When Newt Gets Cranky, Really Cranky and then . . . Goes Nuclear

Ahhh.  The Day of Reckoning is upon us.  Again. The clown cars come out, circle the ballot box and we all . . . wait the results with bated breath.  But until all those votes are counted, we have Uncle Newt’s latest reincarnation:

The Anti-Capitalist!

It’s amazing to watch the GOP race.  We ‘ve had stars rise and flame out before they streak across sky.  But Newt Gingrich took the super-nova route after Iowa’s humiliating results.  Still, the latest attack on Mitt Romney for making money, lots of money, while heading Bain Capital is really off the charts for Republicans.  Any Republican. Here’s what Newt said to a group of reporters in Manchester, NH:

“You have to ask the question, is capitalism really about the ability of a handful of rich people to manipulate the lives of thousands of people and then walk off with the money?”

Okay.  I can certainly appreciate that statement.  But I’m a Democrat Wandering the Wilderness.   Better yet, back in the 90s, my husband and I had a run-in with a corporate raiding mission that took down a 100+ year-old company in Philadelphia.  A lot of wreckage left behind with displaced workers and economic ripples to the wider community.  It’s called ‘creative’ capitalism, which is a nice, almost fuzzy phrase that takes the sting out—for those that create the mess, and then walk away, pockets a-jingle.

But Uncle Newt?   He’s a champion of capitalism, even the ugly, crony kind.  I’m not sure how Gingrich squares this attack on Romney, particularly with the latest reveal that, back in the day, Gingrich himself was involved with leveraged buyouts.

Upon leaving Congress in 1999, the former Speaker joined private equity firm Forstmann Little & Co. as a member of its advisory board.

It is unclear how long Gingrich served on the advisory board, or how much he was paid. The campaign has not yet responded to a request for comment.

Hummm.  Wonder if the firm hired him as a historian?  Inquiring minds want to know. Btw, in the CNN Money piece, Forstmann, Little & Co is cited as one of the original leveraged buyout firms.

To steal from Rick Perry–Oops!

Gingrich’s attacks were signaled earlier, of course, when he publicly vowed a blood feud, retribution for the carpet-bombing Mitt Romney’s Super-Pac delivered in the run up to the Iowa caucus.  Hell hath no fury like a foiled presidential candidate.  Especially when the candidate in question has such a high regard of himself [often referred to as hubris] and for whom hypocrisy is second nature.  We’ve seen this side of Newt Gingrich before when he righteously carried the impeachment standard against Bill Clinton, all the while carrying on his own illicit affair.

But considering how the entire Republican establishment has worked with such diligence, sworn absolute allegiance in making Barack Obama a one-term president, this strategy seems short-sighted, flawed.  Unless, of course, party politics takes a back seat to personal vendettas.

Gingrich has not gone uncritiqued by the party faithful.  Some of the responses I’ve picked up in columns and online are: disgraceful, disgusting, unhelpful and my favorite—he sounds like an Occupier [you know those people who need to take a bath and get a job].

Gingrich’s daughter, Jackie Cushman, attempted to defend her father’s bomb throwing when pressed with the question—won’t this undermine the GOPs’ conservative message [ya think?]:

I think the process that we’re going through — the whole primary process — the whole point is to figure out who is the best candidate to beat President Barack Obama.

That must be the official line from Gringrich’s campaign people because the prickly candidate said much the same thing.

Gingrich yesterday defended his new attacking posture, saying it is better for Republican voters to know the truth now and to force Romney to aggressively back his record.

“If somebody is going to crumble, they better crumble before the nomination,’’ Gingrich said.

So, it’s for the good of the party?  Tear Mitt Romney a new one and voters will come to their senses, see what they’re missing in not voting for Newt.

Good try but no cigar.  Although as Minx mentioned last night, Newt Gingrich has one solid fan, Todd Palin.  Someone [a small-minded person, no doubt] suggested that Todd’s endorsement was in exchange for Alaska’s Independence.  I cannot verify that.

True, I’m merely a spectator [a biased one at that] to the ongoing fracas.  But what I see in Newt Gingrich is pettiness, a hair-trigger temper and envy, none of which is becoming in a presidential candidate.  Still, I can almost feel sympathy for Uncle Newt—Mitt Romney appears untouchable, unflappable.  He’s handsome, calm, in good shape and from all reports, far richer.  It really isn’t fair.

Here’s the thing: I’m guessing Gordon Gekko would be downright stunned and heartbroken by these blistering attacks.

Greed is not good?  Predatory capitalism should be shunned?

Newt, we hardly knew ye.

New Hampshire will decide now.


23 Comments on “When Newt Gets Cranky, Really Cranky and then . . . Goes Nuclear”

  1. Pat Johnson says:

    I referred to this as “The Year of the Stupid” but wish to amend it by adding “Pot Calling Kettle”.

