Friday, August 1, 2014
Why Does This Work?
Mr. Edroso has been spending the week documenting the Republican pivot on impeachment. As an historical "event," and as a experiment in just how bold-faced a lie can be executed on the current American free press and public, it is worthy of some future book, written by some academic studying just what the hell went wrong in the first two decades of the fresh new century. It's not that the people who accept leadership haven't done worse in the tangled past of course. We're at the exact 100 year anniversary of the start of World War I, a conflation that kindled in the heart of western civilization, featured all the European nations who might be described as the seat of western morality and culture (far more than the United States, at that time a ragged outlier of civilization which had recently concluded a ghastly civil war and was still in the throes of papering over the results, see, e.g., Birth of a Nation). Still.
Consider this remarkable fact, chronicled by Mr. Edroso in today's post:
A major figure in Republican politics has come out with a book touted at Amazon thusly:
In Faithless Execution, McCarthy weighs the political dynamics as he builds a case, assembling a litany of abuses that add up to one overarching offense: the president’s willful violation of his solemn oath to execute the laws faithfully. The “fundamental transformation” he promised involves concentrating power into his own hands by flouting law—statutes, judicial rulings, the Constitution itself—and essentially daring the other branches of government to stop him. McCarthy contends that our elected representative are duty-bound to take up the dare.
The "case" is that Mr. Obama should be impeached; the book's complete title is "Faithless Execution: Building the Political Case for Obama’s Impeachment." But this week the playbook says the Republicans one and all should be trying to spin all their previous impeachment blandishments into a twelve-dimensional chess move executed by the Democratic Party to drum up votes and money for the fall. Suddenly Mr. McCarthy is on the wrong page. No problem, apparently. Andrew C. McCarthy just says, when asked:
"To be clear, neither Bill, I, nor most Obama critics, nor any elected Republicans that I know of, are calling for the president’s impeachment at this point..."
This is surely clinical. And Edroso has documented this time and again. In an earlier post this week:
Mr. Edroso quotes several notable Republicans denying any interest in impeachment, including the incoming majority whip:
Rep. Scalise Calls Out Obama: ‘First White House In History Trying To Start Narrative Of Impeachment’ says a headline.
Apparently the underlying mechanism is this. After spending the whole era of the Obama Presidency trying to figure out some way to get him impeached (even the idiotic "birther" thing was essentially an assertion of prima face grounds for impeachment, and quite a few Republicans including even the Speaker of the House do not even now quite reject the possibility of the birther thesis), some theoretician of voter tendencies operating in the leather bound armchairs, cigar in fingers, single malt tinkling in tumbler, has noted that a great bluster of impeachment might get out the Democratic base in what is typically a low ebb for two term presidents, the dreaded 6th year. The answer--just spin all of it, the whole five and a half years of obstruction, obsfuscation, do-nothingism and out right racism.
As Ms Maddow documented night before last, Rand Paul pretty much takes the cake in this contest of bald-faced out-and-out lying. After all, she interviewed the little weasel just after he was elected by the remarkable voters of Kentucky, and he said on her show (and in other venues as well) that he disagreed in principle with the part of the Civil Rights Act that addressed private enterprises, claiming (another remarkable bold-faced lie) that the free market would deal with segregated lunch counters and the like, but that it was the unfettered right of business owners to set what ever rules they wished concerning their customer base. Tell it to the Greensboro Seven. But of course that was yesterday; who remembers that, or anything else. Today Mr. Rand Paul is telling all who'd listen and particularly any who might vote for him that he never exempted private business from the civil rights mandates, and moreover, that those who cite his own words on the subject--such as Ms Maddow--are just "petty haters."
Several political journals, including the Atlantic Monthly, now tout Mr. Rand Paul as the Republican front runner for the 2016 presidential nomination. Worse, he has the backing of Corey Booker, former Newark Mayor and apparent practitioner of New Jersey politics at the vaunted Christie level. Possibly we'll be looking at a Paul/Booker ticket? That would surely give Mr. Christie an aneurysm. Even in the worse scenario there is some silver lining.
But my question is, why in the hell does this pivoting methodology work? Because, my worthy constituents, if it didn't work, the sombitches would not do it, over and over again. And as a special added bonus, you can buy the poster at Walmart.