Game On

by lizard

In a not-very-productive conversation I’ve been having, the person I’ve been mixing it up with took issue with how I referred to politics as a game, like it was some ad hominem attack. Campaigns are contests, and contests have winners and losers, right? Yeah, a game.

The ultimate political game is the presidential race, and to win that game it seems any semblance of common sense constraint gets tossed out the window with the ends justifying the means method of political combat.

In order to become the titular figure head of America, there have been some serious accusations leveled at past victors, like Ronald Reagan. The term October Surprise became associated with the theory that the Iranian hostage situation was prolonged by Reagan, who supposedly cut a secret deal to embarrass Carter and ultimately win the election.

With that in mind, it seems the reckless right, driven by the scary-crazy social conservative wing, may be willing to exploit a blind Chinese dissident to score political points against Obama.

Regardless of that level of speculation, Mitt Romney decided to idiotically insert himself into a sensitive diplomatic matter. Here’s the gist of what he said:

Mitt Romney condemned the Obama administration’s handling of blind Chinese dissident Chen Guangcheng, calling the episode “a dark day for freedom” and “a day of shame” for President Obama if, he couched, reports are true that American officials communicated threats to Chen’s family.

Romney’s comments are dangerous, because at the very least it shows how willing he is to exploit a sensitive diplomatic tight-rope walk for short-term political gain. When it comes to playing games, this would be called “playing dirty”.

I read an article last month by Andrew Levine that was interesting, but kind of alarmist and overly speculative, imho. Here’s how it starts:

Will Mitt Romney and Benjamin Netanyahu concoct a war with Iran? Not if they have a tenth of the sense they were born with. But that’s not much consolation when we’re dealing, on the one hand, with a vulture capitalist and one time Mormon bishop whose flip flopping gives opportunism a bad name and, on the other, with a fascistically inclined ethnocratic zealot on a mission from God.

To pivot from national politics to local politics, M. Storin at Intelligent Discontent is accusing the Pam Bucy campaign of illegal robo calls and soliciting readers for evidence. We’ll see how that goes.

It makes one wonder, if the end is winning at any cost, then is the means whatever you can get away with?


  1. Swede Johansson

    Games need rules. Here’s one from Saul.

    5. “Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon. It is almost impossible to counteract ridicule. Also it infuriates the opposition, which then reacts to your advantage.

    Score one for our side.

    • Mayberry

      It is just a matter of time before felons completely take over the Democratic party. The Democrats have been encouraging felons to vote for years, and now they are fielding their own candidates. Makes sense to me.

  2. Steve W

    Isn’t she your preferred for President person, Swede? Are you going to become Swiss, too?

    • Swede Johansson

      I would, but I fear that line is getting a little too long.

      • Steve W

        Swede, Are all those red cars supposed to be communist cars going to France from Switzerland? Or are they red because they are Republican cars moving to Switzerland to be near Michele Bachmann?

        • Swede Johansson

          They’re red because they’re Ferraris.

          • Steve W


    • Mayberry

      Steve W—Maybe you should check out Switzerland. Then you’d realize what a perfectly happy country looks like and how fu*ked up your own country is. Trouble is, you probably couldn’t even get a visa. The Swiss don’t let anybody in unless they have a good reason and then they have to leave right away. If you want to stay you have to be a white heterosexual Christian who speaks Alemannic or German, have a lot of money, no criminal record, and be disease free.

  3. Ryan Morton

    First of all, that was a very Sex and the City way to end your post.

    Second, you’re right. That is all.

  4. Alien v. Predator: try not to get any on ya, liz; the fan is still spinning.

  5. Chuck

    I got the Robo call yestrday so yes Gutshe and Bucy made at least one.
    I voted absentee today and witheld my vote from them.

  6. Swede Johansson

    Hammer time.

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