When times are tough, people especially look for leaders they can trust. So, what’s a leader? Well, leaders are people who..well, lead.

As in:

1. to go before or with to show the way;
2. to conduct by holding and guiding: to lead a horse by a rope.
3. to influence or induce;
4. to guide in direction, course, action, opinion, etc.;
5. to be superior to; have the advantage over;
6. to have the directing or principal part in.

And I’m here today to tell you that The GOP has basically made the decision that they aren’t leaders, won’t show leadership and frankly will try everything in their power to stop anyone else who disagrees with them from showing leadership either.

Which puts the country in a really bad spot. Because what we need to do right now is not that.

Republicans (in and out of Congress) came back in January already knowing that the economy was in the shitter. No news there. No big shock. But they also came back with obvious marching orders from the RNC and other GOP ‘influencers’ telling them that their job was NOT to lead, not to ‘show the way’, not ‘to be superior to’ – nuthin’.

Their job was to ‘just say no’. No matter what the president or the Democrats came up with, their job was to throw up barriers, enact holding actions, whine, lie, cheat, whatever it took to stop President Obama and the Democrats from showing leadership. They’d rather nothing happen – and if the country goes into the tank and takes the rest of the world with us, that is o, too – than allow the Obama Administration and Democrats in Congress be able to say, “See, we did this.”

Being obstructionist makes no sense. The Republicans in Congress have now boxed themselves into a corner, by word and deed, that if the stimulus fails, they will be blamed because they refused to show leadership on this issue other than tax cuts (and they got 42% of the money in those, so they can’t complain about anything there). If the stimulus succeeds, even a little bit, they will have to admit that spending works (because tax cuts don’t put money into anyone’s pockets and take place at a future date, at tax filing time).

And at the same time, through publicly performing tantrums at the microphone, and on the floor in Congress (I’m talking to you John Boehner and Mitch McConnell), what they’ve done is shown the GOP as following what I’d call ‘the military model of leadership’ – salute the stripes no matter what the quality of the brain is under the hat. These folks know that 2010 is going to be a disaster for them already – and they don’t care. They are following orders from … who? Limbaugh? Steele? The Old Boy’s network? It boggles the mind. But that is what they are doing. And, at the same time, they have managed, as oddly as it seems, to turn themselves into an even nastier 21st Century version of the Dixiecrats, not exactly a move which will help them take seats in any areas other than the deep South.

Dixiecrats

This is a bunch who feels it is ok for them to risk taking down everyone with them so long as they can say, “We did not cooperate with the party in power to enact a program to help everyone. We did not cooperate with the party in power to make sure our “Base” was not offended."

Guys – your Base is like everyone else: eats food, needs clothing and shoes, has kids who need medical and dental care, needs shelter. Do you think that your Base is going to be philosophically pleased if your actions cause them to end up living under bridges? Does this make any sense? Believe me, your Base might hate you today, but will understand tomorrow that ‘he who fights and runs away can live to fight another day.” And I have to ask you flat out: How big is your Base?

No one expects the Stimulus program just passed to be a cure all – but it could possibly be a bulwark to saving us from a long time depression.

If you don’t agree with the current Administration, perhaps you might better just STFU and sit there. Drink coffee, eat Danish, read the paper, play handball, get your haircut in the Congressional Barber Shop. Talk amongst yourselves.

But don’t stand in the way. You are only making yourselves look petty, delusional, stupid and morally and intellectually bankrupt. If you want to say later, “See, we did not help the Obama Administration,” then that is OK – do nothing. If you are not going to show leadership, then that position is the best you can do.

TobyWollin

TobyWollin

Snarky housewife from Upstate New York. Into gardening, fiber arts, smallholder farming.

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