When you mention the name Newt Gingrich, most people will have an immediate reaction: “he’s a genius”, “he’s an idiot”, “he’s a visionary”, “he’s a monster”, etc,.. There are a comparative few public personalities who conjure up such a diverse yet instantaneous response from so much of the country.
I’m more in the “visionary” camp, because Newt was always pushing and proposing so many ideas, so often, that he basically needed an editor to categorize them:
“Newt has 10 ideas a day,” former Republican Congressman and Gingrich Scott Klug told the WSJ last week. “Two of them are good, six are weird and two very weird.”
No great sin, that. But it’s an inarguable fact that Newt was uniquely effective at explaining his ideas in ways that everyone could grasp. He may be a highly imperfect politician and an even more imperfect man, but I maintain he still has a place in future Administrations, even in a simple adviser role… because of his ideas.
After all, it was Thomas Edison who famously said,
“Negative results are just what I want. They’re just as valuable to me as positive results.
I can never find the thing that does the job best until I find the ones that don’t.”
This all occurred to me when I picked up one of Newt’s books, Real Change: From the World That Fails to the World That Works. In it, he points out the obvious fallacies of thinking Government has/can ever create or innovate nearly as well as the free market and the private sector.
It’s a great read and I recommend it highly.
The video at the bottom is just a brief snippet of Gingrich illustrating his book’s basic premise. As you watch, think of all the ways that Government is setting itself up as the ultimate arbiter of what “works”, and how illogical that is.
For instance, remember that President Obama was puzzled by the phones in the White House: they are “30 years behind,” “we can’t get our phones to work”, and he was miffed by the dearth of “really cool phones and stuff.” Yet why would this be? I’ve worked for Fortune 100 companies for years, and we weren’t hampered by an obsolete phone system. It simply wouldn’t be tolerated.
In one world, failure isn’t accepted: the market, brutal competition and the overwhelming need to succeed ensures that. In the other world, however, it’s not only accepted: it’s practically encouraged.
Final thought: while you’re watching, let the term “Obamacare” roll around in your brain. With Government taking over an entire sector of our economy, what will THAT look like in 5 years? Or 10? Or 20?