The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Conventional Wisdom on Herman Cain

Posted on | October 8, 2011 | 25 Comments

Having covered the Herman Cain campaign since December 2010, I’ve had occasion to remark more than once that people underestimate him at their peril. The experts have said all along that there’s no way Herman can win. It’s possible they may keep right on saying that — chanting it like a mantra — until the votes are counted on Nov. 6, 2012, at which point the same TV talking heads who derogated Cain’s chances from the start will then be called on to provide their insightful analysis of how he did what they said with absolute certainty he could never do.

And then these pundits who were consistently wrong will be invited to speak at a major national conference. But I digress . . .

While I’ll later be posting photos, videos and more about our Friday covering Herman Cain and the Values Voter Summit (my 12-year-old son Jefferson accompanied me as my assistant), let me first share another writer’s article. She reports some key facts, but Molly Ball of The Atlantic draws an odd conclusion from those facts:

They admired Rick Santorum. They ate up Rick Perry. But it was Herman Cain who rocked the house at the Values Voter Summit.
Many other speakers got standing ovations, but only Cain provoked church-like shouts of “Yeah!” from the crowd. When Newt Gingrich came up to speak after Cain, a good portion of the crowd got up and wandered out of the giant ballroom at the Omni Shoreham Hotel here in Washington.
Think about that: the former speaker of the House of Representatives — himself once considered a rock star of the Republican base — thoroughly upstaged by a political novice mostly known as “the pizza guy.”
After the speeches, when Gingrich and Cain both held book signing sessions, the line for Cain stretched down a long hallway, then through the hotel’s large lobby to the door. The line for Gingrich was, shall we say, substantially shorter.
Based largely on a similarly rousing speech, Cain won the Florida P5 straw poll late last month, dealing Perry a stunning blow. Cain’s surge in recent polling — he’s rocketed into second behind Mitt Romney in some polls — is getting him billed as the next flavor of the month for a GOP base that’s having doubts about Perry.
The Cain surge has also provoked a round of media hand-wringing over whether, and how much, to “take him seriously” as a contender, or whether it was still safe to treat him primarily as a man trying to sell books and perhaps get himself a television show. . . .

You can read the whole thing, which then goes on to explain that Cain cannot possibly threaten Romney’s front-runner status because . . .

Well, she never says exactly why this can’t happen, but she’s a professional political journalist, whereas the hundreds of people who cheered Cain’s speech are merely Republican voters — and who cares what they think, right?


25 Responses to “Conventional Wisdom on Herman Cain”

  1. Kitty Myers
    October 8th, 2011 @ 9:07 am

    Since Sarah Palin has decided not to run, I’ve been giving a close look at Herman Cain. I don’t know nearly as much about him as I do about Palin, but what I do know I definitely like. (I love the fact he’s not a career politician DC insider.)

    So now the problem is, how far will the Elites go to Palinize Cain? And how will this affect his chances? Because you know the Elites will never allow a black conservative to be president.  Look how far they went to get rid of Sarah Palin.  They want McRomney.

    Wesley Pruden said: “Mitt Romney becomes the odds-on favorite in the Pundit Primary. He’s the least threatening to the elites, mostly because at one time or another he has said all the right things about the things that matter to the elites.”

    So once again, just like in ’08, the Elites and the MSM pick our candidate. There’s still time before the ’12 election, and anything could happen, but I’ve seen this script play out before. As it stands right now, it looks like my choice will be Obama, who will take us over the cliff at warp speed, or McRomney, who will take us over the cliff, but just a little slower.

  2. victoria_29
    October 8th, 2011 @ 9:22 am

    Nice try however, maybe some day (& I would guess day coming very soon) one of you so-called bloggers will grow a pair & actually research this moderate RINO clown.  Cain’s record sucks, he is pro-choice (& yes if you support abortion period your pro-choice), he is a TARP supporter, he was good with Nationalizing banks.  In GA he was literally trounced beaten by 28% in his home state.  Aquila-bilking millions out of their retirement.  And the list goes on & on, let’s talk about how successful Godfather’s really was-look around you, there is a reason he will NOT release any documents. So, we get rid of 1 race monger in Obama & get another in Cain…yeah I don’t think so.  

  3. victoria_29
    October 8th, 2011 @ 9:23 am

    suggest you do some research, he is the ONLY person that can give Mittens a run for his money on flip flops

  4. Kitty Myers
    October 8th, 2011 @ 9:43 am

    victoria, didn’t you just vilify Cain in your comment above?  And now you claim ” he is the ONLY person that can give Mittens a run for his money on flip flops”? 

  5. McGehee
    October 8th, 2011 @ 10:09 am

    I don’t think she means the kind you wear on your feet. She’s just another Cainophobe.

  6. Kitty Myers
    October 8th, 2011 @ 10:18 am

    I still don’t get her two conflicting comments.

