Mr. Cruz goes to Washington

People often fail to realize that their opinion of the world is often a confession of character

-Ralph Waldo Emmerson

You may or may not have heard Boehnner’s remarks that Cruz was “Lucifer in the flesh” [1] followed by his elaboration: “I have Democrat friends and Republican friends. I get along with almost everyone, but I have never worked with a more miserable son of a bitch in my life.”  This is actually the second time he called him that (first was during a Q&A session a month ago), but more important is that this is only the latest –and perhaps most vitriolic- expression of antipathy towards the Texas senator. Lindsey Graham compared a choice between him and Trump to being “shot or poisoned” some months before joking about killing him, candidate John McCain straight up called him “crazy,” ex-president Bush flat out said he “just didn’t like the guy,” Bob Dole expanded it to “no one likes him,” and the media is naturally more than gleeful to spread this around and tell everyone about what an awful guy he must be to draw all these attacks. You’d almost think they’ve decided Trump shall be the nominee or something, guess it must be the ratings.

Of course, just as in painting, the negative space – what they aren’t telling you – can tell as much as the positive.  The first thing you can tell is what kind of Republicans they DON’T write about. While Cruz’s rather dry and uncompromising professional character doesn’t tend to win him friends at work or endear everyone [2], personal  accounts on him from the “people on the ground” as it were, paint a very different picture where people go from cautious optimism to downright fascination. Why this contrast? Well, I don’t know how much people are aware of this, but within the Republican party, there’s a severe gap -and even active disgust and contempt- between party elites (le establishment) and their base. Where conservatives are dismayed at the widespread celebration of abortion, lobbyists and senators roll their eyes and dismiss it as an issue too unpopular to do anything with. Concerned about immigration? They see it as cheap labor. Stopping the debt ceiling or Obamacare? The media would make them look back, it’ll be too hard, and they were already scared of the threats that Obama and other democrats made if the Reps made them work for the bill. As you can see, these guys weren’t the most committed in the world.

On that note, let’s go back to Boehner’s remarks on Cruz. If you dig a bit you might be surprised that for such enmity they actually barely interacted. In fact it could well be that Cruz talked more with Boehner as his lawyer in a 1998 case than he ever did as a senator. So if probably not character, where does the fire comes from? Well, this article from Steve Berman might shed some light. A summary is quoted here (you can check the link for the full context):

“ (…)Emboldened by the [post-shutdown, 2014] win, 41 Congressmen formed the House Freedom Caucus, led by Boehner’s fellow Ohioan Jim Jordan. Boehner’s days were numbered, and at that point, Cruz really became the devil for him (before that, he was just another annoying conservative, perhaps a bit more annoying than most).

Boehner played his own politics the way he played the GOP’s politics: Winning the battle only to lose the war. He would rather have capitulated to the Democrats and left well enough alone without a shutdown. But he let Cruz and the others have their shutdown, hoping it would lead to a spanking at the polls. If that had happened, Boehner would still be speaker, and he would be thanking Ted Cruz for it.

Instead, conservatives won. (…)”

And who do you think got all those Republicans into the senate after Cruz led the shutdown? Grassroots conservatives -common people like you or me- who were impressed by the courage displayed during the shutdown and hoped this would herald a Rep house actually committed to carrying out the crazy idea of safeguarding the principles they were entrusted to defend. Now, the senate didn’t wind up doing a very good job of stopping or even reigning in Obama, but the fact it took Cruz to act up for such enthusiasm to rise out of the voter base does say a lot about where the true affections lie.

Voters are hungry for principled, conservative fighters – because the threat to our liberties from Washington never has been greater.

-Rafael Edward “Ted” Cruz

And now here’s another article on Cruz’s initial Washington confrontations from the view of Cruz himself at the start of his book A Time for Truth. On a strategic lunch, the House leaders decided they’d sent Obama a “clean” bill given without any fight, in exchange they’d let Republicans pass from voting on the bill so Democrats would pay the political price. So they’d have the “clean” bill passing instead of Obama making it worse, and they’d get to go home pretending they did everything they could (Cruz duly notes “right after consenting to let it happen”). I suppose that’s what being a “team player” is all about.

Cruz couldn’t really stand for it anymore and objected. Of course everyone flipped, as they just couldn’t understand why he wanted to ruin their “perfect plan” and wanted to throw five Republicans (who would see themselves forced to vote in the bill) under the bus so much. I don’t think they could understand even after being told he just wanted them to do what they promised the voters.

