“Never hate your enemy, it affects your judgment”. Those emphatic words of Michael Corleone in Godfather 3, could very well have deep meaning in the upcoming 2012 presidential, senatorial, and congressional elections. Republicans seem to be guided more by their anger against so called sell-out candidates, than excitement for the candidates currently representing the GOP field. They are bound and determined to find someone, anyone, willing and able to change the political landscape of this nation. This is not your grandfather’s republican party, and they resist any opportunity to imitate Steven Stills and “love the one you’re with”.
Why? It’s simple. Like it or not, the tea party holds all the cards in the GOP’s primary phase of elections. Either you appease these people 100% or you’re perpetually on the outside looking in. Just ask Alaska’s Senator Lisa Murkowski. Her primary bid contender Joe Miller beat her for the republican nomination, and she had to run, and win as an independent. Tea party people accused her of being a suck up to the left wing, and if you compromise, even in the least bit with democrats, you’re considered an ideological traitor.
Susan Collins, and Olympia Snowe voted against the Von Ryan economic disaster, and the tea party haters couldn’t wait to show at least one of them ‘what up’. Senator Snowes headquarters in Bangor, Maine had to be evacuated because someone mailed her an envelope with a white, powdery substance eerily reminiscent to the anthrax scare immediately proceeding 9/11. And because of what? Because she voted against a bill that would virtually destroy Medi-Care inside of a generation? This is mundane.
The republican army, led in their first wave assault by the tea party marines, have declared war on the entire political system. With their ‘do as I say, not as I do’ approach, they literally force good lawmaking republicans to either get on board, or get drug behind on their bellies. Consider sitting Senator Richard Lugar of Indiana. Tea party haters demanded he not run in 2012, because he believes in strategic compromise. Or the three republicans on the infamous gang of six working on a bi-partisan solution to the economy, who became the gang of five after Tom Coburn left, and soon looks to be the gang of none now that Saxby Chambliss is being blasted by right wing radio for the indefensible crime of consorting with the enemy.
In 1968 The Rolling Stones released a great song titled “You can’t always get what you want”, that went on to say, “and if you try sometime, you find, you get what you need”. Politics has always been a system of give and take. Smart politicians take more, and less wise politicians get less. The tea party philosophy is, if WE can’t get it all…America gets nothing. It’s non negotiable.
And that’s why Von Ryan and his express (not to be mistaken with Paul Revere and the raiders) think they can get away with just about anything. He’s a self proclaimed financial wunderkind, with a congress full of republican henchmen, who together feel they can say and do just about anything they want. I respect Paul’s father Jim. Jim Ryan achieved something humongous when he became the first high schooler to run the mile in under four minutes back in 1964. Now his son is desperately trying to run America into the ground.
I really hope the elections of 2010 become little more than a footnote in this nations history. The tea party was conceived by a combination of distraught republicans upset because President George W. Bush spent way too much money; a democrat reached the presidency; and that democrat just happened to be of African-American descent. The tea party has been allowed to flourish because the Koch brothers, and Freedomworks Chair Dick Armey exploited this misplaced anger by flooding the party named after Britain’s favorite drink with oodles of dollars. Now, the tea party sits as king makers in the republican party.
Never hate your enemy, it affect’s your judgement. Republicans better put down the tea and crumpets, wake up and smell the coffee, and give Paul Ryan and the raiders their walking papers before they see this party’s 2012 aspirations diving off a cliff like the main characters in “Thelma and Louise”.