The Case For Hiring Professionals

John Howell

12/16/2011 1:09:00 PM - John Howell

Times are tough, and money’s short. There’s an extraordinary amount of remodeling that must be done. This old republic is in tough shape. The roof’s leaking, and the plumbing is shot. If that’s not bad enough, we’re out of cash.

Well, it’s not as bad as you think. Both Newt and Mitt are skilled labor. They have tools, they’re licensed, and can provide references.

Some conservatives are apocalyptic at the thought of Newt Gingrich capturing the nomination. He shleps loads of personal baggage, has a history of questionable business situations, undisciplined rhetoric, and a certain intellectual smugness that can be, shall we say, “misinterpreted.” Maybe you are bemoaning the prospect of Mitt Romney carrying the torch. He’s the, “consultant’s consultant,” a serial flip flopper, the establishment pick, Mr. Mormon Milquetoast, midwife to Obamacare, and perhaps the first ‘fully programmed’ hologram to fool us all.

While hosting my radio show, I hear the squawking and howling regularly. “We want someone fresh! Ideologically pure, with no history. The perfect warrior to send to D.C. to dismantle evil government.”

No, no, you don’t. Good in theory, catastrophically bad in practice.

Please get over it. Newt and Mitt will be, in the end, your choices. The good news is they’re both truly skilled professionals. Been there, done that, they have the tee-shirts, and the less-than-perfectly-pure records to prove it.

Here’s the other thing you need to understand — political experience and professionalism are positive attributes to most of America, especially to moderates and independents, who, by the way, are the folks who elect presidents.

Make no mistake — no matter how trite or unappealing you may find this -- mushy, moderate middle America’s criteria for supporting a presidential hopeful will center on someone who conveys that they’re a professional and are ready for the job. We don’t hire huskers or reality TV stars for this gig.

Contrary to the, “throw all the bums out,” mentality, America’s has been historically drawn to candidates who have accrued some governmental experience of a significant level. Turning to someone who can work — and embrace — this most unwieldy system.

Realizing that this imperfect representative republic isn’t going away anytime soon, we figure that our president better know his way around town. Governing isn’t easy. Remember this: Those crafty, “Eastern elites,” devised a system that was intentionally rigged to be insanely frustrating. Monotonous and detailed, the work itself tends to weed out the lazy and easily distracted. Those who screech and punch themselves out, wind up sucking air and becoming marginalized before the real debate begins.

We look repeatedly for someone who has genuinely completed the ponderous drudgery necessary to accomplish goals above and beyond bluster and anger. We admire those who have chaired meetings, exhibited feigned interest while the dummies drone on, and then, built a coalition and passed a bill. Also, as a bonus, maybe, just maybe, they have also successfully balanced a budget from time to time.

There is, of course, much more than pure professionalism and experience to consider: Independent voters will pull the lever for someone who, they feel, can handle the extreme stress of the job and present a coherent message and vision for the future. We will reward a president who will spend our blood and treasure judiciously while protecting America’s vital interests.

This fine Colonial of ours’ needs some renovation. I’d recommend hiring skilled labor every time. Arsonist hacks can’t be trusted with the projects of this size.

The great news for conservatives is that both Newt and Mitt fit the bill. They’re pros and are prepared for the job. We could do far worse. Now, you decide.