Monday, May 26, 2008

beyond the pale

As reported by John Hinderaker at Powerline, Sen. Obama made a couple real humdingers today at a Memorial Day appearance in New Mexico. Go there to see some of the biggies, including a total misunderstanding of the purpose of Memorial Day--unless, of course, Obama claims to be able to see spirits. It would go well with a Messiah complex I guess, but I think this can be better written up to a man who is clearly not ready to have his every word and action scrutinized by thinking people. I guess for him it's a good thing that he's a Democrat.

I took particular umbrage to something that he said that is so UNBELIEVABLY dispicable that I am literally seeing red right now. Again, as reported by Mr. Hinderaker, Obama said this:

And part of what we need is to recognize that oftentimes our women servicemembers are more prone to post-traumatic stress disorder partly because they -- there's a sad, but real, problem of sexual harassment and sexual abuse for women veterans, and that makes them much more prone, then, to have post-traumatic stress disorder.

where to begin. . .

So what you're saying, Senator, is that women are "more prone" to suffer PTSD because they've been sexually harassed or abused.

More prone than what?

More prone than the men? So are you saying that women are more prone than men to suffer long-term degradation from battlefront experiences because of something the men are doing to them? That seems a bit sexist, I would think--I definitely couldn't foresee a women's empowerment czar or czarina broadcasting that message from the highest mountains. And it doesn't portray ANY man in uniform in a good light--that's a good day's work for a wannabe Commander In Chief!

Or did he mean that the prevailing conditions over there make women more prone to PTSD than if there was no sexual abuse or harassment? How, good sir, did you come to believe THAT???!!! Aren't the things that the women are doing over there every day--like even being there--perfectly legitimate activities to induce a long-term negative psychological effect? Or do you think that the women's contributions are such that they'd likely NOT experience PTSD--which is happening to the similarly-serving male populace in large numbers--were it not for the horrible culture that you insinuate runs amok over there?

Again, that's sexism AND a slander against the military.

The thing that gets me most is how off-handed the comment was. Clearly this wasn't scripted--I certainly hope it was not--but he said this whopper of a statement and didn't even think that what he was saying would be considered controversial or that it required more amplification. "Our men serving in Iraq and Afghanistan are a bunch of savages, and our women are their prey" he may as well have said. It probably would have been closer to his honest feelings anyhow.

And the real crux of it is: what will you do about it if you are President? We've got rules against that kind of wrongdoing right now, which you insist are simply not working. How will it be different under your administration?

Will you kick women out of the military?

Or will you just insist that no women serve in a combat zone? That's something you could do on day one of your presidency and have it take effect in about 2 weeks--will you do it?

Or will you just let things continue as they are now. And what is the reason for that course of action?

How much do you really care about these honorable women serving their country under the most challenging of conditions?

Do you care enough to give them their own voice?

Or is that a bridge too far for you?

Disgusting. Hillary, PLEASE make a big deal out of this!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

a modest tax increase proposal

Okay, I'm about to call "uncle" on the price of a gallon of gas--in fact, on prices in general.

I am a blessed man, make no mistakes about it. In the financial arena, I get paid comfortably and my only debts are in real estate. I am willing to bet that 90% of the country envies my financial situation.

But as I look at my credit card bill and see the dollars spent increasing dramatically for no consumer-driven reason, even I am looking for ways to cut my expenses.

I'm even considering something that I NEVER look to as a good solution: taxes.

The three candidates have all weighed in on this within the realm of the price of gas, just one of the areas that are experiencing increasing prices. I am unimpressed. Either they call for a restriction on free-market practices or they provide an inconsequential benefit to the consumer. That's three swings and a miss--next batter, please.

So what can be done about the price of. . .uh, everything? I mean isn't EVERYTHING suffering?

There's one area where that answer is a definitive "no".

Movie revenues.

Last weekEND, the top 12 movies grossed over $120 million. This holiday weekend, industry experts are expecting something north of $200 million. And for the summer as a whole--when people should be putting extra change under their bed cushions to prepare for the long fiscal winter ahead--projections hold that there will be over $2 billion put into box office hands.

Now I know those aren't "profits". . .but some of that money certainly will be. After all, that's a LOT of money!

