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April 21, 2009

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Because it's so evidently false, maybe that was part of a GOP plan to try on dictator as the next label for Obama. Now that liberal and socialist have lost their sting, dictator could be the next big thing. After all, accuracy is hardly an obstacle.

DC, as Saul Anuzis asserted, they're gonna try *fascist* before dictator.

As for Newt; yeah, I'm confused that he gets the national stage again, and sort of, vaguely, alarmed.

Then again, I don't really see anything too troubling in the GOP's current crazy-fest, or crazyification. This is the long-term climax of the John Bircher stuff *and* the neo-con Koolaid that twists the general premise of American Exceptionalism into something dark and nasty. Given that the last two election cycles have cut away the vestigial moderate/Rockefeller Republicans after Southern Realignment was finished in the 1990's, they've now got a solid lock on a special sort of American crazy, bolstered by the rigid/stupid ideological selection program that started picking house members in the 1980s. Sort of; this need more unpacking, I think

The GOP Civil War is about to kick off and some of the leading, erm, lights are getting desperate to focus the factions' collective attention outside the party and enrage us against the Prez.

They're getting increasingly pathetic as they do it. The civil war is coming and no amount of their stupidity will forestall it. We just need to get it over with and see who remains standing.

I know who I want to win. OTOH, I have a sad feeling I know who WILL win. At least until they've done the epic fail on the next two or three election cycles.

Well, Luke, as the resident center-right guy around here, I'm much more unhappy about the GOP's crazification--I don't want you guys to have *too* much unlimited power.

I still wonder whether the GOP could have arrested the crazification process in the absence of 9/11. My guess is "no," since absent 9/11 the GOP loses congress in 2002 and thus the circular firing squad gets going in earnest much earlier.

Y'know, in the wake of calling Cristina a dictator, you can almost miss the fact that Gingrich presented a science fiction novel by William Forchsten, in which a nuclear explosion destroys the nation's power grid, as something that "the media doesn’t talk about."

He went on to say, "These aren’t scare tactics, but the purpose of a national leader is to understand what could happen."

No, really. He did.

Andrew

C'mon, Gringrich was Speaker in the 1990's; it was already pretty crazy then. Gary Bauer ran for the Presidency.

I'd like a viable opposition party, but after the last eight years, burn, baby burn. They've shown that they really can't be allowed to have bright or sharp things, at least for a while. OTOH, I think the man to watch isn't Jindal, but John Huntsman.

I assume he's skipping 2012 (Romney-Thune, probably. Though that gay marriage issue is gonna make things...delicious), but he seems like a plausible for 2016, which is too far off to call, but he's more European Christian Democrat to Roy Moore's American Christianist Republican.

As for us having *too much power*--I don't belong to an organized political party, I belong to the Democratic Party.

Oddly, I disagree with you on the non-9/11 argument. I think the 2002 Congress would've faced a loss in GOP seats, but it would've been....marginal. It's hard to peg a value to party organization and chairmen, but Terry was just dreadful, and Kerry's 2004 campaign bled because of it.

Despite having Terry MacAufflie as chairman in 2004, I suspect we'd have picked up the Presidency (Edwards-Bayh) and slim-stable majorities.

You'd see a gradual erosion of the GOP away from power, but from the Democrats you'd see a return to form by picking a southern moderate, and no desperate overhaul of national party organization. In addition, the gradual shedding of the New England Republicans and other moderates would slow in the face of a poorly organized Democratic Party, as well as not having to carry the impossible millstone of George Bush's wars, Abu Ghraib, and social policies.

I think the GOP still would've come apart, but much more slowly. The punishing defeats in 2002 and 2004 forced the party to reorganize itself, Howard Dean, and then David Plouffe. But absent Bush and Bush's wars/warcrimes/torture/illegal wiretapping and the collapse of the economy, we wouldn't have grabbed off nearly as many seats over time, meaning the moderate GOP wouldn't bleed to death, and without the Bush White House to make their political careers impossible, etc.

Noel:

Or the extensive parts of *1945* in which he uses the term "sex kitten" unironically or the Nazi paratroopers' assault on Oak Ridge.

There's a cartoon somewhere from, I think, c. 1996 or 1998, in which Gingrich is standing in front of a file cabinet marked "Newt's ideas" with the "bad ideas" section shown to be overflowing, and the "good ideas" section empty.

Ah, well. I want them to bring Michael Steel back out. However, I do look forward to Rudy's campaign for governor.

American concerns about Venezuela actually represent a return to the normal state of affairs. For the past several years everyone's been obsessed with Islam, and any disputes with a non-Islamic country like Venezuela would've gotten almost zero public attention. Guess that's changing.

It's an unintended side-effect of the Right's "working the refs" media strategy. In their earnest effort to avoid the taint of liberal bias, the media has gotten out of the habit of criticizing crazy conservatives. This is the result.

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