Thursday, April 30, 2009

The scariest (non) movie trailer ever

So this is the latest video from the still-searching-for-its-message-and-strategy-and-brains Republican party.

This follows the defection of Arlen Specter to the Democratic Party and Op-eds from Republicans Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) and former NJ Governor Christine Todd Whitman lamenting their party's growing exclusiveness and inability to articulate words with more than one syllable: "no," "fear," and "scare."

Though I am a pretty left-leaning liberal (one reason I'm not a registered Democrat is because the party is too conservative for my tastes, particuarly socially), I am not blind to American history. I know within my lifetime that I'll see the resurrection of the Republican Party from its currently prematurely-obituaried state and then another alarmistly termed death knell and a subsequent resurrection, which will flow inversely with the Democratic Party's lifeline.

The only true constant in politics is that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. The Democrats, who thanks to Specter are on the verge of a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate and who already own the House, will find a way to fuck it up (see Rostenkowski, Dan). I know that more certainly than that I'm going to die.

Wasn't it just four-and-a-half years ago that the commentorati were relegating the Democratic Party to N.Y.C., Philadelphia, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, Portland and Seattle? And telling liberals that they should move to Western Europe because America had fundamentally repudiated government regulation of markets and take your gay, god-killing, baby-eating, rare-insect-saving, terrorist-hugging friends with you?

The problem I'm seeing with the Republicans (and Whitman, Specter, Snowe all say words to this effect) is that right now all those people they excluded have banded together with the pretty much everyone else and realized that, it's the economy stupid and right now we're fucked. What do Bob Nardelli (CEO of Chrysler) and union-card-carrying Joe The Assemblylineworker have in common? They're both about to lose their car-industry jobs.

Extra rub for the GOP, payback's being particularly bitchy this time, because your exclusionary tactics toward the different in our 24-hour-news-cycle age were especially condescending O'Reilly-style (it doesn't rear it's head until the 2:14 mark, but I heart this clip) snark and blowhardery.

If they wanted my advice, and they don't, they'd first have to acknowledge that their Message sounds anachronistic. Government will NEVER be small again. The gun-toting libertarians of Eastern Washington State and Oregon are such a small sliver of a slice of the electorate that they shouldn't be trying to secure that vote. In fact, the people who won you the 2000 and 2004 elections (people in the burbs) and who lost you 2008 (people in the burbs), don't want a small government. At all.

They want to know that their kids will get good educations that they can afford and that their investments will be protected. And since rampant deregulation and over-merging got us in this mess, stop saying that the markets will monitor themselves. Even Ayn Rand stated that for true Objectivism and Virtue of Selfishness dogma to work in the real world, people have to recognize that acting corruptly is bad and then not act corruptly.

Well, Rand for all her vilification as inhumanly cold, was in fact perhaps too optimistic. Because people can't help but fuck each other over and often themselves if left wholly to their own devices. So don't accuse the liberals of a naively, pollyannaish world view, in fact I think liberals are more cynical about humanity's capacity to deliver the shiv.

The people in the burbs want to be safe, so yeah, that worked great in 04, but the human genome has programmed us to adapt. And since 9/11 we've raised our baseline, so we're used to a constant yellow or orange alert status, so we're just not as afraid as we were in 02. Maybe we should be, maybe we shouldn't. But Bushies, not only did you squander the greatest opportunity ever to lead the world (post 9/11 when everyone empathized with the United States) and one of the highest presidential approval ratings ever, you also in fact sowed the seeds of your demise.

Karl Rove's decision to get in bed with the religous right was a very short-sighted gain. An alliance with those who believe in a Morality that comes from an unequivocally unquestionable authority cannot ultimately support the traditional doctrines of the Republican party's primacy of individual freedoms. When one lives one's life according to a Moral scale (of assumed beliefs) rather than an ethical scale (of evaluatable behaviors), there is no compromise. So essentially what you did Karl, and those who enabled/empowered you, is tell the core small-government conservatives (who tend to be more of a live-and-let-live crowd, as in I think you gays are an abomination, but if you don't get in my face I don't really care), and pushed them aside for a force of people that are still a minority in overall numbers and geographically (and who also take stewardship of the Earth very seriously. It's one of those divine moral imperatives). Architect of what exactly?

Also Rove's divide and conquer the electoral map strategy did more to fan the partisan flames than Bill O'Reilly, Rush Limbaugh, James Carville and Keith Olbermann ever could. And invading a country that was NEVER a threat to the United States based on lies you HAD TO KNOW would be exposed and then ordering inhumanly savage torture and finally not even taking care of the vets when they got home, all while giving in to your paranoia and spying on Americans without legal consent. WHATTHEFUCK did you think would fucking happen?

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