Hence my proposal: a 10%/$1 increase (whichever is less) in ticket prices at the box office that goes directly to the federal government to help put out more "stimulus" packages. Or to help fund the one we just got. Or whatever--SOMETHING to bring financial relief to the consumer.

Think about that: this weekend alone, that would amount to $20 million dollars; for the summer as a whole, that's $200 million dollars.

Which is, I know, a drop in the bucket. The economic stimulus package just cost the federal government $170 billion--$200 million is a little over .1% of that.

But at least it's something.

You would figure that the liberals would be all over this one, since they're such big fans of regressive taxes.

Of course, you'd be wrong. The fact that it might impact the revenue of THEIR cash-cow industry means it won't get off the ground. The "do as I say" crowd never met a cause they would let interfere with their own perceived importance.

But I can dream.

A tax even I support. Go figure.

Of course, I'd much prefer it if we would up our own ability to "get" oil.

I mentioned I can dream, right?

the difference between leadership and bargaining

I'm hopeful that sometime in the next 3 weeks we'll know Sen. McCain's running mate.

Should he wait? Well, there's a case for a delay, the most common of which is that waiting to make the decision until after the Dem nominee--likely Obama--has made THEIR choice would allow McCain to choose "geographically" to strengthen his ticket.

I don't think he'll play that way. And I hope I'm right.

Listen, McCain didn't win the nomination because he did anything particularly pundit-friendly, which the move above would certainly be. And we have to remember that he won the nomination convincingly.

And he won that nomination by being what he is: an authentic leader, out in front and not backing down from a fight.

So whatever advantage there may be in waiting, I don't think he follows that path. You see, "waiting" to see what the other guy does isn't leadership. It's some form of bargaining where you voluntarily give the other guy the initiative in the contest. And that's a strategy that alpha males don't follow.

Did you ever see a group of football captains happy that their team lost the coin toss at the start of overtime in a playoff game?

That isn't McCain's way. He is right now figuring out the area that he figures to need the most help in to make his ticket as attractive as possible. And he will choose his VP candidate accordingly.

And he will choose it soon.

Saturday, May 17, 2008


SOOOO many possible applications to this title that it makes one wonder exactly what I'm talking about.

Well, today I'm applying it to Michelle Obama. I'm sure I'll use it again at some other point in the campaign--we have a long one ahead of us, that's for sure--but for today, I'm writing about the lovely Missus.

The Tennessee GOP has aired an ad bringing to light Mrs. Obama's "I haven't truly been proud of my country" comments.

In the aftermath, conversation has focused on one thing: is it fair to attack Michelle Obama?

And I am yelling and screaming EVERY TIME I see a "conservative" engaged in a tit-for-tat exchange with a liberal that falls into the trap.

Listen, this isn't about Michelle Obama.

This is about AN agent of the Obama campaign--ANY agent--saying these things.

Would we care what Michelle thinks if she wasn't the presumptive nominee's wife? Absolutely not. I get that.

But DO NOT let this even remotely appear as a personal attack on the Missus.

When asked "is it all right to attack the candidate's wife", respond "this isn't about the exact person who said this, this is about ANY key speaker in the Obama camp feeling a lack of pride in the country, and saying that they will ONLY feel pride if we elect Obama to the White House". Heck, there's even a great chance there to play into the identity politics game, by substituting "Obama" for "a black", "a man", or --dare I say it-- "a black man".

Obama is doing one thing very well right now (well, until yesterday with the whole appeasement issue): he's letting his assets in the campaign, which include the mainstream media, do a lot of the dirty work so he himself can stay above the fray.

How that strategy must be attacked is by attaching all these ridiculous words that are coming from his camp back TO THE CANDIDATE HIMSELF. So don't let MICHELLE be the one associated with the Proud comments--make it "an agent of the Obama campaign" and try our best to force the candidate to endorse or distance himself from those remarks. Don't let Dr. Susan Rice be the one who EVEN DISCUSSES what a "precondition" means--just keep DIRECT QUOTING what Obama himself has said on numerous times, keep those words in the media, and force the man to eventually address the issue.

Listen, Sen. Obama is going to get a "free pass" out of scrutiny from a lot of groups from now until November. But we conservatives do not have to be one of those givers of the free pass.

SO, in sum: when asked "is it all right to attack the candidate's wife" by a moderator, I am hopeful that some of the apparent conservatives that appear on these programs respond by saying that "we absolutely think that every word spoken in public gatherings ABOUT AMERICA by a representative of the Obama camp is worthy of dissection and wider dissemination."

