Herman Cain’s a threat to both the left and the GOP Establishment.
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To begin, what was Lincoln talking about? Why does Herman Cain fit precisely Lincoln’s “living dog” description? What do we need to understand here?
Lincoln borrowed his point from the Bible (Ecclesiastes 9:4: “For to him that is joined to all the living there is hope: for a living dog is better than a dead lion.”) in his fabled House Divided speech, using it to contrast himself with Stephen A. Douglas. Said candidate Lincoln: “A living dog is better than a dead lion.”
By which Lincoln meant that a man who cares nothing for the task at hand is what he termed a “caged and toothless” lion when it comes to doing the job that needs to be done. Lincoln was referring to Douglas’s unwillingness to end slavery. In today’s world Cain is effectively using the same sentiment to illustrate his differences with rival Mitt Romney and others — President Obama included — on everything from how to approach changing the tax code (Cain’s 9/9/9 plan) to putting the brakes on the growth of government and, most tellingly, refusing to buy into the dime store New Deal mentality that has become a hallmark of Establishment moderate Republicans.
As the polls show, Mr. Cain is gaining fans because of his performance in the GOP debates. He is being perceived as a potential “living dog” in the White House — all teeth and energy in tearing relentlessly into the problem. How, the question arises, can a President Romney possibly oppose the growth of government when he went out of his way as governor to increase it? Demonstrating he not only didn’t oppose the idea of big government but that he now seems bent on convincing the public they shouldn’t care that he doesn’t care.
And how can the GOP Establishment in Washington be committed to the task when so many feed off of that very same government? Are not Romney and the larger GOP Establishment the very embodiment of Lincoln’s “caged and toothless lion”? Is not Herman Cain — his color quite aside — a more serious political threat to both the GOP Establishment and the Liberal Establishment as opposed to just another political competitor?
We are in the midst of a tremendous popularity surge for Mr. Cain. Poll after poll is emerging both nationally and now in Iowa showing him at the front of the GOP pack. Like clockwork, and precision clockwork at that, now comes forth the allegation, an “exclusive” in the liberal media outlet Politico, of “inappropriate behavior” that was “sexually suggestive.” Years ago.
Let’s again be blunt. Mr. Cain is black. Were his female accusers white? Politico doesn’t say. Certainly the Politico lists two white male reporters in the byline of the Cain story. One, Kenneth Vogel, is an ex-staffer for the far left George Soros funded Center for Public Integrity, as noted here.
And the tie between the left and lynching, as PBS notes, “black businessmen” who were “looking or associating with white women” and “who refused to back down from a fight” is historically airtight.
But whatever the color of Mr. Cain’s accusers both the pattern of this attack as well as the reason for it is crystal clear.
You might call it The Meaning of the President 2012.
The presidential election of 2012 will mark the 48th year since the defeat at the 1964 Republican Convention of the then-dominant Republican moderates by conservatives. The avowed complaint then from infuriated moderates was that conservatism could not win elections, much less govern the country.
In practice, the loss of elections has since occurred when moderates (Ford, Bush 41, Dole, McCain) headed the ticket. Close election victories rather than landslides have resulted when the nominee campaigned as a moderate (the “compassionate conservatism” of George W. Bush). And under the command of both Bushes, from the raising of taxes (in violation of 41’s “read my lips” pledge) to Bush 43’s embrace of such as a Medicare prescription drug program and education’s No Child Left Behind — the size and cost of government has increased.
It seems altogether obvious that the size and cost of government — now with the country dangling precipitously over the canyon of a $15 trillion debt — will not decrease with a Republican president until a flash point, a crisis, is reached within the Republican Party itself. Reached, resolved and passed.
To borrow from Abraham Lincoln: A party divided against itself cannot stand. A conservative party that is led by a moderate will eventually split asunder.
The GOP won’t dissolve or disappear. But just as Lincoln predicted of America in the middle of the slavery controversy, the GOP will become all one thing or all the other. Either conservatives will continue the party’s evolution back into the party of American conservatism it was at its founding, or moderates will make moderation — the idea of the dime store New Deal — palatable everywhere into the farthest reaches of the GOP.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?