Sunday, May 22, 2011

Mitch Daniels Won't Run, But Another GOP Candidate Says, "Ni Hao!*"

Jon Huntsman speaks fluent Mandarin, and has spent the last year-and-a-half in China as Barack Obama's ambassador to that nation. The former Utah governor and GOP presidential hopeful told Southern New Hampshire University students Saturday not to worry about China leapfrogging America to become the world's top economy.

"You hear how the Chinese economy is going to swamp us," Huntsman said. "Don't believe it!" Channelling Mad Magazine cover boy Alfred E. Neuman has apparently become standard procedure for Republicans on the stump. In defending Rep. Paul Ryan's (R-WI) budget proposal gutting Medicare and replacing it with vouchers the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office figured wouldn't cover a third of future seniors' premiums, deductibles, co-pays and other expenses, Republican pols repeatedly howled that Democrats were trying to "scare seniors."

No health care when your old and sick? Don't worry! Be happy! No jobs after they've all been shipped to China? Mei wenti! (No problem!)

While Huntsman made the campaign rounds, another GOP hopeful joined the ranks of non-candidacy. The Donald ducked, Huckabee wasn't hounded, Haley hadn't barbered, Jeb was bushed, and now, no one's going to be singing along with Mitch.

Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels emailed supporters late Saturday night and told the Indianapolis Star that he wouldn't be tossing his hat into the ring for 2012. He had been courted by top party factors, and was a darling of so-called moderate Republicans, meaning Republicans who knew enough to be ashamed of racism, union-busting, and tossing seniors out of health care, but supported all those things anyway.

Tim Pawlenty, on the other hand, was expected to announce his run for the White House on Monday.

Daniels cited family concerns weighed on his decision to not run. Daniels is unusual among Republicans in that he didn't cheat on his wife, but his wife cheated on him. Cheri Daniels left Daniels and their four daughters, ran off to California with another man in 1993, then remarried Daniels in 1997.  It was unclear whether Daniels feared election campaign shots at his wife or from his wife.

Meanwhile, Jon Huntsman took a shot, metaphorically if not literally, at fellow Mormon Mitt Romney while campaigning at a New Hampshire gun shop. Asked what kind of hunting he did, Huntsman quipped, "Oh, large varmints."

Mitt Romney had bobbled his 2008 answer about hunting and guns, eventually stating he'd only hunted "small varmints" such as rodents and rabbits. It was not known whether Huntsman's reply was a veiled reference to killing humans, as there are, technically, no such thing as "large" varmints.

Huntsman has been careful to distinguish himself from Romney, as they both share Mormon and Utah roots, and backgrounds as governors and businessmen. Huntsman has put his campaign headquarters in Florida, and was asked by the Salt Lake Tribune about attending a South Carolina megachurch. Time Magazine asked Huntsman whether he was still a Morman, and Huntsman replied, "That's tough to define."

Huntsman most recently was ambassador to China for Barack Obama, but resigned from his post in April and has been assuring Republicans his stint with the Obama Administration hadn't tainted him with such things as good sense. Huntsman speaks Mandarin, so when the GOP's Chinese plutocrat masters want to scream at the President of the United States for not offshoring and outsourcing enough jobs, they could do so in their native tongue if Huntsman were to be anointed.

Republicans have relentlessly focused on budget deficits and debt while America's unemployment remains mired around 9%.  Republicans remain committed to ever larger tax breaks for the wealthy, while slashing services and investments throughout the rest of the economy. While focusing on income tax giveaways to the highest brackets, and subsidies to mature industry giants like oil, tax laws discourage investments in innovation and manufacturing in America. The GOP has opposed fiscal policies and administration efforts supporting manufacturing.

Republicans are committed to sending more and more manufacturing and innovation to China, and Huntsman could be their point man for a generation, if the GOP can maneuver him into the White House. As America offshores more and more jobs, evidence is growing that, increasingly, innovation is following manufacturing to those other shores. As America cuts back on education, infrastructure, and wages open warfare on the American worker, the continued de-emphasis on manufacturing remains a potent killing blow against America's economic prospects. 

Envious of China's heinous labor practices, Republicans have declared war on the National Labor Relations Board, with 176 House Republicans voting to eliminate the agency's funding. Meanwhile, prominent Senate Republicans were going after the NLRB for siding with workers who complained about job-slashing at Boeing's plants in Washington state. The NLRB said Boeing built a non-union South Carolina factory in retaliation for union labor unrest in Washington state.

If future aircraft were to be built in China, Huntsman can asked that they be shipped to the feji chang (airport).

It was not immediately known whether China would be supplying the software updates for Diebold's voting machines.

*Ni hao = Hello

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