Make the issue about accountability and not about "attacks". PLEASE!!!!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Wisdom of William Joel

Random quick-thought today:

I was listening to Billy Joel's "Keeping the Faith" yesterday. There's a lot of near-poetry in that tune, things that a lot of everyday Joes can relate to about growing up in yesteryear. But my favorite line is this:

Lost a lot of fights. . .but it taught me how to lose okay

For the record, I don't think that learning to be a good loser is any sort of a reason to fight. In fact, I don't think there's a whole heckuva lot of good reasons to fight, period.

But that doesn't mean that there aren't ANY reasons for fighting.

TO POINT: my psychobabble of the day isn't focusing on the "fights" stuff, but much more on the "losing".

When do our kids today learn how to lose "okay"? Or for that matter, learn to lose at all?

I can't help but think that this is one of the reasons why everything in today's youth is so. . .extreme. "Everybody's a winner" makes everybody grow really sensitive to NOT winning--and not in a good way. There's less character development being accomplished by coming out on the short end of the stick, and I, for one, happen to think it means that there's less character development getting accomplished OVERALL.

I also happen to think that this is a big reason for the liberal's insistence that U.S. forces' premature withdrawal from Iraq won't be a big deal. It's not that they don't care that it will look like a loss--they can't be that stupid. Or at least I hope they can't.

No, the liberals don't mind a U.S. loss because THEY DON'T KNOW WHAT LOSING MEANS to the stature of America globally. And because they don't know what it means to lose, they don't know how important it is that we win.

Heck, Obama even talks about our defeat in Iraq as "helping" our image in the Middle East.

Has a more cockamamie idea ever existed?

A fascination with the weak is a creation only of the Western civilization's romantic mind, and I don't think there are a lot of those in the Middle East. To look at that society that still treats women largely as property and is about as racist as any that has EVER lived and say that our nation's stature will be enhanced by losing ANYTHING is dangerously naive.

Which, as it turns out, is an Obama specialty.

Now back to our regularly scheduled programs. . .

Saturday, May 10, 2008

gotta break through!!!

I think it's fair to say that the media is going to form a protective wall around their candidate, Sen. Obama, from now until. . .well, probably until such time that he dismantles the independent media. I'm not saying that he'll necessarily GO that far, but. . .well, we don't know for sure, now do we? It's so hard to figure out what this guy stands for, because if you wait long enough, he'll backtrack on just about everything he says.

Take, for example, what one of his senior foreign policy advisors said today (as reported at the NYT website):

But Dr. Rice said that this was not the case for Iran or any other so-called “rogue” state. Mr. Obama believes “that engagement at the presidential level, at the appropriate time and with the appropriate preparation, can be used to leverage the change we need,” Dr. Rice said. “But nobody said he would initiate contacts at the presidential level; that requires due preparation and advance work.”

NEVER YOU MIND that Obama has said publicly at least twice and had posted on his website that he "supports tough, direct Presidential diplomacy with Iran without preconditions." I don't know what Rice (not Secretary Condoleeza, by the way, this is Dr. Susan) finds different between "advance work" and "preconditions", but Obama clearly meant that he would talk with Ahmadinejad without the Iranians needing to offer any carrots to make the talks happen; Rice is apparently talking about logistics. Her parsing of the words is a distraction, meant to let Obama walk away from one of his most naive positions he's held this campaign.

Not that the Obama camp knows anything about distractions.

AND AS EASY AS IT SHOULD BE to get the Senator to clarify what he actually means regarding a sit-down with Iran, we can trust that the media isn't going to do it.

But McCain can. It just needs to be packaged in a way that lets him maintain his "high ground" while still making the point. You see, McCain will still draw media attention--it's just got to be done in a manner in which he will allow himself to speak. And merely pointing out the contradiction isn't enough--it will be white-washed by the media, and labeled as a "smear" by Obama's camp.

No, it needs to be something better. And while I think about the proper avenue to bring this positional flip-flop vis-a-vis Iran by the Obama camp to the light of day in a format acceptable to McCain, I'm happy to report that I've already come up with a way around the media interference for yet another Obama "nuanced position".

Sen. Obama signed a pledge last year to accept public funding for his Presidential run if he became the nominee.

