Many conservatives seem to have two words on their lips, Fred Thompson. However, none seem to have much more than that. Every person that I run into who mentions Thompson is thoroughly excited about his long-anticipated announcement for candidacy.
Although, none of these individuals really say why they are so excited about this "potential" candidate waiting in the dark. Some say that he’s the new Ronald Reagan. But upon a quick examination of his history, there is very little evidence to back this up other than the unimportant fact of both being actors.
Today, I once again stumbled upon the mystery of Fred Thompson. I read an article about him and his importance to the presidential race in Time magazine. However, nowhere in the article is one of his standing points mentioned.
Fred Thompson is building a campaign on smoke and mirrors. He is leading voters to believe that he is whatever they would like him to be. Recount any mainstream news that you’ve heard about Fred Thompson. Almost no one says, "Well he’s for small government, the war in Iraq, against Abortion, and very evangelical." In fact, what you do hear are comments like, "Fred Thompson is coming into the race and it’s going to stir things up a lot! People are really excited about him!"
Every report is about the excitement for Fred Thompson and not Fred’s actual stands. This is no doubt his intended strategy.
Fred Thompson wants everyone to be completely and utterly dissatisfied with the current top candidates. They’re all pretty weak with major flaws; it’s quite obvious. His campaign plan is to expose their weaknesses and then stand on any issues where the current candidates are lacking. It is too dangerous for him to firmly present his ideas in debates. His campaign wants to know what he has to say to get elected.
Fred Thompson is willing to do anything to get his personal ends. Simply look at his past……..as a lobbyist!
Ok, I’m not going to jump all over him just because he’s a lobbyist. Surely, there are plenty of good lobbyists indirectly fighting for free markets and protection from harmful regulation.
Fred Thompson was not one of these lobbyists…..
Instead, he fought for more funding to big corporate interests and then turned around to help the Teamster’s Union. Some lobbyists work only with certain interest groups. However, Thompson has no values and principles to his work. Beyond this hypocrisy, Fred Thompson even did 20 hours of work for a pro-abortion group lobbying Congress.
Fred Thompson is not taking a stand because he is a man who stands for nothing. Exposing himself in a debate would be his downfall. He wants to know what he must say to win votes. It’s not much different from his lobbying days.
And what’s the response to these allegations by Fred Thompson’s supporters?
Well, most of them online try to excuse these charges by pointing out that Fred Thompson did not make much of his income from these activities.
This is logically bankrupt in judging one’s character. I don’t care how much any person who works for the devil is paid. I’m concerned about the fact that they work for the devil! Occupation in sin is the key. The money is inconsequential.
I must give some concessions. I can understand a person just slightly more who sold his soul for a billion dollars than the person who sold it for ten dollars. In this case, the defensive argument is that Thompson sold his soul for ten dollars and this makes the lobbying not so bad.
Simply, his values were up for sale and the asking price was not much.
The second claim Thompson’s supporters make is that he is the only "true conservative." Once again, this immaculate wordage can mean anything to anyone. It is a slogan aimed at dissatisfaction amongst voters toward other candidates.
But what makes him so different and such a "true" conservative. Thompson is:
- Against Immigration
- Against Taxes and Regulation
- For the War in Iraq
- Against Abortion
One more thing, he spent time on the side lobbying for corporate welfare and is a big fan of the military industrial complex.
How do these standing points possibly make him a "true conservative" while the rest are not "true"? He sounds exactly like the rest. In fact, his positions on the war in Iraq put him closer to "true Neo-Con" rather than "true conservative."
In an interview with Fox News, Thompson was asked what he thinks should be done in Iraq. He responds with,
"I would do essentially what the president is doing"
Wow! Isn’t this just the amazing, separate-from-the-crowd guy that we’ve hearing so much about! His ideas are so great, new, and revolutionary!
Now on a serious note, I know of almost no conservative who would truly back this statement. Even concerned citizens who think that the war in Iraq can be won in the long run don’t feel current strategy is working. The Republican Party and the Conservative movement have been devastated by the war in Iraq. Yet, Fred Thompson just wants to keep on the same path.
With this viewpoint, Fred has no chance of being elected. America wants change. Citizens who support the war want a different battle strategy. In a heads-up fight with Barak Obama or Hillary Clinton, Thompson’s unimaginative, bland, worn-out ideas on the war won’t stand a chance.
It’s really no surprise, because his campaign is not based on ideas, changes, principles, and values. It’s only based on entering the race when the other candidates are weak and taking advantage of the moment to promise voters anything the others have not offered.
So, if you’re looking for a "true conservative" or a new Ronald Reagan, Thompson isn’t it. He’s just like the rest….perhaps even worse. He has lived a life of inconsistency lacking integrity. His political ideas are repetitive, uninspired, and unoriginal just like the front-runners.
Further, his Bush-like view on the war is a disastrous policy direction for any conservative wishing to make it to the White House. At the very least, Thompson could offer a new strategy to defeat terrorism. However, he’s not creative or bold enough to devise something of the sort.
The only thing that really sets Thompson apart from the rest is his strategy. His campaign advisors are obviously top-notch; his politics and ideas, however, are not.
Vedran Vuk [send him mail] has a bachelor degree of Economics from Loyola University of New Orleans, and was a 2006 Summer Fellow at the Mises Institute. He is currently pursuing a doctorate of economics at George Mason University.