Here you have the GOP on fire, their base enraged, Congress scrambling for the exits, and people are saying "the fix is in"
Are you fucking kidding me?
These are not people acting like they have a magic box to stay in power. They are running for the hills like gazelles being chased like lions. They are turning on each other. Bush is fucking fuming because he's being stabbed in the back.
I know some people feel better being cynical, but at some point, you have to see there's a forest fire. The smoke, the running animals, the embers. The GOP is in serious trouble, the kind of trouble playing games at the ballot box doesn't cover.
It becomes raw stupidity after a while. You're not looking at the facts, but shaping the facts to fit your ideology, which is revolutionary defeatism. I'll oppose the government, but expect to lose, because most people are really stupid and not enlightened like me.
People are not stupid. People have other concerns, but they aren't stupid. They know that children should be protected from child sex predators.
This doesn't mean Nancy Pelosi is a lock to be speaker, there's a shitload of work to do to get people elected, but no political party in the western world has been in this kind of trouble in at least a decade. Yes, it's that bad. The last time was when Marc Dutroix was found to have been part of a pedophile network in Belgium and the government fucked up the investigation.
The closest this is to, is when the Spanish ruling party was caught lying after the Madrid bombing.
Karl Rove hardly masterminded this mess. He's probably drinking Maalox like Diet Coke. This is a nightmare he didn't foresee, much less control. This was a bag of burning shit on the White House doorstep.
This is a nightmare for some reasons aren't obvious, some are.
First of all, this hits to the core of the Republican base. A lot of those church women walking districts just won't. They'll get sick, they just refuse to do so, they won't play along. Gays upset them, but child sex predators, well, they have kids and grandkids and thinking about Mark Foley shoving his dick in Jimmy's sweet little 16 year old ass is too much.
Then Dobson wrote this off as a prank.
Biggest mistake possible
While some people think fundies live in the Handmaid's Tale, the reality is different. Women are religious, men follow their lead. Men may run the show, but women set the rules, and when Dobson said it was a joke, too many women said bullshit. They've survived too many creepy men, lived through too many church scandals to believe that shit for a second. Even as young women, they know the difference between public and private men.
And now we're in the land of people lying. People aren't going to tell their friends that they're not voting Republican, but when election day comes, no one knows how they're going to vote, not even them.
But they are realizing something else. They have been punked. The conservative elite have the same contempt for fundies that we do. Which is why there were so many gay Republicans in the House leadership.
What Dobson and friends are betting on is that it doesn't get any worse. Which, of course, is insane. We're talking about a child sex predator scandal, and those things are rarely shallow. While not every predator has victimized 100 kids, Foley seems to have been indiscrete in who he hit on. Kolbe kept his mouth shut for at least five years, when the first warnings about Foley were issued. And the rumors about Kolbe don't help matters much, rumors which at least one network is looking into.
Think of it this way: what you know about a child sex predator is like an iceberg, only the surface is showing. There is a lot of shit going to come out which we don't have any idea about. Child sex predator scandals tend to get worse over time, more people talk, more people lawyer up.
Second, the rest of the news isn't much better.
While the economy allegedly is looking up, people are now sticking saints into the ground to help sell their homes. Ford is letting go thousands. To a lot of people, that just doesn't make sense.
North Korea went nuclear, while Bush wouldn't talk to them.
Iraq is getting crazier by the day. Hundreds of bodies found on the street, 34 US dead this month. Condi Rice with body armor on. It isn't getting better.
What people have to do is stop thinking about what the GOP will do, and worry about how to get Dems to win. This isn't 2002 or 1994.
Rove got clever in basically tossing away the rule book, and hammering Dems harder than ever before. But we've seen this for six years now, and it's been a run of failure. Bush's policies are turning to nuclear covered shit before our eyes. People forget that Bush barely won election twice and did so by getting fundies out with the image of a promised land.
What did the fundies get? The possibility of Congressmen buggering underage kids. No ban on abortion, no religion back in the schools. Nothing they thought they were promised. And now, they get to see their nightmares come true. Part of the reason people join a fundie church is for security, for comfort. When someone like James Dobson sells out the church women, it cuts to the quick.
If the GOP was smart, Mark Foley would be ambassador to Andorra or Belarus, and long out of the Congress. They wouldn't have protected him for 11 years. They would have bought him out and given him a nice, safe job far away from pages.
Because, in the end, people need to trust their government. Not to do what they want, but to work. Americans expect their government to work. When you get a drivers license, you don't have to bribe the clerk, you don't have to pay the school so your kid can go there, the police don't demand payment so you can keep your business open.
Americans read about those things, they don't live them.
The betrayal of this Congress has been on many levels, most of all, not standing up for themselves against the rapacious Bush administration. But this shows they wouldn't even
protect themselves against the obvious. It never occured to them that Mark Foley could destroy them all. They thought they had it contained.
At some point, you're allowed to stand up, look around and say "Holy shit, that's a big fucking forest fire".
This is one of those times.
posted by Steve @ 8:02:00 PM