That was last year. This year. . .well, he's re-defined "public financing".

Obama in 2007: "My plan requires both major party candidates to agree on a fundraising truce, return excess money from donors, and stay within the public financing system for the general election. . . If I am the Democratic nominee, I will aggressively pursue an agreement with the Republican nominee to preserve a publicly financed general election."

Obama in 2008: "We have created a parallel public financing system where the American people decide if they want to support a campaign they can get on the Internet and finance it," he told donors at a Washington fundraiser Tuesday night. "And they will have as much access and influence over the course and direction of our campaign that has traditionally reserved for the wealthy and the powerful."

"Parallel public financing system". In other words, not THE public financing system that his plan of last year required the major party candidates to stay within.

Gosh, last year. . .that's so long ago in Obamanation.

SO we have hypocrisy here, right? How for McCain to attack this?

This one is actually pretty easy. Again, don't just point out the contradiction (that's so 2004, and McCain has already done that), but make it part of a message. Something like this.

"Obama has said that he wants to help our economy out. Yet he refuses to accept public financing for the upcoming general election. Let's make perfectly clear what his decision is here: He has money available to him that is there for his taking without imposing on the electorate in any way, shape or form. And it's a fair amount of money. It's the same amount as I will have in this public-financing system.

"But Obama doesn't want that money. Obama wants YOUR money. He wants your money to fund his plans. He wants to take money away from you and put it into his coffers.

"This is more than a contradiction of what he wrote about as recently as last fall. This is more than a total about-face on the issue of public financing for the general election.

"This is about Obama wanting your money. And I've got news for you: it isn't going to stop with the general election.

"Obama and his Democratic allies in Congress will keep coming for your money. They'll keep coming for more money to fund their "parallel" programs.

"I have great fear when I think of what other "parallel" activities might be rationalized by an Obama administration. And you should, too.

"Because just like in this "parallel" public financing program that he talks about, there is only one person paying the bills: you.

"And there's only one person regulating the parallel programs. And I've got news for you: it's not you.

"And I happen to think that ALL of us have better things to do with our money than to contribute it to a politician who already has plenty of money available to him.

"Sen. Obama, if you want to help stimulate the economy, do one of the most fundamental things that you have direct control over: let people keep money in their pockets. Accept public financing now. We'll be a better country because of it."

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

what it all means

Okay, it's been a while since I've done this "night after a primary" schtick, so please accept my apologies.

And with that, let's get into the meat of it all:

As I write this, Hillary is up 40+K votes with 85% reporting in Indiana. If you're following this evening, you know that all the results from around Gary, IN are a mystery. Will it be enough to give Obama a victory?

Can I just say I hope so???

There's NO WAY that Obama should carry that vote. I think that a result THAT unbelievable will be treated exactly as that by the Clinton camp--UNbelievable. And there will be many questions. . .and many more questions. . .is it possible that this could be a new front in Operation CHAOS?

Rush, you magnificent man, you!

Seriously, though, I'm going to ASSUME that Hillary wins Indiana, probably by about 20,000 votes, which will equate to just under 2%.

This doesn't counter Obama's 14% and greater-than-200,000 vote victory in North Carolina. It's not even close.

But that doesn't mean it's over.

Listen, Hillary still has Florida out there. And if the DNC thinks they can just say "no" to Florida and not make that a HUGE issue in November. . .well, they're crazy.

McCain already played to that tune a little bit at a brief appearance on--of all places--American Idol three weeks ago. And if you don't think there's a "those Dems--they only play by the rules when it means the voice of the people is muzzled" ad in the future, well, you're just wrong.

And Clinton, of course, has the right line on this one. There was a vote, all candidates "competed" on the same terms--so that vote should be heard.

And when it's heard, that makes Clinton the victor in Florida, New Jersey, Indiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Which stacks up pretty well from an electoral standpoint against Obama's "battleground" victories in Virginia, Missouri, Wisconsin, Colorado, and Iowa.

In other words, her main argument becomes electoral rather than momentum. Honestly, that's always been the best argument (momentum was going to die between June and August anyhow), and it doesn't lose any strength with today's outcomes.

So will she be pushed to back out? Of course. With a weaker-than-expected victory--if any victory--in Indiana and a severe underperformance in NC, there will be calls from every direction.

