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  1. Profile photo of Paul A. Rahe Contributor

    When are Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney going to go under Peter’s knife?

    • #1
    • February 17, 2012 at 8:24 am
  2. Profile photo of Ben Domenech Inactive

    Fantastic interview. I hope Santorum in particular will sit down with Peter as well.

    • #2
    • February 17, 2012 at 8:55 am
  3. Profile photo of Gus Marvinson Inactive

    Gingrich impressed me, as I expected he would. If we could somehow combine the best qualities of Gingrich and Santorum into a Frankencandidate…

    • #3
    • February 17, 2012 at 9:21 am
  4. Profile photo of The Mugwump Inactive

    I’m much more sympathetic to Mr. Gingrich after listening to the interview. His delivery is managed and sober, and his ideas are compelling. I also detected just a wee bit of hurt when Peter brought up the criticisms of his character. But Newt is like the little girl with the curl. When he’s good, he is very good. But when he’s bad, he’s horrid.

    • #4
    • February 17, 2012 at 9:21 am
  5. Profile photo of mfgcbot Member

    Newt did himself a favor by sitting for this interview. I couldn’t watch it, though, without constantly thinking to myself “Peter Robinson is the master”, and that it is something approaching a national scandal that he has not conducted at least one of the Republican debates. The voters would be well-served were the remaining candidates to submit to at least this kind of one-on-one forum.

    • #5
    • February 17, 2012 at 9:39 am
  6. Profile photo of Peter Robinson Founder
    Paul A. Rahe: When are Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney going to go under Peter’s knife? · 2 hours ago

    Beginning when you first made the suggestion, Paul, we’ve been in touch with each of the candidates, extending invitations to tape Uncommon Knowledge. The problem? Scheduling. Since we’re here in California–we try to tape back East once or twice a year, but that’s all–it’s been difficult. But we’ve had a couple of near misses with both the Santorum and Romney campaigns–in each case, something came up–and both have told us they’ll try hard to arrange something when their candidate is here in California.

    In other words, Paul, when you say “jump,” I say “how high?”

    • #6
    • February 17, 2012 at 10:04 am
  7. Profile photo of Peter Robinson Founder
    mfgcbot: Newt did himself a favor by sitting for this interview. I couldn’t watch it, though, without constantly thinking to myself “Peter Robinson is the master”, and that it is something approaching a national scandal that he has not conducted at least one of the Republican debates. · 47 minutes ago

    My day is still young out here in California, but you’ve already made it.

    • #7
    • February 17, 2012 at 10:44 am
  8. Profile photo of Don Tillman Member

    This is a fantastic interview. It goes by fast, hitting a lot of topics, yet there is substantial depth and insight.

    My favorite nugget, early on (and again, it whizzes by):

    Newt Gingrich: “I happen to think that entrepreneurs, engineers, scientists, technicians, are better than Washington regulators and Washington red tape and Washington lawyers at solving environmental problems. And free market countries have better environments than socialist countries. That’s a fact.”

    One disappointment; Peter’s truly foundational question at 9:55, the one about the economic mechanism of focused spending with diffused costs, is mostly ignored. Instead Newt riffs off on unemployment compensation, which is pretty far removed.

    • #8
    • February 17, 2012 at 11:10 am
  9. Profile photo of Pseudodionysius Inactive

    Peter,

    If the Republican party has any brains left (I can’t even begin to imagine the Pythonesque photoshop EJ would do on that), they should make sure you do the exact same length of time with Santorum and Romney as soon as possible. The interview does more to frame the candidates and set up intelligent questions leading into the debates than do 1,000 pages of screeds, tweets, and squeals by bunker blasting bloggers and bookmeisters.

    Newt was very solid here and I think the format would do a world of good for both Santorum and Romney as well as result in CNN asking why they pay their airport drones so much money.

    • #9
    • February 17, 2012 at 11:32 am
  10. Profile photo of Viator Member

    Wow!

