Happy Rick Day!

 

Screen Shot 2015-07-23 at 9.27.32 AMIn the world of presidential politics, today is clearly the day of guys named Rick. To start with, Ricochet’s own Rick Wilson published a piece in Politico detailing why “Trump Voters Are Hillary’s New Best Friends.” The article lit up social media and included the likes of Jon Gabriel posting pictures of nuclear explosions. The whole thing is worth reading, but I found his fourth point to be the most persuasive:

4. You don’t care about his record. It’s an ideological train-wreck of epic proportions if you care about any conservative values. He’s been pro-abortion, pro-gun control, pro-tax hikes, pro-single-payer and is a past master of crony capitalism, to say nothing of his political and financial support for the Clintons and Barack Obama. It’s a mess. You’d never give any other candidate the benefit of the doubt on such a wide portfolio of positions that have changed 180 degrees and back again so many times. And yet, I imagine you can drill into Marco Rubio’s or Jeb Bush’s or even Scott Walker’s record for some sign of apostasy that you can never, ever, ever forgive.

Above and beyond anything else, Trump’s lack of conservatism — irrespective of his current bombast — should be the focus of Republican and conservative primary voters. If there is an actual RINO in this race, it is Trump. If we want someone who represents us, our party, and our ideals we must look elsewhere. Sure, he says a few things we may agree with, and he may say them in a way that gets our blood flowing and puts us in a fighting mood, but consider whether or not he believes what he says enough to lead the party into the fray. Judging by the convoluted smorgasbord of positions he’s held, the politicians and causes he’s given money and lip-service to in the past, Trump is not a fit head for this body politic. We are being conned by a reality television celebrity. Think about that while you read the way Wilson put it:

9. You think Donald Trump is the character he plays on television. You think his swagger and bellowing is the Leadership America Needs and that he’s an antidote to the herd of RINOs running for president. You think Donald Trump is the only one speaking truth to power. You think he’s the only one who really gets you. Remember when you had a crush on some movie or TV star as a teenager? Of course you do. You weren’t really in love with them. You were infatuated by a crafted, manufactured, stage-managed image. The purpose of what Clive James called “The Fame Planet” is to manage and monetize celebrity; you’re being played by a celebrity branding operation. There is nothing authentic about the character of Donald Trump that you’re seeing on the campaign trail. (Certainly not that exotic item that rests on his head.)

Trump simply is not what he appears to be. He may currently be playing a Republican on T.V., but this election is about reality, not reality T.V.

The other Rick to “go nuclear” on Trump (as Sean Davis headlined it at The Federalist) is Rick Perry. The former Texas Governor and Republican hopeful — who has shown no fear of taking the wood to Trump — devoted an entire speech to the matter today. At the Opportunity and Freedom PAC forum in D.C. Perry set to the task of diagnosing Trump as a “cancer on conservatism” which must be excised before he “metastasize[s] into a movement of mean-spirited politics that will send the Republican Party to the same place it sent the Whig Party in 1854: the graveyard.”

Though he spoke very harshly of Trump, the speech on whole was uplifting. Perry spoke of Washington, Lincoln, and Adams as men who served with humility. He spoke of conservatism that unites the nation, uplifts the poor, and is the only hope for a nation in the doldrums of nearly a decade of bad governance.

We have tried the policies of the progressive left for the last six and a half years. The Democratic candidates for president could offer them for the next eight.

Their failures are self-evident. We have never spent more money on welfare in the history of our nation, with few results to show for it.

They have mastered the politics of grievance, when in reality Americans are the victim of their policies that caused the housing crash, that have produced the slowest recovery since the Great Depression, that have caused a precipitous increase in the cost of college tuition.

The solution, according to Perry, is conservatism, what can only be described as Reagan type vision, and the American People.

American workers aren’t looking to get something for nothing. They want to make an honest wage. They want a shot at a good job. And big government won’t give it to them.

That fair shot can only come from free people, and free markets, and the free market incentive known as the profit motive.

Conservatism can lead us out of the Valley of Economic Ruin.

It places faith in individuals, not government.