But I doubt she budges. And in Kentucky and West Virginia, she gets the stage she so desperately wants, following what will likely be comfortable victories (read: speech at the top of the 9:00 eastern hour rather than at the very tail end of prime time).

And then there's the Wright factor. And the Ayers factor. And can we dare hope that there's media traction with Obama's pledges to the Teamsters?

No, there's a lot of campaign left on the left. And there's the potential for a LOT of twists between now and August.

And Hillary isn't going to miss a front row seat to all that. Nor should she.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Russert plays patty-cake with Obama

Sen. Obama appeared on Meet the Press today. Most conservatives guessed beforehand that this was not going to be one of Obama's most difficult appearances, and they turned out to be right. Still, even when talking among friends, Obama leaves open doors that could expose him as the empty suit we on the right know him to be:

-- Russert started out asking about Wright. Obama only called the Wright business a "distraction" 3 times, which I guess is an improvement for him. When asked about his Philadelphia speech and how it dealt with Wright, Obama stressed that "when (Wright) made those statements, or I learned of those statements that I found so objectionable, I, I felt that they didn't define him"--leaving the door open for some enterprising young journalist to potentially create a "greatest hits" of Wright's mutterings WHILE OBAMA was in the audience, adding further fuel to the "what did you know and when did you know it?" inquiries.

Also, Obama stressed that he joined the church for the community he found there, not for the man who spoke from the stage. That's plausible, I guess--until you bring children into the scene. The second your kids are exposed to a message of hate--THAT YOU RECOGNIZE AS SUCH--once and you don't take steps to ensure that they don't get a second dose, then it becomes willful negligence on your behalf. There's more at play here than "the community"--and any parent who is truly post-racial ought to know better than to expose your kids to that kind of vitriol from a figure of authority.

In short, Obama left open more chances for Wright to come back and hit him.

-- There was a lot of bubble gum stuff about how Obama loves this country and how he feels Washington is failing this country. This is probably supposed to be a setup to how his judgement trumps the "Washington experience" of his main rivals, but he fell short of mentioning that today. I wonder if he realizes that his "judgement" has taken some serious body blows lately?

Anyhow, without his punchline, this just looked like a guy talking about Washington's failures and how he loves this country. I thought we called those guys "editors", not candidates?

-- there was a good discussion about energy policy. Obama talked about his opposition to the gas tax holiday because it represents a "classic Washington gimmick", with which I agree--but I still support the holiday just because I think it's a start. (I don't think there should be a tax on gas at all, but that's just me) The discussion evolved into nuclear energy, where Obama was as non-commital as was possible. Something along the lines of "yeah, I think we need to look into it. . .but it's gotta be safe." Well, how about looking into it now so you have a more coherent strategy? Is that too much to ask of a candidate? As for safe. . .well, we kinda operate some of them right now, and as I recall 3 Mile Island was about 20 years ago. That's pretty good, don't you think?

But what really got my blood boiling here was the discussion on global warming. Russert let Obama pass on his statement that "global warming is real" without even a simple follow-up. How about a "is it real enough to voluntarily hamstring our economy with (insert environmental cause here)?". Or how about asking if, in order to avoid the $8 or $10 a gallon that Obama alluded to in his answer, if we should drill our own oil? Or build more refineries? The lack of these questions left this part of the interview flat, in my opinion.

-- Finally, the interview got around to foreign policy and the war in Iraq. I guess there's just a fundamental disconnect in the mind of leftists that make them say things like "(what) we have to do is figure out how are we going to recalibrate our strategic position in the region (the middle East). I think that starts with pulling our combat troops out of Iraq." Because the pure chaos that would result there . . .would be beneficial to our strategic position in the region? I don't get it. Russert asks him about the likely genocide that would take place in the aftermath of our withdrawal, to which Obama says that "oh, it'll take us almost two years to get out"--as if that solves the problem. Two things: 1) Doesn't the left understand that ANY timeline makes chaos in Iraq a guarantee? No matter what is going on now and in November, if the bad guys know they just have to bide their time until a certain calendar date and then they can have the victory that they feel is so precious, they will find a way to be operationally capable on that magic calendar date. The ONLY way to do this is to be open-ended, and to tell the Iraqi government that "we're here for as long as you want us to be here, and for as long as you give us a reason to be here". Anything else is just asking for trouble in Iraq--and the region; and 2) Obama says that if the Iraqis can't figure out their own defense in seven years, than they won't figure it out in 14, or 28, or 56. Let me say, IMHO, that more egotistical words have never before been uttered by a politician. Hell, this country was 30-odd years old when the British burned down the capital! Thank heavens the government of the day didn't say "eh, we've tried for a couple decades, but we still can't protect our own. Might as well ask if the Brits want us back."

