President Perry or President Bachmann? It’s the only question remaining | James Delingpole

August 28, 2011

On US talk radio the other evening, I happened to mention to my hosts how much better things were looking in America, now that they had Rick Perry as a voting option. President Obama is toast – I think on that we can all agree. But up until quite recently, we weren’t exactly spoilt for choice as to who might replace him. Now that Bachmann has shown she has legs and Perry has finally ended his shilly-shallying as to whether or not to run, Americans can look to the future with at least a glimmer of hope.

But how much hope, that’s the question. I can’t say that either is my dream candidate. My dream candidate would either have been Paul Ryan or Allen West. Yeah yeah, too young and inexperienced to run, yadda yadda, better chance next time, I’ve heard all that before. The point though, surely, is that there may not be a next time. This next presidency is it: the Big One; the one that will decide whether America – and by extent the free West – gets to climb out of the Depression and spend a few more decades in the sun, or whether the Barbarians storm through the gates and we enter a new Dark Ages.

Anyway, when I mentioned Perry’s name there was what sounded like a deathly silence. Perhaps I was imagining it but I think what I was hearing was the scepticism and uncertainty a lot of Republicans and independents are feeling towards Perry right now.

When I heard him speak in Dallas a few months ago at the Heritage Foundation’s Resource Bank conference I was quite impressed. I like Texas. I like the spirit of Texas. It is – as Perry was at pains to point out – the Anti-California, which is to say it is virulently anti-regulation, pro-liberty, pro-low-taxation. This is why – duh – Texas employment levels have risen in the last decade even as California’s have plummeted. Perry was most tickled at the fact that the Californian state government had sent a delegation to Texas to see whether it could learn anything from its success.

What I liked about Perry was his folksy but straight-talking manner. Everyone hears a lot of his fellow Texan Dubya in him. But I heard also the odd echo of Reagan. It was all a polished act of course. All that naturalness and ease, I got the distinct impression, had been very carefully practised and worked on. Still, he talked the kind of language we wanted to hear, that was the important thing: fiscal conservatism; small government; less regulation. Definitely not another Dubya which is the last thing America needs right now – one of those notional conservatives who spends more like a Democrat and forges the usual corporatist alliances with the usual vested interests. The US needs a Tea Party guy, not a RINO.

Is Perry the real deal, though, or a just a plausible imposter? Too many people whose judgement I respect have since told me that there’s something slippery about him. He doesn’t honour promises. He’s another corporate shill. He’s offhand and ungrateful to anyone he thinks is of no use to him. He doesn’t pay his dues. These do not sound to me like signs and portents of the Reagan Mk II America and the world so badly needs.

Then again, he is sound on AGW. Bloody sound: (H/T Climate Depot)

Fielding audience questions after brief remarks that dwelled largely on fiscal and economic issues, Perry encountered one skeptic who said he was quoting from Perry’s 2010 book, Fed Up!: Our Fight to Save America From Washington, then asked whether misgivings about climate science fueled distrust of federal research in general.

“I do believe that the issue of global warming has been politicized,” Perry answered. “I think there are a substantial number of scientists who have manipulated data so that they will have dollars rolling into their projects. I think we’re seeing it almost weekly or even daily, scientists who are coming forward and questioning the original idea that man-made global warming is what is causing the climate to change. Yes, our climates change. They’ve been changing ever since the earth was formed.”

Nope: nothing to disagree with there.

And Bachmann? Well, I suppose there are worse crimes than wishing a dead rock star “Happy Birthday.” More than that, I just don’t know enough about her to say, yet – except that if America is going to have its first female president, I’d much rather it were her than one called President Clinton.

UPDATE.

I’ve decided I don’t like this blog post much. I agree with all the stuff about Perry but unfortunately I wrote the headline first, then changed my mind when I wrote the piece, but couldn’t change the headline because it was already in the system waiting to go because I accidentally pressed the send button. T0 be honest, I’m still much, much more excited about the possibility that Paul Ryan might still stand. And yes, I’m not ruling out Ron Paul either – though I have serious reservations about his foreign policy positions.

