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I was actually very impressed by Newt Gingrich's performance this past week:

1. Each of the candidates had an opportunity to explain what will happen with the repeal of 'Obamacare', but only Newt had the wit to observe: "If we get your kids jobs, they won't have to be on their parents' health insurance."

2. Instead of excoriating Romney for 'not carrying his share of the load', Gingrich declared simply that he wants everybody's taxes to be as low as Mitt's have apparently been.

3. Rather than demanding that Romney disclose his tax returns, Newt merely noted that it was a choice for Romney to make.

In all these cases, Newt demonstrated to me the ability to analyze a problem and trick out the most advantageous position to take. The first was glaringly obvious - after Romney (and, IIRC, Paul) had fumbled it; the latter two were nuanced choices from among an array of possibilities but ever more clearly the optimal choices for denying Romney an opportunity to return effective fire.

Hats off to the Newtster!

But then came the acceptance speech last night. Gingrich droned on for 20 minutes or more (David Gergen's immediate response was "The man needs an editor!"). And in that presentation was the 'promise' to challenge President Obama to seven 3-hour debates - 'Lincoln-Douglas' he has elsewhere described it. Assuming President Obama would wisely yield back to Gingrich 90 percent of his time, the prospect is for nearly 21 hours of Gingrich's bombast.

Gingrich has already described himself (not very gracefully) as 'Reaganesque' and 'Thatcheresque', but isn't this really 'Castro-esque'?

Is there someone somewhere in America who looks forward to the opportunity to listen to Gingrich talk for all those hours?

Which makes me then wonder: Is the bloom off the rose already this morning?

Originally posted to Clem Yeobright on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 05:32 AM PST.

Also republished by Kos Georgia.

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Comment Preferences

  •  It goes without saying (27+ / 0-)

    In no way do I accept or defend Newt's positions on the three items I find to 'praise'. They are specious and deceptive - but they are rhetorically nice, don't you think?

    Am I right, or am I right? - The Singing Detective

    by Clem Yeobright on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 05:32:00 AM PST

  •  Gingrich has an unpleasant, high (11+ / 0-)

    pitched voice and supercilious porcine demeanor.  He probably won't make it that far but it would be interesting to see him next to Obama on a stage.

  •  The GOP xtians have spoken! We're all free of our (5+ / 0-)

    sins! There's no accountability for the believers. Rejoice. Try to find the positive. This reeks of awesomeness!

    Tune out the group-stink and you'll be able to smell roses again..OY!

    we have a LONG 10 months ahead of us- just pray and he'll sound great:)

    "Time is for careful people, not passionate ones."

    "Life without emotions is like an engine without fuel."

    by roseeriter on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 05:43:32 AM PST

  •  Reaganesque: Dodging (6+ / 0-)

    I remember Newt running for Congress. Before Reagan, he was barely there. After Reagan, he learned.

    Newt has no filter. He loves himself, and so he gives the universe the first draft, since his first draft is -- by trial and error or quick thinking -- better than the other guy's.

    However, Newt will always go for distraction. He learned from Reagan that a man can be wrong about the most dangerous of things (nuclear weapons) and win an election by distracting the populace. He learned that he does not need to rebut a charge, just answer to it, and then throw a flash grenade.

    No, no one likes him. He is sort of a blurry figure. The goal of any true Reaganite is to abide in a cloak of myth. Newt can't quite manage that, so he settles for a cloud of ink.

    Every reductio ad absurdum will seem like a good idea to some fool or another.

    by The Geogre on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 05:50:50 AM PST

  •  I'm not even sure Newt has a home state (8+ / 0-)

    He was elected from Georgia back in 1588, but he doesn't live there now, not on $3.1 million per year, and he doesn't have a southern accent, not even a fake one.  Maybe he hangs out in Virginia all the time where it's easier to soak Freddie Mac.  Anyway, I don't think Newt even puts a home state on the table.  BTW, Mitt Romney has the same problem.

    You have exactly 10 seconds to change that look of disgusting pity into one of enormous respect!

    by Cartoon Peril on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 06:19:43 AM PST

  •  I don't think that bloom is off the rose at all, (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Cartoon Peril, sunbro, Aunt Pat, Loozerio

    of course depending on how you mean it.  Newt has everything the new and improved Republican electorate of recent years is yearning for - the toxicity for which he is so well known.  Besides billionaire infused money into his campaign, he offered just enough hate and bigotry to appeal to a base that has lost its way, feeding on that hate, which has become so obvious since the election of an African American president.  And the fact that one man, a casino owner, could buy the race in SC is a glaring example of a post citizens united world, which is another story in itself, that should be a wake up call for all of us, but won't be.

    "They love the founding fathers so much they will destroy everything they created and remake it in Rush Limbaughs image." MinistryofTruth, 9/29/11

    by AnnieR on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 06:22:13 AM PST

    •  Newt's focus on Saul Alinsky (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      AnnieR, Loozerio

      is an example of this hate methodology and toxicity.  Newt tries to make Obama to appear to be far more "leftist" than Obama ever was...even in his community organizing days in Chicago.

