Tragedy has befallen We the People, as well as us the people, the dazzled media, the bedazzled Republican Party, and the would-be dazzling future of orbital colonization. Newt Gingrich is folding his tent, one flap at a time (double entendre intended), reducing both his staff and communion with commoners so as to focus "exclusively," says his communications director, Joe DeSantis, "on what it’ll take to win what we’re going to be calling a big-choice convention in August."
Politico has provided a handy translation, of sorts, of DeSantis' Newtspeak:
There is no real reason to believe that these drastic measures to turn around a flailing campaign can save the former House speaker’s candidacy for a third time.
Here's the profoundly, frankly ffffundamental and deeply grotesque problem: Less Newt = More Mitt. Days, weeks, months more of more Mitt and nothing but Mitt; more Mittling pedestrianism that just can't compete with Newt's come-hither Mephistophelianism; more ... blah. While Newt at least delivered an often entertaining, Thomas Nast caricature of the bloated demagogue, Rick Santorum provides nothing but a graceless piety that wickedly depresses. With the latter being shoved to the sidelines as well, we'll soon be left with absolutely nothing but the mediocrity that is Mitt.
Yesterday the Times' Frank Bruni let loose a professional primal scream, a cry psychologically embedded by the bogeyman Gingrich:
[T]he profusion of cable channels, Web outlets, other news platforms and commentary of all kinds (including this column) rewards flamboyance, histrionics and a crowded field. A brash candidate is never more than a bellow away from three minutes of air time or two paragraphs somewhere. The beast is ravenous, and I don’t mean Newt.
This is of course as true as it is sad. Yet if extenuating circumstances can be pled, they would surely be that the Republican Party gave everyone -- including Republicans -- so little to work with.
We were to witness a primary season of dramatic competition; such was the advertised plan. What we got was a permanent frontrunner and inevitable nominee, even when he was badly trailing the assorted, interchangeable, hebdomadal frontrunners. So, with remarkable assists by Cain, Bachmann et al, we kinda threw our own party. Now the humdinger of our hangover comes: we're waking up, turning over, and gawking straight into the mechanical eyes of Mitt Romney. Yikes!