By their fruitcakes ye shall know them

You can always judge a politician by their followers. Mitt Romney attracts the committed, Ron Paul the committable. Grassroots campaigners are essential in American politics, in those states with lengthy caucus and primary processes, and even elsewhere thanks to the Internet’s empowerment of the ideologically energised. Politicians must rely on these people to get their message […]

Ron Paul, an unexamined phenomenon

The American primary process, a kind of elongated sweeps for the cable news channels, is a four-yearly vaudeville show that doubles as a selection process for future leaders of the free world.  Imagine the aesthetics of American Idol welded to the intellectual demeanour of pro football. When it’s the Democrats, there’s also a touch of the campus […]

The Republican Party and the credibility gap

In the screenwriting business, the toughest challenge is pushing plot: writing the expositional dialogue that drives the story forward and keeps the audience up to speed. It’s a thankless task: if the dialogue is too hokey, the audience will hiss; too subtle, and you risk leaving people behind. Worst of all is the scrutiny it […]