Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Disarming The Radicals

Posted by codemorse

From The Huffington Post:

I've been seeing signs, and I thnk we're going to see a strong, nationwide Republican effort to blame Democrats for the partisanship in politics. The Republicans have been saying "Dems are rabid Bush-hater partisans" as a ploy to win votes and I think this is going to become a drumbeat.

....Don't forget the power of Bush's "I'm a uniter not a divider" messaging -- never mind that it was the Republicans who had impeached Clinton. The broad public just
doesn't pay enough attention to differentiate WHO is doing it, all they know is politicians call each other names and aren't getting anything done and they don't like it. Leading up to the 2000 election the Republicans screeched until everyone was holding their ears. Bush came along and promised to do something about it, and got votes for promising that.

So here's what I think might be about to happen: the Republicans continue to call everyone names. The public is sick of it. Then this fall they come to the public saying "vote for us because you don't like name-calling and we'll do something about it." That message has a huge appeal to an uninformed (or, more accurately, misinformed) public.

This would not surprise me in the slightest. I don't think that this particular strategy would/will result from such conscious planning, however.

Rather, I think this is a more simply-stated case of those who love to dish it out not being able to take it.

It's all well and good to ride the "Clinton as philanderer and symbol of Democratic politics" thing 'til it runs out of gas. But when the reverse begins to occur, and people (whether Dem or "centrist" or independent) begin to do the same to Bush and Co.?

They can't handle it. And I mean that without any implication of taunting or teasing. I mean it without a desire to provoke fights. It's just the truth. The exact same people responsible for spearheading personal attacks on Democratic politicians for years are now crying foul over people's dislike of Bush. And they seem to really mean it.

So, instead of turning around and yelling at them even louder, why don't we start pointing out that this is simply the result of their evident desire to bring the personal into the political, and then sincerely suggest that we both agree to cut it out?

Or would that be like Israel and Palestine attempting mutual disarmament?

It might very well be. At this point, too many people on both sides have too many cases of wounded-pride syndrome to put their grievances aside for the good of the country. Most people, at the end of the day, would rather have a good, exhilerating fight that lasts 20 minutes and reconfirms their beliefs, then would spend a day hammering out agreements and compromises.

This is understandable. This is also regrettable.

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