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3 thoughts on “President Perry or President Bachmann? It’s the only question remaining”

  1. John says:28th August 2011 at 3:48 amYou are total idiot. Come on over to Texas and Louisiana and see the pollution these refineries are spewing into the atmosphere 24 hours a day, year after year, for the past 50 years. Come on over to Texas where we have had 30 straight days of record 100 degree plus days with 1 inch of rain. Come on over to Texas where the worst drought in the history of Texas has cost Texas farmers $5 billion dollars in loast crops that have burned up. You are a freaking libertarian idiot.
  2. Ned says:28th August 2011 at 9:07 pmJames, I got introduced to you via CSPAN2 the other night, so I can’t say I know much about you. As a libertarian, I’d be interested in what you have to say about supporting candidates that have a strong socially conservative agenda. Personally, it scares to me to support candidates like Bachman and Perry who call for a smaller role of Federal Gov’t in people’s lives and then at the same time have a laundry list of socially conservative laws they want to keep implemented/enforced from a Federal level. To me, true conservatives (aka libertarians) should encourage and nudge people to live their free lives to the highest of moral integrity with accountability on the individual to make the right choices in life and at the same time reduce the role of the fed govt by liberalizing laws on drugs use, prostitution, gay marriage, etc. Socially conservative laws at a federal level are ineffective for the most part and grow the power of the Federal gov’t while stealing resources that could otherwise be put to good use (border patrol, infrastructure improvement, etc.)Also, I’d be interested in your take on how you think the Fed Govt can and should support the economy. I back “The Economist’s” magazine’s point of view that in the short term we need stimulus from the Gov’t and at the same time create a game plan to sharply reduce fed govt spending in 3-5 years time by cutting Defense, reforming Healthcare, cutting subsidies, etc.

    thanks,
    Ned

  3. Gordon says:29th August 2011 at 5:39 amDroughts, heatwaves, crop failures are all ignored. But minute the first drops of snow lands somewhere in this world, expect Delingpole to start foaming that the scientists are in on a scam and we’re actually global cooling.

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Does Mitt Romney prefer dog-poop yogurt? | James Delingpole

June 27, 2011

Talking dog poop

Whoever eventually wins the US Republican presidential nomination one thing is as sure as eggs: it won’t be a candidate who takes the wrong side on “Climate Change.” (H/T Climate Depot)

Mitt Romney didn’t understand this. He was under the unfortunate impression that it is one of those safe, bi-partisan issues where you can demonstrate how reasonable and electable you are by adopting an accommodating centrist position. And this is why, as Rush has correctly noted, his presidential aspirations are toast.

Jon Huntsman, slightly more canny, has been frantically trying to dissociate himself from his previous position as an ardent supporter of Cap N Trade. “It wasn’t me. The big boys made me do it,” he has been saying. Or words to that effect. But this probably the equivalent of a bourgeois intellectual in 70s Cambodia trying to rough up his hands before Pol Pot’s security police come round: too little, too late.

Best showing so far has been from Herman Cain and Michelle Bachmann, both of whom have made an assault on the Environmental Protection Agency one of their first priorities.

Here’s Bachmann:

“Every time liberals get into office they pass an omnibus bill of big spending projects,” Bachmann said. “What we need to do is pass the mother of all repeal bills, but it’s the repeal bill that will get rid of job killing regulations; and I would begin with the EPA because there is no other agency like the EPA, it should really be renamed the ‘Job Killing Organization of America.'”

