In the politics of running for president over past years, especially since the advent of television, and more specifically all of the 24/7 news programs which are on ad infinitum during the long and difficult presidential primary season with its incessant and seemingly never-ending candidate debates a lot of crazy things get said, re-said and hashed over almost in a continuous loop.
But, the debates and the endless news stories that spring up around them and are often fueled by them, allows us to get a sense about the debates and the candidates themselves, as who the candidates are and what they do or do not stand for. What they will and will not do if elected.
That should be and usually is a good thing, because it can help us weed out the pretenders from the wanna be’s and the shouldn’t be’s. And find candidates from both sides that have some modicum of common sense! Right?
Right? And then there’s Rick Santorum.
In 1964 Barry Goldwater burst upon the scene as the first real scary conservative candidate that actually had a fair to middling chance at being elected president of the United States. Television helped defeat him and soundly. That was not a bad thing. Barry remained in the U. S. Senate and went on to become a really good conservative elder statesman who turned from being a real scary hairy dude in to someone who often made sense and often stood up for the left side of the aisle when it came to the use of common sense.
But, Barry, hale fellow well met (and good friend of JFK) that he was, gave rise to today’s neo-cons or new conservatives who have made Barry look tame by comparison. I’m talking about Ronald Reagan (whom from all accounts Barry considered to be a no-account), George Herbert Walker Bush, Dick ‘Darth Vader’ Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, John Ashcroft, George Walker Bush, the lessor, Newt Gingrich, Eric Cantor, Sarah Palin, John ‘Formerly known as Maverick’ McCain, Michelle Bachman, Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, who went from being a staunch middle of the road liberal leaning compassionate conservative to in his own words – ‘An extremely severe conservative’ (whatever that may be) and finally to the scariest crazy ever to seek the job as president of the United States, Rick Santorum.
Rick is not just scary but just from his quotable pronouncements he makes Freddie Krueger look sane. Let’s just finish with a few of his bon mots or what I like to call scrazy announcements.
“If the Supreme Court says you have the right to consensual (gay) sex within your home, then you have the right to bigamy, you have the right to polygamy, you have the right to incest, you have the right to adultery. You have the right to do anything. (Say what? The Supreme Court said all that? Whoa!) “In every society, the definition of marriage has not ever to my knowledge included homosexuality. That’s not to pick on homosexuality. It’s not, you know, man on child, man on dog, or whatever the case may be. It is one thing. Does that undermine the fabric of our society? I would argue yes, it does. It all comes from, I would argue, this right to privacy that doesn’t exist in my opinion in the United States Constitution.
“One of the things I will talk about, that no president has talked about before, is I think the dangers of contraception in this country. Many of the Christian faith have said, well, that’s okay, contraception is okay. It’s not okay. It’s a license to do thing in a sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.”
“The idea that the Crusades and the fight of Christendom against Islam is somehow an aggression on our part is absolutely anti-historical. And that is what the perception is by the American Left who hates Christendom… What I’m talking about is onward American soldiers. What we’re talking about are core American values.”
Gays in the military – “They’re in close quarters, they live with people, they obviously shower with people.”
“All the people who live in the West Bank are Israelis. There are no Palestinians. This is Israeli land.”
“I am not about equality of result when it comes to income inequality. There is income inequality in America. There always has been and hopefully, and I do say that, there always will be.”
“The president is arguing that Catholics will have to hire women priests to comply with unemployment discrimination issues.”
“They are taking faith and crushing it. Why? When you marginalize faith in America, when you remove the pillar of God-given rights, then what’s left is the French Revolution. What’s left is a government that gives you rights. What’s left are no unalienable rights. What’s left is a government that will tell you who you are, what you’ll do and when you’ll do it. What’s left in France became the guillotine.”
Given in almost any context these are scary quotes from someone who wants to us to elect him president of the United States. Surely, America will wake up and tell this guy to take a hike and go back to whatever rock he crawled out from under.
The real scary thing I take from these quotes are how they have a similar thread to them as many quotes attributed to Hitler before he came to power in Germany. Hitler developed a huge following, which he used to get elected to the Bundestag and then in a quick lightning strikes ousted his opponents (even some in his own party) and seized power, thereby enacting all of the crazy ideas he had been stating while people stood on the sidelines and poo pooed him. Most lived to regret it. And many more died as a result.
To grab a line from Mark Twain, ‘Suppose you were Rick Santorum; and suppose you were crazy? But, I repeat myself!” —– Bob Bearden
Rick Santorum, Bad at Math – Terry Gresham