It’s early in the as-yet-unofficial Jeb Bush 2016 campaign, but it’s not going well. And that concerns me.
Jeb Bush has no business running for president. His wretched family has done such damage to this country — nay, the world! — that in a just society, he and anyone who shares his DNA would be laughed off the political stage for the next ten thousand generations.
But given his plutocratic connections, the ginormous war chest he’s amassed before officially announcing his candidacy (oops!) and the fact that the money people always decide the GOP nominee despite what the hairspray-huffing, snake-handling, sister-humping loons who vote in the primaries want, Jeb should be the prohibitive favorite. But he’s blowing it.
Why should we give a shit? Because it looks like the Democrats are going to nominate Hillary Clinton, and Jeb is the ideal candidate to oppose her — from the perspective of anyone who wants the Democrat to kick the Republican’s ass.
Not even the most genius marketing team on the planet can credibly pass Jeb Fucking Bush off as a “fresh face.” His candidacy neutralizes the “dynasty” objection. And if anything can make a “Clinton restoration” sound attractive (and HRC’s candidacy will be pitched that way by the corporate media 24/7/365 — take that to the goddamned bank), it’s the prospect of a Bush restoration.
You’re not worried about Bush’s flailing because you don’t think one of the second-tier Pubbies can win the general, such as the vapid Rubio, slack-jawed
Scott Walker or pompous Paul? I might have agreed until very recently. But the reelection of Rick Scott as Florida’s governor convinced me that there really is no limit to how awful a candidate can be and still get elected if the corporate media (which is default Republican — never forget!) helps him build the right narrative about his opponent.
Do you think only Florida — land of the twee and home of the cray — would be dumb and unhinged enough to elect someone who is a known liar with a track record of failure? See Bush, G.W., 2004 election. As I’ve argued in this space before, Florida is a microcosm for America in many ways, and when you laugh at us (which we deserve), you’re laughing at yourselves too, just as deservedly.
No, I can envision all too well a scenario in which the national corporate media pulls out all the stops to put forth Rubio, Scott or Paul as a youthful, attractive, hard-nosed pragmatist for the 21st century to backstop the Obama years. And they’ll pit that paragon against Hillary Clinton, that power-mad, has-been crone who couldn’t even keep her own husband away from the interns. Maureen Dowd is lining up her alliterations and dated pop-culture references even as we speak.
So Jeb — get your shit together, man. Steve M. at No More Mr. Nice Blog is exactly right about how you should have handled questions about the Bush Stain. But it’s not too late. Get on message and get-er-done, Jeb. We’re counting on you.