    • #10
    • February 18, 2012 at 1:04 am
  11. Profile photo of Duane Oyen Member

    I do recall asking about this a few weeks back. I won’t be able to watch this for a while. If it was released as an MP3 rather than as a streaming video where you have to sit anchored in front of the computer (hint hint…..) , I’d get to it a lot sooner.

    But we’ve always known that Newt could do this kind of thing well. That is not the problem with his candidacy- Mark Steyn explained all of that back in January during the Newt Boomlet.

    • #11
    • February 18, 2012 at 1:22 am
  12. Profile photo of Charley Davis Inactive

    The ease in which Gingrich responds to pointed questions without having to pause for reflection is impressive. I believe this is the benefit of having a thoroughly articulated political stance so that all ideas stem from the same root.

    • #12
    • February 18, 2012 at 1:29 am
  13. Profile photo of jobethian Member

    Newt is awesome. He actually answers the question. Not with campaign-speech sound-bytes, but Gingrich actually answers the question with real solutions. 

    I love the idea of generating Federal Revenues by utilizing Federal Land. Yes. Better yet, sell those lands and let the private sector put that land to use in the marketplace and create private-sector jobs.

    Peter’s most embarrassing moment is hilarious. Newt talks about giving people paychecks rather than food stamps, and Peter doesn’t get that Gingrich is talking about jobs, not government handouts. LOL 

    Second Peter doesn’t get it how private retirement savings , through the well-known mechanism of reinvestment of dividends over a lifetime, can better protect people from market fluctuations than phoney government promises and ponzi-schemes, which are subject to the whims of government “benevolence”, which is simply the government’s ability to tax most for the benefit of some.

    No one speaks the truth about the threat of Islamic-sponsored terrorism, the failure of government in education, wrong-headed energy policy, Judicial tyranny, Obama’s war on Christianity, etc. etc. as does Newt Gingrich. And no one is as right as Gingrich is about foreign policy either.

    • #13
    • February 18, 2012 at 1:50 am
  14. Profile photo of Kervinlee Member

    I know all the knocks on him, but I still find him an attractive candidate in many ways. After this interview, I find myself asking: why shouldn’t he be elected?

    • #14
    • February 18, 2012 at 2:34 am
  15. Profile photo of Gus Marvinson Inactive

    Gingrich’s response, at about 7:00, after Peter presented Richard Epstein’s assertion that the Framers intended an “independent” judiciary, made me stand up and cheer.

    • #15
    • February 18, 2012 at 2:41 am
  16. Profile photo of Freeven Member
    Kervinlee: I know all the knocks on him, but I still find him an attractive candidate in many ways. After this interview, I find myself asking: why shouldn’t he be elected? · 1 hour ago

    Yeah. I could vote for this Newt.

    • #16
    • February 18, 2012 at 4:14 am
  17. Profile photo of Kervinlee Member
    Freeven
    Kervinlee: I know all the knocks on him, but I still find him an attractive candidate in many ways. After this interview, I find myself asking: why shouldn’t he be elected? · 1 hour ago

    Yeah. I could vote for thisNewt. · 1 hour ago

    I take your point.

    • #17
    • February 18, 2012 at 5:20 am
  18. Profile photo of Give Me Liberty Inactive

    What subliminal message is he sending by wearing a purple tie, hmmmm?

    • #18
    • February 18, 2012 at 6:24 am
  19. Profile photo of Franco Member

    I think the pros far outweigh the cons. I really think he would be a formidable candidate in the general, and people would vote for this guy. I think he is our only hope actually.

    Besides, he’s pre-demonized. 

    Great interview from Peter, thanks!

    • #19
    • February 18, 2012 at 7:34 am
  20. Profile photo of Barfly Member
    Freeven Yeah. I could vote for this Newt. · 3 hours ago

    LOL scornfully. The majority of knocks against Newt are second hand, the product of others’ manufacture and your credulity. Not sayin’ there’s nothing valid against him, but on balance I hear way more smoke than fire. (Sorry, borken metaphor.)

