A True Son of the Alamo

Crockett“We’re fighting — not for one particular candidate or one campaign — but because each of us wants to be able to tell our kids and grandkids…that we did our best for their future, and for our country.”
– Ted Cruz

No major Republican leadership figure wants to see Donald Trump in the White House. Nevertheless, with only a handful of exceptions (most notably and honorably – John Kasich and Jeb Bush), they have either equivocated, lied, or skulked around the fringes of this humiliating circus of a convention trying to avoid being either too close or too far away from Cheeto Jesus.

Paul Ryan evaded an endorsement for weeks, then folded up his conscience, packed it away with the last tattered shreds of his dignity, and stood on stage at the convention to lead the nominating process. Marco Rubio has vacillated like a scared child, still not taking a definable position. The most sickening feature of this tawdry reality show has been the spectacle of grown men who imagine themselves powerful cowering in fear of a ridiculous bully.

Then Ted Cruz got on stage and exposed them all as a bunch of bed-wetting cowards. Like a true son of the Alamo, that unlovable bastard stood up there alone before a hostile crowd and delivered an uncompromising defense of his beliefs. He didn’t hide behind the teleprompter. He didn’t look away. He grinned that smarmy grin right at the New York delegation and told them where to shove it.

Cruz is not stupid. His move may channel the defiance of the Alamo, but it carries the strategic logic of San Jacinto. Commentators can tut all they want about the damage they think he’s done to his career. No modern nominee has won a smaller percentage of the primary vote. Ted Cruz just gave voice to the 55% of Republican primary voters who rejected Donald Trump and have been cringing through each night of this miserable Third World spectacle.

Five months from now everyone who wants to remain active in politics will be spinning their 2016 sound-bites into proof that they opposed Donald Trump. Everyone will have a story about the daring missions they carried out for the underground. Guess who will have proof that will shame them all.

If there is still a Republican Party next year, it will be Ted Cruz, not Paul Ryan, who leads it.

Tonight I find myself cheering for Ted Cruz, a frightening religious bigot for whom I would never cast a vote. November will find me stifling the urge to puke while casting my vote for a Clinton. Irony is overflowing everywhere, spilling over into muddy puddles of the absurd. Nevermind all that. Tonight I’m proud of Texas. I am proud that we produce the kind of defiant, spiteful, unbreakable courage that my political opponent displayed. The Lone Star State didn’t let me down. God bless Texas.

Chris Ladd is a Texan living in the Chicago area. He has been involved in grassroots Republican politics for most of his life. He was a Republican precinct committeeman in suburban Chicago until he resigned from the party and his position after the 2016 Republican Convention. He can be reached at gopliferchicago at gmail dot com.

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130 comments on “A True Son of the Alamo
  1. RW says:

    So why is Clinton the only other vote you can cast? What is your view of Gary Johnson?

  2. 1mime says:

    OH, be careful what you ask for………..How sweet it is……Who knew the Bush (W) administration had used a personal server run by the RNC? And, that 22M emails were deleted? Where was the GOP indignation over private email servers then? What are the odds that HRC knows about this? How has this not surfaced? Where is the outrage? The FBI investigation? The millions of $$ of taxpayer money spent on this heinous activity?

    Sooner or later, it all comes out. It was just a matter of time.

    “In 2007, when Congress asked the Bush administration for emails surrounding the firing of eights U.S. attorneys, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales revealed that many of the emails requested could not be produced because they were sent on a non-government email server. The officials had used the private domain gwb43.com, a server run by the Republican National Committee. Two years later, it was revealed that potentially 22 million emails were deleted, which was considered by some to be a violation of the Presidential Records Act.

    IFILL: In another story that won’t go away, Attorney general Alberto Gonzales is scheduled to go to Capitol Hill on Tuesday to answer lingering questions about how eight U.S. attorneys were let go. The latest e-mails that have gone missing from White House computers that may or may not have something do with it all.

    SEN. LEAHY: They say they’ve been erased or misplaced. They’re there. They know they’re there. And we’ll subpoena them if necessary, and we’ll have them. Because now when they suddenly are facing meaningful oversight, they say they can’t produce the information. They have the information.

    MS. PERINO: There are ongoing discussions between our counsel’s office and the RNC general counsel and it’s just not something I’m able to answer right now.

    MS. IFILL: What do we know, Pete?

    MR. WILLIAMS: Well, as you say, it may have nothing to do with the firings, but it certainly is not good for Alberto Gonzales. It’s yet another challenge for him. Here is the problem — in trying to find documents that might be about the firing of U.S. attorneys and the possible White House role in it, the White House discovered — oops — that e-mails were missing.

    MS. IFILL: A lot.

    MR. WILLIAMS: Yes, and apparently here is the reason — they were written by about 22 or so senior Republican staffers who have dual roles. They work for the government and they get a salary from the taxpayers, but they also have roles in political campaigns and so they were encouraged to use e-mails operated by the Republican National Committee.

    They would send their e-mails through those accounts, and that was to be for purely political things to avoid having someone using government facilities for political purposes. But the problem is apparently some — there’s a potential here, anyway, that official government e-mails — maybe about the U.S. attorneys firings, who knows?

    MS. IFILL: Maybe written by Karl Rove. Who knows?

    MR. WILLIAMS: Right, were sent over this Republican system and therefore not retrievable as the government requires White House documents to be. Now, the White House says there’s no evidence that anyone was trying to evade the record keeping by using the RNC system. Clearly it’s a big chunk of e-mails by Karl Rove, and the White House and the RNC both say they’re going to get computer experts to come in and put their little stethoscopes on and try to find them.

    But this is a two-pronged problem for the attorney general. First, there is some indication that when he was the White House counsel he helped devise the policy that permitted people to do this. And secondly, no matter what his role in creating this thing, there’s now this huge problem about, as you say, the Democrats are not satisfied that the White House is turning everything over.

    MR. SANGER: Pete, that raises a big question of strategy for him on Tuesday. There’s a great desire for him to be very specific in ways he’s not been. I’m sure his lawyers are saying to him “at every given moment say ‘I can’t recall, Senator,’ or ‘I’m not sure I was at that meeting, Senator.'” What’s the effect if we hear a lot of “I can’t recalls”?

