Thursday, January 03, 2013


For a while now, I've thought of the GOP as the Terrorist Party, the Hostage-Taker Party, the Party That Will Destroy America If It Can't Run America, the Anthony Fremont Party. I've seen the GOP as dangerous because it still has the power to do serious harm if it doesn't get its way (and serious harm, of course, when it does get its way).

But that power really seems to have diminished. Obama won reelection in November articulating some very clear GOP-defying policy ideas, and both houses of Congress became less Republican. Now the White House has gotten a tax increase on the rich, after the failure of John Boehner's "Plan B" stunt in the House and Mitch McConnell's embarrassing auto-filibuster in the Senate. Republicans still seem to know how to do drama, but the party's terrorists seem to be leaving their targets unscathed. This afternoon, the angry zealots who were supposed to be able to punish Boehner in the vote for Speaker of the House failed, though they made a great show of being insolent:
Republican lawmakers unhappy with House Speaker John Boehner failed to oust him in Thursday's vote for the leaders of the 113th Congress, which re-elected Boehner by a current tally of 220 to 192. The anti-Boehner crowd -- which had bragged to Breitbart News that it was big enough to nominate a challenger, yet did not -- called out a handful of alternatives. Former Rep. Allen West got two votes, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor got three votes, Rep. Jim Jordan, Rep. Raul Labrador and Rep. Justin Amash each got one vote. After the vote tally looked close to the number that would require a second vote, a handful of the Republicans who had abstained then changed their vote to Boehner. Those abstainer-to-Boehner flippers were Michele Bachmann, Marsha Blackburn, and Scott Garrett.
Boehner keeps his gavel after the Sarah Bernhardt of extremism, Michele Bachmann, flips her vote at the last minute. Perfect.

This isn't the Terrorist Party -- it's the Narcissist Party, the Arrested Development Party, the Spoiled Juvenile Party, the Brat Party. Acting out is becoming an end in itself for these folks; it doesn't matter that nothing comes of it.

See also this:
House Republicans Thursday are rolling partisan welcome mat for newly elected Democrats, circulating a tongue-in-cheek guide for being the perfect "lap dog" for Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi....

In releases targeting all of Pelosi's new colleagues, the National Republican Congressional Committee is welcoming new members "to Washington with his very own official Nancy Pelosi Obedience School Lap Dog Kit." ...

According to a draft of the release accompanying the "kit," it comes "complete with a 'Yes, Nancy Pelosi' stamp and an official Lap Dog membership card ... [so new members] will be prepared to rubber stamp her tax and spend, big-government policies and support Democrats' failed agenda."

Can we put an entire party in the Time Out Chair? We may need to.


UPDATE: Norman Ornstein, as quoted by Greg Sargent: "What you're going to see now is a passive-aggressive majority." Yeah, "passive-agressive" is an appropriate pseudo-clinical synonym for "insolent and brattish."


UPDATE: Libby notes that Democrats have their own snarky membership card, aimed at the GOP. So I guess this doesn't go just one way.


Monty said...

Perpetual Tantrum Party.

Steve M. said...

Yeah, that works.

Ari said...

So instead of working on the public's business, the GOP uses taxpayers time & funds to produce a pamphlet mocking the incomming opposition? While they rant about wasteful government spending and do nothing politicians? How rich.

Palli said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ten Bears said...

It does roll off the tongue smoother than Petulent Tantrum Party.

Palli said...

Mr. Ornstein: Where have you been? You are just saying this now?

Look at the list of passive aggressive traits*. Can’t you remember dozens of examples* of each behavior since 2007! We could have a Five Years In Review show to catalog the passive aggressive behavior that is already entrenched in the Republican Party.

• Ambiguity and cryptic speech: a means of creating a feeling of insecurity in others or of disguising one’s own insecurities;
• Intentional inefficiency, e.g. being late or forgetting things, as a way to exert control or to punish;
• Convenient forgetfulness: to win any argument with a dishonest denial of actual events;
• Cold shoulder response: withdrawing into long silences to avoid either confronting or connecting with others.
• Fear of competition;
• Fear of dependency;
• Fear of intimacy as a means to act out anger: the passive–aggressive often cannot trust; because of this, they guard themselves against becoming intimately attached to someone;
• Making chaotic situations;
• Making excuses for non–performance in work teams;
• Obstructionism;
• Sulking;
• Victimization response: instead of recognizing one’s own weaknesses, tendency to blame others for own failures.

*the list from Wikipedia is derived from the book “Living with the Passive–Aggressive Man” lists 11 observations that may help identify passive–aggressive behavior.

Pundits. They wait to state (or lie about) the obvious. Mr. Ornstein has got some make up work to do.

Victor said...

Time for the Republicans to make some changes.

It's now the GOPPPOWP - the 'Grand Old Preurile Pitiful Old White People's Party."

And they need to trade in their elephant, and ask if they can borrow the Democrat's donkey's @$$hole.

Steve M. said...

Well, Norman Ornstein has been talking about the faults of the Republicans since early last year, when his book on the subject came out.

Palli said...

That book could have been written 12 years earlier. How about Nov-Dec 2000 when Mr. Ornstein wasn't very worried about the "messiness" of the Florida election debacle- it was just too late to do anything about election crime and democracy will win out despite the rough spots. Remind me what the body count is or what percentage of the deficit is actually 2 wars.

Unknown said...

About the lap-dog kit, I have to quote Rowan Atkinson's Black Adder: "Better to be a lap-dog to a slip of a girl than a...GIT!"