We all know the old saw, “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.”
But how about “Fool me two dozen times and you’re the Stupid Party!” (aka, the GOP)?
The Republicans certainly did their best to prove the latter in election 2012.
And how were they fooled? The last election was arguably over and done before the real battle started when the mainstream media overtly and covertly made mincemeat of the Republican candidates during the primary debates, effectively neutering them for the main event.
Well, except for, momentarily, Newt Gingrich, who provided the one intellectually stimulating moment during that tedious and seemingly interminable series of events when he called the media out. That, unfortunately, could only be effective once.
Otherwise, the MSM performed the role of an unopposed air force in a softening up operation against a Third World country before the ground troops are brought in to mop up. And they did it well. (Yes, I know it was a “close” election, but in an economy with 8 percent unemployment and 16-trillion dollar deficits, it should have been a Republican wipeout.)
The extraordinary thing is that the GOP leadership allowed this to happen when a reasonable person could see it coming so far off he could have read War and Peace twice.
It was like nominating George Stephanopoulos to be the chairman of the Republican National Committee. Might as well go Full Monty and make it Chris Matthews next time.
The first thing the GOP has to do to win in 2016 is put an absolute, dead stop, end to this.
To begin with, learn who your friends and enemies are. (Yes, I also know we’re supposed to keep our friends close and our enemies closer. But that doesn’t mean you give your enemy your daughter to sleep with.) Then, obviously, you set up your own party debates your way. Keep the MSM as far away as the nearest leper colony.
Then what do you do?
I don’t recommend putting Hannity, O’Reilly, and the Fox News crew front and center. However you may feel about them — I, like many people, have different feelings about different ones — they are celebrities. You don’t want the media to shine, even if they’re on your side. They’re unelected and will be there for decades anyway (sigh). You want the candidates to shine – and their ideas.
One approach might be to start with a list of intelligent right-of-center people who will ask reasonable questions eliciting substantive responses. You can find them in abundance at such places as the National Review, the Weekly Standard, Breitbart.com, Townhall.com, HotAir.com, RedState.com, and, to be self-serving, PJMedia.com. There are plenty more, including, naturally, the Wall Street Journal opinion pages.