The Slow, Agonizing Death of the Republican Party | The Agonist
- Numerian over at the Agonist has put together an excellent encapsulation of the problems facing the Republican Party, and traces the beginnings of the failure back well over the last century. Here's a snip.
Senator Joseph McCarthy’s campaign against Commie traitors in our midst was the first real political witch hunt in 20th century American politics. The traitors weren’t just Communist sympathizers or soi-disant members of the Communist Party, they were intellectuals, fellow-travelers, and – most interestingly – homosexuals. Senator McCarthy wrapped all this up in one descriptor – “pinkos”. What was interesting about this pogrom of government pinkos was that McCarthy’s aide-de-camp was a lawyer who was himself a closeted homosexual. Roy Cohn certainly knew where to find hidden homosexuals in the federal government – they went to the same bars and cocktail parties he did.
And so the hypocrisy began. Do what I say and pay no attention to what I do. Senator McCarthy’s counterpart in the House was the young California congressman Richard Nixon, who internalized all the wrong lessons from the hysteria he and McCarthy stoked up. The darkness of Nixon’s soul compelled him to see enemies all around, and not just Communist sympathizers. There were liberals and Jew lovers and Harvard educated snobs and phony union leaders who pilfered union dues to live in luxury; these people needed to be watched and could never be trusted. By the time Nixon reached the presidency, he had the tools to do just that, and if the CIA and FBI wouldn’t accede to his demands for illegal spying on Americans, Nixon had the Republican National Committee to do it for him.
Worth your time to read the whole thing - Numerian makes a strong case for the position that the Republican Party doomed itself to failure a long, long time ago and are only now reaping the whirlwind. I find it hard to disagree.