    MR. WILLIAMS: I don’t think that’s going to make the committee very happy, As a matter of fact, Patrick Leahy, the chairman, has already said, “Don’t come up here and say ‘I don’t remember’ a lot. That’s not going to work.” And you know, it’s — again, it goes back to the performance issue. If he can’t — I’m sure there’s some details he can’t remember; he’s like the rest of us, but there are certain — I think the committee’s view is there are some things he ought to remember. And that if he can’t remember them, that says something about his performance.


  3. 1mime says:

    As always, “follow the money”………Politico puts out a regular listing entitled “influence”. I read it to see who the “big” players are among the lobbying firms, and who the big contributors are, then try to match it up as I can with the parties/candidates/issues. (weedy, I know, but that’s how I roll). Here’s a list of the biggest contributors to lobbying firms at the present time.

    U.S. Chamber of Commerce ($22.7 million)
    National Association of Realtors ($9.38 million)
    U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform ($6.45 million)
    Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America ($5.82 million)
    Business Roundtable ($4.81 million)
    Boeing ($4.75 million)
    American Hospital Association ($4.69 million)
    American Medical Association ($4.31 million)
    Google ($4.24 million)
    AT&T ($4.07 million)
    National Association of Broadcasters ($3.61 million)
    Lockheed Martin ($3.49 million)
    Comcast ($3.38 million)
    Prudential Financial ($3.17 million)
    Southern Company ($3.12 million)
    FedEx ($3.06 million)
    National Cable and Telecommunications Association ($3.04 million)
    Amazon ($3 million)
    Amgen ($2.91 million)
    Pfizer ($2.89 million)

  4. 1mime says:

    The New Yorker published an opinion piece by Tony Schwarz, the ghostwriter of Trump’s very successful book, “The Art of the Deal way” in 1987….The book was highly successful and very lucrative for both men. Schwartz had deep misgivings even then (he was more liberal) about doing the piece because of his lack of both respect and confidence in the veracity of anything Trump would tell him for inclusion into the book. He went forward with great misgivings, but when he saw that Trump would be the Republican presidential nominee, he felt he had to speak up about the “real” Trump. He did so in the New Yorker recently.

    Fast foward and Trump is managing to find time to respond: cease and desist, kill, fight, subdue, WIN! The man is shameless. It appears Schwartz is willing to go to the mat on this so he basically responded to the legal letter with a “do what you gotta do”….aka, f–k u.


  5. 1mime says:

    Trump has his tax team working on a new budget proposal that would reduce costs. Not many details yet but true to form, cuts will be used to balance the new proposal which will see lower tax cuts for the wealthy though still improve their situation. Kind of making it up as they go……..Will be interesting to see which programs will be cut to pay for the new plan.

  6. vikinghou says:

    Bill Maher was covering the Republican convention last evening and will be on again this evening after the Convention “festivities” are concluded.

    With regard to Ted Cruz, he quipped “Did you see what Ted Cruz did tonight? About a half-hour ago? He told the delegates to vote their conscience. Now, when Trump is your candidate, there’s nothing lower than that!”

    One guest on his program was Michael Moore, who said that this is no time for Democrats to become complacent. He pointed out that Trump voters, who have pledged allegiance to his flag, are rabid anti-Clinton people who will come out in force to vote for their anointed savior. Moore also predicted Trump will win. So, despite the freak show we have been witnessing in Cleveland, Democrats cannot afford to be blasé.

    • 1mime says:

      Wow. Moore thinks Trump will win. Well, so does the GOPe. GOTV has never been more important.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        I could be wrong, but i feel like Moore doesn’t actually think that, but is just trying to prevent complacency.

        Sometimes, we think the things we fear are more likely to happen then they actually are (I.e. terrorism). The data we have right all points to the opposite conclusion. Granted the data is not very strong this far out, but it’s undoubtedly better to be 5+ points ahead in a polll at ANY time then 5+ points behind.

      • 1mime says:

        Rob you may be in a blue collar profession (which I would argue against…no way would most people EVER put a hat over their head and go down deep like you do!), but you are a good thinker and fine writer. Maybe being in the “deep” helps you distill your thoughts…

      • Sir Magpie De Crow says:

        My default position these days in regards to the election (or American politics in general) is that I don’t know with any certainty what will happen.

        There is good evidence given the glaring deficiencies of Trump that Hillary Clinton will win.

        But those unexpected moments of chaos, violence, foolish decisions and dysfunction when coupled with voters who have frankly a shallow understanding of the wider world can make it possible Trump could also prevail.

        My certainty of how the election will turn out will probably solidify as we get closer to election day. But I remember the prognosticators have been wrong before… I have been wrong before.

        Does anyone remember when GOP pundits and pollsters like Frank Luntz predicted a waning black turnout for Barack Obama in November of 2012.

        Didn’t work out that way at all.

        I will say if there is any clear indications that people are really motivated to vote this November to express their disdain/disgust for Donald Trump or encourage/help others to make sure he loses… he will toast.

        But if there is a groundswell of infantile Bernie Sanders supporters who wish to do things like staging “Fart-ins” to express their displeasure with the Democratic nominee… the result could be unexpected.

        Jesus… Fart-Ins. I just think that is not a productive use of one’s time and
        effort, just like how Trump supporters threatened rape on social media against an artist who made an unflattering image of their political hero.

        Guys, just stop it.



    • vikinghou says:

      I agree. Moore’s comment was unsettling because he is usually an astute observer of politics. He especially has the pulse of the blue collar workers in the upper midwest swing states.

    • Shiro17 says:

      Of course the Dems cannot afford to be blasé, but I still don’t think they, or the media in general, have really grasped what this election is about, and if they don’t, Trump will probably win. Most polls these days are thankfully very detailed and lay out everything for you to pick patterns out.

      At least one thing has become very clear: consistently, the clear majority of people who say that they will vote for Trump say that they are not voting “for Trump” as much as voting “against Clinton,” whereas the opposite is not true (I.e. The vast majority of Clinton supporters are voting for her rather than against Trump). From anecdotal evidence of talking to a few swing people, it appears that against Clinton in this context may actually be more like “against The Establishment.” That is what Trump represents, a vote against the establishment, whether that is the Republican establishment, the Democrat establishment or Washington in general. This is why he let Cruz speak knowing that he would not support Trump: it only bolsters Trump’s credentials as an anti-establishment guy if people like Bush and Cruz are against him.

