Liberal radio talk show host Stephanie Miller this morning was reading from a stack of articles about the demise of the Republican Party. They were similar to the slew of articles that came out after the November election, when, despite having unlimited money and a Republican court system that gives it everything it ever wanted, Republicans failed to meet expectations that they'd defeat President Obama and retake the US Senate.
These new articles seem to be prompted by the realization that the so-called "immigration reform" passed by the senate will likely fail to get through the Republican controlled House of Representatives.
Among the reasons for Republicans' problems:
- The "tea party" continues to solidify its hold on the party, and tea baggers favor ideological purity over winning elections.
- It's becoming known as the party that's against immigrants, women, science, and workers.
- Conservative talk radio. There's beginning to be a belief that the Rush Limbaughs of the world lost the election for them and are continuing to do damage to the party's name.
A few politicos were named who have switched to the Democratic Party or are leaning that way. One long time politico was quoted as saying he'll switch if immigration reform fails.
Several articles highlighted the continuing rightward shift of the party by naming Republicans who wouldn't be electable in today's party, such as Ronald Reagan, George HW Bush, Richard Nixon and Bob Dole.
The self destruction of the conservative movement is some consolation, after 30 years of rising Republicanism in which the New Deal and labor unions were decimated, the political center marched relentlessly rightward, the rich got filthy rich and nearly half of America got poor and it seemed another politician switched from Democrat to Republican every month.
Talk of Republican oblivion would even be a reason to get ones hopes up if the Democratic Party hadn't lost it's soul during those 30 years, if it had anything to offer working people, and if there was even one Democrat left who was an actual Liberal and could preach real Liberal hellfire and brimstone like Ted Kennedy could or Jesse Jackson used to do.
No one expects anything from the president. He's been running around the country trying to do something about his reputation by suddenly citing statistics about the massive wealth and income disparities 30 years of conservatism have produced, precisely the statistics I've been citing for years. But no one has forgot what he did his first four years, so no one bothers to listen to him any more, otherwise they might notice that that's all he's doing, citing statistics, and that in interviews he says he plans to keep cutting the budget and refuses to spend any government money to stimulate the economy. Tax cuts for the wealthy, is what he's proposing.
Despite all this, there is cause for not just consolation, but for optimism and hope, even if no one is talking about it yet. The White majority in America is going away, and will ultimately lose its hold on power. The Democratic Party of the future is being envisioned by people who don't necessarily buy into the American mythology of Plymouth Rock and manifest destiny, and aren't limited to an America where the only thing anybody has the right to consider is an economic system that's at its natural dead end, where the only choice, for breakfast, lunch and dinner, is the rotting, stinking mess that is Capitalism.