Friday, July 22, 2016

Ted Cruz Is A Lying Fuck Bastard: The Return


“No, nothing stupid that he does ever surprises me."  
---Peter Kalikow, the former owner of the New York Post and New York delegate about Ted Cruz

Hi there! Today marks a special occasion in the life of this blog as we welcome back a recurring feature from earlier this year:




If Stephen Colbert can bring back "Stephen Colbert", then I can bring back this damn thing.  

While everyone's attention was on Donald Trump during the primaries, I turned my focus to Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) in his campaign for President. I have always found Sen. Cruz to be most irksome with his self-righteous piety and his absolutist disdain for any viewpoint he didn't share. He also never seemed to be able to manage a facial expression that didn't look utterly clueless or as if he were about to cry.

TED CRUZ IS A LYING FUCK BASTARD continued until his campaign came to an ignominious end after his defeat in the Indiana primary. Still, I knew I might bring this feature back if Cruz were to thrust himself into the national spotlight once more.

And he did this week at the Republican National Convention. Given his complete disdain for Donald Trump and all that he stands for, Cruz speaking at the RNC could be seen as the epitome of hypocrisy. But Ted Cruz never did anything without answering the question, "How does this benefit Ted Cruz?"

So Cruz gets a national forum to present HIS future of the Republican Party and for the country. Remember, Cruz was the first candidate to announce a running mate without actually winning his party's nomination. Such a level of unfounded self aggrandizement is not beyond this guy.

Before the speech, Ted Cruz sat down for an interview with Politico. Here are a few points that stood out to me: 

“[Trump would] lose state after state after state and the media would say that he can’t be beaten ... and the media liked to paint me as some whacked-out theocrat."

At one point, Trump was on the ropes and he had a string of losses. The story at the time was not that Trump was still winning but how Trump was not managing the process very well and the nomination could either slip from his grasp or make the nomination harder to get if he came up short of the delegates needed to win outright. 

“Four weeks before we dropped out, we were winning the race." 

I don't know about actually winning. Granted, Cruz was doing very well, making admittedly impressive gains and was closing the gap between himself and Trump. But he was never ahead. I'm not sure how not actually being in the lead can be called "winning the race".

“I think many of the mainstream media players are liberal Democrats. They intend to vote for Hillary. They believed Donald was the easiest candidate for Hillary to beat. And I think many of them wanted him to win the nomination. I don't think it was innocent decision-making behind this.”

This is of course the standard go to for the conservative ideologue to blame the liberal media. Never mind the culpability of the other Republican candidates who floundered and flopped about like so much dying fish. Never mind all the stories about Clinton's campaign struggling for momentum against Bernie Sanders and his massive appeal to young voters.

Cruz referenced an incident with Jeff Roe, one of this top aides, about a woe-is-me email declaration about how tough the campaign was on Heidi and the kids.

“Look, this is a pretty whining email,” Cruz told Roe.

"In the last three hours it's raised $285,000," Roe shot back.

"You know what?” Cruz replied. “Never mind."

For more on that email and Sen. Elizabeth Warren's response to all of that, click here. Of course, Ted could care less what she had to say. The email made money.

For the full interview, click here

So what of the speech itself? Well, here is how that went down.

Sen. Cruz entered the arena to adoring applause. 

Sen. Cruz exited the arena to boisterous boos.  

In between, Cruz gave the standard speech: Obama bad, Clinton worse, yadda yadda yadda. He only mentioned Donald Trump by name once. The crowd started getting restless. They wanted Cruz to get his shit together and endorse Trump already. Nobody likes Trump but dammit, he's gonna destroy Hillary Clinton so its time to get with the program. 

Then Ted Cruz told the assembled throng to "vote their conscience" and the assembled throng lost their shit completely. "Vote your conscience" is a standard dodge to tell fellow Republicans to vote without actually saying "vote for Trump". So up went the chorus of boos.

Now I've said a lot of bad things about Ted Cruz on this blog but part of me wants to give the man some credit: he damned sure didn't want to endorse Donald Trump and he damned sure didn't do it, even in the face of rising anger from the convention floor.  

There is the possibility that Ted thought the crowd was just chanting "Cruuuuuuuz" instead of "Boooooooooo". But nah. 

But Ted was still true to form. He's doing what makes Ted Cruz look good. Ted Cruz does what for him amounts to a drop the mike moment in the heart of Donald Trump's "coronation" to set the stage for 2020 as the savior of the party after Trump wrecks it. 

Cruz is not a stupid man, at least not on the subject of bolstering himself and his ambitions. He came close in 2016. With lessons learned from this defeat, he will come even closer in 2020.

We must not let down our guard. In Cruz's speech Wednesday, he said we should be driven not by anger but by love. Which is a noble sentiment and standing in the belly of the beast, a Republican convention that was a cauldron of anger, Cruz looks brave for saying it.


But let's not forget Ted's role in fomenting that anger. Ted preached hate and intolerance in his constant rebukes of President Obama. This was a man who championed the shut down of the American government to further his own political ambitions. This is a man who has pissed off his own party with his strict adherence to conservative absolutism. This is a man who would pit American against American when he chided New York values not being true American values

Promoting love over anger looks impressive standing against the ascendance of Trump in the Republican Party. But in the months and years leading to that moment, Cruz's weapon of choice was anger, stirred up hot and unrelenting against a government that wouldn't do exactly what Cruz and his constituents wanted it to do.

Yes, Ted Cruz stood up to Donald Trump and his legion of anger and hate. For that, I will give the man his due. But never forget the true heart of the man who came to that moment. Now and forevermore, we must keep watch and always remember:



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Another post coming up tomorrow as I wrap up the high points and low points of this week's Republican convention and what's next for the Democrats now that Hillary Clinton has named her running mate.

Until next time, remember to be good to one another.

Dave-El

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