      In that sense, all the deep flaws of Trump that we rant about are not a bug, they’re a feature. It’s a message: “You don’t care about us, and nothing you do will actually help us anyway, so we might as well put the court jester in charge so we at least get some free entertainment!” Pointing out all the crazy things Trump does will not work to persuade these people because everybody knows how crazy he is by now. This election, the onus is on the Dems and the establishment types to show just how they care about people and will actually solve problems. If they think they can just get by through Trump-bashing, they will lose.

  7. Stephen says:

    I agree that Cruz has courage. It takes that to run against the herd. I know , as I have done it more than once myself. The fact that he is a religious bigot is nothing new. Half the New Testament was written to correct Christians going off the rails or being misled.

    The main thing I have against the guy is his harsh judgemental way of presenting Christianity. And not actually applying what Jesus said in policies he advocates. The press keeps talking about the Religious Right. But most people of faith are not flowing with what they are pushing, including me. I made my living primarily understanding complex chemical matrices and manipulating them. Hard core science. But have seen and experience many supernatural phenomena in my faith experience that cannot be explain by science. I feel a little like Galileo saying it moves at times when talking to other technical people who are not of faith. But my faith is not ignorance but simple an outcome of my experiences. I realize that we really do not know much about science or religion.

    My main point is Cruz and his ilk are not representative of all Christians or even the majority.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      May I ask if you’re Catholic?

    • 1mime says:

      Stephen, we can always count on you to distill issues to their most simple, honest level. I am not a person of religion or faith but I deeply respect those for whom this force in their lives is important. I have zero tolerance for anyone who abuses and uses faith to advance personal gain, and there are many who do. I do not agree with a vengeful god concept, nor putting one’s self first, nor judging the worth of other people, which I believe Cruz does along with many in the religious right. The Jesus I believe did exist would never have supported the hate and hurt that is being done by the RR in his name.

    • Ryan Ashfyre says:

      >] “But have seen and experience many supernatural phenomena in my faith experience that cannot be explain by science.

      Like what?

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      Definitely agree there’s so much flat out weird stuff in the observable world that it’s very possible (perhaps even likely) that there is “more to life” then we can sense. That there may be some sort of creator even. The more we learn about the natural world, especially as we delve deeper in quantum mechanics, the more it seems like everything is not all that it appears. The double slit experiment, for example. Like, wtf is that? Not only does matter sometimes behave in ways totally foreign to our understanding of the world (I.e. electrons existing in two places at once, quantum entanglement etc), but it also seems that the outcome of this experiment changes depending on if it’s being observed by scientists. I.e. if scientists are directly looking at the electrons, they behave one way. If they are not, they behave totally different. It’s like the electrons somehow know they’re being watched. This experiment has been done innumerable times over the decades with the same result every single time, and we have absolutely no idea why.

      My point being, I actually think it’s entirely possible, even likely, that there is more going on to existence then we know, and there is a certain sense of spirituality about this. But I don’t know why we take that and automatically assume the ancient myths that have absolutely no evidence to support them. Yes, there appears to be something else going on. But how do we get from that acknowledgement, to the Abrahamic religions as the “solution”? That requires a huge leap of which there is no evidence whatsoever. To me, that’s just supplying a solution for the sake of having a solution. I mean, if the monotheistic solution was the actual correct one, isn’t it a little weird that if we plotted out the religions of every human on Earth, there would be a striking correlation to our geopolitical borders? One would imagine the invisible borders we’ve artificially created would have no impact on our knowledge of our Creator. If there IS a creator, he is almost certainly not an omnipotent, omnipresent personal God in the way that is presented to us today. He doesn’t know our thoughts or care who we have sex with anymore then a scientist “creator” of a bacteria culture in a petri dish knows the thoughts of the billions of his individual bacteria, or cares who they sexually reproduce with (I understand bacteria reproduce asexually, but you get my point).

      Personally, if I HAD to lick an “answer” I think something like the Simulation Hypothesis (that we’re all living inside some sort of super advanced computer simulation) is the most accurate. At least there is some circumstantial evidence to support that claim, as well as a logical thought progression.

      But that’s the thing: we don’t HAVE to pick any solution, just because we have a mystery. It’s OK to say, ya know, we just have no f’ing clue, sonwere going to keep on science-ing and hopefully we might get a falsifiable Hypothesis someday. Until then, there is no need to fill in the blanks with bronze age myths with no evidence other then that we were taught these things at a young age when our brains are very impressionable.

      If we wernt taught our religions until we were 18, nobody would believe in them anymore then we believe in the Easter Bunny. But because we are indoctrinated in them from a very young age, they become such a powerful part of our we percieve the world around us. Those kinds of preconceptions can be awfully hard to break free from.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        I should add though, that at least in my case, if we actually DO break free of these religious myths, it is very uncomfortable at first (thats the cognitive dissonance that we all try to avoid). But eventually, one comes to a place where there is a peace and tranquility that is simply not possible if we remain “under the influence” of these religious teachings.

        Again, just in my case, perhaps that wouldn’t work for everyone.

        If a religion – any religion – gives someone peace and comfort, and they do not use that religion as a club to beat others with (I.e. the opposite of what the religious right is right now) then that is a positive thing for that person and society.

      • 1mime says:

        “If a religion – any religion – gives someone peace and comfort, and they do not use that religion as a club to beat others with (I.e. the opposite of what the religious right is right now) then that is a positive thing for that person and society.”

        And, that, my friend, is exactly right. Do no harm in the name of faith. For many people, their faith is of paramount importance and I can respect that while being comfortable with “golden rule” approach to life – imperfect though I am in my consistency of application (-;

        Live and let live. If something makes you happy (er) and doesn’t hurt other people, go for it!

    • johngalt says:

      “But have seen and experience many supernatural phenomena in my faith experience that cannot be explain by science.”

      I am highly skeptical of statements like this on every level, but the most charitable response I will give is that you may have experienced things that cannot be explained by science *right now.* Our ancestors invented an awful lot of mythology to explain natural phenomena about which they were ignorant at the time.