It restores personal freedom instead of restricting it.

It lets business owners and families keep more of what they make, so they can invest it in the economy and create jobs.

I believe in a conservatism that empowers people to make the most of their lives rather than government that makes a mess of their lives.

After giving historic examples of humble leadership and outlining a conservative vision for the future, Perry turned back to his assault (and brought me out of my seat just reading the material) when he tied it all together with this hard truth about Trump:

But most telling to me is not Mr. Trump’s bombast, his refusal to show any remorse for his comments about Senator McCain, but his admission that there is not a single time in his life that he sought the forgiveness of God.

A man too arrogant, too self-absorbed, to seek God’s forgiveness is precisely the type of leader John Adams prayed would never occupy the White House.

He concluded his remarks (I think) perfectly with this:

We need a president who rises above personal grievances, petty differences, raw partisan politics. Who puts the nation first, who inspires Americans to believe again and produce again and dream again.

We must move past the empty calories of Trumpism, and return to conservatism.

We shall not give up on the animating idea of our Republic – a nation founded on the principle of “government of the people, by the people, for the people.”

There is nothing wrong in America that cannot be fixed with the right leadership.

We need leadership that repairs the breach in America, that brings the country together, that sets our sights on greatness after a long period of pettiness.

In all, today was a great day to be a Rick, and hopefully foretells of great days to come for being a Republican and an American.  Happy Rick Day, Ricochet!

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  1. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    The King Prawn:

    Carey J.: Why does Trump draw so much support from conservatives? Because he’s sticking it to the GOP Establishment. And for those of us who can’t decide whether to laugh out loud or barf when we hear the name Reince Priebus, it’s a genuine joy to see those (insert five minutes of non-CoC-compliant ranting) GOP Establishment types sweat.

    I suppose I just want someone who is actually a conservative, who has never given money to the enemy, who didn’t invite Bill & Hill to his wedding, and hasn’t held all positions on the political spectrum equally over time to be the one making the establishment have kittens. That, and I kind of want someone with a little couth representing us. Trump is always one sound bite away from alienating a large group of voters.

    Rick Patrolled!

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump accused the union that represents Border Patrol agents of bullying its members to pull out of hosting a visit by him to the U.S.-Mexican border in Texas on Thursday.

    • #121
  2. Carey J. Inactive
    Carey J.
    @CareyJ

    The King Prawn:

    Carey J.: Trump is the only candidate who’s even willing to curse the darkness. The GOP Establishment is bricking up the windows and hanging triple-layered drapes. You’d think they were vampires, they fear the light.

    So far as I can tell, only Bush is really an establishment candidate. I’ve already dismissed him from my mind and consideration as such.

    Rubio is close enough to the establishment on immigration to count as establishment in my book. Neither Jeb nor Rubio would get any governing done because they’d be too busy handing out green cards.

    • #122
  3. The King Prawn Inactive
    The King Prawn
    @TheKingPrawn

    Pseudodionysius: Trump is always one sound bite away from alienating a large group of voters.

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump accused the union that represents Border Patrol agents of bullying its members to pull out of hosting a visit by him to the U.S.-Mexican border in Texas on Thursday.

    Not following the argument here. Of course the national union leadership didn’t want a local hosting anything for a guy putting R after his name. Breitbart had this yesterday.

    • #123
  4. Western Chauvinist Member
    Western Chauvinist
    @WesternChauvinist

    The King Prawn: A man too arrogant, too self-absorbed, to seek God’s forgiveness is precisely the type of leader John Adams prayed would never occupy the White House.

    Well, that horse has left the barn. See current occupant.

    The King Prawn: Trump is always one sound bite away from alienating a large group of voters.

    You’re still missing the point. There’s already a large group of alienated voters.

    So, one more time, Trump is a symptom, not a cause. Railing against the headache won’t cure the brain tumor. The GOP has been playing checkers in the football playoffs. This time around, we have a few players who remembered to bring their gear to the locker room. Some of us are waiting to see if they know how to play the game. Trump is the pre-game show.

    • #124
  5. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    The King Prawn:

    Pseudodionysius: Trump is always one sound bite away from alienating a large group of voters.

