An American foreign policy requires American liberty

Mitt Romney delivered his long-awaited foreign policy speech at Virginia Military Institute on Monday, and the response has been underwhelming.  There’s not much vocal criticism, which from a campaign standpoint is probably fine.  But there’s not much interest in the speech either way.  Among my circle of e-quaintance, the most common reactions have been that Romney’s formulations were outdated and Cold War-ish, and that there’s a real question whether the United States, with $16+ trillion in federal debt, can afford to execute his policies.

These are valid criticisms.  I believe, however, Continue reading “An American foreign policy requires American liberty”

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You’re killing me, Mitt

It’s the big government, stupid.

As with so many Romney-related flaps, the one surrounding his observation that he could take credit for President Obama’s restructuring of General Motors and Chrysler has been confused and out of focus.  Well, maybe not out of focus, but focused narrowly, and with all the superficiality that can be mustered in 24 short hours, on Romney’s unconscionable triumphalism at Obama’s expense.

The temptation is strong to just let this one go.  But it’s actually a perfect example of where Romney is, um, challenged, and why my enthusiasm for him remains tepid.  The short version of my point is Continue reading “You’re killing me, Mitt”

A Republican Party like it’s 1996?

Dole redux?

Super Tuesday on 6 March will reset the stage for the next act in the GOP nomination process.  It may be early days to draw comparisons, but it is worth noting one thing before Super Tuesday: the 2012 Republican primary season has, to date, looked more like that of 1996 than like any other from 1980 to the present.

A key feature 1996 and 2012 have in common is that, as of today’s date (4 March), the primary elections have delivered one outright win (50% or more of the vote) to any candidate. Continue reading “A Republican Party like it’s 1996?”

Actually, I AM concerned about the very poor

Big-government burdens on the poor.

Romney’s verbal blips tend to be revealing.  His brief but telling discussion of which American demographic he’s concerned with shouts “objective-oriented upper management” louder than it shouts anything else.

The reason Romney hasn’t had that much real political success is that he doesn’t have much in the way of a political philosophy.  When political conditions are set for him by outside agency, he’s an effective manager.  His admirable record at Bain, and his achievement in organizing a faltering Olympics for success, attest to that.  But his record as governor of Massachusetts indicates that in a political role, he accepts existing conditions as given, and seeks merely to optimize certain narrow priorities within them.

He is not committed to political principles, but to management.  The two things are different, Continue reading “Actually, I AM concerned about the very poor”

Florida redistricting: Jeopardy to Allen West’s – and Tom Rooney’s – seats

RINO watch.

That’s the narrow, antiseptic way to put the matter.  Legal Insurrection and Shark Tank put it differently, suggesting “GOP establishment” complicity in singling West out.

Will Weatherford, Florida state representative and spokesman for the Romney campaign in Florida, confirmed this weekend that the Republican-controlled Florida legislature is about to approve a redistricting proposal that will make it much harder for Allen West to be reelected.  Legal Insurrection points out the obvious: Continue reading “Florida redistricting: Jeopardy to Allen West’s – and Tom Rooney’s – seats”