  7. ThePaganTemple
    October 8th, 2011 @ 10:21 am

    If you’re really that worried about the rights of little Democrat babies and leftists to be born and grow up to terrorize the country like their parents and ancestors have, just ask yourself one question. What kind of judges will Herman Cain appoint? If he will appoint conservative jurists in the mold of Roberts, Alito, Thomas, and Scalia, then your concerns should be allayed, as it really doesn’t matter what Cain’s or any other Presidents personal feeling about abortion are. It will take a majority of conservative judges to overturn Roe, not the dictates of a President or even Congress.

  8. Anonymous
    October 8th, 2011 @ 10:50 am

    If you click on her name (above), victoria is a strong Perry supporter. She identifies as a solid conservative who has no patience with RINOs.

    Okay, but then how is Perry demonstrably a much more conservative candidate than Cain, to the extent that victoria equates Cain with Romney, whereas Perry is completely impervious to her concerns about RINO infiltration?

    To me, that suggests victoria is more of an emotional, cliquish fan of Perry than a thoughtful conservative/libertarian who is in it for the long haul. Maybe I’ve misread things, though, on first impression?  

  9. ThePaganTemple
    October 8th, 2011 @ 10:54 am

    You’re just reading it wrong. She’s meaning it to say that if Cain and Romney had a contest to see who committed the most flip-flops, Cain might win.

  10. McGehee
    October 8th, 2011 @ 11:11 am

    What PaganTemple said.

  11. Anonymous
    October 8th, 2011 @ 11:11 am


    I’m kicking myself for not making it to Pentagon City yesterday with my three kids who want to meet Herman Cain! My 12-year-old daughter would have loved to play “intrepid reporter.” Hopefully he’ll come back to the D.C. Area, although he ought to spend his time in early primary states. We live in the Virginia Piedmont, and normally trekking downtown takes all day.

    I wanted to tell Herman Cain the story about how the video of him speaking at a Tea Party, where the marine sang the 4th verse of the Star Spangled Banner, inspired Leigh Bortins of Classical Conversations to have thousands of homeschooling tutors and parents sing that verse this past summer. I was one of them and it was fantastic.

    I made several bumper stickers and pins for Herman Cain – I took the Gadsden flag and made it into his “0” for 2012. I wonder if association with the Tea Party would help, or if we can think of something else to put in that space to counter Zero’s logo.

  12. Anonymous
    October 8th, 2011 @ 11:22 am

    This is exactly what Conservatives for Cthulhu have been trying to warn you about. The owl worshipping elites are trying ram a Romney nomination down our throats citing reasonableness and inevitability. It must be demonstrated that the reaction to attempting to foist “cat paw covers” on the base will not be reasonable or measured if we aren’t given the opportunity to make a positive choice we will not choose the lesser of two evils.

  13. Christy Waters
    October 8th, 2011 @ 11:31 am

    Herman Cain spent $1 mil of his own money to urge blacks to vote pro-life (link). He’s also received the endorsement of Alveda King, niece of MLK and a pro-life activist. I don’t think you can call him pro-choice.

  14. TC_LeatherPenguin
    October 8th, 2011 @ 11:31 am

    I’ve made my decision: Staten Island will go full-bore Cain or else I will will level up on insane… and the locals don’t like when I go full tilt boogie batshit….
    I’m looking at YOU, Mikey Grimm; don’t go full White Guy Molinari.

  15. Adjoran
    October 8th, 2011 @ 1:37 pm

    Gee, here I was thinking we got to vote for our preference in a primary (or caucus). 

    Now come to find out “the Elites and MSM pick our candidate”?  Wow, how do they do that, exactly?  Are they stuffing ballot boxes?  Fixing voting machines?

    Sending CIA mind control waves through the air that only the few special self-appointed “true conservatives” can resist?

  16. Adjoran
    October 8th, 2011 @ 1:50 pm

    Cain needs several things to happen to solidify himself as the viable “not-Romney” candidate.

    He needs Perry to continue to self-destruct.  Apparently he has assigned the Texas Governor to this task, who is doing a wonderful job – including including a wacko preacher to introduce him.

    He needs Romney not to break out and consolidate a lead.  Romney is like vanilla:  always the favorite flavor but never by very much, having to hope the that chocolate, strawberry, pistachio, and Rocky Road don’t gang up and whip him.  So far, so good, but the longer the anti-Romney vote stays divided, the better Mitt’s chances become.

    He needs to avoid further gaffes himself.  Opponents cannot have failed to notice he tends to get off message on topics involving race or religion, and work to bait him on those.  Cain must be careful in what he says.

    He needs no bimbo eruptions, or other “blast from the past” which can easily derail a candidate who hasn’t been vetted thoroughly.