      • Crogged says:

        I’m missing Big Wooly right now-we need that scyfyish, Old Testament perspective.

    • JeffAtWolfcreek says:

      God has always existed at the end of our knowledge of the natural world and when we progress God talk just moves out to the new end of what we know. So, no, I don’t buy any of it. Don’t care if others want to believe in aliens, god, or whatever as long as you don’t try to bring it into the school where my kids are trying to learn science.

  8. tuttabellamia says:

    Interestingly, Ted Cruz also mentioned Alton Sterling and the 9 victims at the church in South Carolina:

    “Sergeant Michael Smith stood up to protect our freedom . . .

    So did the family of Alton Sterling, who bravely called to end the violence.

    So did the families of those murdered at the Charleston Emanuel AME church, who forgave that hateful, bigoted murderer . . . “

    • tuttabellamia says:

      And the crowd went silent when he mentioned Alton Sterling. I guess it was so unexpected and so uncommon to hear Mr. Sterling’s name mentioned in a sympathetic light that the crowd didn’t know how to react. It was as though they were so accustomed and programmed to chant and cheer at certain key phrases — “lock her up!” and “keep America safe” that they were caught off guard by the mention of Mr. Sterling in sympathetic terms. This was NOT in their repertoire.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        And speaking of “keeping America safe,” didn’t Mrs. Heidi Cruz have to be escorted out of the arena by security last night because of fears for her safety?

      • flypusher says:

        “And speaking of “keeping America safe,” didn’t Mrs. Heidi Cruz have to be escorted out of the arena by security last night because of fears for her safety?”

        Quite hypocritical of them to be chanting “Goldman-Sachs” at her, given Trump’s history.

      • 1mime says:

        That was incredibly disrespectful. The underbelly of the Repub Party shows itself…..

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        Indeed she did. Truly insightful that a convention clamoring for safety and security would require something like that.

      • 1mime says:

        Sterling represents an inconvenient truth. Their silence is understandable. Shame at the very thought that their unshakable belief in guns, race, and privilege might at the deepest level of their being, be wrong. If we don’t “see it or experience it” it can’t “be”, right?

    • 1mime says:

      Cruz – already pitching to enlarge his 2020 base.

  9. Crogged says:

    We’ve tried to watch the Republican convention, but the dissonance, anger and ‘feelings’ expressed by so many speakers absent any evidence whatsoever leaked out the television screen, infected us at home and caused relationship problems.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      As that ladies’ magazine from years ago would ask, “Can this marriage be saved?”

      • Crogged says:

        It was easy, change the channel and/or turn off the tube.

        Why are so many of the delegates so angry? By any rational measure we are better off than we were than in 2008. There’s these expressed ‘feelings’ of not being safe because handfuls of American’s have been gunned down because of religious intolerance, but the tens of thousands of us shot for no reason whatsoever is just a shrug and “in the Constitution”. Incredibly, given the incompetence of many of the speakers at this convention, no one has said, “Let’s bring back 2007!”, but what is it they are looking for?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Welcome back, Crogged, if only for a little while.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        “Why are so many of the delegates so angry?”

        My admittedly optimistic opinion is nothing more complex then that they’re losing the war theyve been fighting for 40 years, they know it, and it enrages them. That’s why they’re so happy to torpedo everything, from our military treaties to our trade agreements, both of absolutely have flaws, and both of which are absolutely net beneficial for America.

        Theyve given up trying to win the war because as they die off in ever increasing numbers with no reinforcements coming, they know it’s impossible. Now, they’re just trying to spend their last decade or two on this Earth making sure that those of us who have five or six decades left suffer as punishment for not letting them dictate their shitty, obsolete values to the rest of us.

        At least that’s how I look at it.

      • 1mime says:

        They haven’t lost yet, and don’t forget, Republicans control the governorships and legislatures in 37 states and have control of the House of Reps (for a long time due to gerrymandering) and majority control of the Senate. In 2020, Dems will be defending a whole bunch of seats so 2016 is truly a pivotal year to get things done, reversed, and make SCOTUS appointments. And, the GOP knows it. SCOTUS balance is critical and that only happens if Dems win the Presidency And control of the Senate this election.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        @1mime: >] “They haven’t lost yet, and don’t forget, Republicans control the governorships and legislatures in 37 states and have control of the House of Reps (for a long time due to gerrymandering) and majority control of the Senate.

        No, mime, the war’s already been won; some just don’t see it yet. My generation (the one Lifer calls the “most irreligious, socially liberal and post-racial that’s ever been raised) is on the ascendancy. The current Republican coalition is literally dying out, and quickly at that. GOP control of Congress and state legislatures will begin to crack with this election cycle and continue in the coming years.

        Of course I want a new Republican Party to rise up to advocate ideas like a basic income and others. but the current political trench warfare is a battle with its conclusion already determined.

      • 1mime says:

        Hmm, do you agree with Rob that Moore’s prediction of a Trump win is to create incentive for the Dem GOTV? Moore’s pretty tuned in to things political.

      • vikinghou says:

        Don’t forget 2020 is a census year, so it will be especially important for the Dems to have more control when reapportionment takes place.

      • 1mime says:

        Great point, Viking. Of course, I hope by that time gerrymandering has been challenged and found unconstitutional, which I believe it is, or, at the very least, that states move in the direction of independent councils rather than legislatively-drawn voter districts.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        >] “Hmm, do you agree with Rob that Moore’s prediction of a Trump win is to create incentive for the Dem GOTV? Moore’s pretty tuned in to things political.

        I don’t pay much attention to the man, but I find it hard to believe that anyone well tuned in to politics honestly feels that Trump has a good chance to win. He has a chance to win in about as much the same way as Dr, House has about as much a chance of not being an asshole (not that we don’t love him!). If I had to guess, I’d say he’s trying to rack up the score and secure as many Democratic wins up and down the ballot as he can. No better way to do that than to get as many votes as humanly possible, and Trump’s the best way of doing that.

      • 1mime says:

        Will wait for post labor day polls…….

  10. tuttabellamia says:

    I applaud Ted Cruz as well, for “telling it like it is.” The crowd of Trump supporters should actually be proud of Mr Cruz, because he took a page from Mr. Trump’s playbook.

