January 23, 2012

South Carolina's Newtron Bomb: Part 2 - Newt In the Box

Hatched by Dafydd

...In which we give NLG advice, just as if we knew what we were talking about!

Let's suppose for sake of argument that Newt Gingrich ends up being the Republican nominee for President of the United States. What, in that hypothetical, does he need to do in order actually to win, rather than humiliate himself and demolish the party (and country) in the process?

First, here's what he doesn't need to do: He doesn't need to continue fighting with the useless-idiot moderators at these debates. All right, all right, we get it; the lamestream media are biased against the Right. (And not only that... someone is wrong on the internet.)

But as effective as such Newtiments may be among conservative Republicans, that's how badly they play among independents and Reagan Democrats -- who we need in order to win the general election. Even if a question is unfair or vile and would never be asked of a Democratic candidate, ordinary general-election voters still want to hear an answer; to evade the question by attacking the questioner sounds... cagey, evasive, furtive.

It's all right to use a few seconds to bash the inquisitor; but then, for God's sake, answer the blasted question! Don't make it sound like you have something to hide, Mr. G.

Gingrich sort of did that in the Charleston debate when immoderator John King led off with a question about Marianne Gingrich's claim in an ABC interview that Newt had asked for an "open marriage." After lambasting King for asking the question, he did finally answer the question... sort of. But he spent a minute and a half attacking King, then another thirty or forty seconds backing up and running over the corpse once more (not only was King merely dead, he was really most sincerely dead). Sandwiched in between was essentially a one-word answer: No. Meaning, No, he says he didn't aske MG for an open marriage.

It played very well in the context of a primary crowd comprising conservative GOP voters in the deep South. But that approach will fall flatter than a platyhelminthes among those voters who don't consciously consider themselves "political."

Second, we don't need Newt Gingrich's penchant for a ten-RPM (revelations per minute) scream of consciousness, where idea follows idea so quickly that most viewers are left breathless and dizzy -- but not persuaded by any of them. Such machine-gun rapidity of thoughts, ranging from brilliant to downright goofy, leads to idea overload; the audience simply tunes them all out as random noise, turning Gingrich's soliloquy into "wugga wugga wugga economy, wugga wugga wugga space, wugga wugga wugga ObamaCare."

He doesn't need to prove that he thinks a plethora of thoughts; we got that already. Instead, Newt needs to prove that he can think deeply and popularly. He needs to pick two or three central themes -- two domestic policies and a foreign policy, for example -- and pound the living daylights out of those plans! Something with a simple, catchy mnemonic, like Herman Munster's "9 -- 9 -- 9," but with as much detail as Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-WI, 96%) "A Roadmap for America's Future."

Does Gingrich have the discipline to stick to the script, rather than branching out into an endless eddy of ad libs, regurgitating recursive rodomontade and increasingly repetitious rhetoric? Honest to Godot, I don't really know.

Third, the very last thing we need is Newt the Master Debater... because in the general, that's all it will be.

Anybody who thinks Barack H. "Bubble Boy" Obama is going to pick up Newt's gauntlet of three three-hour debates, mano a mano, also believes in the Truth Fairy. Obama has nothing whatsoever to gain from debating Gingrich. Heck, I wouldn't even be surprised if President B.O. refused to debate "nominee" Newt Gingich al all, not even a single debate.

The president has a remarkably easy way to pull that off: He dithers about debates until there is only one more time slot on the table. He reluctantly agrees to that debate, citing the press of "the people's business" and that he can't take time to play with Newt Gingrich.

Then, just before that debate, Obama deliberately and secretly precipitates a Crisis. This Crisis becomes all consuming -- and Obama summarily cancels the debate for the duration of the Crisis... which lasts into the final month of campaigning. And mysteriously, Obama just plain runs out of time to debate hapless Newton Leroy.

What would Newt do -- debate a GOP stand in pretending to be Obama? Debate an alternate Democrat to be named later? Debate himself? How many people do you think would watch any of those? More to the point, how many people who are not already Newtists will tune in?

Yeah, that's what I think, too.

If Gingrich's entire campaign is a series of Lincoln-Douglass debates -- what does that mean, Gingrich speaks, then Obama shows up the next day with a rebuttal? -- then what becomes of his strategy if Barack Obama simply refuses to play ball?

What we so desperately need from the Newtonian is a good old-fashioned retail campaign, with Newt's voice ringing "from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city""

  • Newt speaking at Elks clubs and national monuments, college campuses and church bean suppers, Wall Street and a Detroit assembly line.
  • Newt on the talking-head shows, conservative talk radio, and NPR.
  • Newt flooding the airwaves and the internets with adverts, YouTubes, Tweets, and lots of "exciting news" on Farcebook and MyFace.
  • A phalanx of Newtists whose full-time job is to anticipate the next attacks on Newt Gingrich and to make ready a forceful, pithy, and easily absorbed pushback to each attack. No attack should be allowed to stand unanswered for longer than fifteen minutes; so the Gingruption Rapid-Response Ring (GRRR!) had better know what slander the Left is going to hurl into the politosphere even before the Left itself knows.
  • Newt campaigning among the peons. Newt answering questions quickly and decisively. Newt kissing hands and shaking babies.

