In the world of fashion flip flops are simple type of shoe that usually consists of a thin layer of rubber for the sole and a V-shaped thong that fits in between your big toe and whatever the toe next to it is called. Here in the states, they’re pretty popular amongst the beach going crowd since they’re easier to clean and provide one with a measure of protection from the hot sands.
In developing countries with warmer climates, flip flops are popular because they are cheap. They can usually be found for under a buck and are often made from recycled tires and other rubber goods.
In the world of politics, flip flops are another thing entirely and should try to be avoided at all costs. Don’t believe me?
“I actually did vote for the $87 billion before I voted against it.”
2004 Democratic Presidential candidate John Kerry
That little gem regarding the funding of our troops in Iraq could have possibly cost Kerry the presidency back in ’04. It was played relentlessly on campaign ads endorsing George W. Bush and was the butt of many a joke for all the late night talk show hosts and political pundits.
But c’mon, we know they ALL do it in one form or another. It’s their business to try and twist another person’s words to their favor.
Bu the real art of mastering the political flip flop is trying to argue that each of your varying positions is consistent with each other. That’s why these folks have a huge contingent of consultants and image makers working for them. They are there for one purpose and one purpose only, to master the art of spin.
What people tend to forget about the act of flip flopping is that it usually occurs when one of our elected officials decides to run for higher office. What works just fine locally often doesn’t play well when it comes to the national stage.
Take Mitt Romney. As Governor of Massachusetts, he was pro-choice. As 2008 presidential candidate he is staunchly pro life.
As Mayor of New York City Rudolph Giuliani was a proponent of gun control as a necessary tool in order to fight crime. Today, while running for President, he’s all about endorsing the Second Amendment.
It ain’t just Republicans folks.
As Senator from New York, Hillary Clinton was all for in the invasion of Iraq and even voted for it when the war drums were sounding. During her recent bid for the presidency she has called upon George W. Bush to “"extricate our country from this before he leaves office.”
As the self described “candidate of change”, Barack Obama isn’t above the fray. Lately he's been accused of changing his positions on such things as The Patriot Act and the health care system.
And the sad thing is, in each instance all of these accusations for all of these people are being made by members of their own party all of whom are seeking higher office.
As the primaries wind down and each party decides on whom it will nominate to represent their interests, the attention will turn to the other side and the rhetoric and vitriole is only going to get nastier.
Kinda makes me wonder if they’d eat their own young in order to get elected.