    I was also going to say Mr. Cruz did it for self-serving reasons, to prepare himself for a future candidacy, perhaps as a personal vendetta against Mr. Trump for calling him “lying Ted” (no lies last night, right?), but then I thought, the same could be said of the cowardly politicians who are grudgingly uniting behind Mr. Trump for self-serving reasons, to protect themselves.

    Might as well do what Mr. Cruz did and just put it all out there. No shame. Gotta love it.

  11. MassDem says:

    Meanwhile, Trump has revealed to the NYT just how much he knows or cares about foreign policy…

    1. We will defend our NATO allies if and only if they are “paid up”
    2. We don’t need any overseas bases–just deploy from America
    3. The solution to the problem of Turkey attacking the Kurds is….meetings. Just that.

    Good thing his VP will handle foreign and domestic policy…


    • Rob Ambrose says:

      Like…..how much more do we have to see before it’s obvious to everyone, even the dumb ones, that this man is a menace?

      It’s like if somebody gets caught standing over a body with multiple knife wounds holding a bloody knife that forensics later confirms is the murder weapon, and he admits to the murder. And then in the jury room, half of the jurors are like “ok, yes, it looks bad. But did anybody SEE him actually stab the victim? I just think he’s playing to crowd when he confessed. Not guilty”

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        It’s irrelevant, Rob. Trump is a vehicle for their frustration and angst at a world that’s left them behind. That’s all that matters to them, and there’s no point in trying to reason with people like that.

  12. Nick Danger says:

    Earlier this month Lifer brought up the term “political sociopath”, a person who has literally no interest in helping his or her party. Ted Cruz’s maneuver is a clear case of helping his career at the expense of everyone else in his party. He isn’t just refusing to support the man who got the largest number of votes, but he’s deliberately cutting Trump’s coat tails shorter.

    I have more respect for Paul Ryan, who made his disagreements clear, gritted his teeth, and then put his weight behind the party’s chosen candidate. Politics is about compromise, and sometimes you have to agree to parts of a deal that you really hate in order to get other things you want. Ryan wants the Republicans to be united, and working together to re-elect Republican congressmen. Cruz doesn’t care about any of that.

    • flypusher says:

      Thing is, Ryan’s not very likely to get want he wants, and Trump could badly taint the GOP brand. It’s going to be increasingly hard to win if you alienate women, and Hispanics, and Black people, and gay people, etc., etc., etc.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        I think it will soon become obvious to Ryan, if it hasn’t already, that he miscalculated. I think by 2020 Trumpism will become so thoroughly discredited that it will disqualify forever those who support him now. Frankly, I think it will be even MORE discredited if Trump actually wins.

        I wonder if Ryan ever looks in the mirror and is like “ya know…..I’m not sure if cutting taxes for the rich and cutting SS/Medicare is worth what I’m giving up” especially since it’s exceedingly unlikely he’ll actually get to implement hisbagenda.

    • johngalt says:

      Exactly. Nobody benefits personally from a blowout Trump loss more than Ted Cruz and he’s taking an active role in making that happen.

    • 1mime says:

      That’s a valid point, Nick. Ryan definitely was more thoughtful in his approach but he sold his soul to the devil never the less. In all fairness, in his position as Speaker, he had a broader responsibility than his own feelings – as did McConnell. Ryan strikes me as an infinitely better person than Cruz. Don’t forget, Cruz was willing (and did) shut down the entire US government for his personal pet peeve. He called the Senate Leader a liar on the floor of the chamber. He is now playing games (because that’s all this is) with the base…No sacrifice – from other people – is too great for Mr. Cruz. People like that always have ulterior motives. In his case, it is totally self-serving. I don’t give him credit for anything other than political strategy.

  13. Rob Ambrose says:



    Cops are called because a man (autistic) says he’s going to kill himself. They show up, nobody has weapons, the guy has HIS HANDS UP and he gets shot.

    When asked why he shot the guy, the cop says “I don’t know”.

    • johngalt says:

      It was worse than that. The mental health counsellor talked to the cops about the situation as he (the counsellor) was trying to talk down a suicidal patient with autism. The counsellor kept his hands up the entire time. Then the cop, for reasons unclear, tried to shoot the patient, who was playing with a toy truck, missed, and hit the counsellor (who was laying on the ground with his hands up) instead. That is seriously messed up – how does any training regimen produce a police officer who so badly mismanages a non-violent situation and then can’t even hit what he was supposedly aiming at?

  14. Sir Magpie De Crow says:

    Wow, been looking at this selfie (with GOP house interns). It stars Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.

    Ryan’s hair I admit looks pretty awesome.

    I now realize maybe he has been hip to Donald Trump’s presidential demographic game plan for far longer than I imagined…

    Look at that diversity! Blondes, brunettes, the occasional redhead… I think two asian guys.

    If you want more racial diversity, I think you need to check out pictures of a delegation of Mormon missionaries heading to Africa (for example).

    ; )

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      I’m not typically one to beat the drums of diversity merely for the sake of visible diversity, but that’s a pretty jarring sea of White faces.

      • flypusher says:

        Got to admit, that much Whiteness shocks me now too. That doesn’t reflect the faces I see everyday.

    • johngalt says:

      Let’s not be unfair here. There is a black woman about four rows from the back on the right side, and a couple of rows further up is a woman who might be Asian (south Asian, maybe?). I’d estimate there are ~100 people in the room, which makes the intern population about 2% non-white, or three times that of the RNC delegates. See – they’re making progress with the younger generation!

      • 1mime says:

        Hey, the Black intern probably works for a Black congressman (-;

        (I’m not as kind as you are JG)

      • Turtles Run says:

        The second head above Paul Ryan’s appears to be a Hispanic or Asian male. I am going to be honest and state that I do not think the Black person in the photo is really black. Could just be the photo though.

      • 1mime says:

        Turtles, for the GOP, “brown is the new black” ……….

      • johngalt says:

        No there is definitely an African-American woman on the right about two-thirds of the way back. You can only see half her face behind a guy with dark hair in a grey suit.

      • 1mime says:

        JG, are you using binocs? Infra-ray telephoto lens?

  15. Terry Sanders says:

    He wasn’t born in Texas! hence not a true Texan.

