The Republican Crisis

The Grand Old Party faces an existential crisis, and the outcome will determine whether it survives or not.

Sacre bleu, is it possible that the Party of Lincoln could simply evaporate and be no more? It is. Our political history is littered with deceased political parties—Whig, Tory, Royalist, Federalist, and so on. It is quite possible that the Republican Party will join them.

It is quite possible
that the Republican Party
will become obsolete.

This event will not happen at some future time: it is happening right now. This Party of the Rich has become the face of twenty-first century feudalism, dishonesty, and stupidity, with the very rich in the role of landed gentry and the rest of us in the role of deceived peons. The party’s galloping dishonesty becomes increasingly repugnant, with almost constant political lies as well as numerous dishonest state laws. There seems to be an endless supply of public statements by Republicans that apparently are designed to prove their stupidity.

Republicans have been on a fool’s quest to prove to Americans that they should not have affordable health insurance. Rick Santorum’s latest declaration is a rather disgusting attempt to equate his fight against health insurance to Nelson Mandela’s fight against apartheid, which is an insult to Mandela and makes Santorum look vain and stupid. As more and more relieved Americans sign up for Obamacare, Republican bad-mouthing becomes increasingly desperate, because they have nothing remotely as beneficial to offer. In fact, almost all of what Republicans want involves greater hardship for everyone but the wealthy.

The worse inequality gets, and the longer Republicans go without realizing what’s wrong, the greater the chance that the GOP will simply be bypassed by more democratic and egalitarian political parties, and will become irrelevant.

Unless.

Unless Republicans wake up to the reality that a number of their foundational beliefs are abhorrent, because they come from a feudal history of master/servant that requires most people to be confined to a role of inferiority.

Republicans assume, incorrectly, that being rich is a valid indication of superiority and leadership. In order to prove the truth of this belief, Republicanism categorizes people into classes of rich superiors and the rest. Such categorization also requires a permanent inferior underclass, to which they have assigned the African-American population and poor people. Today’s Republican party is profoundly racist—and sexist as well.

Republicans need to wake up
to the reality that a number
of their beliefs are abhorrent.

Republicans are also more inclined to religiosity. Not religious belief itself, or religious morality, just the public appearance of Christian piety. This has made it necessary for all Washington politicians to pretend to be fervently religious, specifically, fervently Christian, regardless of their actual beliefs.

Few of any political party or any religion object to the practice of Christianity per se, but increasing millions of Americans object to the numerous atrocities and outrages committed in the name of religion. They especially object to the common belief of the superficially religious that anyone who does not do exactly as they do must be an amoral person, a judgment pronounced for the nearly 100M Americans who are “non-Christian”.

This attitude of Republicans is also reflected in their numerous attempts to make Christianity either the official or semi-official state religion, which of course violates one of the most fundamental premises of the Constitution. Such people appear to have missed the point of the most important lessons in American history, and ought to at least read through the Constitution again.

Then there’s the ongoing and extensive campaign of electoral cheating, which might as well have arisen from a junior high playground belief that if you can’t win, cheat. Today’s Republicans have a well-oiled mechanism of election deception that fools only the naive and gullible. Electoral cheating has three parts: gerrymandering, legislative meddling, and vote-killing. Democrats have also been guilty of gerrymandering, but today the field belongs exclusively to Republicans. (If you aren’t familiar with the theory and practice of the gerrymander, a quick web search will give you tons of info.)

Republican electoral cheating
has three parts:
gerrymandering,
legislative meddling,
and vote-killing.

There are several organizations whose purpose is to get laws favoring the rich passed by Republican-controlled state legislatures. ALEC, financed by the billionaire Brothers Koch, is the most well known. They operate by having a legislative party toady propose a law exactly as handed to them by ALEC. In heavily controlled states these are often adopted unchanged, to the detriment of everyone but the very rich, of course. We can be certain of the purpose of such laws and of their unethical origins, because no such thing occurs in states with Democratic governors.

Vote-killing laws are written exclusively by Republicans to solve a problem that does not exist: voter fraud. When voter fraud occurs, it’s typically in Third World countries run by corrupt autocrats, and it involves stuffing ballot boxes to assure that the bad guys win. Nothing remotely like that happens anywhere in the United States. Very simply, there is no significant voter fraud here. At all.

The exception is in the vote-killing laws that Republicans pass based on lies and false beliefs. Instead of making it easy for every qualified citizen to vote, as any true democracy should do, such laws place restrictions on both established and new voters with the sole purpose of making the vote difficult for probable Democratic voters. Such laws place onerous requirements on poor, and especially poor African-American voters, the intended targets for such laws because they tend to vote Democratic. Many such voters who have voted regularly for years have been denied their right to vote by new laws in Republican states. (In Texas, a former Congressional Speaker of the House, who had voted in every election since the ’40s, was turned away!) Like the other two parts of the amoral cheating campaign, these restrictive laws do not exist in Democratic states.

The “secret” of all this cheating has leaked into the revealing light of day a number of times when Republicans, overly excited about being able to restrict votes for Democrats and subvert the democratic process to favor Republicans, accidentally spilled the beans. Not that it wasn’t already obvious.

We need the Republican Party.
We just don’t need what it has become.

The result of all these dishonorable beliefs and ugly skulduggery is to create a moral and ethical rot among Republicans that may be impossible to overcome, particularly as more and more Americans become aware of it. If the best of the Republicans don’t soon take control and re-establish some sort of moral leadership, dumping the Tea Party nitwits while they’re at it, the GOP stands a good chance of losing everything.

Would the demise of the GOP be good for Democrats and the country? No, it would not. For a while, at least, we would be a one-party country, which is a lousy idea. In addition, it would tend to create the same sort of decay in the Democratic Party. We need the Republican Party. We just don’t need what it has become.

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4 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I think it is optimistic to see a demise in the Republican party – and probably a little dangerous to hope for it as well – for it would be replaced by something more radical than its current incarnation – as well, the Democrats have no problem being as corrupt as the GOP – if there is nothing there to counter-balance (not that either counter-balances the other at the moment) the Democrats would ultimately be even more pathetic than they are now…I ultimately have no solution to the Washington mess – both parties act like starving swine at the trough of big business – but something will have to give – at some point this century…

    • More or less what I was trying to say. Demise may not be the proper word, but political behavior is surely at a new low, and I would say Repubs far more than Dems.

  2. In American history, there has always been one party that represents the wealthy elite. The Whigs replaced the Federalists, and the Republicans replaced the Whigs. The problem is that we now have two parties whose top leaders represent the wealthy elite. Maybe the Democratic leadership is not quite as bad as the Republicans, but that is a low standard.

    • It’s a discouraging choice. Obama and the Dems often seem to have lost their moral compass, but the GOP never had one.


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