Wednesday, July 27, 2011

When the Perfect Is the Enemy of the Good

I became aware of a new Harris poll by means of a tweet from Iowahawk, to wit:
77% of Americans have no idea who Thad McCotter is; 43% would vote for him over Obama 
So I went and checked out the poll and its results, which pretty much confirm the thoughts I've had about the Republican field... up to this point.  The Readers Digest version:  I'm not happy with most of the candidates and the ones that please me have the proverbial snowball's chance in The Hot Place of actually winning the election.  That's sorta the point Mr. Burge was making but not really; Burge is more on about how a complete unknown would run a good race against The One.  Point taken, Mr. Burge, but Rep. McCotter would still LOSE... and here's what the Harris people have to say about that:
Against President Obama
Looking ahead to November, it seems there are three possible candidates who could give President Obama a difficult time. President Obama would lose his re-election if Rudy Giuliani (53% to 47%) or Mitt Romney (51% to 49%) was the Republican nominee. Each candidate would receive 50% of the vote if the President was running against Ron Paul. Right now, President Obama would win re-election against the 10 other candidates presented.

So What?
Right now the Republican party needs to figure out who they are and begin the process of coalescing around one candidate. In the study of politics, there is always a debate regarding electability and this election may show that clearly. Should Republicans nominate a candidate who stands for certain values or policies important to a sub-section of the party, even though that candidate may not be electable in the general election? This is a question the Republican party needs to answer if they want to win next November.
It's an old, old tale but it's one that bears repeating and above all, remembering as primary time approaches.  I know some conservatives (can you say "Palinistas?"  Sure you can!) who would rather see Obama in office for another four years than see the GOP nominate a candidate who fails some aspect of their ideological purity test.  This line o' thinking usually features the "I'll stay home if so-and-so gets the nomination" argument and that consistently amazes me.  This line of thinking has to be The Mother of All Facepalms, as the graphic on the right illustrates.  

The other thing that knots up my underwear is the sheer hubris of such a statement... as in who the fuck cares if YOU, as an individual, stay home?  Not me.  The problem is the aggregate effect of that attitude, which is to say thousands of individuals throwing a hissy fit and staying away from the polls on election day.  There's always an exception, of course, and by that I mean if those thousands of individuals happen to be moonbats who think Obama has betrayed them... in which case, yes.  Stay home.  Please.  

But if it's the conservatives that throw the hissy fit?  I mean... WTF?  You'd rather see Barry Fuckin' Obama win another term than see Romney in the White House?  Really?  You need to see a shrink if you REALLY feel that way, coz you're one sick puppy.


  1. I'll play the part: I had never herd of Thad McCotter until this post. Put me in the majority! Off to the Google, for to be disinterested because I don't care.

    That came off a bit moody. It'll have to do.

  2. You need to watch Red Eye, Andy. McCotter is a semi-regular and a rock-ribbed conservative who plays a mean guitar. Great sense o' humor, too... very dry, almost Brit-like.

  3. I'am an ABR person myself and I might just add an H to the end of that. Meaning: Anybody but Romney or Huntsman.

    We have plenty to choose from even a couple of Ladies so who needs yet another RINO. And NO, if Romney or Huntsman gets the nod I will go pull the lever for them instead of letting BO have the free ride.

    Last time around McRino was #6 down in my depth chart and I still went out and pulled the lever for him.

    I just hope someone like a Rubio or Christie throws their hat in there and really gets things going for the GOP.

    BT: Jimmy T sends.

  4. We're in the same boat on all counts, Jimmy. I voted for McCain as well (even tho he wasn't nearly my first choice), and there's not anyone currently running that really floats my boat. But whomever the GOP nominates will get MY vote; we can't stand another four years of Hope and Change.

  5. It was rigidity in doctrine that lost the British Army the Revolutionary War.
    OMG - can't find anyone who agrees with me 100%.
    Then dammit, go vote against all of those who offend you by voting for the asshat who offends you least.
    About the only way I will ever see a candidate I agree with entirely is if I run and look in the mirror... and I'm not sure I want to do either. Besides, unlike our current clueless leader, I know I'm not qualified.

  6. Then dammit, go vote against all of those who offend you by voting for the asshat who offends you least.


  7. I'm not much for politics...obviously...since I had no clue who McCotter is...

    Not any good at articulating my political feelings either, but I always find myself delighted and agreeing with just about every clever political comment you make.

    Great minds.....well, at least one of us is.........

  8. You're SO very kind, Red! Much appreciated, too. When's your break gonna be over?

  9. There were and are not enough conservatives in this country to elect Bush, and there were and are not enough liberals in this country to elect Obama, and yet both men became President.

    Yes, you have to turn out your base, but independent voters, in the winner-take-all state-by-state race that is a general Presidential election, are what it takes to win.

    If the GOP nominates a candidate who can't appeal to independents, the election is over before it starts.

