I was listening to the National Public Radio (NPR) on my way into work this morning. A large part of this involved a baffling (at least to me) series of discussions as to which candidates were winning (or had won, or should have won, or might win) which votes in the ongoing marathon for the republican nomination.
I don’t know about you, but I can no longer recall a time when discussions of this race (or excruciatingly painful, ongoing slog, depending on your point of view) didn’t occupy so much of my day.
The latest news is that Mitt Romney won the Puerto Rico primary after Rick Santorum shot himself in the foot (metaphorically speaking) by suggesting that Puerto Rico’s statehood be contingent on it making English its main language. (Newt Gingrich and Ron Paul pretty much ignored the territory and thus shared only a tiny portion of the vote.) The strange thing to me is that they even hold a primary in Puerto Rico, since the folks in this territory aren’t US citizens and therefore cannot vote in the main election, but what do I know?
In a recent article in Time magazine, it was suggested that Newt Gingrich step down from the race, thereby leaving Rick Santorum with a clear run against Mitt Romney, but where would be the fun in that? I for one am looking forward to months more entertainment watching these four candidates popping up and down like some bizarre reincarnation of Whac-A-Mole.
All of which leads me back to NPR and a weird and wonderful thought I had (you’d be amazed what pops into my mind while I’m driving back and forth). As part of this broadcast, there was some discussion about a forthcoming primary (I forget which one), and how Newt Gingrich doesn’t stand a chance in it. Also, that if Newt doesn’t show well in this particular primary, the future will look somewhat bleak for him (of course, they’ve been saying this about all of the candidates since the race began). There was also mention of the fact that all of the folks who have already decided to vote democrat in the next election will be staying at home (since – not surprisingly – they have no one to vote for in the republican primaries).
So my thought was this… it seems to me that the prolonged struggle to decide on who should have the republican nomination – especially considering all of the negative advertising in which they are spending so much of their energies attacking each other – is really damaging the party in general, and especially damaging the candidates’ chances of winning the main election. On this basis, I was wondering why the democrats don’t mobilize themselves to all come out to vote for Newt, thereby prolonging the current nomination fiasco.
Hey, it’s just a thought…
As an aside, the title of this column, "If voting changed anything, they'd make it illegal," was a quote by Emma Goldman (1869 – 1940), who was an anarchist known for her political activism, writing and speeches. Looking at Emma's picture below, I don't think she was much of a party girl. In fact, it looks like she's wondering whether or not to pull a gun out of her purse and show you the error of your ways (grin).
As another aside, I actually met Newt Gingrich way back at the beginning of the Twenty-First Century (or the beginning of the current millennium, if you prefer). The photo below shows us on the Hawaiian island of Kauai (where they filmed portions of Jurassic Park
Believe it or not, I was the “Warm-up Act” for Newt at a conference that was being held on Kauai. I gave a one-hour presentation on technology in general – how things had evolved over time and where we were headed in the future – and then Newt gave his talk, putting things (where we were and where we were going) into a political and historical context.
I remember Newt as being very gracious. As opposed to saying something like “The previous speaker is obviously an idiot, this is the way it really is…”
(which is the way things usually go when I talk), on a couple of occasions he referred back to my speech “As the previous speaker noted…”
and then elaborated on some point I had made. The result was to make me look as though I actually had some clue as to what I was talking about, which I thought was very kind of him.
… I just remembered that I gave Newt a copy of my book Bebop to the Boolean Boogie
and told him I would be asking him questions later :-)
… I wonder if Newt has the same picture (of him and me) sitting on the bookshelf in his
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