    A challenge: for what serious arguments against that other Gingrich can you find compelling evidence, of sufficient length and depth to provide independent context? Are you just hitchhiking on the bandwagon?

    Jeez. I bet a lot of you people believe in anthropogenic global warming, too. No, oops, wait, bad example, …

    • #20
    • February 18, 2012 at 8:08 am
  21. Profile photo of Lucy Pevensie Member
    JoBeth Gerrard
    George Savage

    JoBeth, Peter understands it all perfectly well. It’s just that he is a great interviewer, so he follows-up with the standard argument against private retirement accounts: What happens when the market takes a dive? The result is that we all got to see and evaluateNewt’sresponse to what would surely be President Obama’s argument in the general election.

    Oh I see. Peter Robinson is the Inspector Clouseau of interviewers. He onlyappearsto be bumbling around without a clue about the real world of jobs and savings. What can I say? He certainly made Gingrich look brilliant by comparison. Well done. 

    Really? You really can’t understand that interviewing technique? A good interviewer uses it all the time. He would be less deft and professional if every time he was, in effect, quoting someone else’s ideas he said “Some critics would argue . . . ” That would sound really clunky. It’s not that he’s bumbling: he’s spare and elegant in style, and you seem to have missed the between-the-lines content. 

    • #21
    • February 18, 2012 at 9:35 am
  22. Profile photo of Lucy Pevensie Member

    By the way, the interview was fabulous, as expected. Thanks, Peter. I don’t know; every time you folks convince me that I have to pick one of the other candidates, Newt comes back and reminds me why I love him. When he’s good, he’s really, really good.

    • #22
    • February 18, 2012 at 9:37 am
  23. Profile photo of George Savage Admin
    JoBeth Gerrard: Second Peter doesn’t get it how private retirement savings , through the well-known mechanism of reinvestment of dividends over a lifetime, can better protect people from market fluctuations than phoney government promises and ponzi-schemes, which are subject to the whims of government “benevolence”, which is simply the government’s ability to tax most for the benefit of some.· 8 hours ago

    JoBeth, Peter understands it all perfectly well. It’s just that he is a great interviewer, so he follows-up with the standard argument against private retirement accounts: What happens when the market takes a dive? The result is that we all got to see and evaluate Newt’s response to what would surely be President Obama’s argument in the general election.

    Personally, I’d jump right on board the Robinson for President bandwagon, but he stubbornly and persistently refuses my efforts to draft him.

    • #23
    • February 18, 2012 at 10:08 am
  24. Profile photo of James Of England Moderator
    George Savage

    JoBeth, Peter understands it all perfectly well. It’s just that he is a great interviewer, so he follows-up with the standard argument against private retirement accounts: What happens when the market takes a dive? The result is that we all got to see and evaluateNewt’sresponse to what would surely be President Obama’s argument in the general election.

    Personally, I’d jump right on board the Robinson for President bandwagon, but he stubbornly and persistently refuses my efforts to draft him. · 9 minutes ago

    This is a particularly good example of Peter’s interviewing skills. Enough depth to produce interesting statements, but moving quickly. Some pressure, but with enough comfort that Newt is thinking about policy rather than worrying about potential gotchas.

    I’d have quite liked it if, when Newt talked about balancing the budget, Peter had asked if Newt would like to return the revenue side of that balance to 20.6% of gdp, for instance; I’ve not heard him talking about the role of the tax hikes and spending cuts he opposed in achieving balance, and that strikes me as interesting, but there are others who do that stuff.

    • #24
    • February 18, 2012 at 10:27 am
  25. Profile photo of jobethian Member
    George Savage

    JoBeth, Peter understands it all perfectly well. It’s just that he is a great interviewer, so he follows-up with the standard argument against private retirement accounts: What happens when the market takes a dive? The result is that we all got to see and evaluateNewt’sresponse to what would surely be President Obama’s argument in the general election.