  10. I'd vote for Mickey Mouse over Obama... then again, I would never vote for Obama.

    Trouble is there are still a lot of brain dead fools out there that will vote for him. Pity all of us if he gets another go around.

  11. Yes, you have to turn out your base, but independent voters, in the winner-take-all state-by-state race that is a general Presidential election, are what it takes to win.

    There are none quite so blind as the ideologues, Barry. They're RIGHT (or correct, on the left) and no one can convince them otherwise. They also have a tendency to piss me off, and mightily.

    Anon: I'd vote for YOU before I'd vote for Obama. ;-)

  12. Okay, not sure you'll get this but I'll explain it anyway:

    It is the people who are declaring Palin "unqualified" who have fallen for the perfect-enemy-of-good thing. Nominate her, and we might as well buy a ticket to the re-inauguration ceremony right there and then? Ah, Really? Six years out of ten, the President has been a Republican. Were those guys all perfect? Wise, dignified sages who were treated gently and well by our chattering-class media? Came off as sleek and sophisticated on the boob tube?

    The perfect is the enemy of the good, indeed. I very often feel the sting of proxy embarrassment when I hear the anti-Palin people string together their arguments of "There's just got to be someone else!" Believe me, I understand the frustration, and I do sympathize with it. But some of your kinfolk -- not necessarily you, but a lot of the people who see Palin the way you do -- have revealed themselves to be nothing more than nattering nabobs. Good heavens, it's been how many years by now? And once in awhile I back 'em into a corner and say "Well who do you LIKE?" and I get back this stuff and nonsense..."Someone will come along. Still waiting."

    Perfect. Enemy of good. Indeed.

  13. Your explanations (note the absence of scare quotes, although I was sorely tempted) often leave me scratchin' my head and wonderin', Morgan.

  14. I know Thad. I know him well. Even though he pissed me off with the GM bailout, I'd vote for him in a heartbeat...even in the primary.

    Our problem is, we don't have anyone nearly that sharp running. Jeez Louise!!! What's it gonna take to get somebody quick, articulate, and forcefully conservative to run?

    As buffoonish, and weak as ObozO is...with his record of failure...he should lose Carter style. The very fact that WE know he might win again is telling.

    I'm going to vote for the guy, or gal that gets the party nod. And, I ain't gonna bitch and moan about who they come up with. The problem is (as always) that without the base really motivated, it'll be a nail-biter.

    Perhaps a Romney type CAN motivate the conservative base by ginning up enough disgust with ObozO amongst 'em.

    My big things are getting spending in line, entitlement reform, national defense (and that one needs some big-time work...even fiscally), and getting another strict constructionist or two on the SCOTUS. If any candidate comes out of the nomination process convincing me that he/she will get those things done, then I'll be more than motivated.

  15. Even though he pissed me off with the GM bailout...

    Interestingly enough, I saw the current CEO of Furd on Charlie Rose last night and he testified in front of Congress in FAVOR of the bailout. He and Charlie got into that subject in some depth, the consensus bein' the bailout was a GOOD thing, and I agree. So, cut Thad a sprout there.

    Your priorities and mine are VERY closely aligned, Andy. They're identical, in fact.

  16. On the GM was the principle of the thing.

    Billions to keep the UAW powerful...


    Still, that's my only complaint against Congressman McCotter. Helluva good man!

  17. I don't know of a single Palinista who would sit out the election. You nominate one of your used cigar butts against Holy Man, and I'll vote for the cigar butt.

    Perhaps what the Palinistas have been saying, is that if so-and-so is nominated against His Eminence, other people will stay home. That, you will have to admit, makes perfect sense. What's a vote for Giuliani really say? What's a vote for Gingrich really say? What would a Gingrich voter be saying about carbon-cap-and-trade? Do you know the answer to that any better than I do? Does Newt Gingrich know?

    Also: What scandals will come out of Rudy, T-Paw or Newtely get the nod? I don't know the answer to that and neither do you...but I'm pretty sure of what else we are to find out about Sarah Palin. Say what you will, but she's been "vetted." Thirty bazillion e-mails released and the lamestream media makes complete asses out of themselves about it.

    You evidently have turned this around to mean "I'm a Palinista so if she doesn't get nominated I'm going to stay home." That's okay, my friend. We're used to the tired-of-waiting-for-you-to-say-something-stupid-I'll-just-make-it-up treatment. Thoroughly accustomed to the Saturday Night Live reception. We've got thick skins.

    And I can see you-know-what from my house! :-)

  18. You evidently have turned this around to mean "I'm a Palinista so if she doesn't get nominated I'm going to stay home."

    Nowhere did I mention you, Morgan. But now that you mention it, did we not have this sorta discussion in 2008? Were you not on the record as staying home rather than voting for McCain? I might could be wrong, correct me, if so. ;-)

    But then again, as the financial industry caveats say: "past performance is no indication..."


Just be polite... that's all I ask.