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump accused the union that represents Border Patrol agents of bullying its members to pull out of hosting a visit by him to the U.S.-Mexican border in Texas on Thursday.

    Not following the argument here. Of course the national union leadership didn’t want a local hosting anything for a guy putting R after his name. Breitbart had this yesterday.

    Its a chance to do another rhyme.

    • #125
  6. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Pseudodionysius:

    The King Prawn:

    Pseudodionysius: Trump is always one sound bite away from alienating a large group of voters.

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump accused the union that represents Border Patrol agents of bullying its members to pull out of hosting a visit by him to the U.S.-Mexican border in Texas on Thursday.

    Not following the argument here. Of course the national union leadership didn’t want a local hosting anything for a guy putting R after his name. Breitbart had this yesterday.

    Its a chance to do another rhyme.

    Rick Eyerolled!

    • #126
  7. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Western Chauvinist:

    The King Prawn: A man too arrogant, too self-absorbed, to seek God’s forgiveness is precisely the type of leader John Adams prayed would never occupy the White House.

    Well, that horse has left the barn. See current occupant.

    The King Prawn: Trump is always one sound bite away from alienating a large group of voters.

    You’re still missing the point. There’s already a large group of alienated voters.

    So, one more time, Trump is a symptom, not a cause. Railing against the headache won’t cure the brain tumor. The GOP has been playing checkers in the football playoffs. This time around, we have a few players who remembered to bring their gear to the locker room. Some of us are waiting to see if they know how to play the game. Trump is the pre-game show.

    I Am NOT a Tumor!

    • #127
  8. Frank Soto Contributor
    Frank Soto
    @FrankSoto

    Carey J.:

    The King Prawn:

    Carey J.: Trump does three worthwhile things. First, he talks about issues, particularly immigration, that the other candidates are afraid to.

    Your point? What is his solution? The only thing he proposes is himself, the same way BHO would make the earth cool and the oceans recede.

    It’s more of a solution than Jeb or Rubio have offered. They just want to hand out green cards at the border. Make everyone legal as they cross the border and there’s no illegal immigration problem. We could solve the illegal drug trade problem the same way by legalizing everything – NOT.

    It’s really not.  You can’t fire everyone in an agency simultaneously.  That’s not how reality works.  You also can’t fix bureaucracies by finding more efficient managers.  His lack of actual conservative beliefs is revealed in the quote.

    • #128
  9. Carey J. Inactive
    Carey J.
    @CareyJ

    Umbra Fractus:

    Franco: What amazes me is that these people actually believe they can influence individual voters to all come together and dump Trump. Whenever I hear or read “we have to come together behind one candidate” or “we can’t look like we are crude bigots” or “we have to proceed with caution” I question their grasp of politics, basic understanding of human nature and democracy.

    I don’t know what article you’re responding to, but there’s nothing about “com[ing] together behind one candidate,” in Rick Wilson’s article. In fact he listed several viable alternatives to Trump.

    When did this race become Bush v. Trump? There are 17 candidates in the field at least half of whom are conservatives in good standing. Scott Walker, Rick Perry, Ted Cruz, Carly Fiorina… Why does every criticism of Trump have to be an endorsement of Bush?

    Because Trump’s exit from the race would free the Bush machine to begin the process of destroying the other candidates. Trump serves as a stalking horse and as cover for the other non-establishment candidates.

    • #129
  10. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Rick Barrel Rolled!

    • #130
  11. The King Prawn Inactive
    The King Prawn
    @TheKingPrawn

    Western Chauvinist: You’re still missing the point. There’s already a large group of alienated voters. So, one more time, Trump is a symptom, not a cause. Railing against the headache won’t cure the brain tumor. The GOP has been playing checkers in the football playoffs. This time around, we have a few players who remembered to bring their gear to the locker room. Some of us are waiting to see if they know how to play the game. Trump is the pre-game show.

    I hope you’re right. I see the point as Trump is not, never has been, and never will be part of the solution to the problems that alienated the base from the party.

