Monday, March 19, 2012
Ranking the Presidential candidates
When it comes to the Presidency of the United States of America (or the leadership of any Western country for that matter), I'm a one-issue man: Islam.
Actually, I'm a three-issue man: Islam, Islam, and Islam.
The bad news is that there exists no viably potential candidate fit to handle the metastasizing problem of Islam -- i.e., with the balls and brains to put on the table, front and center, one of the most important, and grimmest, facts of our 21st century:
"Islam is a deadly dangerous seditious ideology (which also happens to be a "religion"), and all Muslims who enable Islam are thereby enabling deadly dangerous sedition."
What he or she would then advocate doing about this, in terms of a platform and possibly policy, is another matter. But such a bracingly refreshing statement would be a damn good start.
Although we have no one anywhere in the West capable of uttering these simple, but direly important words, that doesn't mean all the viably potential candidates for the Presidency of the United States of America are uniformly worthless. As with everything in life, there are distinctions to make, and some are at least somewhat better than others. Unfortunately, the degrees among the choices are not that choice; but sometimes you just have to make do with inferior product, simply because the only alternatives at the time are that much worse.
I would rank them in the following way, with the best on top of the list:
Mitt Romney and Ron Paul are simply unacceptable. They are so bad with respect to the problem of Islam, I am almost tempted to vote for Obama (as a protest vote registering my throat-throttled fury); or not vote at all.
But Santorum is hardly an ideal choice; far from it. His mind is a mess with regard to Islam. It would take a team of philosophers to unscramble his brains in this regard. Much of Santorum's convolution is the result of some politically incorrect instinct or intuition deep inside him, wrestling with the PC MC that continues to be dominant in his bloodstream and nervous system. What results are spasms of incoherence, as can be seen in his responses in the following interview:
...I use the modifier radical Islam. I don’t say that all Muslims are radicals; clearly they are not. The folks who are most harmed by radical Islam are Muslims in that region of the world who are living like, for example, in Iran. We have a radical theocracy that is in charge of Iran, and the vast majority of the Iranians, almost all of which are Muslims, are being persecuted and killed by that regime and tortured by that regime and are oppressed by that regime.
Where's that game show "wrong answer" buzzer when you need it? I could have used it a few times in Santorum's quote above. Oh wait, I just found the one I ordered from Ebay last year. Let's try it out.
I use the modifier radical Islam. [EHHH!!!] I don’t say that all Muslims are radicals; clearly [EHHH!!!] they are not. The folks who are most harmed by radical Islam are Muslims [EHHH!!!] in that region of the world who are living like, for example, in Iran. [EHHH!!!] We have a radical theocracy that is in charge of Iran, and the vast majority of the Iranians, almost all of which are Muslims, are being persecuted and killed by that regime and tortured by that regime and are oppressed by that regime. [EHHH!!!]
At least he has some vaguely mish-mashed instincts against "radical" Islam; but one dismally expects not much more from him than one got from George "Islam is a great religion of peace" Bush. A little more, perhaps, here and there, and enough just barely to tip the edge to move my elbow, when I'm in the slacks changing room of the voting booth, to pull the lever Santorumwards rather than towards another four Obaminable years -- but simply not enough for what we urgently need now.
I.e., just because he's marginally better than Obama doesn't mean he has any excuse for being impermissibly muddle-headed about the problem of Islam. If a purple trans-gendered lesbian with one leg and three nipples who was pro-choice and pro-gay-marriage but who was also clearly and appropriately anti-Islam and anti-Muslim were in the running, I would choose her, him or it over Santorum (or Gingrich, or any other conservative in existence today) in a New York micro-second.
Then we have another quote from Santorum:
"What must we do to win? We must educate, engage, evangelize and eradicate."
Huh? If you're spending the effort, time -- and money -- "educating, engaging and evangelizing" what is it exactly that you will be "eradicating"? Santorum likely does not mean that latter word in the violent (never mind the pragmatically effective) sense, but in the neo-Wilsonian sense Bush meant: We will eradicate "radical Islam" through "education", "engagement" and "evangelism". Good luck, Kimosabe. (Not to mention, that "evangelism" will have to be a volunteerist project unrelated to government funding. Meanwhile, Muslims are trying to find ways to mass-murder us.)
Santorum also has the strange notion that Shia Islam is worse than Sunni Islam, just because Shia Islam believes in an eschatological figure coming soon to wage Jihad (as though that is not a mainstream Islamic doctrine anyway). As with everything bad about Islam, there is no difference in substance between Sunnis and Shia -- only with terminology and semantics.
Gingrich is similarly sort of okay in a half-assed way that wearies me so I don't feel like examining his statements on the issue and getting more depressed and angry than I already feel. I have no doubt he's infected like every other conservative is with the neo-Wilsonian virus (I would love to be proven otherwise). My assessment is that -- with regard to the only issue that matters today -- he's slightly worse than Santorum, while still slightly better than Obama.
To end on something less abysmally depressing, let us turn our attention away from the 21st century, and look back. I recently learned about an American politician from a time long before the PC MC strain of mental bacterium became dominant and mainstream throughout the Western Body Public -- one William Eaton, the US Consul to Tunis. Here is how in 1799 he described Muslims in Tunisia from his experience there.
Considered as a nation, they are deplorably wretched, because they have no property in the soil to inspire an ambition to cultivate it. They are abject slaves to the despotism of their government, and they are humiliated by tyranny, the worst of all tyrannies; the despotism of priestcraft [i.e., Islam]. They live in more solemn fear of the frowns of a bigot [i.e., Mohammed] who has been dead and rotten above a thousand years, than of the living despot whose frown would cost them their lives…The ignorance, superstitious tradition and civil and religious tyranny, which depress the human mind here, exclude improvement of every kind…
Notice how Eaton in his last sentence states in no uncertain terms the hopelessness of any prospect for reform among the Tunisian Muslims. That should be one of the pillars of our present policy with regard to Muslims in general. But that won't happen -- among conservatives (remember Santorum's 3 E's: "education", "engagement" and "evangelism") or liberals -- until PC MC goes out of sociopolitical fashion. And that may take decades, and innumerable mass-murderous attacks by Muslims, as we timidly inch our way at a slug's pace toward rationality in this regard.
Sadly, there is not today in our time one conservative politician anywhere in the entire West who would have the brains, and the balls, to say words like Eaton's clearly and plainly. For, not only is the surrounding popular & political culture today hostile to such intelligence; more often than not the heart and mind of the conservative du jour -- however tough and no-nonsense he may think he is -- have become sufficiently deformed by PC MC such that he sincerely believes, to one degree or another, in some convoluted and attenuated bullcrap that obfuscates Eaton's clear vision, and he thus cannot see the data as Eaton saw and come to the obvious and intelligent conclusion Eaton derived from that data.
Were Santorum half the man Eaton was, he'd scrap his 3 E's and replace them with one that counts: Evacuation.