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Thursday, January 12, 2012

Incipient Sanity In Crazytown?

Upgraded and adapted from the Moot, my reply in conversation with "jollyspaniard," for your consideration:
Of course, nothing could be clearer than that the GOP does NOT prefer Romney, hence their almost hysterical affirmation of not-Romney after not-Romney. That even much of the Establishment neither likes nor trusts Romney any more than the Base does is well documented (and following the money confirms this). However, his quick consolidation of front-runner status through the primary contests (which I certainly expected, given the alternatives) is quite interesting nonetheless. It is important to remember that what you appropriately call the "busload of clowns" (Palin, Trump, Bachmann, Perry, Cain, Santorum) are actually reflecting and catering directly to the real attitudes and assumptions that drive the GOP Base, so that when they "fall in line" as they are for Romney on the grounds of electability as they are (setting aside for the moment that I honestly regard him nearly as unelectable as the rest of clowns in the clown car, not just as likely to lose but as structurally nearly incapable of winning, with nothing but lots of money and his Base's rancid rather race-based hatred of Obama on his side) it is useful to notice that this choice of "electability" over their own core convictions is premised on their recognition that they are a marginal minority in a browning, secularizing, planetizing, democratizing nation -- that whatever their boasts about being the "real Americans" and "the American people have spoken and what they want is... voucherized social security! more austerity for the undeserving poor! zero taxes and regulations for our rich overlords! climate change denialism! creationism in biology class! jezebels hanged birth control!" and so on, they actually are starting to make political decisions based on changed assumptions. The unconscious realization that the right lost the culture wars has long driven the disciplinary fervor of the GOP (as well as accounting for their weird declarations that a blandly average Christian majority seems really surreally to feel themselves embattled and discriminated against and hanging by their nails at the edge of a precipice or something), but the emergence of a more pragmatic politics premised on the un-electability of candidates reflecting their actual views may be the first step toward recognizing that their views have been tested and found wanting. This may be the beginning of the self-awareness that will eventually redefine the Republican party into a version of conservatism that can partner in the fact-based administration of a diverse sustainable multicultural multipolar polity/world (their loss to Obama again, and the loss of most of their mid-term gains would drive that lesson home further still). Definitely the old dysfunctional coalition you rightly describe of "business plutocrats with christian[ist]s and teapartiers [eg, more or less the Bircher contingent -- various mixes of libertopian neo-confederates] as useful idiots" has not survived the p2p-democratization of base voters any more than the faux-centrist Clinton/DLC left survived the p2p-democratization of the Democratic Party from MoveOn through Dean to Obama's triumph (whose second term will reflect that transformation even better than the first if we manage to swing the Congress in my view).

1 comment:

jollyspaniard said...

I've been reading the comment section at a number of right wing blogs trying to understand how these people think. I've just about given up because I feel like I understand them now and it's pretty sickening stuff. They do seem to realize that they're going to lose in 2012. It also looks like they're fracturing internaly into at least three different camps who increasingly resent and hate each other.

I'm not sure how that will play out though as they realize they've got to stick together. Even though they are beginning to hate each other they'll always hate the progressive "other" more. They're united in hatred, they always have been. This is also a collection of movements that are comfortable to howl at the moon from the wildernss, filibuster and play dirty tricks while in opposition.