The healthcare debate happening now, let's face it, is the result of the decisions the Democratic and Republican parties have "evolved" (and I use that word advisedly) over the years.
The bad behavior of the GOP is just the tip of the iceberg of the Republican sell-out back in the 1960s. That's when the religious conservatives, empowered by Barry Goldwater's loss in the presidential campaign of 1964, surged into power and moved the GOP from being about fiscal conservatism and civil liberties and leaving people alone to live their own lives into the party of Big Brother, demanding governmental control over people's private lives while pushing major forms of corporate welfare.
The 2-year-old types of behavior the Republican leaders and prominent activists are indulging in arises out of this kind of self-righteous outlook on life. They consider themselves the good people, the "real" Americans. (And let's just not pay attention to their embracing of secession from the United States as an expression of their patriotism.) No, they aren't getting their way so they pout and whine and cry "no."
They also preach fear. It's a big thing to them, their fear. They are afraid of everyone ... especially Americans. Be afraid.
Well I am afraid. I'm afraid of them. They are creepy.
They'll Let Anyone in this Big Tent
But let's look at the Democrats. They're no great shakes either. Here they are in control of Congress and the White House and they can't get anything done.
Why the hell was this healthcare reform vote last night such a squeaker?
I'll tell you: It's that Big Tent strategy that the Democrats embraced years ago, starting around 2004. Remember that? When women were told to shut up and stop distracting people from the "important shit"? This is when the Democrats started actively recruiting anti-choice candidates, anti-gay candidates.
They Democrats in Congress are comprised of a high percentage of the opposite of RINOs (Republicans in name only): REBAONs (Republicans by any other name).
And so we get nitwits like Stupak.
The Senate is full of it, buster
Of course, all of this is aggravated by "Senate tradition" which really just the latest tactics employed on a rule that the Senate made up so long ago nobody in office really knows what it's even about:
What a load of crap this is. This whole idea that a supermajority now must be in place for anything to happen is in large part why nothing much is ever accomplished in the Senate.
So with the Republicans opposing anything that the Democrats support, and the Democrats too timid to call the Republicans' bluff and actually force them to filibuster — I'd love to see that! — we have a case where the Republicans are actually running the Senate.
Any wonder why we're where we are now?
Could you imagine a Lyndon B. Johnson or a Barry Goldwater in today's political climate? Johnson would be a Brobdingnagian in today's Senate.
On the other hand, Barry Goldwater would be attacked by Republicans as being a "socialist" because he supported the separation of church and state and opposed governmental intrusions into private lives.
Yeah, that's a socialist. Uh huh.