Thursday, November 22, 2012

Denialists, Whiners, and Wackjobs

Paul Begala

I used to think Republicans were a monochromatic monolith specializing in Group Think, though without the Think part. The Republicans’ reaction to the reelection of Barack Obama, however, has shown a surprising diversity in GOP thought. At least five distinct -approaches have emerged.

The Vince Lombardi Republicans. Political parties exist to win, this group says. If you don’t win, you can’t enact your agenda, can’t protect your values, can’t advance your cause. The Lombardi Republicans are pragmatic. They saw President Obama win 72 percent of the Latino vote—the fastest-growing segment of the -electorate—and they had a “Ven a Jesús” moment. [...]

I happen to think the Vince Lombardi types are right. But, let’s face it, they’re outnumbered by less admirable Republicans.

The Sour Grapes Republicans. For a movement that aspires to macho stoicism, there sure are a lot of whiny wusses in the GOP these days. I hate whiners. I coach my kids in baseball and basketball, and I have two inviolable rules when they lose: don’t blame the other team and don’t complain about the officials. Sour Grapes Republicans do both. Donald Trump, the village idiot of a city of 8 million (my em. Heh.), took to Twitter to call President Obama’s reelection “a total sham and a travesty,” to propose a “revolution in this country,” and to allege (falsely) that Obama had lost the popular vote. Clearly, Trump is living proof that hair spray causes brain damage.

The Flat-Earthers. When you listen to Flat Earth Republicans, you’d think they actually won. Karl Rove, the legendary Republican bogeyman, led groups that spent $300 million in opposition to the president and congressional Democrats. Ninety-four percent of that money was spent supporting candidates who lost. Rove’s analysis after the election: “We did good things this year.” Really? It’s not like they spent the money trying to do something truly good, like artificially inseminating zoo pandas or inventing untraceable email so Army generals can make love as well as war. No, Rove spent hundreds of millions and lost bad. That’s an abysmal year. But you wouldn’t know it listening to Flat Earth Karl.

The Crazies. An Arizona woman allegedly ran over her husband with her SUV when she learned he hadn’t -voted. She was apparently upset that Obamacare wouldn’t be repealed. Let’s hope her poor husband gets all the health care he needs. Lord knows he’s suffered enough.

The Blame America Firsters. On a conference call with his major donors a week after the election, Mitt Romney blamed his loss not on his painfully lame campaign style, his unfocused advertising strategy, or his multiple gaffes and insults. No, he blamed the American people. President Obama, he told his fellow millionaires, followed “the old playbook” of giving “gifts” to special-interest groups, “especially the -African--American community, the Hispanic community, and young people.” First, Mitt, if it was an old playbook, why weren’t you ready for the plays? [...]
I believe Lincoln got re-elected for the same reason. "Gifts" to African-Americans. Like the Emancipation Proclamation and the 13th Amendment. Even if said African-Americans couldn't quite vote for him. Heh.

The real “gift” of 2012 is that, in the toughest economy of our lifetime, the American people had the good sense to turn away from a party that holds them in such contempt.

Give thanks.

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