    He needs money and organization.  As of right now, he has only about 30 paid staffers divided among five states.  That’s not a winning formula.  It’s easy to overspend and run out of money early, but you have to be able to raise money and start building an organization in later states or you end up just a Spring Fling.

  17. dad29
    October 8th, 2011 @ 1:59 pm

    Umnnhhhh…..Santorum’s not exactly dead, either.

  18. Anonymous
    October 8th, 2011 @ 9:54 pm

    Cainunism [keyn – yuh – niz – uhm] – noun

    1. A theory or system of economic organization based on a wildly optimistic regard for the fiscal discipline of Congress and the President. Adherence to this theory typically requires the suspension of disbelief concerning the ability of increasing the government’s power to tax, without substantive spending cuts, to actually reduce burdens on taxpayers and to produce economic recovery.

    2. The intentional use by politicians of resonant slogans which obfuscate and distract some voters from the otherwise conspicuous absence of thoughtful, realistic or realizable fiscal or monetary plans and policies.

    Cainunist [keyn – yuh – nist] – adjective

    1. Of, characterized by, favoring or relating to Cainunism; Cainunistic

    In a sentence: “Imagining that a ‘9 – 9 – 9’ percent tax ‘plan’ would not soon be 9.9 – 9.9 – 9.9, then 19 – 19 – 19, and so on, is just more magical Cainunist thinking.”

    Origin of Cainunism: term used by informed voters to describe the economic-sounding slogans that originated from the 2012 vanity presidential campaign of Herman Cain (1945 – )

    Synonyms for Cainunism: 1. Prevarication, 2. Deception, 2. Cozen, 3. Hucksterism, 4. Hoodwink, 5. Sales Pitch, 6. Razzle Dazzle

    Antonyms for Cainunism: 1. Common Sense, 2. Objective Reality, 3. Free Market, 4. Tax Reduction, 5. Economic Liberty, 6. Less Government, 7. Constitutionalism

  19. maxi
    October 8th, 2011 @ 11:39 pm

    He also received the endorsement of Jesse Jackson’s group- so what does that tell ya?

  20. maxi
    October 8th, 2011 @ 11:53 pm

    I questioned his judgment after I read the article about his trying to talk Tiger Woods into running for President a few years back. Herman Cain may not be  qualififed to be POTUS, but he is no fool. He knows some Republicans are desperate for their “own” black to rally around to prove, once again, they are not racist. And if you doubt that just name me one black republican who the base has NOT rallied around and wanted to run for the top spots. West was no sooner elected then there were blogs calling for him to run for POTUS. Same with Colin Powell.
    The next time we accuse our congressmen of being spineless, for not standing up to the dems, we need to look in the mirror to see who the truly spineless are.  We are ready to elect an unqualified candidate to the highest office in the land, at one of the worse periods in history, to prove to the dems we’re not racist.

  21. Rock You Like A Herman Cain « The Rio Norte Line
    October 9th, 2011 @ 3:53 am

    […] Other McCain has been on to Herman for a long time here, here, here and here. I’m not sure the Ambassador to Vanuatu thing is going to work out but I wish […]

  22. ThePaganTemple
    October 9th, 2011 @ 8:16 am

    Maxi, define “qualified”. What does it take in the way of background and experience to earn that title? If there are so many in Washington he have earned that title, why are we in such a sorry shape now? Don’t look now, but there are very few leaders in Washington who would be unqualified going by most standard definitions of the term.

    I do agree with you that there might be some Republicans that are just a little too eager to promote what few black Republicans there are, and that’s unfortunate. But its also human nature. It’s even understandable to a point.

    If we want to convince blacks that conservative policies (not necessarily Republican ones, but conservative ones) are good for them, then it helps if you have some people of their race who is capable of making that case to them. Cain can say things (like how blacks are brainwashed into voting for Dems) that white politicians can’t get away with. It would cause a firestorm, but when Cain says it, sure he gets complaints, but nothing of the magnitude that a Rick Perry would face. That’s just one thing that makes Cain so compelling to Republicans, and so dangerous to leftists.

  23. ThePaganTemple
    October 9th, 2011 @ 8:18 am

    Tells me that Jesse Jackson is disappointed in Obama, whom he never really liked anyway, and is hoping that if a Republican does win it will be a black Republican whom he might come closer to forming a bond with. It also means he might be going a little soft in the head.

    October 9th, 2011 @ 1:33 pm

    Mitt is gonna be the guy and Cain is gonna endorse him. better start getting used to it.

    the flip flop thing is old news and a total snooze. 

  25. The Other McCain’s RINO problem | Truth Has a Chance
    October 10th, 2011 @ 8:23 am

    […] their very recent coverage of Herman Cain’s rise in the presidential polls.  See here, here, and here.  He is right to be indignant.  The Other McCain has been saying Cain will be […]