Friday, September 07, 2007

Another Day, another candidate

Fred Thompson seems to be slightly brain-damaged. Not to a degree of vegetable-itude, but there are clues in his speaking style that suggest permanent effects of a few solid knocks to the head. Oh look, the Google tells me that his spin organizations are bragging about his High
School football experience, and specifically that he wasn’t concerned when he got knocked down. Well, commendations on a non-whiny demeanor, but consolations on the attendant loss of emotional expression and the reduction in sharpness of enunciation. Has any capacity for compassion, conservative or otherwise, been retained? This year many of the Republican hopefuls exude an air of physical frailty. The one exception is Giuliani, with his cardio-fitness and irritating perkiness. Last week I saw several magazine covers with illustrations of Giuliani along with Clinton and Obama. It was interesting that they didn't include Romney. Was Romney omitted from the spotlight out of predjudice, or are publishers trying to sell Giuliani as a psuedo-Democrat, as the perfect middle of the road-er, simply because he is from the east coast? If he were elected, he would support whatever the republicans in Congress asked him to. The press may try to assign him the perception of having good intentions, but he would sign the same bills that any other Republican would.

But I've ventured into policy and I wanted to talk about style. Thompson is seen as the one hope to draw in those non-denominational fundamentalist family values voters who the regressive tax policy, anti-health care, anti-school proponents can't win without. His religious affiliation is one they share, and the halting speech adds folksiness to his image. Primary voters don't make their choices based on who they think will do well across the country, they look at the issues and at how candidates talk about them. If Romney should become the nominee, it is going to be fun to watch the right regroup to embrace him, and float third-party candidates, and even vote for church-going Democrats who value their families.