Thursday, November 3, 2011

End of the Line For Herman Cain




If the above piece at PJ Media is true, Herman Cain's presidential run is completely finished not because it's becoming evident he has a history of being on the make with women he takes a fancy to, but because he hasn't been honest and forthcoming with the American people. By dodging, obfuscating, blaming and playing the race and victim cards, Cain has lost our respect and trust.  We are in no mood as voters with all the problems we're facing to have another Bill Clinton episode in the White House circa 2012.


DEAN STEPHENS AT AMERICAN THINKER says what none of us wants to hear but needs to delve into about Herman Cain: As with many candidates, there's a mythology, as there was with Colin Powell, we should examine to see if it bears up under deeper scrutiny. To wit:
Herman Cain supporters have accepted his narrative that he is an American success story. The question is, just how much of that "success" did he earn on his own? And is it really the Horatio Alger story we are led to believe?
Stephens believes that while Cain has achieved a measure of success which is fine as far as it goes,  it's vastly over-rated. He also thinks the candidate long ago became a professional politician rather than the full-time businessman he likes to portray himself as being:
Herman Cain did not build Godfather's Pizza. He was made manager of an existing organization within a large corporation and given staff and a title. The parent company soon spun it off, as big firms often do with subsidiaries that offer modest upside scale potential. Cain did not grow the business while he ran it as a subsidiary or after it was spun off. He made it more profitable by closing restaurants and firing several thousand employees. Cain then used that profitability success as a stepping stone to run for public office -- and quit. That act itself was typical of an employee, not an entrepreneur. In fact, many insiders do not consider Cain key to the turnaround. They tout Ronald Gartlin, who helped build the Godfather's chain before Pillsbury bought it, as key to Cain's efforts to return it to profitability. Gartlin replaced Cain on his departure and continues to run the business today. For the last 20 years Herman Cain has been active in politics. Although he has never won public office, he and his supporters cannot realistically claim he is not a professional politician. He is! Cain was appointed to the Federal Reserve board despite absolutely no credentials in monetary, fiscal, or economic policy that would justify the appointment. His status as a black businessman was likely his most important qualification. I cannot find any transcripts or video interviews of Cain discussing economic issues with any depth or breadth of insight. He talks in generalities. Details that require true knowledge are avoided. Cain is a sound-bite candidate in a sound-bite era. Even so, why is this Federal Reserve experience considered a good thing? Many of our problems in economic mismanagement are directly attributable to board members like Cain rubber-stamping disastrous Federal Reserve policies
Stephens continues by bringing up the sexual harassment charges leveled against Cain which he does not believe are true. I disagree and think there's probably a long-standing pattern of Cain being on the make which has had the effect of making female associates he comes in contact with uncomfortable if not downright fearful. I could be wrong, but it certainly now seems so. Cain clearly needs to address this issue and not just deflect it by blaming Perry or anyone else. It's bad politics at its worst.

The main concern Stephens has is Cain's inexperience with foreign policy which he thinks makes the candidate unfit to lead the country in these perilous times. The piece ends with a clear call for Cain to stop stonewalling and answer many questions that we need answered to fill in the blanks of our collective projections. I agree.  We can't and shouldn't vote for the projection of any candidate.

I am just as guilty of getting carried away with superficial and often hyped mythology on the candidates as anyone. For that, I have read this piece with relish and hope to be better for it.


gcotharn said...

I have no problem with reporting facts about any candidate. I do not even have a problem with rival campaigns pointing media towards facts about a candidate.

I do have a problem with the way Politico handled this story: I gave specific objections in a previous comment. Most importantly: when Politico allows unnamed accusers to allege sexual harassment, then Politico creates a state of media anarchy.

It is ... harsh ... that a victim of harassment is required to go public in order to get her story out. However, the alternative is anarchy. The alternative is the conducting of an ongoing metaphoric Salem Witch Trials ... which will be conducted against every conservative male politician in America ... and which are currently being conducted against Herman Cain. Salem Witch Trials is an accurate metaphor, even if Mr. Cain is a very guilty sexual harasser: Mr. Cain is being accused by persons who are not going on the record (with exception of the Christian radio broadcaster, and even that broadcaster refused to give specifics about what Mr. Cain did - which means even the named radio broadcaster has accused Mr. Cain via via vaporous inferences. There is no way to defend against that. Justice - informal justice amongst fellow human beings - demands that Mr. Cain be accused in a way which allows Mr. Cain to defend himself against something which is concrete, i.e. which allows Mr. Cain to mount a defense. No one can defend themselves against vaporous unspecified inference). I am not, here, defending Mr. Cain. He is not my preferred candidate, and he might be guilty as everything. Rather, I am criticizing the conduct of Politico, and of Mr. Cain's accusers.

The proper conduct, and the proper comparison, is with allowing a guilty criminal to remain free ... due to lack of evidence. Such is TREMENDOUSLY frustrating for victims, and for all who love justice, yet such MUST be done. The alternative is anarchy. This is the case in both the justice system, and in the media, and amongst human beings of good will who wish to live together in a successful society.

So, I am ranty - am churning out scores of words per minute, and am barely stopping for breath. Thank you for providing a forum for me to get this stuff off my chest.

Webutante said...

Greg, I agree with you on the way Politico handled the story. Editorial rooms are filled with conversations on how best to break a story like this, or whether to sit on it and let it ride.

On one hand it was unfair to Cain by using anonymous sources. Several days ago, I was defending him vehemently. But as time has gone on with other people chiming in, I think Politico was right in breaking it and letting a progression of events unfold, including the woman's lawyer filing to break her silence agreement with the Restaurant Association.

It appears with new details emerging, Cain would have had to know the incident (s?) and the woman (women?).

Anyway it's all going to come out soon and we can decide again if Politico did the right thing, if not the most ideal right thing with this story.

Thank you as always for your keen observations.