    • #131
  12. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    The King Prawn:

    Western Chauvinist: You’re still missing the point. There’s already a large group of alienated voters. So, one more time, Trump is a symptom, not a cause. Railing against the headache won’t cure the brain tumor. The GOP has been playing checkers in the football playoffs. This time around, we have a few players who remembered to bring their gear to the locker room. Some of us are waiting to see if they know how to play the game. Trump is the pre-game show.

    I hope you’re right. I see the point as Trump is not, never has been, and never will be part of the solution to the problems that alienated the base from the party.

    That didn’t stop them asking for his money. Big mistake. Huge.

    • #132
  13. The King Prawn Inactive
    The King Prawn
    @TheKingPrawn

    Pseudodionysius: That didn’t stop them asking for his money. Big mistake. Huge.

    And his recent conservatism didn’t stop him from giving it out equally to any politician who would be of use to him like Hillary, Schumer, and Reid. For crying out loud, just feeling neutral about Reid should disqualify one from the republican primary!

    • #133
  14. Leigh Inactive
    Leigh
    @Leigh

    Carey J.: Because Trump’s exit from the race would free the Bush machine to begin the process of destroying the other candidates. Trump serves as a stalking horse and as cover for the other non-establishment candidates.

    Has the Bush machine been focused on taking down Trump?  I haven’t noticed it.  It looks like the Rick Perry machine is on fire, though.

    The Bush machine is nothing to the Clinton machine.  If any potential nominee is going to be able to stand up to Clinton, he’s going to have to be able to withstand the Bush machine, too.

    • #134
  15. Leigh Inactive
    Leigh
    @Leigh

    The King Prawn:

    Pseudodionysius: That didn’t stop them asking for his money. Big mistake. Huge.

    And his recent conservatism didn’t stop him from giving it out equally to any politician who would be of use to him like Hillary, Schumer, and Reid. For crying out loud, just feeling neutral about Reid should disqualify one from the republican primary!

    What I’m hearing is that it’s OK since he was just a businessman playing the game.  It wasn’t intended as support for their policies, so evidently it doesn’t count.

    • #135
  16. The King Prawn Inactive
    The King Prawn
    @TheKingPrawn

    Leigh:

    Carey J.: Because Trump’s exit from the race would free the Bush machine to begin the process of destroying the other candidates. Trump serves as a stalking horse and as cover for the other non-establishment candidates.

    Has the Bush machine been focused on taking down Trump? I haven’t noticed it. It looks like the Rick Perry machine is on fire, though.

    The Bush machine is nothing to the Clinton machine. If any potential nominee is going to be able to stand up to Clinton, he’s going to have to be able to withstand the Bush machine, too.

    Perry almost looks like he’s on a suicide mission against Trump to save the party from that animal on his head. Still debating whether or not that deserves props.

    • #136
  17. The King Prawn Inactive
    The King Prawn
    @TheKingPrawn

    Leigh:

    The King Prawn:

    Pseudodionysius: That didn’t stop them asking for his money. Big mistake. Huge.

    And his recent conservatism didn’t stop him from giving it out equally to any politician who would be of use to him like Hillary, Schumer, and Reid. For crying out loud, just feeling neutral about Reid should disqualify one from the republican primary!

    What I’m hearing is that it’s OK since he was just a businessman playing the game. It wasn’t intended as support for their policies, so evidently it doesn’t count.

    In other words, being part of the problem.

    • #137
  18. Carey J. Inactive
    Carey J.
    @CareyJ

    Pseudodionysius:

    Carey J.:

    The King Prawn:I heard Trump yesterday talk about firing all those who work for government. Just cut pink slips for them all. He has less understanding of working within the bounds of the law than Obama.

    I’d rather have a presidential candidate talking about firing government workers than hiring more of them, which is what most of the other candidates want to do. A Republican Congress with a Republican President pushing hard for Civil Service reform could probably make it easier to get rid of dead wood and obstructionists.

    There are much worse outcomes in life than an executive of the US Federal Government waking up each day wondering who he can fire before he calls Lindsay Graham into his office for a cup of coffee and a knee in the groin.