    The irony is that these ads, as “hateful” as Newt views them, are essentially telling the truth by dragging up old statements and former positions about each of them.

    Unlike the Willie Horton ad, these ads are actually “telling it like it is”. Mitt’s a two faced wobbler and Newt is a lying sack of sh*t. Doesn’t get much more “honest” than this.

    I love watching them take aim and shooting at one another because neither one is worthy to hold office of any sort.

    Mitt’s a cold blooded snake in the grass and Newt is a lying weasel.

    What else is new?

    • peggysue22 says:

      Yup. Unfortunately, it’s same old, same old. But the idea of the Republicans taking an anti-capitalist stand–even the most predatory form of capitalism is a wonder to behold.

      There’s not much to laugh about in this election cycle, but this is too much. As for Newt? He’s becoming a cartoon of himself. And then there’s Perry. He felt compelled to jump in, tried to be clever, anything to get his mug on camera.

      The crazy season has begun!

  2. bostonboomer says:

    Great post, Peggy Sue. Everything you say about Newt is true, but as I said in my morning post, I don’t care how much of a hypocrite Newt is, all I care about is that he hurts Romney. Newt has no chance to beat Obama, but Romney does unless the truth about him gets out. Gingrich is a means to that end, and I’ll take it.

    • peggysue22 says:

      Oh, trust me. I’m no fan of Romney. But Newt is someone I’ve never been able to stomach, and his behavior now is off the charts. But then, I didn’t live with Romney as a Governor either.

      My best friend in NJ feels nothing but loathing for Christie and yet he’s the love object of many Republicans. The only Republican candidate who would be close to tolerable [for me at least] would be Huntsman. That being said, I think Huntsman is probably the only true conservative of the bunch. Which I am not. But at least he appears to be sane, rational and strikes me as a thoughtful, intelligent individual.

      2012 is wash in my opinion on the presidential level. I have no horse in the race.

      • Pilgrim says:

        Newt is downright mean. Agree with you about Huntsman’s rationality, thoughtfulness and intelligence.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Huntsman supports a balanced budget amendment and minimal corporate taxes. I can’t vote for that.

        Gingrich is mean and nasty, and I can’t stand him, but if he can hurt Romney, who is truly dangerous for this country, I’ll put up with him.

        It’s not a question of my hating Romney as governor. I didn’t know as much about him then as I do now. Romney is Bush plus Obama on steroids.

        • dakinikat says:

          Any one that supports a balanced budget amendment can’t be trusted with the economy, imho. That’s an insane proposition and it totally misunderstands the institution of federal government. You shouldn’t be balancing a budget during good times, you should be running a surplus and examining your bond positions. It encourages governments to overspend and create bubbles and inflation. You also can’t possibly run a balanced budget in bad times without sending the country into a depression. It’s insanity.

  3. Allie says:

    BB – is Romney really that much worse than Obama? They both appear to be unprincipled con men to me. I don’t think either man will do this country any good – they aren’t the ones holding the strings anyway.

    • bostonboomer says:

      IMHO, Romney is much worse than Obama. I suggested you read the post I wrote this morning and previous posts I’ve written about him. Check out the links. Obama was someone Wall Street could influence. Electing Romney is like electing Wall Street. You might as well vote for Jamie Dimon.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Also, think about why The Boston Globe snubbed Romney. They endorsed Huntsman, someone who has no chance of winning. Why? Because Romney sucked as governor and we can’t take a chance at letting him suck even worse as POTUS. If you want Wall Street running the country instead of just having tons of influence, vote Romney.

  4. PJ says:

    Yes, great post! I love seeing the true Newt come out.

    However, I don’t think Newt’s line of attack will hurt Romney that much with Republicans. And as others have said, it helps Romney to address this kind of attack now rather than later in the general election.

    Newt staying in the race only helps Romney. In SC, Newt is dividing the same type of voters with Santorum. They are each getting about 20%. If Newt or Rick dropped out, those #s could combine to beat Romney’s 30%. But I just saw Newt on TV saying he thinks he can win SC, so I guess that’s not going to happen.

    If Romney wins three in a row, I think it’ll be pretty much over.

    • ralphb says:

      The line of attack won’t inoculate Willard. It just means he’ll get 8 months of it instead of the 6 you might expect from the Obama campaign.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Exactly. Obama’s people are gearing up to do the same attacks, but now Newt is doing the really dirty work for them. It’s not really dirty though, since it’s true.

      • PJ says:

        That’s just it, ralph. People are going to get sick of hearing about it. That’s one theory anyway… could be wrong.

  5. Allie says:

    Newt is an embarrassment and I’m ashamed he comes from my home state of Georgia.