In other words, Newt behaving like a regular nominee for the presidency... the same battle plan that would be followed by Mitt Romney or Rick Santorum. That is the only way that Newt Gingrich would be able to beat Barack Obama; he can't just cruise above the country at Flight Level 350, delivering pronunciamentos via aerial bombardment. "As God is my witness, I thought those turkey ideas would fly!"

Does he have the attention span to conduct this type of campaign for month after month? Again, I just don't know; he strikes me as a bloke who bores easily.

If "Retail Newt" shows up, then we have a really good chance. But if it's just the old "Tsunami Newt"... well all I can suggest is that you put on your manly gown, gird your loins, and pull up your socks; it's going to be a bumpy ride, heading into a crash landing.

Hatched by Dafydd on this day, January 23, 2012, at the time of 4:22 AM

Comments

The following hissed in response by: snochasr

Sorry, but Newt has already announced his campaign battle plan. "We will challenge Barack Obama to a series of SEVEN 3-hour Lincoln-Douglas style debates on national television, and he can use a teleprompter if he wants. If he refuses, as I believe he will, I will follow him around the country and match him speech for speech and just tell the truth about him and his horrible policies." A "running debate" may be even better than the mentally exhausting (for viewers) 3-hour slug-fest.

The above hissed in response by: snochasr [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 23, 2012 7:00 AM

The following hissed in response by: Ken Hahn

Sorry, I have to disagree. We need to bash the lapdog media at every opportunity and let people know that there are alternative sources. Since 1960 the press has been a subsidiary of the far left in the Democratic Party. Every Republican should be giving them Hell every chance they get.

If Newt is the nominee and Obama refuses to debate, he should buy time and debate an empty chair. Obama has been missing as President and showing him missing as a candidate is only fair. I think Newt has some severe problems as a candidate but Obama does also. Highlight them and expose his supporters in the "nonpartisan" media.

It's time we stopped being nice to people who imply racism and terrorist tendencies to those of us who just want a constitutional republic.

The above hissed in response by: Ken Hahn [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 23, 2012 9:54 AM

The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh

Ken Hahn:

If Newt is the nominee and Obama refuses to debate, he should buy time and debate an empty chair.

And how many undecided voters do you think will tune in to watch Newt Gingrich debate an empty chair?

I'm not suggesting we be "nice" to perjurers and serial slanderers; I suggest we use tactics that might actually work to evict President B.O. from la Casa Blanca, as opposed to cutesie stunts that will make our own nominee look foolish and desperate.

Dafydd

The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 23, 2012 3:36 PM

The following hissed in response by: Ken Hahn

Dafydd,

We need to do something. We've been nice for over 50 years and we get no respect. Traditional campaign tactics aren't going to work against Obama and a united media. A stunt or two might help.

The above hissed in response by: Ken Hahn [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 23, 2012 6:27 PM

The following hissed in response by: snochasr

That is why I believe Newt's campaign strategy will work. Every time Obama gives a speech (and he gives a LOT of them), Newt shows up the next day and grabs headlines for disagreeing with the President, usually in a bright little sound-bite that the media needs. The media outrage will continue the next day, at which time Newt gets to explain it to the little kiddies and the media will report THAT, just as outraged as before because he did not back down. It's called "free media" and it's the only path to success, IMHO. You can't outspend Obama AND his sycophant media friends.

The above hissed in response by: snochasr [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 24, 2012 7:04 AM

The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh

Snochasr:

Is your suggestion that Gingrich, should he become the nominee, should allow Barack Obama to determine all of Newt's campaign appearances?

Suppose Obama goes on a long tour of Republican strongholds. Newt, doglike, follows faithfully. That means that Obama is trying to expand his message into enemy territory -- while hapless Newt is simply preaching to those already committed to vote Republican, and responding to the same Obama stump speech, over and over and over, playing Mr. Rebuttal... and allowing Obama to control the venue, pace, and agenda of Gingrich's campaign.

How about this: Gingrich follows his own campaign plan, carefully worked out with his campaign mangler and staff. If Obama actually says something different and startling, Newt can respond; if not, Newt can push his own message of growth, jobs, and drastically cutting federal spending (and block-granting the fed spending that's actually necessary), in a venue of his own choosing, actually trying to capture normally Republican states that Obama won last time.

Sound intriguing? That's a normal campaign. They do it that way because -- it works.

Dafydd

The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 24, 2012 1:44 PM

The following hissed in response by: Baggi

Once again, Dafydd, I couldn't disagree with you more.

American's are not stupid. They know the media is biased.

Like Hugh Hewitt has a penchant for doing (lately), allow me to give you an analogy.

You and your wife are going out to the movie theater. You go to the door and open it for your wife. As you open the door and your wife begins to step through the threshold, some jerk pushes her aside and starts to shout in her face about how stupid she is for getting in his way.

