Cruzing for a Bruising
The conservative National Review magazine has an amusing article about the far-right reincarnation of Joe McCarthy, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), considering a run for the presidency. Amusing, that is, if your definition of the word includes the concept of gross, pathetic, galling and hypocritical. The article is titled, "Cruz 2016."
There's one little problem, though, you see. (Okay, there's one more one little problem, there are other problems like his non-existent record, his incompetence, and his mean-spirited over-the-far-right edge, Red-baiting ideology. But all the other, little problems are more of a personal opinion problem. This one is more...well, Constitutional.
As the articles notes --
“Cruz isn’t worried that his birth certificate will be a problem. Though he was born in Canada, he and his advisers are confident that they could win any legal battle over his eligibility. Cruz’s mother was a U.S. citizen when he was born, and he considers himself to be a natural-born citizen.”
There are several responses. The first and most obvious is -- HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!
So, let's get this straight, if that's possible.
The far, far right Ted Cruz and his brain trust not only don't see the fact that he was actually, literally born in Canada and there's an actual, literal birth certificate that proves it, but further that despite having an actual birth certificate that says he was born in Canada, Ted Cruz "considers himself to be a natural-born citizen." All because his mother was a U.S. citizen when he was born.
His father is a Cuban immigrant, and Cruz lived in Canada until he was four years old. Which apparently is the standard in CruzWorld for natural-born citizenship. What's so amusing, as well, is who the fatuous, fawning article in the National Review accepts this on face value, unquestioningly, "he considers himself to be a natural-born citizen" and devotes that one paragraph alone to the issue, case close, settled, next. Hey, if it's good enough for Ted Cruz, it's good enough for the US of A.
Okay, yes, yes, I know. The elephant in the room. And the donkey --
One is waiting to hear Ted Cruz weigh in on his opinion about Barack Obama and his mother who was a U.S. citizen when he was born -- in Hawaii with actual, literal documents to prove it.
I'm not sure if "hypocrisy" even does this justice. There has to be some new word that defines it, without causing your head to explode. Bozombastical, perhaps. Though even that falls far short.
But then, this is Ted Cruz. For all we know, he thinks Canada is one of the states. And thinks Hawaii isn't. With Texas and what they require in schoolbooks these days, you never know...
But for all that, another paragraph in the sycophantic, love-struck, toadying article leaped out --
"For the moment, Cruz’s inner circle is small: mostly aides from his Senate campaign; his father, Rafael; and his wife, Heidi. They didn’t plan on having these presidential conversations so early in his first term. Yet Cruz’s rapid ascent and a flurry of entreaties from conservative leaders have stoked their interest — and Cruz’s."
Well, first, er...yes, I'd say that this is a "small" inner-circle. So, at least the National Review is right about that.
And as for not planning to have these presidential conversations to early in his first term -- a) from all I've read about Ted Cruz, I don't believe that's true, and b) they left out that "so early" means four months! That's even bizarrely early by "Republican slamming Barack Obama as inexperienced" terms.
But mostly, what the article leaves out is any definition of what a "rapid ascent" is. Ted Cruz's name is perhaps known by more people than a couple months ago. But then, more people know the name of the Boston Bombers and the Ricin Letter Mailer, too. So, just knowing your name isn't inherently a great thing. More to the point is that Ted Cruz's "rapid ascent" and accomplishments in actuality isn't an ascent at all. In fact, he's been blasted and ridiculed by fellow senators for trying to tie Chuck Hagel to terrorist organizations, and humiliated when failing at a pathetic "gotcha" moment with Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. Sen. John McCain referred to fellow-senator Cruz on the record as a "Wacko Bird" (later apologizing). He was widely ridiculed for claiming Harvard Law School was full of Communists. Even Cruz himself noted that in one instance fellow-GOP senators were actually yelling at him and two others "at the top of their lungs, I mean really upset." Salon had a long article about all this and more, detailing the disdain of Cruz within the ranks of his own party, calling the piece, "GOP creates Ted Cruz, now thinks he's a jerk." Only in the far right National Review is any of this considered a "rapid ascent," let alone an ascent at all. Putting it in print doesn't make it so.
The National Review love letter wrote that Ted Cruz's "supporters argue that he’d be a Barry Goldwater type." It's worth noting two things -- 1) The Republican Party deeply respected Barry Goldwater, and didn't consider him a jerk. And 2) he got swamped in one of the greatest presidential landslides in U.S. history.
The far-right National Review's idolatry of Ted Cruz is just too funny to grasp. As is the pure concept of Ted Cruz for President.
Though not as funny as Ted Cruz considering himself a natural-born U.S. citizen.
5/1/2013 12:00:07 pm
"Barry Goldwater type"! I disagree with a lot of what the late Senator stood for in his career; but I could at least respect him because he wasn't mean and was willing to compromise, to get things done. Cruz is not only the meanest S.O.B. in the Senate since Thurmond died, he's the dumbest since Tailgunner Joe. The National Review has turned into a bigger joke than the NY Post.
5/1/2013 12:59:10 pm
Thanks for your note. As I hope my piece makes clear, I agree with you fully. That said, my sense is that the more "reasonable" Barry Goldwater appeared as he got older and became more of an elder statesman. He was a bit less flexible in his earlier days -- but -- he was never totally inflexible, mean-spirited and seemingly stupid like Ted Cruz appears to be.
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Robert J. Elisberg is a political commentator, screenwriter, novelist, tech writer and also some other things that I just tend to keep forgetting.
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