    • goplifer says:

      Moment of shocking revelation: Neither was I. It’s a complete fluke, my father had briefly taken a job in a factory in…wait for it…Chicago. They skeedadled back to TX as quickly as they could! But I’m a Texan. Other famous Texans who weren’t born in the state:

      William Travis
      Davy Crockett
      Sam Houston
      Sam Rayburn

      and now, of course Ted Cruz.

      • elvispizza says:

        Thank you for accepting the blame for Cruz and not pointing the loaded Cheeto Jesus birther finger at Canada.
        We might take a wall, though, and as with the one advertised, we agree those on the south side can pay for it. Just until we reverse the Harper continuation of the Mulroney harmonization plan. 😉

      • Archetrix says:

        Don’t forget Hank Hill.

  16. antimule says:

    What I don’t get is … why is everyone so craven about Trump? He’ll likely lose and then being against him would be a lot better positioning than being for him, right?

    Can you explain that for me Chris?

    • goplifer says:

      Not so long ago, most major political figures were older people, well…men, who were pretty much already established in their own right. There are exceptions like Lyndon Johnson and Richard Nixon, but for every Johnson there were a dozen Kennedys and Bushes. These guys had ambitions, but they also had a way to feed their families if their ambitions failed to pan out.

      What happens to Marco Rubio if he stops being a Senator? Well, I think he figured that out when he went home after the primaries and looked at his checkbook. Ryan has some money, but a lot less than people think. And what’s he gonna do after politics, go live in Janesville like some miserable provincial Palin?

      Most of these people owe their entire livelihood to convincing people to like them. Needless to say, it becomes an obsession. I have met a handful of politicians in thirty years who can perceive anything on any level that extends beyond their latest poll numbers. And most of them, like Chris Bell in Texas, haven’t actually fared very well.

      It doesn’t pay to be smart in politics. Just look at Rick Perry. Modern politics is a solid career option for good-looking, popular, morally flexible C-students. Mostly it’s about learning to ride a wave. Ideas, vision, and leadership in our system comes from outside of our political leadership. Our leaders eventually learn to ride it if it works for them.

      • 1mime says:

        All true, but you haven’t responded to your comment about HRC, someone you indicated was highly qualified (And smart). I’m really curious about your change of heart.

      • Nick Danger says:

        Please clarify. What do you mean by “dozens of Kennedys and Bushes”? Independently wealthy? From politically connected families? Raised in a tradition of service?

      • Crogged says:

        What happened to Eric Cantor? From Wiki

        In an interview with the Richmond Times-Dispatch on July 31, 2014, Cantor announced his resignation from Congress effective on August 18, 2014 and that he asked Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe to call for a special election on November 4, 2014 to coincide with the 2014 general election.

        On Tuesday, September 2, 2014, Moelis & Company announced that it was appointing Eric Cantor as vice chairman and managing director and that he would be elected to the Moelis & Company board of directors.

        And after Mr. Rubio was a lame duck? Crickets………

        I give Mr. Cruz his due-his beliefs are in front of his opportunism.

      • 1mime says:

        Not me! I’d say Cruz’ opportunism and beliefs are in a dead heat!

  17. flypusher says:

    Chris, what is your take on that scorching hot rumor that Trump offered Kasich the VP slot with all the responsibilities the President is supposed to have? I can see it, given how lazy and ignorant Trump is. He wants the spotlight, but none of the hard work. If a recording that verified this came out, would it have any effect? Not on the Trump-zombies, but what about those GOPe sellouts?

    • 1mime says:

      Why would Trump lose anything by statements that indicated what people already know? That he will be about the most hands-off president ever for the hard stuff, and a pain in the ass when he wants to be. The GOPe are counting on his disinterest and incapability to govern so that they can run things without his involvement. Heck, he’ll probably fill in the pool at the Washington Monument and put in a putt-putt course.

      • flypusher says:

        I think the GOPe would be fine with it if it were kept secret, at least until after the election. But bait and switch doesn’t play well with a lot of people. It’s also fine ammo for Hillary.

      • 1mime says:

        Nah, I just don’t see that as significant, Fly. Could be wrong, of course, but both presidential candidates talked to all the people on their short list. Trump could claim he was doing just that. What difference does it make, anyway? It would have been a help towards getting votes in OH, an important state, but to what other purpose? Kasich stated unequivocally months ago that he would never accept a VP position with Trump.

  18. Griffin says:

    “November will find me stifling the urge to puke while casting my vote for a Clinton.”

    I actually understand this but I was getting the sense you had a begrudging respect for Clinton and considered her a solid candidate. Is it her overreliance on old timey political machinery and patronage engines that turns you off so much? For me it’s more some of the foreign policy stuff.

    • Griffin says:

      And her being an arkward, horrible campaigner and prone to unforced (albeit heavily exaggerated) errors of course.

      • 1mime says:

        Hillary is a poor campaigner but she is a competent performer in her positions. Because: she knows what she is doing, and she has excellent organizational skills. She didn’t attain the super delegate support by being incompetent or “likable enough”, she earned it the old fashioned way. She should get credit for that.

        The job of SOS is grueling. Seen or heard much from John Kerry lately? This position requires tremendous dedication and the toll it takes is tremendous if the job is done well.

      • Griffin says:

        “she knows what she is doing, and she has excellent organizational skills.”

        Err I think it’s a little more complicated than that. Clinton is great at building bridges between her and other politicians by doing them favors. Not in neccessarily a corrupt way, but mentioning them in her speeches, endorsing them, taking them seriously when they come to her for help, etc. She doesn’t have great organizational skills so much as she’s had alot of time to build these relationships based on a sort of patronage system, which (for better or worse) she’s very good at cautiously working within.

        This causes her to over rely on this system however. The upside of this is that she never has a shortage of friends and experts when she needs advice. The downside is that she takes in the bad advice with the good, her “favors”, while usually not actually corrupt, can come across to the public as corrupt and, if there are too many people advising and helping her, overwhelms her to the point where she comes across as ineffectual.