Obama showed a remarkable naivete in this segment of the interview.

OVERALL, the interview was exactly what I expected. Softballs, weak follow-ups, some very noncommital answers from a guy who can only speak about "hope". . .it truly frightens me that this guy is on the cusp of being our next President.

God help us all!

Thursday, May 01, 2008

improper foundations lead to poor buildings

If you read this blog, you know that I am not Sen. Obama's biggest fan.

Let me count the reasons why, all brought to you courtesy of--who else--Rev. Wright.

I dislike Sen. Obama as a Presidential candidate because:

A) He's a racist enabler. I don't know if he's actually racist, although some of the things that he said in, say, San Francisco come pretty close to the line. But there is no question now that he--and EVERYBODY who goes to Trinity United and supported the vile Jeremiah Wright by attending his services--enabled that man, perhaps even emboldened that man to spew racist hatred into the ears of the attendees, into the minds of young, impressionable people--and eventually into the cameras, where thankfully his words finally drew proper outrage.

B) He's a liar. Descriptions of his "relationship" with his Pastor have changed in depth as the controversy has grown deeper; his statement the other day that Wright is not the man he had known for the past 20 years is in direct opposition to his own writings, where he noted with fondness the initial sermon he heard from Wright that decried a world run by "white greed"; he initially said he was not aware of any statements Wright said that could be considered wrong, although he had called him "controversial" before--only to now admit that he had heard Wright say some pretty amazing stuff; he continually described McCain as advocating "100 years of war", and then like a bully challenged the media when they had the audacity to challenge that claim. Actually, this list goes on and on. . .

C) He's not courageous. In Philadelphia, he was given a chance that every politician would dream about: a massive stage with an opportunity to distance himself from a despicable man while also setting the tenor for the race ahead. Instead, Obama blathered on endlessly, distancing himself from his white Grandmother while saying, in essence, that Wright was the personification of the black church AND the black community. He doubled-down on the hating Wright, daring anyone to make the blatant racism of his spiritual advisor and close friend a campaign issue. That may have taken some chutzpah--but it wasn't courageous.

D) He's a glory hound. "I'm the biggest supporter of (insert cause here) you've ever known" has been uttered so much that it's now a punchline; he takes credit for writing legislation that doesn't even exist yet (as I wrote about in an earlier post).

etc etc etc

But you know what? The thing that really gets me about him is this: What is he doing running for President this year? This man with such a thin legislative record that he has to run on the vacuous "judgement" platform, this man who's policies are so similar to Clinton that their physical differences have no choice but to be thrust into the spotlight, and who is so young that he could EASILY run for President in future years--he thinks he should be President in 2009?


Wouldn't it have been better for him if Wright, WHO OBAMA HAD TO KNOW WAS A LIABILITY IF HE ISN'T HIMSELF A RACIST, had been given a couple years to live in quiet retirement before Obama sought the national spotlight?

Not to mention, he'd have found time to put Ayers, Rezko, and heavens only knows who else behind him also. Did he really think that Ayers wouldn't come up in this campaign?

Wouldn't it have been better for him to build some kind of a legislative record--or even better, to be a member of a probable (if not for him) Clinton administration?

I mean, there was NO reason for Obama to run this year. Well, no reason except for paragraph D above. . .but even that doesn't explain it.

I just don't get it. And because I don't get it. . .I'm suspicious. (Gee, I guess I'm a typical white person after all!)

And I have been suspicious from the start. And every blunder, every empty refrain, every time he avoids making a record for himself in the Senate--it makes me more suspicious. And more certain that Obama wasn't ready for this stage yet. That's where the article's title comes from: he has no good foundation in legislating, executive activities, or campaigning (and I mean really campaigning)--and all the building his campaign has done for the last year is looking awfully unstable right now because the foundation is crumbling under the weight of his "front-runner" status.

So why run now?

The mind reels. . .