The RPs Debate Presidential Leadership: Jason Atkinson Rebuts

Jason Atkinson: Rebuttal #7

[John Y.’s Provocation The RP’s Rebuttal #1; Ron Granieri’s Rebuttal #2; Rod Jetton’s Rebuttal #3; Krystal Ball’s Rebuttal #4; John Y.’s First Defense; Rod Jetton’s Response #1; Jeff Smith’s Rebuttal #5; John Y.’s Second Defense; Ron Granieri’s Response #1; John Y.’s Third Defense; Artur Davis’ Rebuttal #6; Jeff Smith’s Response #1; Rod Jetton’s Response #2]

Some people just deserve good things in life.  Ya, we know Mitt’s daddy owns the car dealership and got a Corvette for his 16th birthday, but after all, he looks like the quarterback.  He is not like the rest of the kids in shop class, English, debate or pep-band.  He is just a little better. He doesn’t have to one-up, he was born up.

In 1920, Warren Harding looked like Presidential timber too and campaigned on the thriller banner of “normalcy.” Some people just “got it go’n on.”  Not like the rest of us who have had to pull our selves up the hard way, make hard calls, and pay the personal price for our political decisions.  Mitt has always had someone else pay, or someone else’s money to pay.  Mitt Harding has the look and was smart enough to choose the right parents.  People want to have their picture taken with him, but don’t really want to talk to him, akin to taking picture at a car show. 

So back to Harding: He looked like President, so let’s run him for President.  The key to that borrowed historical back room quote is “who” is part of “let’s?”  History showed us who with Teapot Dome. 

Presidential looks and take no chances are part of the “administrative” style of leadership.  Obama promised changed, forward looking, leadership.  That contrast alone hurts Republican chances. 

In his inaugural speech, Harding declared, “Our most dangerous tendency is to expect too much from the government and at the same time do too little for it.”  That’s the sort of “Normalcy” unemployed hurting people don’t want. 

Behind Harding’s looks was a dispassionate leader.  An administrator, but not what American culture rally’s behind.  As Artur Davis questioned: “Does the guy or lady believe in people like me?”  If Harding did, he didn’t show it.  Same with Mitt, if he could show it, would real people be convinced he believed? 

Like it nor not, we are drawn to the mystic of the leader who is a maverick, who is unashamedly American, and who makes us proud as a diplomat.  Carter wore a suit, Reagan a tux- who was more Presidential?

This conversation is somewhat difficult for me because I am fascinated in leadership styles balanced with purpose and humility.  Like most, I haven’t seen anything close this campaign cycle; but then again, like most, instead of watching the 384th debate, I’m worrying about my keeping my old clunker suburban on the road, not Mitt’s new Corvette.

And I think that’s many people’s unarticulated problem with Mitt Harding: we resent blue bloods who don’t know how about working with dirty hands.  The cool quarterback who doesn’t have to ride the bus with the rest of us.


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