You could respond meekly and say something like, "We're sorry, we won't get in your way again." or you could respond with something along the lines, "Listen bub, that's my wife you're talking to! I opened the door for her, not your sorry as. Not get out of the way and have some respect."

In this scenario, the media is the jerk, we voters are the woman and the politicians are the husband.

Mitt Romney is the type we perceive who responds in the first way. Meekly.

Newt Gingrich responds the second way. With fire in his belly and sincerity.

You are, in effect, saying that the crowd that witnessed this exchange wouldn't understand, because they are not the woman and they don't necessarily agree with the woman.

And this is where you're wrong.

American's are smart enough to recognize a fighter when they see one and they are smart enough to know when someone is being wronged.

Conservative Republicans aren't the only ones out there who don't trust the media. As a matter of fact, in a recent survey (I believe in 2009) Jon Stewart was the most trusted name in news. That ought to tell you everything you need to know right there.

We want someone to stand up to the bully for us. We want someone who isn't meek and mild every time the media comes up with some faux reason for us being evil. There are endless examples of this. Why do you think conservatives are so focused on Obama's golfing?

It's not because we think he shouldn't golf. It's because the media attacked Bush for golfing and Bush meekly backed down. Score one for the Democrats. This demoralized the Conservatives out there who loved Bush.

Bush wouldn't fight back. Thank God he fought back against Islamists. But he didn't fight back against the media.

We're tired of that.

The above hissed in response by: Baggi [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 24, 2012 7:26 PM

The following hissed in response by: Baggi

Dafydd wrote;

Is your suggestion that Gingrich, should he become the nominee, should allow Barack Obama to determine all of Newt's campaign appearances?

That's actually Newt's plan and it's a good one.

Your response is, what if Obama only goes to Republican strongholds?

Does Russia know that the United States is having a Presidential election? Does China? How about those living in South Africa?

But how can they know, Obama and the Republicans haven't actually, physically, been there!

Oh yeah, internet, radio, television. Did we forget these things exist?

It doesn't matter where Obama goes. Obama will go to South Carolina and give a speech and talk about fairness and taxes and boeing blah blah blah.

Four hours later, Gingrich will show up and he will respond and make headlines for following Obama around and calling Obama a coward for not facing him. And he will do this day after day, week after week, month after month.

And all the while it will demoralize Obama's followers who will see Obama for what he is, a coward and a weakling. And it will embolden Conservatives because there will be no one to dispute our message.

We will have a standard bearer who will go unchallenged and the result will be, "They must be right. Who can argue against them? Not Obama."

It's a perfect strategy in this new internet age.

The above hissed in response by: Baggi [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 24, 2012 7:46 PM

The following hissed in response by: snochasr

Actually, I think both approaches are probable. Newt will not follow Obama around for long, "telling the truth" about him, before Obama explodes in frustration and pique and "blows it." After that, Obama will lose his most effective weapon-- empty rhetoric-- and if he doesn't back away from campaigning altogether will play to an increasingly disillusioned base. Gingrich will then be free to roam the rest of the country, jabbing and poking from afar.

The above hissed in response by: snochasr [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 24, 2012 8:21 PM

The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh

Baggi:

Four hours later, Gingrich will show up and he will respond and make headlines for following Obama around and calling Obama a coward for not facing him. And he will do this day after day, week after week, month after month.

Interesting. Then Obama can dub the GOP nominee "Tag-Along Newt." Then Gingrich can become a national running joke, as happened to Gerald Ford.

Snochasr:

Newt will not follow Obama around for long, "telling the truth" about him, before Obama explodes in frustration and pique and "blows it." After that, Obama will lose his most effective weapon-- empty rhetoric-- and if he doesn't back away from campaigning altogether will play to an increasingly disillusioned base. Gingrich will then be free to roam the rest of the country, jabbing and poking from afar.

Yeah, wouldn't it be cool if, throughout his entire campaign, Obama consistently makes the worst possible responses to everything Newt says or does?

Say, let's build our national strategy around that expectation! What could go wrong?

Dafydd

The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 24, 2012 9:36 PM

The following hissed in response by: Baggi

I do think it's possible that Newt could becoming a "national running joke" like Sarah Palin, and just about every other Conservative.

It's not because our spokesman are "running jokes" it's because they don't fight back and Republicans go along with it.

Romney will become a "national running joke" also. Saturday Night Live and the media will see to it.

Only, you won't go along with it if it's Romney, only if it's Gingrich.

Others will though. Just enough to allow the meme to catch on. Like Bush is a stupid chimp. Sarah Palin is dumb. Rice is a house you-know-what. Etc.

What you failed to show though is how it would be true. Not that Gingrich would actually be a joke, only that he would be labeled as such, by our ideological enemies.

You've already given in to them before they've even started. No wonder you prefer Romney.

The above hissed in response by: Baggi [TypeKey Profile Page] at January 26, 2012 9:27 PM

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