Why I Support Carly Fiorina for President, By Dave Begley


 I have had the unique opportunity and pleasure to see in person nearly all of the candidates for president so I write with some authority on this topic. I’ve seen some multiple times and talked and questioned them when I could. I then wrote up my accounts and submitted them to www.powerlineblog.com.

My Background

Back when I was a Democrat I was elected to a minor political office in Nebraska. More importantly, I worked at the same law firm as Ben Nelson when he ran for Governor. I also had a role in a complicated and high profile lawsuit involving a recount in the Democrat primary in his first race. Ben Nelson went on to serve as Senator and his experience there is instructive today.

Ben’s background was the insurance industry and on a national scale at the highest level. The people of Nebraska were solidly against Obamacare, but Ben was the fifty-first vote in its favor. It is now clear that Obamacare is not only a failure but crony capitalism of the worst sort for the insurance industry. Not to put too fine a point on it, but Ben Nelson sold out the people of Nebraska for the Democrat party and his insurance company cronies. He tried to soften the blow by negotiating the “Cornhusker kickback” so small town hospitals wouldn’t go bankrupt, but the polls showed he had no chance for reelection so he retired from the Senate and went back to the insurance industry.

My lesson? We need a real outsider as President.

The Scope of the Problem

I submit that foreign affairs are at the most dangerous point ever in the history of the world. Russia is resurgent. The Chinese are restless. Religious zealots in Iran and Syria have the money and means to get nuclear weapons. Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan never had such weapons. Surprisingly the appeasing architect of these failed policies thinks she can fix it.

On the domestic front things are really not much better. The recovery has been the most sluggish ever. We are lucky to have 2% growth. The latent problem is the national debt at nearly $20 trillion. The full magnitude of the debt problem is masked by the Federal Reserve’s zero interest rate policy. Once interest rates normalize, then interest payments explode. When the national debt well exceeds GNP then the economy really slows. The only solution then is massive inflation by devaluing the dollar or tax rates through the roof.

What We Need

In my view we need a servant leader and doer with solid conservative principles who is also an outsider.

Carly frequently uses the phrase “servant leader.” The cynic might say it is poll tested and the cynic might be right. I, on the other hand, take her use of the phrase to be authentic, genuine and direct from her heart.

Grant me dear reader a slight indulgence. On November 15th of this year, my teacher, mentor and friend Fr. John P. Schlegel, S.J. passed away. He was assigned to Creighton University three times and last served as its President for over a decade. During his time as Creighton’s President, he raised nearly $500 million. Most people probably know Creighton for having a pretty good basketball team but it is way more. Through his enormous talent he transformed my alma mater and Omaha. He was a friend to students and millionaires alike. He said Mass regularly and feed the homeless. He was an athlete and scholar. He focused all of his ability to become a man for others and Carly has that “others” focus. She doesn’t use “I” or “me” constantly like the current President. She appears to me to be sincerely interested in making America a better place for average persons. How novel.

Carly might not be a perfect conservative, but she is as conservative as any candidate and no moderate like Jeb Bush or John Kasich.

The Opponent

Hillary is old, tired and out of shape. Mrs. Clinton’s closest aide wrote in an email that was never supposed to see the light of day that Hillary was “confused” about some basic tasks at State. Hillary also needs naps.

The first time I saw Carly in July, her first appearance was at 7:00 am and she worked all day. One time she told a story about how she had climbed a ladder in New Delhi, India to get on a roof to meet some people. There is no way that Hillary would or could do such a thing.

Hillary is not very smart at all. If a person is going to run a secret multi-million dollar bribery scheme that is nearly treason then a smart person would spend some real money to make sure the private server was completely secure and that the contents of the emails never saw the light of day. Hillary didn’t do so. Incredibly stupid. Head-slapping stupid.

Bobby Jindal was a Rhodes Scholar. Ted Cruz was one of the smartest students at Harvard Law and argued cases before the Supreme Court. The GOP field is exceptionally talented, but I would rank Carly as the smartest and I don’t make that claim lightly. She really is a very quick study across a range of topics. Running HP with all of the different disciplines she had to master proves how intelligent she is.

Right now there is a serious criminal investigation ongoing against Hillary Clinton but it concerns her mishandling of national secrets. She has received a complete pass from the Obama Justice Department on the thinly disguised bribery scheme she conducted with her husband and the Clinton Foundation. For purposes of her candidacy the danger here is that if she is elected we will never know if she will sell out the American people’s safety and security for money. It is a small move from allowing the Russians to nearly corner the world’s uranium market to something more consequential.

She is a liar and not even a very good one at that. She is now praised for her prevarications. How perverse is that?

And what kind of woman stays married to a man who sexually humiliated her in front of the entire world? Maybe the Monica incident and her reaction was understandable, but by all accounts Bill has continued with his behavior. The answer to the question is that only a mortally craven or mentally unbalanced person would stay married to Bill Clinton.

