Around the Block’s “The CPAC Report”


“Oh, what a circus, oh what a show!”

“As many of you know, the annual CPAC conference was held last week at the Gaylord National Resort and Conference Center in National Harbor, Maryland, just outside the “beltway swamp” (CPAC’s location characterization). CPAC, which stands for “Contemptible People Acting Cuckoo” claims to be the third-ranked Political and Press event of the year, behind the State of the Union (aka, Secessionist Marjorie Taylor Greene and her Peanut Gallery show) and the (not-so-funny) White House Correspondents’ Dinner. While attendance at this year’s edition of CPAC was smaller than in past gatherings, there were still quite a few wretched, hateful and despicable (thanks, Hillary – how did that work out for you???) cuckoos in attendance.

Truth be told – which of course Around The Block is dedicated to, i.e., truth telling – this year’s edition of CPAC was particularly notable in that many potential Trump 2024 challengers – I’m looking at you DeSantis, Pompeo and Pence (Pence, really?) didn’t even show up, fearful of being overshadowed by the disgraced, soon-to-be indicted ex-“president.” Nikki Haley, the only other currently declared GOP presidential candidate, did make an appearance to a woefully small audience, only to be heckled by Trump supporters in that audience chanting, “WE LOVE TRUMP!” CPAC was so awful this year that, as reported in the New York Post, my go-to source for CPAC news, in the conference straw poll of likely Republican nominees for the 2024 presidential election, “Trump was the preferred candidate of 62% of attendees, while Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis came in second place with 20% percent support, followed by Michigan businessman Perry Johnson, who ran a Super Bowl ad for his long-shot campaign for the GOP nomination in third place with 5% of the vote, the aforementioned Ms. Haley with 3% and biotech entrepreneur Vivek Ramaswamy(?) with 1%.

I guess with two candidates of sub-continent Indian heritage, I should be careful not to criticize the GOP for its lack of diversity.

The Post went on to report that , “Sens. Rand Paul and Ted Cruz, along with former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, each had 1% of the vote to round out the tally board.”

I don’t know about you, but calling this group a ‘motley crew’ gives ‘motley crew’ a bad name.

But wait, according to The New York Post, it gets worse. Among a field of 28 potential vice-presidential candidates, Keri Lake won with 20 percent of the vote, beating former Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (14%) and the woebegone Ms. Haley, with 10 percent.

You might remember Lake, the former local TV reporter from Phoenix who thinks she’s governor of Arizona. Talk about lunacy, CPAC gave the 2024 nod to a Trump/Lake ticket, neither of whom will admit that they lost free and fair elections in 2020 and 2022 respectively.

But enough about the lunacy of the CPAC crowd, let’s move on to the leader of the (lunacy) pack, Donald Trump.

The New York Times headline/sub-head summed it up:

Trump, Vowing ‘Retribution,’ Foretells a Second Term of Spite

In a speech before his supporters, the former president charged forward in an uncharted direction, talking openly about leveraging the power of the presidency for political reprisals.

From the Times:

“Donald J. Trump has for decades trafficked in the language of vengeance, from his days as a New York developer vowing “an eye for an eye” in the real estate business to ticking through an enemies ledger in 2022 as he sought to oust every last Republican who voted for his impeachment. ‘Four down and six to go,’ he cheered in a statement as one went down to defeat.

“But even though payback has long been part of his public persona, Mr. Trump’s speech on Saturday at CPAC was striking for how explicitly he signaled that any return trip to the White House would amount to a term of spite.

“’In 2016, I declared, ‘I am your voice,’ Mr. Trump told the crowd in National Harbor, Md. ‘Today, I add: I am your warrior. I am your justice. And for those who have been wronged and betrayed, I am your retribution.’

“He repeated the phrase for emphasis: ‘I am your retribution.’”

Since he repeated the phrase twice for emphasis, let me not only repeat it, but bold it for its horrific symbolism: “I am your retribution.”

As eminent Harvard Law professor Laurence Tribe said in a retweet of a Bill Kristol post, “These parallels should chill us to the bone.” 

As you see below, the parallels Tribe referenced was Joseph Goebbels comment:
“Eines Tages kommt die Stunde der Vergeltung!” (“One day the hour of retribution will come.”) — Joseph Goebbels, June 5, 1943

And if all this isn’t enough, here’s the first Twitter comment to Tribe’s post:

“Mr Tribe, with all due respect, the vast majority of Americans don’t know how the Nazis came to power, let alone who Goebbels was.”

I don’t know who Green&Serene @DarmokAndJalad are, but I fear that they are correct in their assessment about the “vast majority of Americans.” While lack of historical knowledge of so many Americans is lamentable, perhaps even worse is that a great number of those American people, the Trump “patriots,” the white supremacist/neo-Nazi cohort, the “good people on both sides” crowd that Trump called out after Charlottesville, know exactly what Trump was saying. As, I’m sure Trump did himself. Do you really think he pulled the word “retribution” out of thin air? Can you say “dog whistle?”

Talking about Trump “patriots,” there’s one more hard to swallow bit of Trump theatrics that came out of CPAC . It was when Trump took his support for those who stormed the Capitol to another level, collaborating on a new performance piece integrating the National Anthem with the Pledge of Allegiance performed by Trump and a group of inmates imprisoned in Washington on charges related to the Jan. 6 attack.

Trump and the prisoners — dubbed the “J6 Prison Choir” — released “Justice for All” a roughly 2 1/2-minute track that features the former president reciting the Pledge of Allegiance cut with the inmates singing the national anthem.

Here it is for you to listen to or not. In any event, remember the man who is featured with the insurrectionists in this piece is the same man who fomented the insurrection, the same man who might be indicted in some jurisdiction for any number of crimes and the same man who is now the overwhelming choice of the CPAC cuckoos to be the Republican nominee for president in 2024.

I’ve run out of words!

Published by Ted Block

Ted Block is a veteran “Mad Man,” having spent 45+ years in the advertising industry. During his career, he was media director of several advertising agencies, including Benton & Bowles in New York and Foote, Cone and Belding in San Francisco; account management director on clients as varied as Clorox, Levi’s and the California Raisin Advisory Board (yes, Ted was responsible for the California Dancing Raisins campaign); and regional director for Asia based in Tokyo for Foote, Cone where he was also the founding president of FCB’s Japanese operations. Ted holds a Bachelor’s degree in communications from Queens College and, before starting in advertising, served on active duty as an officer on USS McCloy (DE-1038) in the U.S. Navy. Besides writing Around the Block, Ted is also a guest columnist for the Palm Beach Post.

2 thoughts on “Around the Block’s “The CPAC Report”

  1. I tried to listen to the video but just could not!!! It makes me sick. Ted, I don’t know how you do all of this research into this disgusting group of cretins and continue to do it day after day. I guess I should be ashamed that I am a bit of a, damn I can’t think of the bird that sticks it’s head in the sand, but that’s what I seem to be. I just can’t bare all of these hateful people who are coming out of the woodwork and hanging around. I give you huge kudos for keeping on. I’m sick now!!!!!! Hugs, Toni



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