BY ANDRÉ FRENCH
I protested. I cringed at the thought. Campaign season is nauseatingly long, and unnecessarily expensive. But circumstances beyond my control prevailed, and because I was with friends that chose to partake, I partook.
The number seventeen is an overwhelming number. But for reasons of implausible electability I fairly easily discounted a number of candidates based on applicable inexperience and name recognition. This, after all, is not the Democrat Party that took a no name junior Senator from Illinois and promoted him to King of the World. The GOP has it’s issues, but it has a history of vetting an Obama kind of candidate whose slimy ethics were employed to force his way into the Senate. A slick talent for delivering words without delivering goods is a hard sell for a party that understands better than its counterpart, the serious cost of grand ideas.
The “happy hour” debate scheduled for five o’clock took a more serious tone than the “Trump Show” that followed. This was in part due to the massive, mostly Ohio, audience, absent in the first debate. Not surprisingly, the horse with an outside chance rose to the challenge. What Carly Fiorina lacks in legislative experience (some may argue this to be an advantage), she more than makes up for in executive mastery, impeccable leadership qualities, and a backbone that conjures a Thatcherite resurrection. Her skill set shined, and I think she won the day. This is good because we need to see a woman apply for the presidency for reasons other than “It’s about time.” I felt like Bobby Jindal finished a splendid second, with Texas Governor Rick Perry on his heels.
The Main Event
I have to say that the real winner in the evening’s main attraction was the three person panel representing the very best of FOX News. Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I watch ‘some’ FOX News. My information diet is also sustained by a plethora of other news sources, domestic and international, many of them moderate and liberal progressive, as well as a healthy dose of conservative periodicals that encourage thinking, like City Journal, The New Criterion and The New Atlantis. I have often found it interesting that the frustrated-by-facts detractors of FOX form their opinions based on one of two realities. They’ve rarely or never spent reasonable time watching or reading FOX’s work (I am not referring to commentary here), and rely almost exclusively on what they’ve heard someone else say about the network. Or they feel their progressive positions so threatened after decades of prevailing leftist control of media, that they refuse to even consider that they might not have all the answers.
But I digress. Chris Wallace, Megyn Kelly, and Bret Baier moderated a potentially explosive minefield of personalities and did so with acuity and humor.
The best moment? While there were many good ones, I have to give the prize to Bret Baier for asking the “show of hands” question. I was floored with enthusiasm. I am not a follower of MMA, but that opening exchange with Trump was like watching Ronda Rousey knock out her opponent in the first 34 seconds of the fight. Journalistic brilliance, right out of the gate. But it wasn’t all downhill from there.
Who won? Anybody’s guess. It was not as clear cut as the earlier round. But I do think that Cruz, love him or hate him, showed himself to be the honest symbol of conservatism he has been in the Senate. He is banking on his “stand” against the wishy washy right to “seat” him squarely in the top contending for the White House. Rubio also shined, as polished as he has ever been during a tenure of success in Florida politics. It is interesting to note that both candidates have their heritage in Cuba. They understand where this administration has compromised on the way human beings treat human beings, and they are determined to do something about it.
Most all the contenders did well. The sandbox boys got their licks in. Christie and Paul can always be counted on for something of a Bill O’Reilly vs. Barney Frank exchange.
But the real news of the evening was found in the suicidal addiction that is Donald Trump. Now, I refuse to discount the value Trump has brought to the process, at this politically correct time in particular. So too does Dr. Ben Carson set the record strait in the absolutely asinine manipulation of speech and thought represented by progressive borne political correctness. But Carson, who really did very well, has less a chance of a seat in the oval office than the real estate tycoon.
However, in the end, what value Trump brings to the table turns the table upside down by the time the game is over. He’s adept at counting cards, but inept at counting chips because they’re now scattered all over the floor. He’s a brave, brash, successful and belligerent, woman disrespecting wrecking ball, and I credit FOX for beginning to put him out of the American voter’s misery. He played his hand, and he has proven he does not play well with others. That is dangerous.
I have contended for some time that Donald Trump, should his loyal minions stay engaged, and leaning heavily on his own personal wealth, may very well become Ross Perot 2.0. Hillary’s “Trump” card, and America’s fast track to the abyss. However, the pillory of Hillary is just getting started. She has a lot more creative lying to do if she is to get herself out of the mess she’s taken years getting herself into. If she fails, I don’t see Sander’s convincing enough moderate Democrats to swallow his “at least honest” penchant for socialism. Enter senior Massachusetts Senator, and “Native American”, Elizabeth Warren. Hold on to your seats, while you pray the progressives don’t hold on to theirs.
Self-Educated American Guest Writer, André French, is a husband and father of three from Sharon Springs, NY. He is a small business owner, musician, songwriter, and worship leader, and writes regularly on history, politics, culture, faith, and family.