The Teapublican presidential free-for-all is starting to get serious as the candidates have finally started to use live rhetorical ammunition. Not content with predicting the fall of Western Civilization if President Obama is reelected, the would-be clowns are now turning on each other which can only bring to mind Punch and Judy meeting the Marx Brothers who meet the Three Stooges.
As I submit to the water torture of the Clown Cavalcade Debates (now missing a few clowns with the departure of Donald Trump, Herman Cain and now Michele Bachmann) I find myself wishing that I could ask just a few questions based on the reality of their stated positions. Here are a few – see if you don’t agree that it would be worth the price of admission to see Newt or Mitt or Rick or Rick or Ron or Jon try to answer truthfully:
1. You have stated your absolute opposition to abortion under any circumstances. Mr. Santorum, you have stated that as president you would also seek to outlaw contraception. Given your position what would you do if your wife or daughter was brutally assaulted and raped? Would you direct the emergency room attendants to forego all contraceptive protocols in caring for your wife/daughter? If, as a result of this awful crime your wife/daughter was pregnant would you want her to go through the ordeal of a truly unwanted pregnancy? And if you do, do you feel justified in imposing a similar decision upon every female in the United States?
2. You have stated that your opposition to abortion is based upon your belief in the sanctity of life. Yet all of you are also on the record as being in favor of capital punishment. Since all of you have stated that life begins at conception do you also believe that the right to live ends upon the commission of a capital crime? And how do you propose that the United States hold the moral high ground when it comes to human rights issues when it is the only industrialized country in the world that still enforces capital punishment?
3. All of you have stated that you are “pro-life” yet all of you are also on record as being in favor of federal and state budgetary policies that will reduce spending on social services (you call them “entitlements”). How do you reconcile being “pro-life” while being against adequate spending so that the boys and girls that are born have an opportunity to have a decent life in this country?
4. Primary and secondary school students in the United States are ranked 26th in the world. Given this dismal figure several of you have proposed dismantling the United States Department of Education and none of you have spoken against this proposal. How do you justify making the United States the only industrialized country without a national ministry/department for education?
5. The recently healthcare legislation (that all of you term “Obamacare”) will provide health insurance for over 35 million American men, women and children who are currently uninsured with no prospects of becoming insured. Since all of you have declared that your first agenda item as president would be to repeal the current healthcare legislation how do you propose to provide healthcare insurance for nearly 1/6th of the American population that is currently uninsured?
6. According to your official biographies all of you are direct descendants of immigrants who came to the United States when immigration laws and procedures were decidedly less stringent than they are today. Given your own family history how do you justify taking the stance that 11 million undocumented immigrants currently living in the United States, paying taxes and contributing to this country’s economy should be deported? Further, given your own family history and the reality of immigration being one of the defining forces in this country’s development, do you think it makes sense to impose draconian restrictions on immigration in the future?
It is unlikely that these questions will ever be asked. We are guaranteed that they will never be answered. Yet, we should ask how it is that serious presidential contenders could take positions that are so divisive and destructive.
The right wing of the right wing has totally hijacked the Teapublican Party so that the positions in questions 1-6 are now mainstream policies on the Planet Tea Party.
There is, of course, that the A.B.O. (Anybody But Obama) crowd will hold its nose and swallow these rancid policies because of their opposition to anything Obama. The catastrophic outcome is there for all who care to see.
Remember November 6th!