    Why would anyone bother kneeing Lindsay Graham in the groin? It’s not like there’s anything there that might be injured.

    • #138
  19. Carey J. Inactive
    Carey J.
    @CareyJ

    SParker:

    The King Prawn:

    S: Trump is the only guy saying what needs to be said about immigration.

    Anyone can curse the darkness. What we seek is a little light.

    Yes. Fine. But did you not notice that Gov. Perry called Joseph N. Welch a Senator in the speech? Any schoolchild knows Welch was Chief Counsel to the United States Army in those hearings. A man who can make a mistake like that can make other mistakes. Yesterday he was the One. Today may he burn brightly in Hell.

    And speaking of Hell, what the Hell is Trump actually saying about immigration that no one else isn’t or hasn’t?

    None of the GOP candidates were saying much of anything about immigration when Trump started talking about it. Even after Katie Steinle’s murder by a five times deported illegal alien who had been sheltered from a sixth deportation by San Francisco’s sanctuary policies. Trump threw open the drapes, and the GOP establishment candidates screeched like vampires scorched by sunlight.

    • #139
  20. Carey J. Inactive
    Carey J.
    @CareyJ

    The King Prawn:

    Leigh:

    Carey J.: Because Trump’s exit from the race would free the Bush machine to begin the process of destroying the other candidates. Trump serves as a stalking horse and as cover for the other non-establishment candidates.

    Has the Bush machine been focused on taking down Trump? I haven’t noticed it. It looks like the Rick Perry machine is on fire, though.

    The Bush machine is nothing to the Clinton machine. If any potential nominee is going to be able to stand up to Clinton, he’s going to have to be able to withstand the Bush machine, too.

    Perry almost looks like he’s on a suicide mission against Trump to save the party from that animal on his head. Still debating whether or not that deserves props.

    Bush probably promised him a job after the elections.

    • #140
  21. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    The King Prawn:

    Leigh:

    Carey J.: Because Trump’s exit from the race would free the Bush machine to begin the process of destroying the other candidates. Trump serves as a stalking horse and as cover for the other non-establishment candidates.

    Has the Bush machine been focused on taking down Trump? I haven’t noticed it. It looks like the Rick Perry machine is on fire, though.

    The Bush machine is nothing to the Clinton machine. If any potential nominee is going to be able to stand up to Clinton, he’s going to have to be able to withstand the Bush machine, too.

    Perry almost looks like he’s on a suicide mission against Trump to save the party from that animal on his head. Still debating whether or not that deserves props.

    Bachmann did the same ankle biting routine on Perry during ’12 as she angled for a Romney appointment at the debates if you’ll recall the Gardasil incident.

    • #141
  22. user_1830 Coolidge
    user_1830
    @HerrForce1

    Rick Wilson envies Jonah Goldberg’s and Steve Hayes’ attacks from Trump. If this doesn’t draw some bombast Rick should be disappointed (maybe a gotee would help). Excellent point #4. I tire of the zero-to-sixty types that jump into something like a Trump sideshow.

    • #142
  23. Leigh Inactive
    Leigh
    @Leigh

    Pseudodionysius: Bachmann did the same ankle biting routine on Perry during ’12 as she angled for a Romney appointment at the debates if you’ll recall the Gardasil incident.

    That was her second act, after the kamikaze mission to take Pawlenty out. (The one candidate who maybe could have been plausible and who was unquestionably to Romney’s right.)

    I’m wondering if that’s at the back of Perry’s mind — he thought Bachmann was destructive last cycle and Trump looks like filling the same role, only worse.

    • #143
  24. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Leigh:

    Pseudodionysius: Bachmann did the same ankle biting routine on Perry during ’12 as she angled for a Romney appointment at the debates if you’ll recall the Gardasil incident.

    That was her second act, after the kamikaze mission to take Pawlenty out. (The one candidate who maybe could have been plausible and who was unquestionably to Romney’s right.)

    I’m wondering if that’s at the back of Perry’s mind — he thought Bachmann was destructive last cycle and Trump looks like filling the same role, only worse.

