Rob Christensen at the N&O had the creepy job this week of interviewing Newt Gingrich, who is in town to rake in some of the Puppetmaster's cash and fan the flames of all things reactionary. Go see the real thing . . . or read my translation of the Newt's double talk below.
Newt gauging presidential run
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich was one of one of the leading American political figures of the 1990s, having helped Republicans win control of the House in 1994. BlueNC's Anglico was visited in a dream by the Newtmeister as he burned through North Carolina on his Gigantic Ego Trip.
A: What do Republicans need to do to keep the White House in 2008?
G: First, elect me. I am god's gift to our nation and without me, we will never get back to basics. We have to be committed to balancing the budget. We have to be committed to controlling the border in terms of immigration. We have to be committed to continuing tax cuts to accelerate economic growth. We have to be the party of reform. In other words, we need a soul and brain transplant.
A: Under what circumstances would you consider running for president?
G: I am going to spend the next 15 or 16 months blabbing about
how much America needs mewinning the future, talking about big solutions and big policy proposals. If we (note Royal "we") find there is a national interest and the American people really want to go through the changes necessary to compete with China and India, and go through the changes that are necessary to deal with the reality of the baby boomers living longer than any generation before them, then I'm interested in considering it. ... "
A: You say "we." How many of you are in there?
G: Two that I know of. There's the Pillsbury Doughboy me and the Rush Limbaugh me. We're both crazy as sh*t, but that's what it takes to be successful in the Republican Party these days.
A: Are we winning the war in Iraq?
G: Who cares? It's a good campaign issue and it's good for bidness. As long as the Democrats want to cut-and-run, we'll have plenty of support for pouring billions into Iraq.
A: The New York Times recently noted that political scientist Willmoore Kendall received three times as much ink as you did in the new Conservative Encyclopedia. William Buckley was quoted as saying that was appropriate because "Newt came and went rather fast but didn't leave hard fingerprints." What do you make of that?
G: Total confusion. I've spend my career building my career and I personally claim credit for destroying our government and its credibility. No one has wrecked so many things so quickly as I have. I resemble that remark.
A: So why are you getting disrespected?
G: Jealousy. When people see my magnificent presence, they are just flat-out jealous. That's the only possible explanation.
A: What do you make of the reports in The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times and elsewhere on the financial transaction disclosures?
G: WHen the White House discloses intelligence for political gain, well, everybody can appreciate the wisdom of that. But a liberal newspaper trying to inform the public about illegal government activities? Now that's a despicable lack of patriotic concern on the part of The New York Times management.
A: Do you not think the terrorists kind of figured we were monitoring their financial transactions?
G: If they already assumed it, why would The New York Times print it? If it was so self-evident, why was it Page One? They can't have it both ways. It can't be irrelevant and, by the way, it's on Page One.
A. Did it occur to you that it may be completely self-evident to the terrorists, but not to the
lemmingspeople of America who have been lied into lethargy by this administration?
G: Lies? What lies? We're fighting them over there so ...
And, of course, the Puppetshow is going orgasmic over the possibility that el Newt might once again take up his jack hammer and continue to demolish the government he wants to lead.
For what it's worth, I hope the Newt does run for president. I really want to hear him explain the heartfelt family values that cause him to divorce his wives when they get sick. There couldn't be a more suitable asshole for a starring role in the Puppetshow.