Look: I am eager to learn stuff I don't know--which requires actively courting and posting smart disagreement.

But as you will understand, I don't like to post things that mischaracterize and are aimed to mislead.

-- Brad Delong

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Wednesday, February 29, 2012

More On The Republicans

In comment responses both at Retirement Blues and at Angry Bear, I said this:

I'm not hoping for one party rule.  I'm hoping for a political process that has participants who believe in science, engage in honest debate, are genuinely interested in the well-being of he American people, and which focuses on issues of real importance to society.  
The Republicans fail each of these tests.  I would hope that a new party would emerge.
Over the last 40 years, the Republicans have abandoned conservatism and become regressive reactionaries with no valid political philosophy.   Their pandering to the religious right has dragged the discourse far off center. Political dialog for many years now has been between the right and the far right.  
If there is valid conservatism in U.S. politics today, it exists in the Democratic party.
In my dream, the new party arises from the left.  There is lots of room there. 

I guess my anti-Republican editorializing mislead people into thinking that I am some sort of  Democratic party partisan.  The reality is, I've been driven to the Democrats as the only existing alternative to the Republicans.  In fact, I've said many times, the only thing the Democrats have going for them is that they are NOT Republicans.

Even shallow-thinking pseudo-centrists like David Brooks are now catching on.  Brooks says:

 All across the nation, there are mainstream Republicans lamenting how the party has grown more and more insular, more and more rigid. This year, they have an excellent chance to defeat President Obama, yet the wingers have trashed the party’s reputation by swinging from one embarrassing and unelectable option to the next: Bachmann, Trump, Cain, Perry, Gingrich, Santorum.

 But where have these party leaders been over the past five years, when all the forces that distort the G.O.P. were metastasizing? Where were they during the rise of Sarah Palin and Glenn Beck? Where were they when Arizona passed its beyond-the-fringe immigration law? Where were they in the summer of 2011 when the House Republicans rejected even the possibility of budget compromise? They were lying low, hoping the unpleasantness would pass. 
.   .   .   

 Without real opposition, the wingers go from strength to strength. Under their influence, we’ve had a primary campaign that isn’t really an argument about issues. It’s a series of heresy trials in which each of the candidates accuse the others of tribal impurity. Two kinds of candidates emerge from this process: first, those who are forceful but outside the mainstream; second, those who started out mainstream but look weak and unprincipled because they have spent so much time genuflecting before those who despise them. 

 Brad Delong responds to Brooks (emphasis added):

As I have written in the past: You know, I went to Washington in 1993 to work for what we called Lloyd Bentsen's Treasury as part of the sane technocratic bipartisan center. And it took me only two months--two months!--to conclude that America's best hope for sane technocratic governance required the elimination of the Republican Party from our political system as rapidly as possible. Dole and Gingrich's "We really don't care that these policies are good for the country--are a lot like policies we would enthusiastically support if proposed by a Republican president--but we are going to try to block them because that will weaken Clinton" was a real eye-opener. Nothing since has led me to question or change that belief--only to strengthen it. We really need a very different opposition party to the Democrats: a less dishonorable one.

Now David Brooks--who has spent the last nineteen years carrying water and making excuses for today's Republican Party--finally says what I have been saying since 1993. Where have you been, David?

Here is the simple truth.  The Republican party leadership has no concern for the vast majority of the American people.  They are not patriotic in any conceivable meaning of the word.  They are motivated exclusively by greed and power, and are bent to the will of their overlords in the elite American financial aristocracy.   Republican politicians, ex Ron Paul, are of two types: those who are on board with that program, and tea-party nut jobs.

The Republican party, as now constructed, is a clear and present danger to everything we believe America is supposed to stand for.  Their ideas of freedom are directed at corporations, not people.  Their alleged free-market principles are welfare for the rich and a finger in the eye to everyone else.

Unfortunately, the Democratic party leadership is bent in the same direction - thus has it ever been with money and power.  But there are still some politicians, like independent Bernie Sanders, and a few in the Democratic party who are willing to fulfill their missions as public servants. 

If we have any hope, it lies in these Pols.

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