The hit piece tries to make it sound like the story is entirely about self-promoting grandstanding, but the evidence against is embedded in the article itself when it quotes A Time for Truth again:

“The final result,” Cruz narrates sanctimoniously, “was that President Obama, Harry Reid, and House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi, with the active complicity of the Republican leadership, were able to add trillions of dollars to the national debt — a bill that we are passing along to our children and grandchildren — while doing nothing whatsoever to control future spending.”

Emphasis mine. See, Cruz might be a good or a bad guy, but here you can see his concerns about the dire conclusions of what happens if no one stands up.  Regardless of your feelings on his politics, what can’t be denied is that he has grown with deeply held convictions and has remained loyal to them in a culture where corruption and wickedness is so celebrated that people aren’t even surprised to hear of presidents raping women in the White House, or a candidate refusing to release tax returns while another is pending an FBI investigation. Maybe Cruz is just a decent person in a forsaken environment.

Of course that also means he’s constantly tarnished by one of most forsaken environments nowadays: the media. Granted, this is unsurprising considering the vast majority of publications are to some degree left-leaning and are more interested in sharing propaganda than news nowadays. But he seems to attract this kind of bile that doesn’t get thrown at Trump, Kasich or most other Rep figures. From the kooky accusations of being the zodiac killer bent on world domination (latter coming from a video when he was a shittalking high schooler) to even relatively good-humored actions like his reading of “Green eggs and ham” during the shutdown presented as evidence for his narcissistic personality disorder. Just put something like “is Ted Cruz hated” on google and you’ll have day’s worth of articles; there’s just absolutely nothing he can do that won’t be spun around as deep-rooted evil.

How do we turn our nation around? President Obama thinks the answer is more and more government. Government is not the answer. You are not doing anyone a favor by creating dependency, destroying individual responsibility.

-Ted Cruz

Appropriately enough, it’s the same reasons that make Cruz so unpopular in Washington which get him so much hate from the media. While having Reagan’s charisma, better grasp on tact, or even just a better face could help, there’s just no getting around the fact that Cruz is not only a Republican but a deeply-right “freedom of religion, not from religion” and “uhh, you don’t get to kill babies” tier conservative. In a materialistic, aimless society unable to offer anything but sensual self-worship and ultimately meaningless ‘success,’ it’s natural that they find anathema a viewpoint which – by virtue of their own lifestyles – they are almost incapable of understanding. Most media hates all Republicans, but it’s only in Cruz’s uncompromising character and outstanding acumen that they see the most untarnished and capable embodiment of the ideologies they wish to poison their audiences against.

Thinking of it, I actually wouldn’t be surprised if deep down they actually liked the other two candidates. Kasich isn’t all that different from them, and as much as /pol/acks like to think that the “God Emperor” will BTFO Muslims and Jews, Trump simply doesn’t have any convictions or knowledge that will steer him through the maelstrom of politics.  He’ll just fall back to a reality TV operandi of pandering to whichever audience is popular at the time while seeking his own interests in actuality. One of them is harmless and the other makes great TV. Well, things actually go a bit deeper with Trump… he’s everything they’ve ever wanted out of a conservative: vulgarity, ignorance, an absolute lack of moral conscience, misogyny, vanity and thuggery. And it’s why, in the weird sadomasochistic schema they’ve built, deep down they love Trump for all the finger wagging they posture while their real hatred is reserved for Cruz. Anyone can look good against Trump, but Cruz shows them for what they really are.


 

[1] He likes Trump though, as they’ve been “texting buddies” for a long time and golf together once in a while.

[2] In fact it seems like it was this overeager audatiousness that got Bush to make his remarks about him remembering Cruz’s participation in his campaign, a sentiment apparently shared by many who worked with him there. Though I guess it left a good impression on Heidi Cruz (maiden name Heidi Nelson) so there’s that.

[3] From the linked article: “When Cruz tried to work things out with Boehner, Cruz said “John Boehner’s response was, ‘I have no interest in talking,’””

One thought on “Mr. Cruz goes to Washington

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  1. Just to clarify, this was written and uploaded before the Indiana primaries and Cruz’s campaign resignation, so if you find the use of present tense odd, now you know why.

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