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The CNBC Republican Debate: Bring In the Clowns


The CNBC Republican Debate: Bring In the Clowns

Robert Borosage

The CNBC Republican presidential debate last night opened with a startling bolt of straight talk: “We are on the verge, perhaps, of picking someone who cannot do this job,” said Ohio Governor John Kasich, ignoring the inane moderator request that the candidates begin the debate by naming their biggest weakness.


The Republicans are essential. We need them to act evil and insane, like cartoon villains, so that 51% of voters will think Hillary or Bernie is the most reasonable alternative. Also so that Liberals can pat themselves on the back for being smart. All of these things are necessary if the USA is going to continue blowing up the Middle East and stealing from workers to aid the rich.


On behalf of working clowns i know, let me note that actual clowns are sick of the "Republican clown car" and "send in the clowns" memes.

These are not clowns, these are demagogues. Clowns aren't gonna gut Social Security. Selfish nasty sociopaths who front for "the billionaire class" are the ones who will do that.


Christie actually accepted the scientific reality of climate change. I guess what little chance he has of the winning the nomination is now gone. The only other two candidates who said they believe the science are Graham were Pataki who were in the debate for candidates with the lowest poll numbers. It is unlikely they helped themselves by accepting the science. I don't think there is any doubt that the deniers will remain at the top of the polls.


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I could not bring myself to watch the Republican presidential "debate" (LOL), but I did catch certain choice exchanges on the radio. It's hard to believe that the current crop of candidates is the best that the GOP has to offer. The last time I heard such insipid nonsense, such unadulterated bullshit, from a such a noxious bunch of turds, it must have been the last Republican debate with the same putrid principals.

Kasich was right: his fellow Republicans are unqualified for the Oval Office. And because he believes much of the same rubbish, Kasich himself is not much better. Kasich at least is trying to think; the rest of them are just spewing out the same old pap that the Republican party has been vomiting up, since the dark, sinister days of the Great Prevaricator, Ronald Reagan. Trump, Carson, Rubio, Cruz, Christie, etc, etc--none of them has anything new to offer. Tax cuts, entitlement reform, liberalizing the economy, shrinking the government, feeding the Pentagon--we've been down this road many times before. In fact, it's the same road that Democrats and Republicans have been travelling for the last 30 years, with disastrous consequences for the United States and for the world. Can somebody please wrestle the wheel away from the lunatics who are driving? The car is getting ever nearer to going off the cliff!

The candidates are either morons, thugs, or oily salesmen. Sometimes they are all these things at once. Think Donald Trump. To a man, they are pretty obnoxious. Carly Fiorina is the one (token?) woman and she is just as repulsive as any of the guys. I can't imagine anything worse than having to be in the same room with this dreadful group of people. Chris Christie is just awful, as is Mike Huckabee. But they are positively wonderful when you compare them to the great racist oaf, Donald Trump.

The Republican establishment has gotten a rude awakening with Trump's candidacy. They know well that Hilary Clinton is the next US president if Trump wins the nomination. Normal people--who aren't deranged by fear and hatred of the Other--see nothing in Trump but an ignorant, unprincipled buffoon. The Tea Party faithful, the angry paranoids who want to "make America great again" by holding onto their assault rifles and kicking out all "the Mexicans,," see in Trump the fulfillment of their fascistic dreams. The Republican establishment is evil but not stupid: they know that this sickening diet of bigotry and know-nothingism only appeals to 20-25% of the American populace.

It's clear that the establishment is throwing its support to the retired neurosurgeon but still active idiot, Ben Carson. The strategy is obvious: use Carson to kill off Trump and then when Trump is done kick Carson to the wayside and hand the nomination to Jeb Bush. The first part of the plan is working as Carson has surpassed Trump in the national polls. It will be interesting to see if the second part of the plan goes as intended. It should be alright. Carson is a political moron; at some point he will do himself in and then the field will be clear for the smarmy, unattractive Jeb Bush.

As I was listening to the Republican hopefuls spout their nonsense, I was moved to ask: how are these people managing to make George W. Bush look like an intellectual giant?

The Republican party is in disarray. The Tea Party monster has led to the party devouring itself. Ignorance and lunacy were put in the driving seat to achieve the long desired goal of permanently destroying liberalism, by pulling everything in the direction of the Far Right. This gambit by the Kochs and the other oligarchs worked too well. The Republican Party has killed the Democrats as a liberal force by forcing Democrats over to the Corporate dark side, where all the money is. The Democrats are now the party of perpetual betrayal: they betray the people in the name of "realism" and "expediency." In other words, they are beholden to Big Money. But the Republicans may well have killed themselves in the process of killing liberalism. The Tea Party is not a political movement so much as a moral and social pathology. Listen to Ted Cruz for five seconds and you will understand what I mean. There is very little reality in present Republican politics, but there is a great deal of meanness, cruelty, viciousness.


