This article in The Guardian imagines the Republican primaries as a cocktail party…
Planetary distances of policy and world-view divide these men, and the Republican debates have the air of cocktail parties whose guests have been selected by random telephone dialling. The candidates deliver monologues: Romney talks chalk, Huckabee cheese, Giuliani cabbages, McCain kings. Here and there a familiar term spoken by one contender – “Iraq”, “abortion”, “tax code”, “illegals” – will trigger a sudden animated reflex from another, but the prevailing mood is one of bemused civility, as at the cocktail party where the plumber’s mate stares gloomily into his glass, waiting for the plant geneticist to stop maundering on about rice genomes so that he can get back to the important topic of stopcocks.
This has come about of course because of Rove’s molding of Reagan’s
grand alliance of fundamentalist Christians, corporate CEOs, libertarians, neoconservatives and traditional small-government-big-defence types
and each segment of the alliance has (had) its own hero
Now the fundamentalists have their own candidate (Mike Huckabee); the corporations theirs (Mitt Romney); the libertarians have Ron Paul; just hours ago, the neocons still had Rudy Giuliani,
From the outside, it looks like McCain is the only one who actually represents conservative values – but what do I know? – and the other lot don’t seem to like him very much.