Carly’s Rise

She really did rise from secretary to CEO of one of the biggest tech companies in America. And tech is our greatest industry. That is an extraordinary accomplishment that could only happen in America. She rose by merit at a time of extreme difficulty and transition. The internet was just coming on the scene. She was friends and competitors with Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and Michael Dell. That’s the tech equivalent of George Washington, Ben Franklin and Thomas Jefferson. She probably learned a few things from those guys.

Here’s a point that the regular press and American public really doesn’t appreciate. Every single quarter HP has to publish its financial results. There is a scorecard to compare to what Wall Street had expected. She then was subjected to really tough questioning on major and minor points by the Street. This is a rigorous process and not only did she have to master the facts but she had to be quite sophisticated in answering tricky and often compound questions and with follow-ups. Meet the Press is child’s play compared to quarterly conference calls.

When Carly joined HP it was in trouble. She had to make tough decisions. Not every one worked out, but the important thing is that she took action. She didn’t talk about taking action like what the Senate does. The “knock” on her is that she had to layoff people after the Compaq merger and she was subsequently fired by her Board. What is vital to know here is that Board member and legendary Silicon Valley venture capitalist Tom Perkins recently wrote that the HP Board made a mistake in firing her and he had voted to fire her at the time. It is also worth noting that the HP Board was dysfunctional and later became embroiled in its own scandal.

Lesson for voters today? Carly will challenge and change the status quo in Washington. She is an accomplished executive outsider. She is not tied to the old way of doing things and that is to the good as DC has failed and needs fundamental change.

Carly first came to my attention with her declarative statement that Hillary Clinton must not be President. The directness and boldness of her statement was refreshing but also the fact that she knows what is important. Her real opponent was not Scott Walker who was then leading in the polls. Since then she has largely focused on her three page tax code and zero based budgeting proposals. There is great power and significance in these two ideas but she hasn’t really gone into much detail. I think that she is prudent and smart not to do so because with fine details the special interests will mobilize and oppose her.

She distinguished herself in the debates by the force of her intellect and personality. That’s no small feat considering she had limited political experience and was competing against the best field ever. She didn’t rest on her laurels but got right after it on the campaign trail. I have seen her four times in person and, to put it nicely, the people of Iowa are not a Georgetown crowd. She chatted up the crowd at the Norwalk fire station and at a tent meeting with average Iowans. She is friendly and approachable but still business-like. Three times I have seen Mrs. Clinton and she never took questions from voters. Hillary appears like a queen talking down to her subjects.

What Carly Needs Now

Right now Carly has stalled in the polls. Part of it is due to the large field and part of it is due to her lack of political experience. The other nonpoliticians also have a sizable percentage of the vote. I also think at this point she desperately needs some new material that is consistent with her conservative principles. Here are my proposals: A tariff on OPEC oil and a full frontal assault on the climate change/Green movement.

West Texas oil is now at about $40 bbl and gasoline in Omaha is at $1.95. Our American oil producers need WTI at between $60-$70 to make money. We are only 7 million barrels per day away from North American energy independence. Our “friends” the Saudis are pumping full bore in order to crush our new fracking industry and they are achieving success. Just today I read a report that there has been 250,000 worldwide layoffs in the energy industry and more to come. One oil company has already filed for Chapter 11 and at this rate it won’t be the last.

We make bad trade deals and Trump used that fact as one of his key campaign themes at the beginning. What have the Saudis ever really done for us? We protect the world’s sea lanes for free. We defeated Iraq when Saudi Arabia was threatened. Some of the money we send to OPEC ends up with ISIS and Al Qaeda. I submit that a $20-25 bbl tariff on OPEC oil would be in the self-interest of the United States. Let’s save our oil companies and the jobs here in exchange for a reliable and terror free supply of oil and $3.00 gasoline. OPEC needs our food, tech and pharmaceuticals way more than we need their oil. It is time to turn the tables on those ingrates after forty years of abuse at their hands. And ingrates and abusers they are.

While the Left proclaims that climate change is the number one threat to the world today and a source of Islamic terrorism it is crystal clear to the average voter that the Democrats are clueless. Carly should use Alinsky-like techniques and ridicule them as they are ripe for parody. Why are we spending billions now to prevent a 0.018 increase in temperature in 2100? Tehran could nuke DC well before 2100.

The Greens are a key constituency of the Democrats. Their misguided climate change regulations are a huge drag on the economy and it will only get worse. If Obama’s Clean Power Plan regulations go into effect we are looking at hundreds of thousands of people losing their jobs and a 300% increase in energy costs like in Germany. In Europe, average people call it “energy poverty.” We don’t need that here at all. It is wholly unnecessary.

Carly should just call for a “Green Freeze and Rollback” on all of Obama’s energy and environmental policies. The word “freeze” is a reference to the nuclear weapons moratorium that the Left wanted with the USSR in the Carter years. The word “rollback” is a nod to Wal-Mart’s old policy of rolling back prices. It will resonate with Wal-Mart voters. Our environment is clean enough. Let’s declare victory and not try to clean that last 1% at a high cost in jobs and money. Why don’t the Chinese clean up their own environmental mess? Let’s enjoy our success and use the money savings to defeat radical Islam. Radical Islam is a clear and tangible threat to the United States. Global warming is not.

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