In the wake of last week's public confrontation and threat to "take out" Fred Dicker of the New York Post, gubernatorial candidate Carl Paladino (R-NY) was unapologetic. In its wake, Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Andrew Cuomo's (D-NY) forces have determined that Paladino's statement that a "benevolent dictatorship is the best form of government," is extreme. I assume that Paladino is thereby judged to be extreme and far outside the mainstream for this view. Now I am hardly interested in what I've seen of the Tea Party. Paladino's racism is legend already. And even if the Tea Party accepted me and I rose to the top of the organization, I'd still be their token Michael Steele -- yuck. But yet, I am not sure that the Cuomo camp's objection is a worthy or valid one.
Most civics neophytes learn early that political systems that provide individually-derived decisions are by and large more effective than decisions made by committee. So what was wrong with Paladino's statement? Could it be that he is merely on the wrong side of his opponent's capability to influence politics and media?
Frankly, I'd make a better Governor than either Cuomo or Paladino. For some time now I've understood the internal validity of the "benevolent dictator" maxim. But why was such contempt generated from Cuomo's camp on this? My belief is that Democrats', in fighting fire with fire, have also crossed the line. Cuomo's counsel was determined to deify the concept of benevolent dictatorship because most of the uninformed public today do not know what the concept means. The American public can't distinguish Socialism from syllogism and summarily they couldn't care less.
Now admittedly, Tea Party opposition is today the penultimate example of biased and indiscriminate behavior. But never mind that. There should be no honor or value in fighting fire with this brand of fire. Give the people "good information" and allow them to decide from that. And I appreciate that those like me would be outraged if in the future, there had been a way to alter Paladino's ultimate incompetence and narrow worldview that had gone ignored.
Clearly, we are all more willing to cheat for our objectives these days. The problem is that we will also cheat our own credo and our own sense of propriety to achieve our goal. That our goals are commonly thread through material things truly lowers the ante. And so the work in progress that is the next election winds down the road of the conventional when much, much more is needed. We've got to win this thing before we can worry about the ethics, you say? Be careful here! What does it profit a man"...?
Indeed, what we've seen evolve in Chicago has been the assertion of a benevolent dictatorship for roughly sixty years. Hasn't that form of rule been the outcome of the two Daley administrations over time? Yes, we see even Democrats become part of that Orwellian double-talk that has the public viscerally regurgitating politics as they are. And we are tired of it.
So what is the real purpose for Rahm Emanuel leaving the White House in his current attempt to become Chicago's next mayor? Dream job hell; Rahm wants to rule in a powerful arena. John Milton in "Paradise Lost" had it right when he said, "Better to rule in hell than to serve in heaven." Sadly, benevolence flees the scene if half of what is written about Emanuel's personality is correct. Ego and benevolence are not great bedfellows. Chicago will suffer due to this less agreeable personality but will yet endure powered on its own inertia.
Being less reprehensible than the extremes exercised by modern Republicans certainly says little for Democrats. Republicans have long been the shills for the powerful elite and there are no limits for oligarchs in their attempts to maintain power. This is why when average citizens quizzically shake their heads and appeal to corporate forces to "think of their grandchildren," they miss the point. Sociopaths don't display a two-generation, down the line allegiance gene. They metaphorically "kill for the joy of killing."
Get it together Democrats. Looking slightly better than the "Ignorance is Strength" party does not bode well for you. Emulating the party that cast off the warnings of Dwight Eisenhower for the "sleepy wisdom" of Ronald Reagan cannot be a good thing. Following in the footsteps of "tricky Dick" and Carl Rove is like being called Des Moines, Iowa, the second ugliest Capitol in America. You don't even strive to be the best at abhorrence?
Andrew Cuomo be advised: Curb your angry dog and begin to assume that some of your constituents have a modicum of sense and savvy. As distorted and off the mark as Tea Party Republicans are, that they can be so easily prodded into such an irate state should not suggest that you do the same with your constituents. Make that unhappy "middle" have to deal with facts. Then move the "middle" in your direction. I know that saying my mind is made up, don't confuse me with facts is the conventional wisdom of the modern electorate. But it has been your acceding to the lowest common denominator that has made this ground so fertile for such inane political maneuvering. You can't "out dirty" the current Republican establishment. That would be impossible to do. But then, who would want to? The vile and politically horrific should be their province solely. Republicans staked their claim here some time ago and that ground is their exclusive domain.
If the muddled middle opts for the tasteless ranting of the likes of Paladino, then let them. The only thing worse than that is becoming the Des Moines of politics.