive unfair concept favoring of those who have plenty and can afford to give more to the detriment of those who have little and can’t afford any more, to his electrified fence immigration policy, to his general lack of experience and understanding of any meaningful issue of importance domestic or foreign. 

On the other hand, we have Perry with a disastrous record as Texas governor (Highest rate of residents without healthcare insurance, $27 Billion budget shortfall Texas–one of the worst in the nation, short fund Medicare by $5 Billion, cut education by $4 Billion–Texas ranks last in the nation in High School diplomas), to his equally superficial and regressive flat tax plan which with substantial tax reduction to the wealthy would substantially increase the deficit by further decreasing revenue. One “Highlight” is his proposal to shift to a territorial system of corporate taxation which would allow corporations to repatriate profits parked overseas at a 5.25 percent rate, providing an even greater incentive fo rcorporations to move more of their operations and jobs overseas.  And then there is the call for Texas to succeed from the union, his religious calling to run for office, draconian antiabortion stance (requires all women who seek an abortion to have a sonogram),call for Texas to opt out of Medicare and Social Security, suing the federal government for disapproving the State’s air quality standards since Texas is the countries biggest polluter, and the list goes on.

The truth is that there is no substitute for intelligence,especially when the culture of government requires and values decisive actions that involve substantial impact on the standard and quality of our lives as well as great expenditure of treasure and potentially lives.  We need smart people as leaders on all levels of government, local, state and national. Our world, Micro and Macro, is very challenging and complicated and does not lend itself to catch phrases and half-baked concepts.  We are in an economic, environmental and social crisis and we need serious and smart people to lead us to a better and more prosperous near and long-term future.  In a country of over 300 million people, surely we can do better than the current present and proposed Washington crowd, specific select few (list availableupon request) excepted.

 


Categories: Age of Rudeness & Mediocrity

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