The Primary Season Begins…
The prognostications and pre-election spin-doctoring for 2012 has already begun and the first votes have yet to be cast. The emergence of one candidate in particular seems to be cause for constenation of the Establishment’s chosen messengers in the press, the intelligensia and the corridors of power. That an old man, an outsider, considered by many, if not most, to be a relic of an earlier era, could challenge the anointed candidates of the party hierarchy, reminds this writer of the rise from the ashes of ruin and neglect of another political leader:
“Seventy years ago this summer, in June of 1940, an aging British politician, who for the previous twenty years had seemed to his countrymen to be one of those entertaining, eccentric, essentially literary figures littering the margins of political life, got up to make a speech in the House of Commons…”
No one would confuse Winston Churchill with Ron Paul, yet their stories, as hinted at above, do share some things in common. Being a prophet in the wilderness whose hour finally comes, regardless of what it is that one prophesies about, is a theme applicable to the one in 1940 and the other approaching the outskirts of 2012. Time will soon tell if the latter’s story will continue to share a line with that of the former.
Another candidate whose history and personality also have Churchillian aspects is Newt Gingrich. In his grandiosity and romanticism, as well as in defeat and exile (one man’s Galliopoli is another man’s folly and fall from the Speakership), Newt does have a bit of Winston’s touch. One can imagine him, more so than any other candidate of this cycle, having the febrile and fecund mind needed to produce an idea like an aircraft carrier made of ice. For a certain time, one of great external danger, such a character as his, too often plagued in normalcy by inconstancy and distraction, might be focused on a single great task with all hazarded on the outcome. In times of great internal challenge, such as our on-going Second Depression, another kind of mind and character is called for – one steady and thoughtful in the work of re-acquainting a people with the old principles of economy, enterprise and thrift that had undergirded their greatness in earlier times.
The voters of Iowa have the first crack at deciding if either of these gentlemen, one a threat to the establishment, the other one of its’ own but untrusted by it all the same – will receive the mark of their favor, or if, perhaps, the anointed, but as little loved, however much trusted, Establishment candidate, Mitt Romney, will come away with the laurels of victory. No matter which of these, or even perhaps a dark horse, even a write-in, carries the day, the spin has already begun. Thus begins the quadrennial rite of selecting America’s next President.
More on this as the calendar turns a page and the votes begin to count. For now, a prediction: The victor will emerge amidst charges of fraud, vote tampering, on-line hacking (or, more properly, cracking) of vote tallies, and with enough white noise generated thereby to taint, for those whose purposes are served by calling it tainted, the insurgent victory of Ron Paul.