Giving Themselves A Wedgie
Lawrd Gawd, Billy Bob, but when wingnuts self-destruct, they really do it most thoroughly. They're in the midst of wedging themselves to death, and considering how shamefully they've used wedge issues in the past and present, I am enjoying this immensely.
Consider this point made by both Garance Franke-Ruta and Atrios about recent comments of Grover Norquist that the GOP's base — meaning their primary voters — are going to be against anyone who isn't lockstep behind Bush no matter what, and that the real issue for the GOP base isn't Iraq, it's Bush: Bush could decide to leave Iraq tomorrow and the wingnuts would turn on a dime with him. To use Norquist's exact words:
The base isn't interested in Iraq. The base is for Bush. If Bush said tomorrow, we're leaving in two months, there would be no revolt.
Hey, Republican primary voters! Grover Norquist just called you a bunch of sheep! Have some more Kool-Aid with your grass clippings.
This is why, as Atrios says, it's useless for McCain to TIG-weld himself to Bush's Iraq war policy: Because as Grover notes, it's not about Iraq, it about Bush. And since McCain's career is built on his "straight talk" fakery wherein he pretends to distance himself from Bush except where it really counts, McCain is toast with the wingnuts.
But here's the problem: In order to have a chance in the general election next year, Republican candidates for office, from president on down to dogcatcher, must start putting as much daylight, real or fake, between themselves and Bush as they possibly can. Yet the wingnuts won't countenance this: Even if they know that it's fake, even if they know it's just being done to fool the rest of America.
I've long thought that it's going to take more than just a good election cycle or two to cure America of the ills inflicted upon it by the authoritarian-minded wingnuts. It's going to take a true sea-change, and the complete and utter destruction and repudiation of the Republican Party brand. We found out with Watergate and Iran-Contra that if you let them escape justice, they will come back even worse than before, having learned nothing in the interim; a look at Bush's advisors and Cabinet members shows that. What a pleasure it is to find out that, despite the constant fluffing and support they get from the GOP/Media Complex, they are hell-bent on making it so that no sane American will want to have anything to do with them, ever again.