Dec 27th, 2011
If you haven't read Bill Kristol's latest, do yourself a favor and keep it that way. Titling it "A Time For Choosing," Mr. Kristol lectures the early primary and caucus voter:
"Ignore the proclamations of the pundits, the sophistries of the strategists, and the calculations of the handicappers. Ignore the ads, the robocalls, and the polls. Be skeptical of those who would seek, whether from national stage or local perch, cavalierly or presumptively to instruct you how to mark your ballot. That ballot is yours alone to cast."
Got that, average GOP voter? Ignore whatever you've learned about the worst slate of candidates for your party's nomination in living memory.
Here's his real message, however, and it's not for the electorate:
"And it is a moment, as you prepare to cast your vote, for others to reflect on whether they don’t owe it to their country to step forward. As this is no time for voters to choose fecklessly, it is no time for leaders to duck responsibility. Those who have stood aside—and who now may have concluded, as they may not have when they announced their original decision, that the current field is lacking—will surely hear the words of Thomas Paine echoing down the centuries: “The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands by it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.” Now is not a time for leaders to engage in clever calculations of the odds of success, or to succumb to concerns about how they will look if they enter the fray and fall short. Now is a time to come to the aid of our country."
It's depressingly entertaining witnessing Kristol convolute himself in such a manner. In only a few short and overly florid paragraphs, he moves from 'don't listen to the pundits' to 'for the love of God, somebody who can win, please listen to me and get into the race before it's too late.'
If he's this panicked now, one can only imagine what he'll be writing by Summer.