This book, "The Wrecking Crew," by Thomas Frank, as beautifully and as trenchantly as it warns us of what has happened to our country, sadly, is also just too true. And its truths are difficult to improve upon -- except to mention that the Republican tsunami of corruption with its triumphant philosophy of "privatization" as their version of the best replacement of "government of, for, and by the people," only proves what we suspected all along: that as corrupt as they are, the Republicans at least are still single-mindedly playing chess, while the democrats, just as corrupt and just as mindlessly, are playing tiddlywinks on the Republican side of the chessboard.
As self-destructive as the Republican "conservative revolution" has been, at least the Republicans "HAVE a philosophy." They have been engaged in a mean-spirited, burn-the-house-down, fight to the death, self-destructive defense of their illicit political values and their morally ill-conceived revolution. It is a revolution that they are so committed to that they are willing to scuttle what remains of our democracy --- that is, the parts that have not already been auctioned-off, or off-shored to globalization.
It is no secret that the Republican ideology has stopped all progress in making our democracy a more perfect Union. Its "every man for himself" dictates, has made the nation heel; literally brought the nation to its knees in one ignominious gridlocked impotent "bought-and-paid for" disgraceful body called the U.S. Congress.
And since they have been going up against the impotent Democrats' "non-philosophy," (a virtual "in-place" counter-revolution against itself), the Republican Revolution has had "an open field run," the whole "secondary is without defenders." Republican freshmen running backs like Paul Ryan, have been successful beyond their own wildest dream.
To wit, the Republican's specious non-issues such as their orgy of "Ayn Rand Objectivism," re-packaged as "privatization," have been allowed to take over the national agenda, sprint unmolested across mid-field, without even a feeble whimper from the Democrats? The Democrats make no pretense of "having a political philosophy." In fact, the president called having one "being ideological." That is to say, far be it for the Democrats, purer than Caesar's wife, to engage in ideological politics? Here is a "spoiler alert" for all Democrats: "The name of the game is called ideological politics!" Get over it, and get in the game!
As we have watched a succession of weak Democratic Presidents, from the "bumbling" but sweet Jimmy Carter to, the more rough and tumble redneck, Bill Clinton, who at least tried to fight back, to the now "feckless" brooding Barack Obama enter office and then immediately begin shedding their own pro-Democratic Party outer skins, by constantly trying to find running room to better "tack to the right," it seriously begs the only important question this book fails to answer:
Why have the Democrats lain down in the middle of the road to become "Republican road Kill," at the very time that the Republican Party's tsunami of corruption and privatization schemes are beginning to take over the country? Why have they not nipped it in the bud? Why have they even failed to play hard-knuckled politics like their opponents play? Why is Mr. Obama always apologizing to the "Tea Party" but not to his base? Why does he willingly fumble the ball so that the Republicans can keep making easy recoveries with ground gained for their illicit and immoral causes?
As soon as we ask these questions, the answer becomes transparently obvious: The corrupt Democrats are in bed with the same moneychangers in the Temple as the corrupt Republicans? One corrupt hand greases the other corrupt hand just across the political aisle, and the American public is none the wiser? It is an orgy of bipartisan political corruption as far as the eye can see that is sucking the blood out of our democracy. We are left with a symbolic shell of a democratic process: a four-year Kabuki dance between the worse of what is left called presidential elections.
Our Mulatto president was the first politician ever to raise a billion dollars in a single political campaign. What does that tell us boys and girls? I think it tells us that he is not a "Democrat" but a "Dollarcrat." Give him a billion dollars and he knows how to run a winning campaign, and how to get pre-awarded a Nobel Prize, but little else.
And thus in a way, this makes Democrats the worse of the bad Apples in the barrel, if only because their corruption is both mindless and has no purpose. It is electioneering without a clear political purpose, governing strategy or philosophy for how to move the country ahead, but it is also cowardly, selfishly greedy and politically suicidal.
At least Tom Delay, Dick Cheney and Jack Abramoff knew, and were committed to a robust political philosophy -- Ayn Rand's Objectivism -- however bankrupt that political philosophy may have been. Even as they too, just like their Democratic opponents, continued to suck the t*ts of the big dog money cash cows.
It is no secret that the Republican's political philosophy is to put in full retreat the "American march towards becoming a more perfect Union." It has been to reverse this 240-year old march to democratic perfection by stopping in its tracks any notion of a "common good" as being too costly for the taxpaying one-percent "job creators." However, as vulgar as this philosophy is, it at least IS a philosophy.
While the Republicans are being allowed to dismantle, sell piece-by-globalized piece, and then "burn down what remains of "the house of democracy" with their Ayn Rand philosophy of privatization, the Democrats, are busy engaging in tactical tiddlywinks, placing all of their eggs, not in a robust bag called a progressive political philosophy, but simply in a basket of prepositioning maneuvers readying themselves for the "hoped for" windfall of demographic inevitability? That is to say, the Democrats are essentially standing idly by playing playing three-card Monty, hoping to rope-in the large Hispanic influx, while the vile and vulgar Republican Revolution in privatization is , like "Proud Mary's" Big Wheel, still rolling on down the river, and succeeding beyond even the Republicans' own wildest dreams.
I have a theoretical footnote to this book that when coupled with the corruption of political money, helps explain everything. It is not one that most readers are going to want to hear, but I believe it to be as true as this book is true. It is this: Other than political money, there is only one other salient issue that leaps out into the open. It lies deep in America's political psyche and is potent enough to allow the Republicans to turn our nation into the corrupt, proto-fascist, privatized, gridlocked "national security state" that it has become right before our own eyes: And that issue is race.
Unless we are completely blind, dumb and stupid as a people, any fool can see that race is the system generator of all of America's evils, the "real" issue that animates American politics, and the only issue that lies at the base of the "so-called" Republican Revolution.
Do I need to spell it out for you: Strom Thurmond's Dixiecrats morphed into Nixon's Southern Strategy, which got Ronald reagan elected for two terms, and has since metastasized into the tail-wagging racist Republican/Libertarian Dog, called the "Tea Party? And every since Thurmond, race has not only been the issue just off center stage of the Republican/Libertarian agenda, but has also been "the gateway drug" to all other excesses in moral and political corruption and depravity in the American political system.