Republicans think government is the problem and the solution is smaller government.

They're half right:

Government is the problem though the solution is not smaller government, but much larger government of, by and for and all the people. 300 million people governing themselves from the grassroots, not 300 politicians in Washington governing for corporate bribes.


How can taxing the rich help the poor and middle classes if the rich make the tax laws through their bought politicians?

Wouldn't the obvious solution be to let all the people make the tax laws by referendums and leave politicians out of it?


These ten dunces are a portrait of POWER in America. Blacks, 10% and women, 10% (both tokens of the patriarchal capitalist order); and 80% to the usual suspects: White males of monetary means.


Your frame is about as accurate as 90% of the Republicans' stands.

Your use of the term "USA" is another attempt at painting with a singular brushstroke. Ideally, USA is a government run by, for, and OF The People. And obviously The People aren't the ones stealing from workers to aid the rich. The People ARE the workers.

Corporate (and/or 1%) capture of our government sets these priorities.

From the Page & Gilens Study proving the gap between major public sentiments and actual policies, and the Piketty Study exposing just how much wealth was reverse-engineered to the top of the fiduciary "food chain" in recent years; it's obvious that The People are NOT the ones behind the decisions that generate these preferential to the rich outcomes.

Those who constantly suggest one is equivalent to the other or otherwise work to create an inseparable fusion between the citizenry and the military (particularly with respect to its murderous acts) ... are pushing viewpoints that reinforce the asymmetry of the status quo. You protect Power.


That's why after a bit of theater, they put in the odious Paul Ryan to do the deed. He has NO conscience... classic definition of a card-carrying sociopath.


The "deniers" at the "top of the polls" are those that cater to the right wing Christian brand. Many followers are told that End Times are part of "god's will" and this leads millions to do nothing to alleviate the problem.

Many from this same sector don't believe in evolution, and think Holy War is a great way to prove one's homage to Team Jesus.

So when you talk about the top of the polls, remember these are polls that speak to the least educated demographic in the U.S. Out of 10 candidates, if the best polls at 25%... that's 25% of HALF of actual voters, if that. Then you see that it's a hardly half the U.S. population that is THIS delusional.


Pretty sure Lrx ("joined October 9") is RobertL or whatever his name was. Talks about polls as if they were of supreme importance, and also says we need governments to lead on climate change at the COP summits. Has he mentioned O'Malley yet while puffing up Clinton? Lemme look... Oh yes he has.


I like your paragraphs (content) three and four, but wonder why you work so hard to leave Bernie Sanders out? Also, you make Democrats into the worse evil by suggesting that their betrayal is willful rather than a natural outcome OF a system that IS run by Big Money. Since Sanders is largely opposing that, making him invisible is odd.


I recall his posts. He was pushing any "Any Dem but Bernie Sanders" meme so it was impossible to know if he was paid by the Hillary camp or another entity.


I never defined USA in my post. I didn't say 'the people of the USA' nor did I say 'the government of the USA.' Therefore you don't know what I was attempting to paint with that brushstroke. Therefore you are making assumptions.

But obviously, I was imprecise. So now I shall be precise. I meant 'the government of the USA' by which I mean the cabal of militarists, war profiteers, bankers, politicians who keep the whole Bush/Obama war machine going full-tilt boogie.


i just noticed the slogan printed repeatedly on the CNBC banners behind the stage, entering the mind of every viewer:





Superb comment!


Bravo Robert Borosage! No doubt you'll be accused of polluting politics by trying to bring facts, reason, logic, and truth into a realm where they hold no sway.


Not sure what you mean about working hard to leave Bernie Sanders out. I was commenting on the Republican candidates and how unappealing they are, not simply as Republicans but as human beings. I thought it would be obvious that I find Sanders morally and politically superior to all those barbarians who were standing on the Republican stage. I don't think the Democrats are worse. The Republicans are far worse. Indeed, in my view, they represent political evil. The Democrats are not worse, but they are bad enough: they promise to be for the people, but they betray the people for Big Money. The Republican party (God bless them!) does not even promise to be for the people; they promise to be only for some people, while viciously going after others. And they play this game to serve the interests of Big Money in a far more committed way, than even the worst Democrat.. You accuse me of sidelining Sanders, but you are grasping at shadows. Sanders is clearly the best thing to happen to US politics in this short, horrible century.

Oh, and Btw, the Democrats do willfully accept corporate money. I mean no one FORCES them to take it!