        Her reliance on this system also makes it difficult for her to be a better campaigner since it’s diffucult to please every entity in the patronage system (which often requires careful calculation and often having somewhat vapid speeches) while also keeping the public happy, who tend to prefer a candidate who is more bold and willing to take “independent” stances. Bill Clinton was good at balancing this. Hillary Clinton is better at the former than Bill is (pleasing the political organizations within the Democratic Party) but worse at the latter (pleasing the public).

      • 1mime says:

        She had a very successful Senate career, Griffin. Relationships in politics are important to building trust and developing consensus. If you ever run for office, you’ll learn this skill or perish. Hillary’s negative for me was the stupidity of her decision on the email, and her boorish, strident speaking style. And, my gosh, put a lock on that bobbing head! But, she’s smart, and she is competent and she’s experienced. This likely carries some baggage but it also will help her hit the ground running – if she’s elected. She won’t start out like Obama who actually thought he could change the minds and hearts of Republicans and get their cooperation. She knows full well what she’s going to have to deal with from day one….if she’s elected.

      • Griffin says:

        I’m not disagreeing with you that she’s competant and has done well it’s just that her style can backfire very easily is all.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        I dunno Griffin, I think you’re right in parts aboutbher, but the waybyou describe her performance makes it seem like kind of a gimmick, something that could fail her if those relationships stop working.

        I think she builds great relationship doing quid pro quo as you say, but that’s not the fundamental driver of her success. I believe she’s just old fashioned competent. She works hard, and prepares herself thoroughly for any task she does.

        She certainly is not a “natural” like her husband is. She makes up that deficit with old fashioned elbiw grease. Bill doesn’t need to work at politics. It’s effortless for him. Hillary’s not like that, every part of it seems like a significant effort. But she’s got a strong work ethic and an obvious desire (almost a need) to prove that she belongs with the “big boys”. And throughout her career, she undoubtedly has done that.

  19. 1mime says:

    Lifer, you made me do something I didn’t plan or want to do – ever again. Watch Ted Cruz. I had to see what moved you to such exhortation, given your past commentary on him as a candidate and as a man. As much admiration I have for you, I cannot salute this man for speaking up for Texas. Cruz was doing as he always does – speaking up for himself. It’s always been this way with him. He made the calculated decision to be the contrarian Republican in front of a friendly Trump crowd to establish his bona fides with the “Never Trump” wing of the party. That doesn’t give him any points for leadership in my book. It’s all about positioning himself/auditioning for the 2020 GOP nomination. He made the cold calculation that following this disastrous election year, the Republican Party will welcome him as its “savior” and “forgive him his sins”. If there is one thing I’m absolutely certain of, it’s that Republicans have convenient memories. The crowd was disrespectful and reacted exactly as he knew they would do – booed him. He will play that clip a million times in the run up to 2020 election.

    As you correctly pointed out, Paul Ryan, Marco Rubio, Chris Christie, and Scott Walker are all compromised for their support of whatever sincerity, making Cruz the heir apparent. So, no appreciation, pride or kudos from me for Ted Cruz. He may make those of you who are disheartened with the state of the GOP “feel” better, but it is all for his personal glory – not yours.

    I also was surprised by your statement about your vote for Hillary Clinton. You are on record here as stating she is imminently qualified for President – and that you would be voting for her. I did not get the impression from your earlier endorsement of her qualifications that voting for her would be so distasteful to you. Have you changed your mind in this regard or was this wordsmithing?

    • goplifer says:

      I despise the Clintons. They are nasty, grasping political reptiles.

      That said, they – or more to the point – Hillary, is an operator. She will succeed in circumstances where Obama failed. She is the most thoroughly competent person to assume office since FDR. Being ideologically illusive, pragmatism will be the dominant theme of her administration.

      Having a leader with principle and vision might be nice. What we desperately need now, though, is competence and pragmatism. Faced with a choice between a reptile and an arsonist, I’ll vote for the reptile.

      • Stephen says:

        Jeb Bush said he would not vote this election for president this time around. I respect the man but either Hillary or Trump are going to be our next president. I respect you choice more. Sometimes it is difficult to discern the lesser of the evil. But not in this case.

      • 1mime says:

        Well, that clears that up……Totally misread you……

        For what it’s worth, I’ve always felt that way about Willy, but thought Hillary was more genuinely interested in getting things done for their own sake. A reptilian descriptor is pretty low, however. I don’t despise Cruz, but I do believe he is shallow, self-serving political animal….If HRC is a reptile in your book, Cruz is a snake. I fear where his zealotry would take our nation, and I think that fear is well placed.

        Appreciate your being forthcoming about your opinion of Hillary. Most here honestly express their opinions about candidates and I think that saw should cut both ways. Now we know.

  20. Shiro17 says:

    Did anyone else find it REALLY jarring and strange when Eileen Collins came out of nowhere and talked about how we need to spend more on the space program? Like, she’s actually arguing in front of this crowd that we need increase government spending? Or, just that someone relatively sane actually managed to get through to the podium?

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      Yeah, and increase gov’t spending on something so dumb as SCIENCE? Can you imagine?

      “If God wanted us to be on other planets, he would have put us there” is I’m sure a common refrain last night.

      • 1mime says:

        Please, god, send this group of far right conservatives a vision that you want them to go to other planets. And, that this will be their “chosen” land. That will leave the Earth for the rest of us normal folk. The sooner, the better.

        Hi ho and all that rot.

    • elvispizza says:

      Consistent with Thiel’s support for government spending – only, from a wonk, not a tipper wingnut; and without the assumption that such public spending be undertaken for future pillaging by commerce.

  21. Ryan Ashfyre says:

    >] “November will find me stifling the urge to puke while casting my vote for a Clinton.

    Cut it with the melodrama, would ya, Lifer? We’re electing the first female president in the history of this country. Agree with her or not, take pride in that and what it means to every woman in this country, young or old, and what that means for them.

    That aside, you’re giving Cruz way too much credit here. I give him his due for saying that in front of Trump’s most rabid supporters, but no more. This was a man essentially jumping a sinking ship, one that insulted not only his wife, but actually accused his own father of being involved with the JFK assassination. If for nothing other than his own ego, what does it take for Cruz to go up on an offered stage to give a YUUUUGE middle finger to the guy that screwed him over?

    And there’s always 2020 to consider, which Cruz, assuredly, has in mind as well. Please. This was the same snake oil salesman we’ve all come to know and despise. Interests just happened to align for a moment here, nothing more.

