Salon‘s Alex Pareene and Talking Points Memo‘s Tom Kludt are both pooh-poohing the notion of Morning Joe host, author and former Congressman Joe Scarborough looking like a reasonably promising candidate for the 2016 Republican Presidential Nomination. Pareene is saying that the conservative-minded MSNBC talkshow host is (a) not well known enough and (b) not crazy enough for the Republican nutters. But with Gov. Chris Christie suffering a thousand-cut death and most likely out of the race, Scarborough seems like the only guy around who could mount a substantial and engaging challenge to presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. Scarborough is blustery at times but it’s hard to imagine that he’d be anywhere near as gaffe-prone as Mitt Romney was, and he’d surely be more appealing to country-club Republicans, independents and undecideds than a whacko like Rand Paul, who is absolutely guaranteed to lose. Scarborough, at least, would lose by a closer margin. I for one would like to see him win the Republican nomination. It would make a more civil and engaging contest of ideas and character. You know all the dumbfuck rural uglies will come out of the woodwork if Paul wins the nomination.