Friday, May 1, 2009

This is exactly right

posted by Armadillo Joe

I knew I'd find something to post. David Sirota gets this exactly right:
When [Demomcrats] temporarily took back the Senate in 2001 after Vermont Sen. Jim Jeffords' party switch, they said the Republican House would stymie their priorities -- a logical argument that came true. When they won both houses of Congress in 2006, they said George W. Bush would veto their agenda -- again, a fair assertion that proved correct. When they won both Congress and the White House in 2008, they insisted they still couldn't do very much because their 58 Senate votes couldn't overcome a filibuster -- a less believable claim considering Obama's bully pulpit, but nonetheless at least mathematically valid.

It has been like watching a 15-year version of an Indiana Jones film -- every time we think the quest to find the ark will be completed, there's been another twist, putting off the promised conclusion just a little bit more.
I think there was a little quid pro quo here with regards to the timing of the Souter and Specter announcements, though I can't say for certain. Tristero over at Digby's Hullbaloo certainly thinks there are more things in the Washingtonian heaven and earth than are contained the mass media's philosophy:
Any questions now why Democrats are paying good money to run Specter as a Democrat?

I didn't think so.

Special note: Of course, I don't like Specter. Of course, I'm disgusted that the Democratic party has moved so far to the right that a conservative pinhead like Specter would even consider joining. Of course, I'm appalled at the manipulation and cynicism involved in purchasing Specter's votes for Obama's Supreme Court nominations.

But that is exactly what is going down. To ignore it, or to deny it, is not merely silly. It's naive. Dangerously naive: after all, there is a vicious, malicious, extreme-right Republican party that, given half a chance, will rear its ugly head up again and create even more havoc than they already have.

Now, it's time to get Franken seated. And fast.

Bye-bye, Mayberry Machiavellis. Welcome to politics, Chicago-style
I think the changes in the years since the GOP's heights of victory in 2002 have been epochal. Remember that Al Gore and John Kerry both almost won. Had either of them, we wouldn't now know the name of Barack Obama as anyone other than a slightly left-of-center senator from Illinois who coulda-shoulda-woulda make a run at the White House at some future date, maybe 2016. As it is, Bush's Rethugli-goons were in a multi-generational downward prior to 9/11 and they only really got one and a half election's worth of juice out of that melon. Rove's doubling-down of Nixon's Southern Strategy only made the GOP's long-term prospects more bleak in the face of large-scale demographic trends which anyone could foresee, as long as this country continued to have a functioning democracy (arguably, we don't) which is why he and his minions could crow about a Permanent Republican Majority -- which lasted about as long (proportionately speaking) as Hitler's Thousand Year Reich.

Nevertheless, after Reagan and his goon squad took this country over an ethical cliff, we finally hit bottom during the four-year stretch from 2002 and 2006, bumping and scraping along the seething, blood-caked boneyard on the floor of hell. I read somewhere on the interwebs these last few years (probably on Billmon before he went off the air) that though the GOP had truly taken over all three branches of government, two were relatively easily reversible, because the long-term damage done by these goons in our four-year march through perdition was actually in the judiciary. We could band together and fight to get the president we wanted, if we fought hard enough. We could fight our smaller local battles and get the legislatures we wanted both state and federal. We could fight for city councils and school boards and mayors, but the lasting damage, the Reich-wing moles planted throughout our government, the ringing echo of the Nixonland waking nightmare we've lived in since the late 60's will quietly march on in the form of appointed judges with secret agendas.

Which is why the GOP will go to the mat for Souter's seat. They will use every ounce of strength they have left, pull every trick, use every parlimentary sleight-of-hand, tell any lie, clutch their pearls and faint on any couch, bribe any official, level any threat, throw any tantrum. They may be (as Mr. C sez in his return post) the 21st Century Whig Party -- bound for oblivion -- but they all know that, collectively, this will be their last stand as a cohesive political entity. We have not yet even begun to see them bring Teh Crazy, no matter who Obama nominates, because they are so disorganized right now and their porcine, drug-addled sex-tourist demagogue of a leader is so convinced of his own potency, that no coordinated effort to keep their powder dry and regroup so as to live to fight another day is in the offing for this scattered mob on the run. They will go berserk on any name put forth by our president, because loading the judiciary with lifetime appointments has been the real goal of their reign of terror all long.

So this fight for Souter's seat, I think, is the looming Cosmic, Epic Battle Royale for the Ages for which the GOP has been itching. I wish it wasn't so early in Obama's term, but I think he has with this appointment and Specter's defection the power now, right now, to destroy utterly the last dregs of political power of the disorganized remnants of that corportized, violent, racist hard-right we've battled since the days of Nixon. They will never disppear completely, but their ability to regroup will be smashed beyond repair for two generations.

Thus, the fight right now is to prevent them from doing any further harm and that fight starts with Souter's seat. Damage would include a compromise candidate, by the way, because they will demand such. Then our fight will be to undo the deep, deep harm they've inflicted over the last 25 years, from Clarence Thomas forward, at all levels of the federal judiciary. On that score, if Souter's seat is the first step, impeaching Jay Bybee is the second step in a long, long chain of dispatching all those wicked, morally compromised men and women who are appointed for life and bringing our scales of justice back into some kind of balance.

The fact that Alito and Roberts are young terrifies me for exactly the same reason.


Matt Osborne said...

Alito and Roberts may be young but they can still choke to death on their own bile... Just accidentally, ya know. Not that I'd ever wish such terrible fates on unqualified hacks promoted beyond their ability in a blatant attempt to install idiocracy...

Anonymous said...

Great points Armadillo but I'd like to point out that Specter isn't a conservative.Thats one of the reasons he cited for switching parties.He's pro-choice and voted against the staunch conservative Robert Bork for the supreme court.He also was one of 3 repub senators who voted for Obama's stimulus bill.

Anonymous said...

As for Alitto and Roberts,maybe DICK Cheney will take them on a hunting trip....we hope