Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Where Do Republicans Go From Here: Further Down The Toilet Of Tea Party Insainty, Or Back Toward Relative Bipartisan Sanity?

From early this morning the news has been full of confident reports that the idiotic Republican shutdown is about to be put behind us. I won't fully believe it until it's done, but the reports are nearly unanimously confident that Congress will in fact pull its head out of its ass and the chestnuts of the global economy out of the fire.

So. If we're wrapping up the shutdown now -- will the rightwing nutbags be able to do it again? Soon? It seems so stupid to me that so many nonextremist Republicans let them get away with this, let themselves be pushed around so. Perhaps they haven't studied the end of the Weimar Republic as much as I.

If the deal is going through now and the Bizarro-World episode is almost over, if we're there, it's because mainstream Republicans are siding with the Democrats against the Tea Party in sufficient numbers. Which they should have been doing since well before the 2010 midterms, from the point of view of they own self-interest, nevermind considerations of things like sanity, reality and common decency. 3 years' worth of cooperation with idiots and psychopaths, the most spectacular example of which, before the last couple of weeks, was the 2011 budget crisis, has done huge damage to the Republican brand. I predicted it had well before the 2012 elections. Democratic gains in 2012, due in no small part to the defections of non-batshit-crazy Republican voters appalled at everything for which the Tea Party stands, proved me right, and the catastrophic plummeting of Republican approval ratings during the shutdown is sending the same message to any Republican with ears and a functioning brain: Dump the Tea Party, the sooner and more emphatically, the better.

You can't be a little bit pregnant and you can't be a little bit okay with psychotic political partners. When the whole fucking world is appalled at your political allies of convenience, whether you're von Papen in 1932 and those partners are the Nazis or you're John Boehner in 2013 and those partners are the Tea Party, it's time to stop and consider the opinion of the whole fucking world, and think about whether, in the long term, that opinion should outweigh the political gains you're trying to obtain by allying yourself with a fringe group of fascists who hate you just as much and respect you just as little as they do anyone else.

The 2012 elections told mainstream Republicans that their partnership with the Tea Party was political poison, that it was just a sheer disaster. Some of them listened. The public reaction to the shutdown is telling them the same thing. A few more have been listening, still not very many. The 2014 midterms will scream it so loud you'll wonder how anyone possibly couldn't hear. But keep in mind that many mainstream Republicans still thought Romney was going to be elected President late in the evening of Election Day 2012. Perhaps things like that should make us wonder whether many of the mainstream Republicans aren't just plain stupid. I'm talking about the mainstream, never mind the Mad Hatters of the Tea Party.

Anyway: Republican Senators and Congresspeople, on behalf of the Democratic Party, thanks once again for providing us with tons of priceless campaign advertising material for which we won't have to spend a lot of money, but just quote you and run raw audio and video of you. You're really being a tremendous help.

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