What Next For The Right-Wing?


Courtesy of The Guardian:

The real significance of Boehner’s surprise announcement of his resignation, though, is that the content-challenged grandstanding of the government shutdown is no longer simply a tactic to let off steam, or to enhance a given House member’s fundraising numbers among the right-wing base; it is the Republican party’s model of governance, tout court. The American right has demonstrated that again and again over a decades-long campaign to gain control of political institutions with the express aim of dramatizing the inefficiency, corruption, and profligacy of the very idea of government. It’s akin to seeing a child smash an X-Box controller into a wall, over and over again, and then proceed to wail over the mangled wreckage that the breakdown was entirely due to a design flaw.

More from The Guardian:

When news broke of House speaker John Boehner’s resignation at a gathering of social conservatives on Friday, the room filled with hundreds of grassroots activists immediately erupted into cheers and a standing ovation.

The moment was emblematic of a years-long struggle for the soul of the Republican party, a high-stakes battle that has publicly unfolded in often ugly and always dramatic fashion. As the highest-ranking Republican in Washington, Boehner has spent the greater part of the last four years as the face of that turmoil and, by his own admission, decided to step aside in part to restore a sense of calm.

But even as conservative hardliners sought to take credit for Boehner’s departure, the question of whether the shocking event truly marked a turning point for the direction of the Republican party remained unclear – and one that will likely be determined by the race for president.

Salon has this to say:

Movement Conservatives just claimed the head of House Speaker John Boehner. Hispolitical death was the price of preventing a catastrophic government shutdownafter Movement Conservatives in Congress tied the very survival of the United States government to their determination to defund Planned Parenthood. Movement Conservatives are gunning for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell next. We should be very afraid. Boehner and McConnell are not wild-eyed lefties. They are on the very far right of the American political spectrum: fervently pro-business, antiabortion, opposed to social welfare legislation. But they are old-school politicians who still have faith in the idea of American democracy.

Movement Conservatives do not. They want to blow up the government and remake America according to their own radical ideology…

“When we act, we create our own reality.”

That is exactly what today’s Movement Conservatives are doing. After the last Republican debate, astonished observers noted that many of the candidates’ assertions were flat-out lies. The New York Times editorial board mused: “It felt at times as if the speakers were no longer living in a fact-based world.” But the lies are not random. They tell followers that America has fallen apart because enemies— minorities, women and liberals– have poisoned the government. Only a Movement Conservative leader can purge the nation of that poison and return America to its former greatness. Donald Trump, who currently commands a significant lead, is the salesman who puts it most clearly…

The fantasy world of Movement Conservatives is no longer fringe talk. The leading candidates for the Republican presidential nomination embrace it. They are playing to a chorus of true believers, and they are preaching what that choir wants to hear.

And if this doesn’t scare the bejaysus out of you, it should.

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7 Responses to What Next For The Right-Wing?

  1. View_From_Here says:

    Hola Irishgirl!
    Here’s something I found just for you. As she sez, “Nothing could go wrong, baby!”

  2. 40Watt says:

    I’m going to think positively. From the 18th century on, every time there has been a massive financial downturn and widespread social problems, the result has been a movement to the left with a concomitant rise of the far right, authoritarianism, anti-communism, nativism, racism and so on.

    Just one example out of several would be the period after WWI, a time of increased immigration, rampant epidemics, strikes, and violence. There was a rebirth of the KKK who capitalized on all of America’s insecurities, manipulating the existing hatreds not only for African-Americans, but for relevant minority groups in different areas of the country–in Texas, the Mexicans; in New York, the
    Jews; and so on. Its membership grew exponentially together with the floggings, lynchings, brandings, castrations, and other vicious atrocities.

    Ethnic and religious minorities were not the Klan’s only victims. Klansmen believed themselves to be God-fearing Christians, and in their capacity as the self-proclaimed guardians of public morals, Klansmen unleashed punishing physical attacks on suspected adulterers, philanderers, bigamists, and price-gouging shopkeepers of all races and religious persuasions. Between 1921 and 1923, there were thousands of such incidents.

    The US has flirted with fascism more often than one cares to think about. People either don’t know or have been taught sugar-coated versions of history. My point is we have turned the tide before and must believe we can turn it again. To succeed, we can’t despair. We must use the effort expended wringing our hands and get to work. Get out the vote!

    • 40Watt says:

      I can’t resist one more example as the one above deals with the responses of the “people.”
      This one deals with Fascism of the rich and powerful.

      In 1934 a special Congressional committee was appointed to conduct an investigation of a possible planned coup intended to topple the administration of president Franklin D. Roosevelt and replace it with a government modelled on the policies of Adolph Hitler and Benito Mussolini. The shocking results of the investigation were promptly scotched and stashed in the National Archives. While the coup attempt was reported at the time in a few newspapers, including The New York Times, the story disappeared from public memory shortly after the Congressional findings were made available to president Roosevelt. It was the recent release from the Archives of the Congressional report that prompted the BBC and Horton commentaries.

      The Congressional committee had discovered that some of the foremost members of the economic elite, many of them household names at the time, had indeed hatched a meticulously detailed and massively funded plot to effect a fascist coup in America. The owners of Bird’s Eye, Maxwell House and Heinz, among others, totaling about twenty four major businessmen and Wall Street financiers, planned to assemble a private army of half a million men, composed largely of unemployed veterans. These troops would both constitute the armed force behind the coup and defeat any resistance this in-house revolution might generate. The economic elite would provide the material resources required to sustain the new government.

      Read more here (and it is worth reading) – http://www.commondreams.org/views/2007/08/02/threat-us-fascism-historical-precedent

    • 40Watt says:

      Excellent article. This a very clear explanation of the built-in potential for gridlock in the system. Interestingly enough, this was something my Prof. of Constitutional Law (British) used to bring up quite a lot about the American system. I now see what he meant in action. (I didn’t find it that interesting at the time 😉 )

      He used to pronounce “r” as “w”. He always on about “the bwilliance of the Bwitish Constitution as opposed to the pwoblem of the Amewican Constitution. According to him, writing the damn thing down in the first place was a mistake!

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