Friday, December 28, 2012

Holding Their Breath

It's truly remarkable. The Republican Party will not move away from its one big idea: No new taxes. Ever.

After losing in November, Republicans appear to have chosen David Farragut as their source of inspiration. "Damn the torpedoes. Full speed ahead," they shout. Then, like children, they hold their breath until they turn blue -- or red.

Public opinion isn't on their side. Robert Reich writes:

Public opinion is already running strongly in favor of President Obama and the Democrats, and against the GOP. In the latest CNN/ORC poll, 48 percent say they’ll blame Republicans if no deal is reached while 37 percent blame Obama. Confidence in congressional Republicans is hovering at about 30 percent; Obama is enjoying the confidence of 46 percent. And over half of all Americans think the GOP is too extreme.

Yet Republicans haven’t budged. The fact is, they may not care a hoot about the opinions of most Americans.

If you are wondering why they are unmoved by anyone or anything, consider Reich's explanation for what is happening:

The national party is in disarray. Boehner isn’t worried about a challenge to his leadership; no challenger has emerged. The real issue is neither he nor anyone else is in charge of the GOP. Romney’s loss, along with the erosion of their majority in the House and Democratic gains in the Senate, has left a vacuum at the top.

House Republicans don’t run nationally. They run only in their own districts — which, because of gerrymandering, are growing even more purely Republican. Their major concern is being reelected in 2014, and their biggest potential obstacle in their way is a primary challenge from the right.

What Americans are witnessing is the triumph of Tip O'Neill's dictum: All politics is local. The parochial  trumps the national. They are no longer all in this together.

 Rest assured. There will be a reckoning.

This entry is cross posted at The Moderate Voice.


thwap said...

It's an interesting question as to how much our rulers are "masters of the universe" who have all the angle figured out and who are deftly steering us to self-inflicted crises in which they come out more entrenched and powerful than before, ... or whether they're dogmatic, narrow-minded idiots who are only saved by their already existing control over the means of accountability.

I prefer the latter interpretation.

Perhaps they might possess some innate skill or some practical experience at steering society through the the crises they themselves create, but that's about it.

Owen Gray said...

I agree with you, thwap. The second interpretation is more valid.

As for their ability to survive, I think Lawrence Marin is right. Stephen Harper has had a remarkable run of good luck.

But, as I watch the Idle No More protests gaining traction, I'd prefer to think that his luck is running out.

Lorne said...

Your post, Owen, puts me in mind of how much of a mockery American politicos have made of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address reference to “government of the people, by the people, for the people.”

Owen Gray said...

It's no different than the Harper government's contempt for Parliament, Lorne.

"The people" just get in the way.

Anonymous said...

It's as Flaherty said. The giant wealthy corporations are sitting on all of the money. Doesn't stop Harper giving billions of our tax dollars to them though.

My son had read an article, some time ago. The plot is, to strangle every living being on this planet. Cause so much chaos and strife. That will be their excuse for, the Global Governance.

Harper did make a speech on, Global Governance for Canada. He was Policy Chief for his, Northern Foundation Party, of 1989. Harper said, The New World Order, has been worked on since 1945. Perhaps this NWO, will be the Fourth Reich?

Owen Gray said...

Whatever Harper wishes to accomplish, Anon, will be so much easier if he doesn't face opposition.

If he can get Canadians to believe that "resistance is futile," his path will be clear.

ChrisJ said...

Many of the GOP representatives believe that any Democrat in the White House- especially an African American one - means the country is already ruined. No matter what crises they create, it works to destroy an illegitimate government.

Owen Gray said...

And that's why they declared that their first objective was to make Obama a one term president, Chris, -- and why they insist that Obama couldn't have been born in the United States.