Posts Tagged ‘GOP’

Needing an Intervention

I have to swear off Transition Watching.  The election is over. The good guy won. As perilous as our situation is, we had to wait for eight years to get a really smart president  and a few more weeks won’t kill us. Probably. I guess. In any case, obsessing over every rumor that leaks out about the upcoming Obama administration is not a productive use of time. Unless you’re cable news. Then it definitely works for you. It only works because there are millions of us who are so starved for good governance that we’ll tune in and absorb every unsubstantiated tidbit they’ll throw at us – as in Hillary either will or will not be Secretary of State.

Of course there’s also the other sideshow that’s going on – the Republican rending of garments and gnashing of teeth – well that’s just mandatory fun. There have been approximately 432 articles written in the past week by Republicans describing the various ways in which the GOP is screwed. I think my favorite article today was The Center-Right Nation Exits Stage Left, by Tod Lindberg, a fully credentialed conservative. 

We are now two elections into something big. This month’s drubbing is just the latest sign that the country’s political center of gravity is shifting from center-right to center-left. Republicans who fail to grasp this could be lost in the wilderness for years.

From your keyboard to God’s ears, Mr. Lindberg. I’m taking nothing for granted, but you have to get your gloat on when you can and there might never be a better time. 

Still, there has to be a  little time for life. For blogging, for housework, for friends, for getting work done during office hours. Not necessarily in that order. I know for sure that I’m not the only one in this fix, though. I bet that a significant portion of the population needs to kick this habit. I can do it.  I know I can.  It’s a matter of keeping things in perspective. There’s more to life than politics.

By the way,  it’s less than two months ’til the Obama trading cards hit the stores!

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GOP Blues

I see dead elephantsThings have been going so badly for the GOP, what with losing three special elections in a row and being saddled with the least popular president ever. So it’s clear the GOP is broken. Now how to fix it? Well, Tom Cole, posting on the NRCC blog, writes about the American Families Agenda which is going to attempt to address some of this:

This week, my colleagues in the Republican Conference announced the American Families Agenda, spearheaded by my colleague, Congresswoman Kay Granger of Texas. This new agenda concentrates on the bread and butter issues facing every American. And it recognizes that today, more and more families struggle with balancing work, children and caring for elderly parents. Over the coming weeks, Republicans will be promoting new ideas that give people more personal freedom and lessen the burden of government.

From young people just starting out and looking for affordable college, to working parents who want more freedom in the workplace, to seniors who would benefit from greater flexibility with their health care and prescription drug benefits, the American Families Agenda provides commonsense solutions that modernize our laws and give people greater liberty.

That’s GOPspeak for: We are going to come out with some sorts of tax cuts and/or credits that make it seem as though it has some interest in the problems of ordinary people. If it sells, it could be five years, or maybe even ten, before a critical mass of people realize that their problems have been in no way alleviated.

Hey, it’s worked for a long time. However, a bit of sticky wicket is that there are over 1200 comments on this post as of this writing which basically boil down true believers becoming distraught at the idea of the government giving even the appearance of interest in the common good.

Well, what went around may, at long last, becoming around. The GOP got it’s current constituency by driving anyone who displayed a shred of concern for his fellow human out of the party. On the other hand, they recruited by fooling a lot of the people too much of the time. They smeared opponents with lies and distortions, they indulged in dirty tricks, they played to fears and cultivated those fears. They appealed to love of God and country.

Now that so many years have gone by we’ve finally learned that unfettered free markets mean cheaper consumer goods, but also no jobs. They’ve learned that the Iraq war cheerleaders didn’t know what they were talking about. They’ve learned that if real disaster strikes they can expect to be left on their own. They’ve learned that no matter how hard they work, and even if things don’t go too badly for them it’s harder to get into and stay in the middle class. They know for sure that if it’s not provided by their employers they really can’t afford health insurance. Once people really know what’s going on it’s hard to change that. Remember Bush’s Social Security agenda? There he was, just starting a second term, riding high. The public wasn’t having it no matter how sure they were that Dubya had a hotline to Jesus.. It couldn’t be sold, and they tried. If the 1200+ bloggers on that site, most of whom seem convinced that the problem is that the Bush administration hasn’t been conservative enough, get their way, then we should really get to see what the Democrats can do.