Alice considered the Mad Hatter and the equally mad March Hare and declared: This is the stupidest Tea Party I have ever been to.
Seventeen Presidential candidates are sitting in a sand box, throwing sand into each other’s eyes.
They are talking all at once, calling each other stupid and not listening to one another.
Then Alice encountered the Dormouse who was spinning a long tale leading to nothing, The Knave of Hearts who stole some tarts and the Queen of Hearts who said: Sentence first, verdict afterwards. And then she commanded: Off with their heads!
Here is Donald Trump. He does not feel he has to discuss the environment or the economy. Instead he has fun calling women fat pigs and Mexicans rapists, drug runners and criminals. Next to him is Carly Fiorina. She is furiously attacking Planned Parenthood and adds false embellishment to an already doctored video. She would also break off all communication with President Putin of Russia.
Also at the party there is a Mock turtle who once used to be a real turtle and a Cheshire Cat with very long claws, many teeth and a grin that does not disappear even after he does.
Now meet Jeb Bush. His answer to constant gun violence and mass killing is “stuff happens.” He also claims, “my brother kept us safe. When was this, Jeb? Before, during or after 9/11? Jeb favors a picture of Margaret Thatcher on the $10 bill. Perhaps he thinks that Britain still rules here. As to Ben Carson, he would like us to know that electing a Muslim president would be a big mistake. He also denies evolution. Did he skip biology classes in college?
The White Rabbit ran a race in a circle with no possible winner. Is it any wonder that Alice wished she had fallen into a different burrow? (In that she is not alone.)
All the other Republican candidates sing in unison the praises of creationism. All of them also hate the Supreme Court. Now listen to Marco Rubio. He declares climate is always changing. It is not because of human activity. He also loves the Second Amendment and is totally opposed to abortion.
And the following sentence comes from the mouth of Rand Paul: Socialism could lead to mass genocide.
At this Alice wakes up and drifts in a daze not knowing where she is or who she is. Quite by accident she stumbles on “The Island of Sanity.” She rubs her eyes.
Five people are standing next to each other looking relaxed, confident and happy to be together. In the middle is a woman. They listen to each other attentively. But they have also come prepared to say what they have to say and to do so clearly and even succinctly. No one is negative or on the attack or is distancing themselves from our current President. What a refreshing contrast it is to be watching civilized adults. Bernie Sanders gives his usual speech denouncing billionaires, but he manages to sound as though he is doing it for the first time. And everybody applauds when he says he is sick and tired of Republicans harping on Hillary’s emails. He is a little wobbly on gun control.
Hillary speaks forcefully about women, gun control, immigration and her willingness to take on the Republicans. She is doing a great job of presenting who she is rather than being defined by others. Lincoln Chafee and Jim Webb get a chance to say a few words and Martin O’Malley, the former governor of Maryland, emerges as a possible contender at some point in the future.
We all look forward to seeing more of this substantive discussion and more well conducted and moderated debates.
Alice is wide-eyed and wondering where she has been…and where she is going.