I'd be willing to bet that Ted Cruz touches himself when he looks at this poster
The Republican debate last night was truly frightening, and not because the candidates kept telling me that I needed to be afraid of ISIS. A bunch of people who claim to be qualified to lead the world's most powerful empire voiced violent fantasies of war and hate, and openly disparaged democracy in the process. They all talked of "penetrating" and "annihilating" and "destroying ISIS" which will happen by them just making it so through pure force of will. More than one candidate openly supported tyrannical regimes in the region and disparaged the notion of supporting democratic movements. All I heard was "killing our enemies matters more than democracy." They have dropped the pretense to any higher ideal other than death and murder to an extent that is truly scary. The rebel forces in Syria are currently fighting and dying (on our behalf) wedged between two ruthless enemies, but came in for abuse from the presidential candidates, all of whom claim so solemnly to be lovers of "freedom."
This train of thought was aired most loudly by Ted "carpet bomb them until the sand glows" Cruz, but others essentially said the same thing. They are practically creaming themselves over the fact that the American public is being so fearful after the attacks in San Bernardino. They know that after terror attacks so many in this country lose their senses, and their lizard brains will vibrate with delight when conservatives promise vengeance. 9/11 turned Dubya into a leader after floundering around like the feckless idiot that he was, and the current Republican candidates are hoping that a whole lot of blustery tough talking will give them a similar halo.
The way they talk about "boots on the ground" as if those boots aren't on the feet of real life human beings that they will be sending to foreign lands to kill, die, be maimed, and undergo psychological trauma is truly monstrous. They act as if their actions won't have consequences or reactions attached to them, and that they can be the heroic figure who kills all the bad guys. They think being president is like something out of Michael Bay movie, or at least they think so little of their constituents that they assume they are so naive and stupid to believe that the world works that way. I would scoff at such a mentality, but so many in this country are so ignorant of political reality, and so hopped up on a wicked brew of nationalism and bad action movies, that they will gladly go along with it. We are living in interesting times, indeed.