    Oh no, Rick Trolled!

    • #144
  25. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Leigh:

    Pseudodionysius: Bachmann did the same ankle biting routine on Perry during ’12 as she angled for a Romney appointment at the debates if you’ll recall the Gardasil incident.

    That was her second act, after the kamikaze mission to take Pawlenty out. (The one candidate who maybe could have been plausible and who was unquestionably to Romney’s right.)

    I’m wondering if that’s at the back of Perry’s mind — he thought Bachmann was destructive last cycle and Trump looks like filling the same role, only worse.

    Pawlenty who ended up working for Romney and telling Gingrich to pack it in?

    • #145
  26. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive
    Ball Diamond Ball
    @BallDiamondBall

    KP: “We’re not saying shut up. We’re saying don’t get conned.”

    We’re not getting conned. Enough lectures, please.

    • #146
  27. Ball Diamond Ball Inactive
    Ball Diamond Ball
    @BallDiamondBall

    Umbra Fractus: ” Why does every criticism of Trump have to be an endorsement of Bush?”

    Because every endorsement of Trump is a criticism of Bush.

    • #147
  28. Leigh Inactive
    Leigh
    @Leigh

    Pseudodionysius: Pawlenty who ended up working for Romney and telling Gingrich to pack it in?

    It’s been a while, but I did quite a bit of looking into it at the time.  He was to Romney’s right, which doesn’t mean he was the ultimate conservative.  His healthcare plan in Minnesota was preferable to Romneycare.  If he’d been just a little tougher and Bachmann hadn’t entered the picture, we might have been better off with a Midwesterner with no healthcare liability.  Speaking of which, we have one of those this time around…

    Gingrich was effectively campaigning to Romney’s left on some pretty substantial issues.  Remember him dumping on the Ryan plan?  And “King of Bain?”  Wanting him to pack it in says nothing about ideology to me.

    • #148
  29. Pseudodionysius Inactive
    Pseudodionysius
    @Pseudodionysius

    Leigh:

    Pseudodionysius: Pawlenty who ended up working for Romney and telling Gingrich to pack it in?

    It’s been a while, but I did quite a bit of looking into it at the time. He was to Romney’s right, which doesn’t mean he was the ultimate conservative. His healthcare plan in Minnesota was preferable to Romneycare. If he’d been just a little tougher and Bachmann hadn’t entered the picture, we might have been better off with a Midwesterner with no healthcare liability. Speaking of which, we have one of those this time around…

    Gingrich was effectively campaigning to Romney’s left on some pretty substantial issues. Remember him dumping on the Ryan plan? And “King of Bain?” Wanting him to pack it in says nothing about ideology to me.

    Yes, I’m sure his powerful fighting skills would have impressed the electorate as he took out the Barack Obama campaign at the knees. Sorry, but Minnesota Nice versus Chicago Thug never sounded impressive now nor impressive then and woulda, shoulda and coulda have been the Republican consultant choices for a few cycles now.

    • #149
  30. Leigh Inactive
    Leigh
    @Leigh

    Pseudodionysius: Yes, I’m sure his powerful fighting skills would have impressed the electorate as he took out the Barack Obama campaign at the knees. Sorry, but Minnesota Nice versus Chicago Thug never sounded impressive now nor impressive then and woulda, shoulda and coulda have been the Republican consultant choices for a few cycles now.

    That’s why I qualified it “if he’d been a little tougher.”  I entirely agree that he evidently wasn’t up to the job.

    There’s no real mystery, though, why Romney didn’t punch as hard at Obama.  He thought he was ahead.  When Romney was up, he played Mr. Nice Guy and kept it safe, even in the primaries.  When he was losing, he punched hard.  He punched hard in the first debate against Obama — and then decided he was winning and it was time to play it safe.  If your data is right, that’s a perfectly legitimate strategy.  Playing hardball can be risky, so if things are going your way you don’t deploy your heaviest artillery.

    But Romney’s data was wrong.  Really wrong.

    Oh, and don’t confuse Walker with Pawlenty.  Ask his opponents about that Midwestern Nice thing.

    • #150
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