Friday, December 30, 2011

"Liars, Demagogues and Ignoramuses": Der Spiegel's Marc Pitzke holds a mirror up to the GOP


Der Spiegel's Marc Pitzke has a must read column online at Der Spiegel International entitled "A Club of Liars, Demagogues and Ignoramuses." Pizke is a German writer and photographer living in New York City, and in his column he provides a startlingly clear-eyed and objective description of the Republican Party's remarkably dysfunctional primary process. Pitzke's thesis is straightforward: the Republican field has been so bad it has actually damaged the reputation of the United States:
It's true that on the road to the White House all sorts of things can happen, and usually do. No campaign can avoid its share of slip-ups, blunders and embarrassments. Yet this time around, it's just not that funny anymore. In fact, it's utterly horrifying.

It's horrifying because these eight so-called, would-be candidates are eagerly ruining not only their own reputations and that of their party, the party of Lincoln lore. Worse: They're ruining the reputation of the United States.
Pitzke addresses several of the GOP candidates individually, like this scourging of Newt Gingrich:
Pompous and blustering, Gingrich gets away with this humdinger as well as with selling himself as a Washington outsider -- despite having made millions of dollars as a lobbyist in Washington. At least the man's got chutzpah.

The hypocrisy doesn't end here. Gingrich claims moral authority on issues such as the "sanctity of marriage," yet he's been divorced twice. He sprang the divorce on his first wife while she was sick with cancer. (His supporters' excuse: It's been 31 years, and she's still alive.) He cheated on his second wife just as he was pressing ahead with Bill Clinton's impeachment during the Monica Lewinsky affair, unaware of the irony. The woman he cheated with, by the way, was one of his House aides and 23 years his junior -- and is now his perpetually smiling third wife.
Ouch. Read what Pitzke had to say about the others at Der Spiegel International.

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore

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