Ordinary, I would put something like this in the links roundup, but what Driftglass writes about the continuing obsession with Compulsive Centrist Disorder is top-notch. Take it away, comrade:
The bitter truth of our current situation is actually very simple:
1. The Right is an unholy, unsalvageable mess. It is too far gone, too beholden to its fascist elements and too fucking dangerous to be allowed anywhere near the levers of power.
2. For years, Liberals have been just about the only people who have had the balls to say that the Right is an unholy, unsalvageable mess out loud and in all kinds of weather. For example, in the darkest days of the Bush Administration we continued to say it out loud even as Conservatives like Andrew Sullivan were turning a buck calling us unAmerican, freedom-hating Fifth columnists.
3. No matter how many times Liberals turn out to be right in fact, our media/industrial complex will never permit it to be acknowledged in public. Too much money is riding on the Big Scam that the Left and the Right are both equally wrong, so Never. Ever. Ever.
The core of virtually every Liberal critique of Obama Administration comes straight from this reality.
So does the stridency of some of our voices.
Because we are getting very tired of always being right and never being heeded. Tired of being lied about. Tired of being slandered. But mostly of all we are completely done with lazy, Centrist panderers (a disturbing number of whom are still fresh from being kicked out of the Conservative clown car) getting away with poxing the houses of both those who lie loudly…and those who loudly call out the liars as liars.
And like I’ve written numerous times, the unholy melange that is one part batshitloonitarain, one part theocrat, and one part recidivist segregation never rethinks or reconsiders, it only regroups and rearms:
And the results of those historic, back-to-back electoral beatdowns [of 2006 and 2008]? The Right did not [decide] to sober up, did not get together and kick the bigots and the lunatics to the curb, because the bigots and the lunatics are the Right. Instead they did the exact opposite, ratcheting up the ragetalk, doubling-down on the crazy and running their bugfuck conspiracy factories around the clock.
And you know what? It worked!
In other words:
The Obama Administration’s signal failure was not how it handled single payer or Guantanamo Bay: its signal failure was its blithe obliviousness to just how bottomless the fanatical hatred of Right really was.
As the kids used to say, read the whole thing.
Did you catch the dumbfuck NPR expert last night who didn’t understand how marginal tax rates work? Steve Inskeep or Itzy or something like that. Blathering on about how will people who make $990,000 behave.
Simpler Driftglass, courtesy of Prof Krugman; (I’m paraphrasing here) “The Right’s strategy for the last 2 decades has been one of delegitimizing ‘the other side’. When someone is perceived and illegitimate, no respect, nor recognition shall be provided. Obliteration is the ultimate goal.”
I’m sorry I can’t agree with this (adding more to the original quote):
This is assuming that Obama was an honest actor acting in good faith.
Had Obama catered to the right a few times and failed, I would say yes, but every f-ing time? It’s just not believable. Occam’s Razor provides a much simpler solution, one you’ve indicated yourself – despite Obama’s rhetoric (and I don’t think it’s simply a case of misunderstanding his agenda), Obama is a Regan Democrat. Again as you say, is the opposition.
No doubt the Republican party is “batshit insane” and a lying destructive mess, but if Obama had stayed to his rhetoric and hadn’t forwarded a right of center policy he clearly believes in, we’d be in a far, far better place.
In that regard, I do think the liberals/Democrats are “equally bad” as the Republicans – they are equally willing to believe the unbelievable, anoint “messiahs”, attest that their opinions are “hard earned” when they are based on affiliation, and go to extraordinarily convoluted means to avoid the inconvenient truth (like that Obama just isn’t that into us). If we are more often correct, we should admit that it’s mostly by “luck” – we happened to choose the right team in at puberty. Most of us liberals believe in what we believe not because we expended more thought than Republicans, but because we choose “team liberal” (or it was chosen for us by virtue of our parents), and therefor are just as likely to be mindless followers. Me included – we should not delude ourselves.
Finally, only Guatanamo Bay and single payer? What about continued denial of Habeas Corpus? Indefinite detention? Military tribunals? Drone wars? Assassination of American citizens? Extraordinary rendition (aka “torture by proxy”)? Prosecution of whistleblowers? Refusal to investigate Bush Administration crimes?
None of these things required “Republican” approval (they’re “Executive Branch”) – and all are not only odious but contrary to Obama’s pre-election rhetoric.
In my mind to blame Obama’s faults simply on the admittedly insane right, is insane itself. That’s not to say they don’t suck though.
Another example of how “crazy Republicans” aren’t forcing anything: