Print Story So it begins
By Gedvondur (Wed Nov 05, 2008 at 06:31:36 PM EST) politics, Democrats, Republicans (all tags)
In the aftermath of the election amidst the glow of the historic Obama win, we begin to see the recriminations.

Apologists are beginning to defend G.W. Bush's last eight disastrous years, the Republicans are beginning the soul-searching that may very well schism their party and lastly, the conservatives are trying to make the media the ultimate scapegoat for the Republican loss.

Apologize for Bush

This was a trend I was sure would happen and it began right on cue after the election.  It didn't even matter which candidate won, Republicans and neo-cons were going to start apologizing for G.W. Bush and blaming others for his inept and dishonest warmongering administration.  Those the would re-write history are even saying that the ultimate failures of the G.W. Bush administration were caused by Democratic control of the House and Senate in the last two years.  I certainly reserve a certain amount of contempt for those Congresses, but they are hardly the underpinnings of the many G.W. Bush failures.  There was even an editorial in the recent WSJ that accused the country as a whole for not having enough respect for Mr. G.W. Bush and his office, laying the blame at the feet of his detractors.  A handy but misleading device that entirely fails to analyze the actions of G.W. Bush or his administration.  The disrespect shown G.W. Bush was earned by his actions and words, as well as the actions of his administration, for which he is directly responsible.  Wait, there will be more.  Soon, blame will land in Powell's direction, Rice's direction, Rove's direction, and even in Darth Cheney's direction.  The apologists will all have decided that only by betrayal could G.W. Bush have failed as miserably as he did.  Apologists could not have been that wrong for that long, at least in their minds.  The behavior is pathetic and history will not be kind to the 43rd President.  And it will not be "bias" that makes that judgment.

Republican Soul-Searching

A battle for the soul of the Republican party is about to commence.  The moderates will be emboldened by the crushing defeat the party as a whole suffered.  Real conservatives will try and take back the Republican party from the Religious Right, rednecks, and worshipers at the altar of ignorance.  These unrepentant neo-cons will cleave to the new symbol of ignorance, intolerance, and jingoism that is Sarah Palin.  The real conservatives of the Republican party lack a charismatic leader, but a man such as Mitt Romney could be just that.  The bitter divide over something as simple as civil discourse with the Democrats could very well schism the Republicans, much as Teddy Roosevelt did when he ran against Taft.  If firm control is not taken of the Republican party soon, their sojourn into the political wilderness will be longer than any of them would like and longer than would be good for the nation.  The radicalization of the Republicans must be reversed if they are to function as an effective opposition party and stand a real chance of regaining power any time soon. 

I often wonder why it is that most neo-cons cannot come up with any new ideas or strategy.  Against Obama we saw some extremely tired themes.  Themes that are so old, worn and dated I was shocked that they made an appearance in the McCain campaign.  Things like "Big Government Liberal" "Tax and Spend Liberal".  These old saws do no more than point out many of those failings in the neo-cons themselves over the last eight years.  Another one that I find to have special insignificance, "Communist" and its polite-company cousin "Socialist".  Some of the people who voted in this election were not EVEN ALIVE when the Wall fell.  They do not remember the Soviet Union, the Cold War, and the Red Threat.  Communism's own catastrophic failure makes charges like this seem petty and small-minded.  It is as if the Republican opposition play book is full of old plays that no longer work.  Some of them are so old and tired its actually insulting that they are even used.  The Republicans need to re-invent themselves based on real conservative principles of governance and then let the issues take them to power again.  Speaking of old, tired tactic we come to the last bit of my little rant.

The Liberal Media

This is the most aggravating point of all and one for the stupidest and most tired plays in the neo-con opposition play book.  When something bad happens, say a historic clock cleaning at the polls, blame it on the media.  Very 1996 and 2000 guys.  Very.  Many of the conservative pundits are crying foul now, laying the blame on the heads of CNN, NBC, CBS, and ABC.  Much of this blame comes from pundits on Fox News.  An outlet known for its one-party bias.  Is there liberal bias in the media?  Sure.  Look at MS-NBC.  But all of the networks?  No.  The Republicans loss was not just about failed policy and the misfortunes of the economy and the Iraq war.  Their loss was also because of tone and near continuous fear mongering.  We are numb to their messages.  Obama offered the clear and steady voice of hope, rather than the shrill and screeching voice of fear.  That fact more than any other caused the landslide.  Not any "liberal media" trickery, not any vote fixing.  Like a man dying of thirst in the desert, we latched onto the thin, unsubstantiated stream of hope coming from Obama.  

If the Republicans wish to heal themselves and come to power again soon, this "liberal media" line they are again indulging themselves in has to stop.  They need clear leadership based on policy and good conservative principles to woo back those that abandoned them.  If the Palinites get their way, the next four years will be filled with mindless hate, fear and invective.  The Republicans need a new play book and for the sake of balance in our government, I hope that they find one.  In the mean time, I will continue to drink from the fountain of hope.
< I was gonna rant | A Glorious New Day! >
So it begins | 16 comments (16 topical, 0 hidden)
How appropriate by BadDoggie (4.00 / 1) #1 Wed Nov 05, 2008 at 11:11:37 PM EST
That you would choose to write a serious diary about bottom-feeders. See you tomorrow.


OMG WE'RE FUCKED! -- duxup ?

FWIW by sasquatchan (4.00 / 1) #2 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 03:47:20 AM EST
waspost did admit they had more coverage of Obama, and by a wide margin. (Read the Sunday Ombudsman from sometime in September, IIRC).

However, Waspost spun it as "we know McCain, we don't know Obama" and "Obama has a more compelling story than McCain"

It is as if the Republican opposition play book by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #3 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 04:50:10 AM EST
is full of old plays that no longer work.

It is. The reason they used it is that, as recently as 2004, it appeared to work.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

Hmmm by Gedvondur (2.00 / 0) #4 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 05:16:14 AM EST
Well I get the idea that you don't want to change a winning plan, but I think it was fairly obvious early on that those tactics were not going to work. 

I expect the Republicans to employ smart enough people to understand that.  I think the reluctance to change was on the part of the neo-cons.  They would have had to repudiate Bush in order to get a working strategy, something they couldn't bring themselves to do.

I think it is something that they will have a hard time doing even now, when it is so obvious that it is necessary.


"I love my brain. It's the only organ I can afford to lose." --frijolito
[ Parent ]
The Republicans weren't big McCain fans by theboz (4.00 / 1) #5 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 05:35:18 AM EST
He pissed off his party too many times.  In addition to that, the Bush administration pissed off way too many Americans, so the Republicans had to take a breather and throw up a lamb to be slaughtered.  That's why so many prominent Republicans who were rumored to be in consideration for VP never wanted it.  Sarah Palin wasn't part of the elite, so she could be thrown under the bus with McCain too.  Everyone knew that the Democratic nominee would win, barring some huge blunder.  Even Edwards, after his affair became known, probably could have beat McCain.  The Republicans knew they screwed up, which is probably why Rove sat this one out completely, as did many long-time Republicans.

As to their future, we'll have to wait and see.  They are in disarray right now, the religious reich is angry at elitist intellectuals like the wealthy Republican financial guys.  The rich guys hate the common man and see poor people, including working class Republicans, as weaklings that deserve nothing.  The fiscal conservatives aren't the same as the social conservatives, and the divides grew during the second Bush term.  It hopefully will take them a while to regroup, and it would be even better if both parties split up and became three or four parties instead.

- - - - -
That's what I always say about you, boz, you have a good memory for random facts about pussy. -- joh3n
Oh, they _are_ commies. by dn (2.00 / 0) #6 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 08:48:45 AM EST
The people figured this out and elected Obama because of it. They are remittance men and need a replacement Daddy because the bankers disowned them.
 "Communism's own catastrophic failure makes charges like this seem petty and small-minded."
Capitalism can turn debt into wealth, but it is a process of diminishing returns. If Obama tries to deliver on his vast hand-out promises, they would have to be funded by massive borrowing, and the incremental profit per unit of debt would go negative.  The result would be an economic depression and a collapse of the sovereign debt of the United States.  The latter would result in either (1) massive spending cutbacks in defense, Social Security, and Medicare or (2) hyperinflation.  Hyperinflation would in turn be accompanied by "civil unrest".  A Soviet-style collapse is entirely possible.

Fortunately Obama does not have a track record of delivering on promises.

    I ♥   

Interesting by Gedvondur (2.00 / 0) #7 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 09:55:24 AM EST
So tell me....How was the Republican plan going to end?  You know, the one where we continue to borrow while lowering taxes....

His promises are much smaller than you would be lead to believe.  He can't do anything without Congress anyway.  Besides, Bush was handing out money in the form of "economic stimulus".  That worked out fantastic.

So other than death and destruction, what plan do you have?  I think it was pretty clear that more Republicans was going to lead to further disaster, both social and economic.

All I really see in your argument is more silly tired communist comments and the idea that Obama is a "tax and spend liberal". 

How about a NEW idea, hey?  Dressing up the old ones is tiresome.


"I love my brain. It's the only organ I can afford to lose." --frijolito
[ Parent ]
The old 'so, whats *your* plan' canard... by MohammedNiyalSayeed (2.00 / 0) #8 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 11:14:05 AM EST

A ten percent flat income tax is my plan, short of my actual plan, which you people will not find palatable. Which candidate supported a ten percent flat income tax? I've totally forgotten in all the excitement...

And before you say "run for office", allow me to point out that I already have, and failed. One of the reasons for this failure is the


that there is a non-governmentally-imposed "two party" system which sucks millions into its coffers in order to make sure the only "viable" candidate is one who has sucked the dick of his or her party for long enough that party knows the candidate is their bitch, and will not go doing the will of any people, but rather of the "party", and the "party's" corporate sponsors.

You can build the most elegant fountain in the world, but eventually a winged rat will be using it as a drinking bowl.
[ Parent ]
Well by Gedvondur (2.00 / 0) #10 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 11:33:46 AM EST
While your plan is short on details, at least its a plan.

Just to let you know, I use you as a backup when I can't think of anyone else to vote for.  So if you are suddenly City Dog Catcher or Clerk of Courts in Brown County Wisconsin, remember you asked for it.


"I love my brain. It's the only organ I can afford to lose." --frijolito
[ Parent ]
My plan by dn (4.00 / 1) #16 Fri Nov 07, 2008 at 12:25:19 AM EST
Don't project partisanship onto my comment.  Not mentioning a group does not imply any statements about them.  As a group, I think the Republicans are total knobs too.

I think a Republican administration would continue the economic meltdown, culminating in a long economic depression.  Their bailout willingness, inept as it is, nearly eliminates the risk of a rapid economic collapse that would trigger a violent revolution.  This is, of course, a "what if" fairy tale, as the economic die will be cast before the political cycle returns them to power.

Yes, the "wasteful government spending and meddling" criticism is old.  It is also correct.  The mathematics of paying interest using borrowing guarantees it.  The people who laughed off the criticism are now receiving an object lesson in exponential curves, and they're going to get it good and hard.  Their children will grow up with the parable of the ant and the grasshopper ringing in their ears.

What Obama and The Washingtonians can or cannot do is not yet obvious.  The unlikely scenario of actual trying all their promised social justice programs would end in economic apocalypse and revolution, as I said above.  The only way to pay for it would be borrowing, which is at its mathematical limit.  Conversely, it is possible that Obama, having won the final contest, will pull a JFK and turn into a hands-on pragmatist.  However the Democrats are such a crazy quilt coalition of crusaders that what will actually happen is still anybody's guess.

My plan is to look out for myself and encourage financial conservatism in the people I know.  The fix for the debt bubble is to restore conservative risk management regulations, default on the bad debt, preserve the productive capacity of bankrupt companies with government support, and apply the healing power of time.  This, of course, is politically impossible until some hard lessons have been learned.

    I ♥   

[ Parent ]
McCain was their best hope by ShadowNode (4.00 / 1) #9 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 11:31:59 AM EST
Had he been the candidate in 2000, they'd be in an entirely different place. They couldn't have held him in reserve anyway; he's passed his sell-by date as it is.

I don't see the Republican Party redeeming itself in the next cycle. Palin (or someone like her) will likely be their candidate in 2012. I'd hoped that they would be beaten thoroughly enough for the moderate conservatives to break off and form their own party.

I agree by Gedvondur (2.00 / 0) #11 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 11:35:21 AM EST
McCain was a throw-away for them.  And I can only hope that they do schism and form a more moderate party. 

I say that with some trepidation, as I want some sort of balance on the Democrats.



"I love my brain. It's the only organ I can afford to lose." --frijolito
[ Parent ]
It happened in Canada 15 years ago by ShadowNode (4.00 / 1) #12 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 12:17:50 PM EST
The Progressive Conservatives cratered and then fractured in the 1993, when they went from a majority government to two seats in the house (not even enough to officially be a party). They split into a Quebec nationalist/lefty party, an Alberta nationalist/religious wacko party and a conservative/environmentalist party.

Ultimately the Alberta nationalist party won the role of the national right wing party, largely by default as the Quebec nationalists don't run outside Quebec and the conservative/environmentalist Green party has too shallow a support base to win any seats.

It probably wouldn't work out that way in the US. You don't have the regional issues we do, and those you do apply more to the religious wacko wing of the Republicans than the moderate conservatives.

But it would mean 15 years of unassailable Democratic rule.

The first 10 years of that worked out well for Canada. Chretien's government pulled us out of the economic mess Mulroney's government put us in, and passed some important social legislation.

The next 5 years didn't. The Liberals were lazy and unused to putting up a real fight for office, and appointed a leader essentially on the argument that it was his turn, and they owed it to his daddy.

He (barely) won a minority government which he quickly lost to a minority held by the Alberta nationalists.

[ Parent ]
Interesting example by Gedvondur (2.00 / 0) #14 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 04:09:01 PM EST
Thanks.  I will read more on that.


"I love my brain. It's the only organ I can afford to lose." --frijolito
[ Parent ]
if Palin is the 2012 nominee by dev trash (4.00 / 1) #13 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 02:58:26 PM EST
I'm registering as something else.

[ Parent ]
A lot of people will by ShadowNode (2.00 / 0) #15 Thu Nov 06, 2008 at 04:28:12 PM EST
And a lot of others would have no problem with a schism in the Republican party.

[ Parent ]
So it begins | 16 comments (16 topical, 0 hidden)