    Oh I see. Peter Robinson is the Inspector Clouseau of interviewers. He only appears to be bumbling around without a clue about the real world of jobs and savings. What can I say? He certainly made Gingrich look brilliant by comparison. Well done.

    • #25
    • February 18, 2012 at 10:58 am
  26. Profile photo of James Of England Moderator

    Most of the way through until the first serious lie. Romney’s plan B law was passed over his veto- it wasn’t his choice whether or not to follow it. He initially took the position that a flaw in its wording allowed him to essentially ignore it, but later legal advice (as in, later in the same day) persuaded him that he was wrong. Even had he ignored his official legal advice, the legislature was already preparing to re-pass the law with the mandate made more specific. I can’t find a full account of the story right now, but the Washington post has some of the details here.

    In addition, the mandate applied only to the provision of Plan B to rape victims. This is specifically permitted, for the prevention of conception, under the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services, which governs Catholic hospitals, that particular rule being based on a 1989 judgment. Some variations on this rule caused problems with Catholic doctrine, such as in Connecticut’s version, but the Massachusetts law did not require a conscience violation, and applied only to a small number of institutions (ie. none with other rules).

    • #26
    • February 18, 2012 at 11:10 am
  27. Profile photo of James Of England Moderator

    If Obama is winning the annual award from the leading (mostly) Catholic campaign for religious liberty in a few years time, I’ll be prepared to revise my views of his mandate. Until then, it seems pretty clear that the Catholic Church does not view as equivalent things that it accepts and things that it rejects.

    Santorum, it is worth noting, is more precise in his objection; it’s still false, in that it claims that it was in violation of Catholic conscience and in that it claims that it was Romney’s choice, and misleading in that it fairly clearly implies a link with Romneycare, but much, much less so.

    • #27
    • February 18, 2012 at 11:28 am
  28. Profile photo of Freeven Member
    Barfly
    Freeven Yeah. I could vote for this Newt. · 3 hours ago

    LOL scornfully. The majority of knocks against Newt are second hand, the product of others’ manufacture and your credulity. Not sayin’ there’s nothing valid against him, but on balance I hear way more smoke than fire. (Sorry, borken metaphor.)

    A challenge: for what serious arguments againstthat otherGingrich can you find compelling evidence, of sufficient length and depth to provide independent context? Are you just hitchhiking on the bandwagon?

    Jeez. I bet a lot of you people believe in anthropogenic global warming, too. No, oops, wait, bad example, … · 23 hours ago

    You assume too much here. I was on board with Newt, flaws and all, even after he embarrassed himself with his attacks on Romney’s work at Bain and his feeble attempts to defend his work at Freddie Mac. I still prefer him strongly to Romney. Santorum, I think, is a better choice, however, and once he became viable my support shifted to him. If Santorum were to fall out of contention, I’d return to Newt. I just wish he were more consistently the Newt we see in the video.

    • #28
    • February 19, 2012 at 7:01 am
  29. Profile photo of Larry Koler Member
    Kervinlee
    Freeven
    Kervinlee: I know all the knocks on him, but I still find him an attractive candidate in many ways. After this interview, I find myself asking: why shouldn’t he be elected? · 1 hour ago

    Yeah. I could vote for thisNewt. · 1 hour ago

    I take your point. · Feb. 17 at 4:20pm

    This is the real Newt — no filter, no commentators. The other Newt that some people worry about is, at root, a phantasmagorical caricature created by the left. Believe your own eyes and ears. 

    • #29
    • February 19, 2012 at 9:21 am
  30. Profile photo of R. Craigen Inactive

    The prop 8 decision was not an example of the (very real) war on religion — it was a war on “We the people” as articulated in the founding documents.

    • #30
    • February 19, 2012 at 9:26 am
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