Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Flatline: Why the GOP Has Become a Political Party that Deserves to Die

by Nomad

Is it time to ask whether we are actually witnessing the passing of a political party?

If you are beginning to feel like politics in the US has hit an all time low, you are not alone. 
Mike McCabe has seen the failure of the two-party system close up. 
As the executive director of the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, a nonpartisan watchdog group that specializes in tracking the money in state elections, he has been achingly aware that the Grand Old Party isn't so grand anymore. 

While Progressives have had their share of doubts with the Democrats, the Republican Party could hardly get any more farcical and bizarre than it is at the moment. 

The days of Teddy Roosevelt, Eisenhower and even Reagan are long gone and what remains is little more than hucksterism, fleecing the 1% and appealing the worst aspects of American culture, such as intolerance, irrational fear, and willful ignorance.  
In the linked op-ed piece, McCabe points out that,  the Republican Party seems to be on the verge of flatlining. Something historic seems to be happening right under our noses and we are simply too close to see it happening. 
Most of us would agree that this election is already shaping up to be one of the most peculiar and inexplicable presidential races in US history. 

Mainly it's a result of the messy situation within the Republican Party. Few political analysts had anticipated the Trump phenomena. (I was one of those that couldn't imagine Trump actually running for president.) Fewer smart guys can prognosticate what the primaries will be like. 

Will Trump withdraw from the Republican Party as he has repeatedly threatened? Should we expect the establishment of the Trump Republican Independence Party (TRIP)?

Or will he beat back the aghast old guard and win the nomination of the GOP? Is it possible that that the Republican elite can find some means to marginalize Trump, perhaps through some kind of last minute convention tactic? 

For an assortment of reasons, McCabe thinks that the prognosis for the Republican party is grim. All of the signs of a party in its death throes are conspicuous in the 2016 presidential campaign. 

In McCabe's opinion, the approaching death of the Republican party is well-deserved. He writes:
Today’s Republicans clearly have lost confidence in their ability to peddle their ideas to another 49 percent, and have resorted to a dizzying array of voter suppression tactics to whittle down the size of the electorate and to blatant manipulation of political boundaries in hopes of rigging election outcomes.
And even then, the Republican elite are satisfied to allow people like Donald Trump and Sarah Palin and so many others stir up as the degree of division and outright hatred. 
Things we used to be ashamed of are currently the fodder for entire campaign speeches.
But they still aren’t sure enough people will buy the feed-the-rich, screw-the-poor policies they are selling, so they desperately turn to shameless — and shameful — appeals to racism and xenophobia to dredge up enough energy to stay alive.
Although you are extremely unlikely to hear that kind of talk on the corporate-owned mainstream media, it's about time that somebody said what a lot of people have been thinking.