The Phony Campaign

2008-01-14 Update

Most candidates gained phony hits at the Google post-NH Primary. Unaccountably, Fred Thompson and John Edwards swapped third and fifth place. The ways of the Google are mysterious indeed …

Query StringHit CountChange Since
"Ron Paul" phony241,000+27,000
"Hillary Clinton" phony234,000+24,000
"Fred Thompson" phony186,000+39,000
"Barack Obama" phony184,000+14,000
"John Edwards" phony173,000-3,000
"Mitt Romney" phony158,000+15,000
"John McCain" phony157,000+16,000
"Mike Huckabee" phony140,000+11,000
"Rudy Giuliani" phony124,000+1,000
"Dennis Kucinich" phony79,300-3,500

As always, amusing accusations of phoniness are always dogging our candidates:

  • At Townhall, Michael Medved highlights recent CNN polls that show Romney doing poorly in head-to-head matchups against Clinton and Obama.
    After spending more money than his major opponents combined, Romney appears more and more clearly unelectable, and a Saturday column by Gail Collins in the New York Times gives a clear explanation why. "Unfortunately, there's something about Romney's perfect grooming, his malleability and his gee-whiz aura that seems to really irritate both the other candidates and the voters," she writes. "What bothers voters about Romney, as it turns out, is not his Mormonism but his inherent Mitt-ness."

    She's right, of course. As I've said repeatedly over the last several weeks, the problem for Romney isn;t his faith, it's his phoniness. It's even worse to see that in-authenticity combined with an all-too-visible mean and nasty streak in going after his rivals.

    This may be the only time Gail Collins was quoted approvingly by anyone at Townhall.

  • Pejman Yousefzadeh is also quite put out with Romney's approach to campaigning in the economically-moribund state of Michigan:
    One would think that Mitt Romney would use his hard-won credentials in the business world to work and introduce free market solutions (a.k.a. "the only solutions that have a sand castle's chance in an earthquake of working") to Michigan's problems.

    Instead, Romney says this: "What I'm critical of is the absence of a federal policy designed to strengthen the U.S. automotive sector and manufacturing general."

    Pejman bemoans Romney's facile abandonment of free market principles when it's convenient to pander to the American auto industry. He also points out that McCain and Huckabee aren't much better on this score.

  • Hillary Clinton was on "Meet the Press" yesterday, claiming that progress in Iraq is due to …, well, her:
    The point of the surge was to quickly move the Iraqi government and Iraqi people. That is only now beginning to happen, and I believe in large measure because the Iraqi government, they watch us, they listen to us. I know very well that they follow everything that I say.
    Over at Power Line, Scott posts a response to Hillary from a soldier serviing in Iraq:
    Having just gotten back from Iraq about a month ago, I'm stunned to see Hillary Clinton taking credit for the progress (political and otherwise) going on in Iraq. While she was jetting around the country, raising money for her personal political ambitions, I was riding around the streets of Iraq, fighting terrorists and raising the hopes of people I don't even know. For Clinton to suggest that her promises of future policies had more effect on the improvements in Iraq than even ONE of our soldiers is disgraceful and insulting. I will not allow her to take credit for the results of our hard work, especially when she opposed the policy to give us the help we needed ( i.e., the surge).
    Hey, you know what? It's not only disgraceful and insulting; it's also phony.

Last Modified 2014-12-01 10:17 AM EST

Rescue Dawn

[Amazon Link] [4.0
stars] [IMDb Link]

There oughta be a special kind of Oscar for "Best Performace Involving Disgusting Food". Christian Bale would probably be a real contender for his role here.

In this movie (based on a true story) he plays Dieter Dengler, a Navy pilot assigned, in 1965, to bomb the Ho Chi Minh trail in Laos on his very combat first mission. And he gets shot down and taken prisoner by the Pathet Lao.

It's no picnic. In fact, it makes Stalag 17 look like the Waldorf Astoria.

Dieter joins prisoners accumulated by the Commies from previous CIA and military operations in southeast Asia. There's Duane, who's played by Steve Zahn, previously known mainly for amiable-goofball roles. There's also Eugene, played by Jeremy Davies; he's totally in character as 90%-crazy emaciated Charles Manson lookalike, who's mortally certain he's just about to be released as a result of ongoing secret negotiations. There are also a couple Thais and a Chinese smuggler from Hong Kong.

An unlikely bunch to plot and execute an escape plan, but that's what they do. The movie is intense and harrowing, and unabashedly on the side of the good guys. Very much worth your while, if you can stomach some poor culinary choices.

Last Modified 2012-10-15 10:54 AM EST