      President Obama has conducted his administration in such a centrist manner, that Newt's Saul Alinsky comparison is absolutely laughable.

      If Obama used a similar method of whipping-up support, he would compare Newt to George Wallace or David Duke at every opportunity, which would also be false, but would be similarly indecent.

      The difference is that Newt has a nasty message of hate that appeals to the haters in the Republican Party, a message that would not work with those Americans actually wanting to invigorate the economy for working families and the 99%.

      Newt's demeanor works for those on the right who are angry with the world and believe that their problems are because of people Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh, and Glenn Beck have brainwashed them to believe are to blame.

      -4.75, -5.33 Cheney 10/05/04: "I have not suggested there is a connection between Iraq and 9/11."

      by sunbro on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 08:18:32 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Chris Hayes covered that whole Saul Alinsky (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        sunbro, Loozerio

        nonsense on his program this morning.  

        That nasty message of hate is all Newt has, and it is quite appealing, given how the messengers on the right have been stirring up the hate doubletime since the election of a black president.  This is going to get even uglier than it already has been, and my sense tells me Newt has found a winning message, using hate peppered with Mitt the vulture capitalist.

        "They love the founding fathers so much they will destroy everything they created and remake it in Rush Limbaughs image." MinistryofTruth, 9/29/11

        by AnnieR on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 10:07:12 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Honestly, I can't wait for the debates (6+ / 0-)

    Remember that moment when McCain told the black guy in the audience of the debate that he probably didn't know Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and Obama's head dropped a little, shook, and he smiled with exasperation?

    Or when McCain put quotes around "health" when speaking of women who get abortions for the "health" of the mother, and Obama looked at him with an air of disbelief?

    Yeah, it's be 21 hours of that.  

    Except Newt will be talking about how he's the only person in the whole history of persons that can change civilization with super super smart ideas.

    Like child labor.

    P.S. I am not a crackpot.

    by BoiseBlue on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 06:27:28 AM PST

  •  As much as I love politics... (7+ / 0-)

    I don't think I'd want to watch anyone debate for 21 hours, not even President Obama.

    Seven 3-hour debates? At some point, say, around, the fourth debate, they'll end up debating what's the better salad dressing, Ranch or Italian vinaigrette.

    My favorite parts of Gingrich's speech last night:

    1. Trying to accept credit for Reagan and Clinton's economic successes.

    2. Again referring to Obama as the "food-stamp president." Newt, why don't you just come out and call him President N-word?

    3. Saying that Obama has been a weaker president than Jimmy Carter.

    These last two points are hysterical.

    The GOP was desperately hoping that Obama would be Kwame Kilpatrick writ large. The fact that he's nothing of the sort, though, isn't preventing them from clinging to this notion.

    Oh, and that weaker-than-Carter thing? Ask Osama and Moammar how they feel about that, okay, Newt?

    The GOP is a train wreck. Couldn't happen to a nicer bunch of guys.

    How about I believe in the unlucky ones?

    by BenderRodriguez on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 06:50:56 AM PST

  •  Two very sharp No. 2 pencils (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    to jam into my ears if Heifer-head Gingrift talks for that long.

    “I’ve got an obligation to act on behalf of the American people. And I’m not going to stand by while a minority in the Senate puts party ideology ahead of the people that we were elected to serve.” PBO

    by OleHippieChick on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 09:03:40 AM PST

    •  Put down the pencils, and slowly back away. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      OleHippieChick,  don't let "Gingrift" (good one) get inside your center of gravity, you dig? Marginalize his existence by thinking of him as .......ehhh....uhhhuhuhu......he really is.

      •  TY. phew (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I always change channels when he's speaking. It's worse than looking at the dopey face of Junyah bu$h. Run awayYYY.

        “I’ve got an obligation to act on behalf of the American people. And I’m not going to stand by while a minority in the Senate puts party ideology ahead of the people that we were elected to serve.” PBO

        by OleHippieChick on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 04:05:02 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  The Gin Grinch (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      OleHippieChick, Loozerio

      He is dodging.

      Look, they took his "I'm the moral one" from him. (Family values is his registered trademark.)
      They took his "I'm more uncaring than the rest of you" from him. (Make poor children be janitors, and Arizona's actually doing it (as long as they protest the removal of Hispanic studies).)
      They took his "I hate Washington more than you" from him.

      They showed the divorces, were more nuts, and showed his Freepie Mac money.

      The last trick he had was, "I'll say negro." It's a single gag, and it's too small a room.

      Every reductio ad absurdum will seem like a good idea to some fool or another.

      by The Geogre on Sun Jan 22, 2012 at 04:09:33 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  That (0+ / 0-)

    comment about the three seven hour debates about made my head explode.  I literally almost spewed the tea I was taking a drink of all over when he said it.

    No, I couldn't take 21 hours of Newt.  LOL

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