Fate, Folly, Fred

OK, Mr. Thompson, so you have finally decided you’re in the race. Late and a sloppy entry, but you have time to make up for that, just to long as you don’t screw up again. And let’s be honest, you have screwed up. I have this sneaking suspicion that when you decided to declare your candidacy on the ‘Tonight Show’, it was because someone in Marketing thought that was some slick ‘outside the box’ thinking. In fact, sir, it was plain stupid. You not only set yourself up as a shallow celebrity seeking applause without facing any of the hard questions which real candidates address, you demonstrated poor sense of timing and delivery – you managed to suggest that the debate you skipped was not worth your attention, and by extension you implied the same thing about the voters who watched that debate.

Let’s get right to the brass, Mr. Thompson. Yes, you have assets, but maybe you don’t see them as they really are. People are sick and tired of preening and posturing mandarins and narcissists, and so it’s refreshing to see someone who promises candor and a strong backbone. Your problem, sir, is that you do not hold the monopoly on those qualities, so that your advantage is in transit. To coin certain phrases, use it or lose it and the clock is running. But we must also address your liabilities. I liked you as a Senator, all things considered, but it does not speak well of your sense of commitment that you jumped ship so quickly – a reasonable voter must ask what happens if you became President, then got tired of the job? Surely you know that the office of President is a four- or eight-year colonoscopy in plain and constant view of the public, under even the best of circumstances? So how do we know you are committed, sir? The question needs a better answer than how you feel just now.

You also have a problem in your rivals for the nomination. A mayor of New York, renowned for common sense and personal courage; a charismatic governor with talent for executive work; a bonafide hero from the Vietnam War who, tactless and boorish though he is at times, stands by what he believes regardless of the climate; and a plain-speaking southern governor whose quiet tact and reason are compelling. With all due respect for your intelligence and charisma, Mr. Thompson, you need to do a much better job of explaining why your resume is the superior one to these proven leaders. America needs a GOP nominee who not only can but will whip the pretender from the Left, and lead the nation’s defense against her enemies and towards her commonwealth. A few quips get you looked at, sir, but now is the time for you to show your mettle and your stamina. You have a lot of work to do, and it’s past time to begin, sir.

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