I don’t care a whit about today’s Ode to Bipartisanship at the National Cathedral. While I held GHWB in low regard when he was VP and president, and while his role in the open theft of the WH on behalf of his namesake son in 2000 still rankles, I’m not overly concerned about that today, either. I am deeply concerned about the open threat that 1 of our 2 major parties poses to the foundations of a governmental system that dates back to 1787.
Two days ago, the always estimable Charles Pierce said most of what I have to say on this subject in 2 paragraphs:
If the American democratic republic is to survive, the Republican Party as it is presently constituted has to go. It has to be ripped from the political landscape, root and branch, and burned to ashes, which then have to be scattered in the sea off Antarctica, of which there is a lot more these days because the Republican Party as it is presently constituted doesn’t give a damn if the planet burns.
But that’s for another post. Not until the Republican Party as it is presently constituted has been wiped from the memory of man can a sensible, reason-based, science-friendly center-right party rise in its place. The Republican Party as it is presently constituted exists solely to launder corporate money, and its primary national imperatives are bigotry, plutocracy, and ratfcking. It doesn’t believe in constitutional norms any more than it believes in climate science. The prion disease has progressed beyond all recall. The Republican Party as it is presently constituted needs to be put out of its misery before we are put out of ours.
As has been noted in numerous posts on this site since Pierce wrote these words of wisdom, things have only gotten worse the past 2 days. In both WI and MI, lame duck GOP legislatures and governors are consciously trying to undo the results of this year’s elections. In NC, a US House election stinks to high heavens.
In the late 20th century, the GOP had more than its share of low moments—Watergate, Iran/Contra, the Thomas confirmation process and other similar events all immediately come to mind. Things got visibly worse, however, in this century. The Bush Family and its consigliere James Baker bringing Roger Stone down here to work his mischief and all of the other abominations of the 2000 recount set the template for the parade of horrors that would follow. Lying this country into an aggressive war that was incompetently waged, trashing the 4th Amendment, legitimizing torture as an intelligence tool, nearly melting down the economy—the consequences of that election theft will live with us for decades to come.
The GOP’s reaction to the electoral wipe-out that it so justly earned in 2008 was equally terrible. We were told about ACA “death panels” that would kill off grandma. For the first time in our history, “birthers” forced a sitting president to provide proof that he was actually born in this country. The Constitution was effectively amended as self-describes “conservatives” prevented a president from filling an open Supreme Court seat as per Art. II, Sec. 2.
There’s little to add to what others have said here about dubious dealings in the 2016 election and about the train wreck of a “presidency” that has followed. Impeachment was clearly intended for this president. It’s possible that the 25th Amendment was intended for him, too.
At this point, the scars from the Kavanaugh confirmation are still fresh. There’s little to add to what I already said (quoting Russ Feingold) on his manifest lack of credibility. It’s painful to think that his Court tenure may outlive me.
At this point, there is a clear trend line, and it’s a declining trend line. Regardless of what one may think of “bipartisanship” in the past, it’s as obsolete in the current climate as torch light parades, black & white television, and whistle stop campaigns. As per Pierce again:
This is very much a national story, and it is a national story because it illustrates perfectly how fully the prion disease has destroyed the higher functions of the Republican brain. The Republican Party as it is presently constituted is the greatest threat to the American republic since Appomattox. It needs to die, fast and hard, and the ground salted so that it does not rise again.
There may be a time in the future that there is an opposing party that has a semblance of rationality to it. That time, however, clearly is not now. We’re not merely dealing with a racist, sexist, militaristic, and greedy party that is ready, willing, and able to sacrifice the future livability of this planet. We’re dealing with a party that fundamentally disbelieves in the core concept of government of the people, by the people, and for the people. We’re dealing with a party that views compromise as weakness and that views ignorance as strength.
It’s long past time to bury “bipartisanship.”
This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.