During the GOP debates earlier this week, the four remaining candidates were asked to describe themselves with one word definitions. Ron Paul said “consistent,” Rick Santorum used “courageous,” Mitt Romney used “resolute” and Newt Gingrich used “cheerful” which got an appropriate laugh. If they asked me the same questions, my answers would be a little different.
I would use “zealous” in describing Ron Paul. He is very fervent in his beliefs, right or wrong. In many respects you have to admire his consistent zeal, yet the problems many have with him is his zeal for a world that would have trouble existing. While his voice should be heard, we do need to discount his opinions when they are too pure for our own good.
I would use the word “sanctimonious” with Rick Santorum and that is not meant as a compliment. He is very fervent in his beliefs, but his arcane positions ostracize many and are hypocritical at times. A female guest on Bill Maher’s show said, if elected Santorum would take use back to another century – the 13th century.
My first word for Newt Gingrich cannot be repeated here, so I will settle on “egomaniac.” Folks, it is “all about Newt.” It always has been and will always be thus. He has very high opinions of himself that is not shared by people who know him well. My favorite comment about him from a former colleague is “if Newt is the smartest person in the room, my advice to you is to leave the room.” The fact he touts balancing the budget as Speaker for four years, is not true as he was only Speaker for two of those years and he actually voted against two of Bill Clinton’s bills to help balance the budget.
Which brings us to Mitt Romney. The word I would use is “fluid.” He seems to go with the flow and has made past decisions that are inconsistent with his current posturing. The reason he is the best GOP candidate is he is a moderate, which is what we need from the GOP. The problem is he cannot tell anyone that he is as there is a faction that is looking for a strident, uncompromising conservative voice. I actually felt sorry for Rick Santorum when he was booed for saying politics is a team sport. He is right.
To be fair, I need to do the same process with our President. I would use the word “judicious.” Warren Buffet described the President as the “best editor of information he has seen.” He meant the President would ask everyone their opinions and then make an informed choice. You may not like his choice as he tends to be more of a moderate, but he is judicious with his decisions and less strident in his views. The GOP has trouble labeling him as such. but he and John McCain were not that far apart on many issues. Ironically, McCain would stand no chance of winning his party’s nomination today.
I am hoping it comes down to Romney and Obama. The President should win as he has done a pretty good, but not perfect, job as our steward. I would give him more thumbs up than down. Yet, I could tolerate Romney more so than his GOP rivals if he did win the White House.