    I have no doubt those men with their psychopathic egos are all carrying around lots of personal vendettas – and they are not confined to the Republican side of the aisle (Carter and Ted Kennedy come to mind).

    Does seem odd Newt would help Romney’s chances by staying in the S.C. race.

    • quixote says:

      Pity the poor Newter. If he stays in, he loses because the Robot wins. If he drops out, he loses because he hasn’t won.

      I’m sure, being a historian and all, he’s thinking how true it is that the world never appreciates its prophets in their own time.

      • peggysue22 says:

        Quixote said:

        “I’m sure, being a historian and all, he’s thinking how true it is that the world never appreciates its prophets in their own time.”

        You know what? I would not be surprised if that was ‘exactly’ the way The Newt felt. The ego is that big. The puny serfs never recognized their handsome Prince.

        But then, more often than not? A toad is just a toad.

  6. While I take this election & the future of our country seriously, your post made me smile. At times, I even laughed out loud. Do you think pocket protector Newter got shoved into a locker too many times in school by letter sweater jock Romny & his best buds? Seriously, we know Newter wasn’t popular in school…..he married his teacher, after all.

    The saddest part to me about all of this: those blue collar Republicans seem to believe whatever it is these people say even if tomorrow’s statements are the opposite position from today’s. Have all of the independent thinking, reasoned people fled the American Taliban Party? Have they gone into exile? Maybe they’ve grabbed their money and set themselves up in Costa Rica.

    Initially I thought that Huntsman was the only sane person in the field. Then, then……he said he supports the Ryan Plan. OMGoddess! Yes, let’s allow the elderly, many of whom aren’t as sharp as they once were, pick & choose an insurance carrier. After all, rates are so reasonable in the private sector. You nearly have to be a rocket scientist to figure out Bush’s prescription drug plan. My 90 year old neighbor can’t remember to pay her bills, renew her license or put gas in her car. She has no family to speak of, she is a former nun. In my experience, the older we get the fewer choices we want to deal with. And we are much more easily fooled by the slick scammers who sell insurance and everything else. We may get meaner in our old age (impatience mostly) but our cynicism diminishes.

    For more on Huntsman check out Pro Publica: http://www.propublica.org/article/our-guide-to-the-best-coverage-on-jon-huntsman-and-his-record After Sunday’s debate, I think he’s going to give Romney a run for his money. And the South doesn’t like Yankees – I don’t trust the polls for South Carolina. I fully expect some upsets ahead, with Huntsman rising on the charts. But then, before Perry entered the race, I was certain he would be the nominee. He actually did a good job on The Daily Show when he was hawking his book. I didn’t expect him to crash & burn in the debates. I was wrong then, I could easily be wrong now. I wish I believed in The Rapture & the whole field would simply go *POOF*, especially if Cheney happens to walking on the stage at the time. Bye, bye, boyz. Oh and they can also take Grover Norquist with them too.

    • peggysue22 says:

      I’m glad it made you smile, Connie. In reality, there isn’t much to smile about anymore. But Gingrich has managed to take spite and turn it into high comedy. Yes, he could be a product of his past [aren’t we all]. Payback time!

      As for Huntsman? I’m not suggesting I’d vote for the man. But if Santorum, Gingrich or Paul took the WH [don’t think there’s much chance of that], I’d be looking for my passport and the nearest exit. The Trinity of Terrible. Rick Perry blew himself up, thank goodness. He had me worried, too. Then he opened his mouth.

      None of the choices are good. In fact, short of a miracle there is no choice. So, we have to smile when we can and keep on trudging.

  7. ralphb says:

    This should be blatantly obvious but I guess it isn’t so Krugman spells it out.

    Businessmen and Economics

    A brief thought on something I’ll try to expand on later. Leaving aside all the questions about what Mitt Romney did or didn’t do at Bain — and about his self-aggrandizing double standard — there’s an even broader question: why does anyone believe that success in business qualified someone to make economic policy?

    For the fact is that running a business is nothing at all like making macro policy.

    • dakinikat says:

      That’s one of the memes that bothers me about the republicans. Households, Government, and Businesses are all unique institutions with varying goals and constraints. Equating one to another is pure stupidity. Households don’t exist in perpetuity. They can’t print money. Businesses don’t have the ability to tax. Businesses exist purely to return profits to owners. Households have goals based on completely differing characteristics like age of the heads of the household.

  8. ralphb says:

    Fighting on Democrats’ turf

    Take a guess who said this yesterday: “Voters are just now meeting the Real Romney — the buyout tycoon who executed takeovers, bankrupted businesses, and sent jobs overseas while killing American jobs.”

    MoveOn.org? No, it was Rick Perry.

    This may be correct that these attacks on Romney now by fellow Republicans will serve to validate the Democratic line against him in the GA.

  9. Minkoff Minx says:

    This post really brought out some good comments…good going Peggy.