    • flypusher says:

      ” If for nothing other than his own ego, what does it take for Cruz to go up on an offered stage to give a YUUUUGE middle finger to the guy that screwed him over?”

      Cruz isn’t the only one with cause to flip off the Donald, but he’s the only who dared to do it that way. He did what McCain and Rubio and Ryan and McConnell and a very long list of GOP sellouts should have done. I think it’s a mark of integrity if you can give credit when it is due to someone you don’t like.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        As I said, I give Cruz his credit. Getting up on a stage in front of a whole stadium of people and essentially telling them to f**k off takes guts, no matter who you are. Motives matter though. Ted “Snake Oil” Cruz did all of that for himself; not for the Republican Party and not for self-purported “principles” or any such nonsense. Cruz did this for Cruz, and to that I give no credit whatsoever.

        If Lifer wants to take that as a point of pride, what else can I say? It’s about the lowest of low hanging fruit that you could ask for.

      • 1mime says:

        You want someone with guts in the face of incredible disrespect and indignity? How about Pres. Obama in his inaugural address having to proceed after “you lie”. That takes guts. Tonight was planned out to the T. Cruz could care less about what these Trumpsters thought about his remarks because he knew how they would react! This wasn’t a heart-felt speech, this was cold.

      • 1mime says:

        Ryan, you and I are on the exact.same.page.

      • flypusher says:

        I completely agree that he did the right thing for very self-serving reasons. You take what you can get.

      • 1mime says:

        But you don’t get kudos for shamelessly parading around in your holier than thou, smarter than anyone in the room speech. He “used” the event. If there is anyone who needs to be horse-whipped, it’s Manafort for not vetting the speech and telling Cruz he wouldn’t be needed.

      • flypusher says:

        It’s just all the more evidence that the Trump campaign is a total mess. Not that any more evidence is needed, but some people still need their noses rubbed into it some more. Especially Ryan.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        >] “I completely agree that he did the right thing for very self-serving reasons. You take what you can get.”

        That’s a fine mindset to have when you’re talking about policy making, not when you’re looking to being the next heir apparent to the Republican Party. A leader blazes a trail for all those who follow afterwards and sets the example. What does it to say to all those who look to the GOP and see Ted Cruz as that example?

        We all move ever more towards the future, but the reason we continually look back at Abraham Lincoln is that he stands as the moral core of the Republican Party. You don’t sacrifice that core in the name of “what you can get” just because there aren’t any other good options.

      • flypusher says:

        “That’s a fine mindset to have when you’re talking about policy making, not when you’re looking to being the next heir apparent to the Republican Party. A leader blazes a trail for all those who follow afterwards and sets the example. What does it to say to all those who look to the GOP and see Ted Cruz as that example?”

        I would have much rather the person to defy Trump be someone like John McCain or Chris Christie or Paul Ryan or Marco Rubio. But they declined that chance to lead.

      • 1mime says:

        If nothing else, we have learned a great deal about the 2020 candidate pool.

      • Titanium Dragon says:

        I disagree.

        Cruz smarmed his way onto stage by concealing what he was up to.

        McCain is too honest to do that.

      • flypusher says:

        Are you really shocked at what he did TD? The Trump campaign dropped the ball in allowing Cruz to speak without getting that endorsement first. As for McCain, one of the things I used to like about him is that he spoke out against things that offended his morality, like torture. And here he is caving to a bully who promises water boarding and worse. A bully who made light of McCain’s POW ordeal, something he probably couldn’t have stood for 5 minutes. The opportunity to be great almost always comes with a hard choice to make. McCain chose poorly, and a lot of us who used to respect him no longer do. I now hope he loses his Senate seat.

      • 1mime says:

        Fly, who knows if this is true, but Politico reported that Trump tweeted out last night following Cruz’ spectacle that he read the speech 2 hours before the convention and allowed it to go forward because he felt it would not be well received.

        Trump isn’t smart enough to realize that Cruz is playing the long game here. This wasn’t ever about Trump, it was all about 2020.

      • flypusher says:

        1mime, I’ve also heard speculation that this was orchestrated, like a WWE event. Cruz plays the villain and Trump appears to save the day and please the crowd. The one flaw I see in that interesting theory is that I don’t see Teddy agreeing to anything that might help Trump. I think Cruz is a slimy opportunist, but I also think that he is pissed about Trump attacking his wife and his father.

        Who knows? The Trump campaign has made so many errors that I have to take any assertion that they knew what Cruz would say with a shaker or two of salt.

  22. flypusher says:

    I must reluctantly agree. I can’t stand Cruz, but he did not sell out. So grudging respect for you, Teddy. You’ve got more spine than the majority of GOP Congresscritters. But you’re still not forgiven for that Gov’t shutdown, or your refusal to give Judge Garland the confirmation hearing he deserves (and the intelligence insulting excuses you give).

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      I just can’t shake the feeling that none of this was for principles.

      I could be wrong, but somehow I doubt Cruz would have done this if, say, Trump had a very high favorability raring within the GOP.

      • flypusher says:

        I have no doubt it was self-serving. But the emperor is buck nekkid, and somebody, anybody, needs to say that. Trump is not qualified for the job, regardless of favorability rating.

  23. JK74 says:

    Hey, Chris, look on the bright side; when Cruz is nominated to challenge President Clinton in 2020, his smashing defeat (rivalling only Trump’s loss four years previously) might finally break the belief of the “missing conservatives”, that if only the GOP had nominated a “true conservative” they’d have won.

    Trump’s loss this year gives many reasons that a rationaliser (as against a reasoner) can use to explain away. A Cruz loss will give far less opportunity.

    • JK74 says:

      Forgot to add; the downside (for you, the US and the world) is that rock bottom is still >4 years away, and the transition into something like a “normal” centre-right party even further off.

    • elvispizza says:

      Perhaps the definition of true conservative needs to explicitly exclude hateful Armageddon-bent Christianists? That’s all the reason or rationale most people ought to need to vote against Cruz.

  24. Sara Robinson says:

    You know we are in bad times when the only person on that stage you could say something nice about is…Ted Cruz.

    Molly Ivins is spinning her grave.

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