Rage Against the [Political] Machine

Appearing on Fox News Sunday, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin gave conservative voters in Florida the following advice:

You gotta rage against the machine, at this point in order to defend our republic and save what is good and secure and prosperous about our nation, we need somebody who is engaged in sudden and relentless reform and isn’t afraid to shake it up. Shake up that establishment.

So, if for no other reason to rage against the machine vote for Newt, annoy a liberal. Vote Newt. Keep this vetting process going, keep the debate going.

What did Governor Palin mean by “that establishment?”  Is she a former hippie, somehow reliving the heady days of Haight-Asbury? Nope.

The Establishment she refers to is the GOP Elite – the Beltway insiders who are attempting to maintain control and continue the status quo of moderate mediocrity in the Republican Party.

A perfect example of how out-of-touch the GOP Elite are may be found in the words of George Will, token “Conservative” political pundit of newspaper editorial pages and ABC This Week, where he said yesterday:

Time is not Newt Gingrich’s friend because the more time he has the more he talks. And the more he talks the more he says things, as he just here this morning, he said that I would love to be civil, but I’m running against a maniacal liar. Now, that’s pretty strong language. I don’t know if you have ever told Longfellow’s nursery rhyme to your 4-year-old daughter Alice yet. ‘There’s a little girl, had a little curl right in the middle of the forehead. When she was good, she was very good indeed. And when she was bad, she was very horrid.’ And we’re at the horrid stage with Newt Gingrich.

Remember, this is the same snob who wrote the following about good old-fashioned American blue jeans on April 16, 2009:

Denim is the carefully calculated costume of people eager to communicate indifference to appearances. But the appearances that people choose to present in public are cues from which we make inferences about their maturity and respect for those to whom they are presenting themselves.

…Today it is silly for Americans whose closest approximation of physical labor consists of loading their bags of clubs into golf carts to go around in public dressed for driving steers up the Chisholm Trail to the railhead in Abilene.

This is not complicated. For men, sartorial good taste can be reduced to one rule: If Fred Astaire would not have worn it, don’t wear it. For women, substitute Grace Kelly.

If it was up to Beltway Boys like Mr. Will, conservatives would behave like good little sheeple and shut up and vote for Romney.

Former professional politician turned actor and conservative radio talk show host Fred Thompson has noticed the “Beltway bias” as well, calling out candidate and pundit alike:

Former Sen. Fred Thompson (R-Tenn.) on Sunday attacked Mitt Romney for “unseemliness and overkill” in his aggressive campaign against Newt Gingrich, the candidate Thompson has endorsed.

Romney’s “modus operandi, basically, is to play Mr. Nice Guy until somebody gets close to him,” Thompson said on NBC’s Meet the Press. “And then he unleashes his attack machine. And that’s what happened in Iowa and it’s what’s happening in Florida.”

Thompson said that a story in Sunday’s New York Times depicts “Romney’s staff … patting themselves on the back, talking about how mean and down they are. How they’ve got Matt Drudge in their back pocket. And how Romney is in on all of it.”

For months, Drudge has been running a steady stream of pro-Romney and anti-Gingrich stories on his website, Drudge Report.

Fred ‘s right.  Romney’s and his campaign staff have definitely turned up the heat this week on Newt Gingrich.  According to the previously referenced New York Times article:

In a call last Sunday morning, just hours after Mr. Romney’s double-digit loss to Mr. Gingrich in the South Carolina primary, the Romney team outlined the new approach to the candidate. Put aside the more acute focus on President Obama and narrow in on Mr. Gingrich.

Find lines of attack that could goad Mr. Gingrich into angry responses and rally mainstream Republicans. Swarm Gingrich campaign events to rattle him. Have Mr. Romney drop his above-the-fray persona and carry the fight directly to his opponent, especially in two critical debates scheduled for the week.

The results of that strategy, carried out by a veteran squad of strategists and operatives assembled by Mr. Romney to deal with just this kind of moment, have been on striking display here.

By this weekend, Mr. Romney’s aides were on the offensive and increasingly confident, with some combination of their strategy and Mr. Gingrich’s own performance swinging polls in Mr. Romney’s direction. Even as it acknowledged the damage inflicted on Mr. Romney by the past several weeks, his team suggested that it had learned a lesson about never letting up on rivals, especially if Mr. Romney wins the nomination and confronts Mr. Obama in the general election.

As far as The Drudge Report is concerned,  please read it and decide for yourself.

My good friend, Gene Hoyas – The Bulldog Pundit – has been writing for a while now that Mitt Romney was going to be the Republican candidate, no matter what.  It’s not that he’s a big fan, quite the opposite.  However, he knew early on that the political chicanery brought to bear by the Establishment would tar and feather Gingrich’s campaign beyond redemption.

Unfortunately, so far, he is turning out to be a prophet. And ain’ t it a cotton-pickin’ shame.

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