If you’re following the 2012 presidential campaign at this point, I’d like to suggest you stop, read a good book or two or three, and come back in January when the primaries and caucuses start. I’d prefer that we all wait even longer to be honest with you, but I guess the point when people start voting is as logical a time as any.
And there couldn’t be a less logical time than now, because there isn’t merely nothing going on, there’s less than nothing. Consider:
– Michelle Bachmann made big news the other day by confusing John Wayne with John Wayne Gacy, which really has a lot to do with how we’re going to get federal spending under control.
– Mitt Romney made news a week ago by jokingly referring to himself as unemployed, which really has a lot to do with any policies that might be put in place to prevent so many other people from being unemployed.
– Sarah Palin, who is not even running, made big news by going on a bus tour, suspending the bus tour because she had jury duty, then speculating that maybe she would and maybe she wouldn’t resume the bus tour. This has a great deal to do with our ultimate strategy with respect to Libya, Egypt and Syria.
– Newt Gingrich made big news when his entire campaign staff quit. Apparently they were shocked to discover he is actually running for president.
– Tim Pawlenty had to answer for a “blunder” that amounted to little more than a decision not to attack Mitt Romney in a debate just moments before everyone was asked by CNN’s John King if they prefer Johnny Cash or Elvis.
– Herman Cain was asked by a reporter for the 42,904th time what it’s like to be a black Republican.
– President Obama gave some speech and political reporters dutifully reported how many times he used a certain word in the speech.
You’d have to be dumb as a box of rocks to care about any of this. It has nothing to do with the future of our nation. It has nothing to do with any of the issues we face. Political reporters, who are obsessed with campaigns but know nothing about the governing of the nation, eat it up. Bachmann’s John Wayne “gaffe” was front-page national news, just as Romney’s “insensitive joke” got big coverage last week.
My complaint here is not about the media’s liberal bias. It is about their shallowness and stupidity. They can tell you how much money someone raised, or how many people showed up at their fundraiser (as well as the notables who skipped same), and they can tell you when someone says something stupid, makes a mistake, stutters, yammers or fidgets. But they can’t tell you anything about what kind of president any of these people would make, because they don’t even know what that means.
And the political junkies who lap all this up are no better. Everything happening right now is mind-blowingly irrelevant. This is not to say there’s nothing you can learn right now that will be useful next year. Look at the candidate’s web sites and study their issue positions. Study their backgrounds so you can make a determination as to whether they actually have the skill and experience to accomplish the things they say they want to do. Research their records to see what they’ve achieved (not just what they’ve “stood for”) so you can get an idea of what they’re likely to achieve as president.
But for God’s sake, can we all just ignore the gigantic reality show that watches in anticipation for the moment when Tim Pawlenty is caught stealing Mitt Romney’s peanut butter? If there’s anything stupider than this parade of irrelevance, I can’t imagine what it is.