She is right, of course. And to all those other prospective Republican presidential candidates who have yet to understand why she’s right – among them Texas Governor Rick Perry, I hope – let me explain it using my favourite revolting analogy to do with the suicidal idiocy of misguided centrism: the Dog-Poop Yogurt analogy. (Apologies to readers already familiar with this one: I used it first about David Cameron’s dismal “Conservatives” in a piece for the Spectator). (And again with reference to the noisome Chris Huhne)

OK, so imagine there are two types of people in the world. There are kind like me – and you, I would hope – who like to eat their yogurt plain or with bits of fruit in it. But there is also out there, another kind of person. Lets call them the Greens because that is who I mean. They want to change the world; they want to shake the status quo to its very foundations. They believe that if we carry on as we did before, cleaving to our decadent traditions and selfish, pleasure-seeking lifestyles, then the world will end. And that’s why, as part of the radical, hair-shirt lifestyle shifts we need to adopt if we are to save the planet, they believe the time has come to end our bourgeois, running-dog lackey addiction to unsustainable fruit-flavoured or plain yogurt. What we need to do instead is flavour our yogurt with something more bracing, more radical, more alternative, more organic; something besides which has the virtue of being as cheap and abundant as the wind and the sun: dog poop.

“But hang on”, say all we fruit- and plain-yogurt lovers. “There’s a reason why we eat our yogurt either plain or with fruit. And the reason is, it tastes nice. Whereas if you put dog poop in it, it will taste like ****.”

“Typical,” say the Greens. “We hear this from your side all the time. You’re too selfish to change your ways. You’re addicted to fruit. You want to stick your heads in the sand and ignore all the evidence that fruit and plain yogurt are unsustainable.”

“What evidence?”

“Well for a start look at the supermarkets. Every day they sell tubs and tubs of the stuff, feeding the public’s insatiable greed, encouraging reckless consumption of dairy produce which comes from cows which not only take up precious land which could otherwise be set aside for biofuels but which also produce methane – an even more powerful greenhouse gas than CO2. Whereas, we have strong evidence to suggest that if yogurt were flavoured with dog poop instead, consumption might fall dramatically, leading people to enjoy much more healthy lifestyles and reduce their addiction to dairy products.”

“Doesn’t sound very enjoyable to me.”

“Well it’s not about your enjoyment. It’s about the children.”

“I don’t think my kids want dog poop yogurt either.”

“Generations unborn then. And the polar bears. And the California Delta Smelt. You’re going to be telling me next you don’t care about the California Delta Smelt.”

“Well now you mention it…”

Which brings us to Mitt Romney. And all those other RINO type quasi-ecotards of his ilk who imagine, somehow, that by positioning themselves in the middle they’re going to achieve the kind of consensus that will keep everyone happy.

“Suppose,” Romney is saying, “We just put a tiny bit of dog poop in the yogurt and mix it up with the fruit and the plain. That would work, wouldn’t it?”

No it wouldn’t. And even if half our political class don’t yet understand why it wouldn’t, an increasing number of the people who vote for them very much can.

The public understand that if there is no remotely convincing, proven link between Anthropogenic CO2 emissions and catastrophic climate change then there is absolutely no point in politicians formulating major, economy-destroying, landscape-blighting, liberty-crushing, tax-raising policy decisions on the basis that there is. Period.

More than that, as I argue in my new book Watermelons – yes, also available on Amazon – environmentalism is not some side issue which politicians can heed or ignore at their leisure: it is, in fact, probably THE most strategically vital political battleground of our age, the Helm’s Deep of Western Civilisation.

Why? Because it has become the liberal-left’s great proxy issue. Under the cloak of ecological righteousness, the liberal-left is seeking to advance its controlling agenda of income redistribution, property theft, taxation, regulation, government by democratically unaccountable activists and bureaucrats, state rationing and economic destruction, only couched in such a way as to make it seem caring and sensible and good. But the green movement represents precisely the kind of Big Government bullying which inspired the Tea Party. Any conservative who cannot understand this does not deserve the Republican nomination: not least because it means he’s not a real conservative.

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One thought on “Does Mitt Romney prefer dog-poop yogurt?”

  1. Jim of FL says:4th July 2011 at 6:12 amRomney is doing OK because its early, and he is staying in northern liberal areas of US. I expect TX gov Perry to enter on 7-4-11, which will not be good for Mitt. Also, Mitt will get a beat-down from Tea Party people as soon as he heads south. He will not be president.