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July 22nd, 2013
thesmithian

'The Republican Party has spent 30 years careering ever more deeply into ideological extremism, but one of the novel developments of the Obama years is its embrace of procedural extremism. The Republican fringe has evolved from being politically shrewd proponents of radical policy changes to a gang of saboteurs who would rather stop government from functioning at all…

In this sense, their historical precedents are not so much the Gingrich revolutionaries, or even their tea-party selves of a few years ago; the movement is more like the radical left of the sixties, had it occupied a position of power in Congress. And so the terms we traditionally use to scold bad Congresses—partisanship, obstruction, gridlock—don’t come close to describing this situation. The hard right’s extremism has bent back upon itself, leaving an inscrutable void of paranoia and formless rage and twisting the Republican Party into a band of anarchists. And the worst is not behind us.

more.

August 11th, 2012
thesmithian

Ryan’s nomination represents…the completion of a fifty year struggle. Starting in the early 1960s, conservative activists set out to seize control of the Republican Party. At the time the party was firmly in the hands of establishmentarians who had made their peace with the New Deal, but the activists regarded the…development of the modern regulatory and welfare states as…bound to lead to…societal collapse…the conservatives slowly advanced—nominating Goldwater, retreating under Nixon, nominating Reagan, retreating as Reagan sought to govern, and on and on through Gingrich, Bush and his successors…Ryan’s nomination represents a moment when the conservative movement ceased to control the politicians from behind the scenes and openly assumed the mantle of power…

more at NYM.

Ryan’s nomination represents…the completion of a fifty year struggle. Starting in the early 1960s, conservative activists set out to seize control of the Republican Party. At the time the party was firmly in the hands of establishmentarians who had made their peace with the New Deal, but the activists regarded the…development of the modern regulatory and welfare states as…bound to lead to…societal collapse…the conservatives slowly advanced—nominating Goldwater, retreating under Nixon, nominating Reagan, retreating as Reagan sought to govern, and on and on through Gingrich, Bush and his successors…Ryan’s nomination represents a moment when the conservative movement ceased to control the politicians from behind the scenes and openly assumed the mantle of power…

more at NYM.

March 27th, 2012
thesmithian
Ask yourself how we suddenly know that the dead kid had been suspended from high school because he got caught with a bag that might once have contained marijuana. Ask yourself why we know that. We know that because this case is Not About Race. It is Not About Race because It Is Never About Race. Race is the past. Black people can vote. One of them is president. Nothing Is About Race anymore. Just ask Newt Gingrich or Rick Santorum…and they’ll tell you that the president “injected” race into the tragedy. It wasn’t there before the president — who is (shhh!) black, you know — put it there. Ask Joe Oliver, this “friend” of the gunman who insists that Zimmerman might have said “fucking goons” and not “fucking coons,” because the latter is an obsolete racial slur and the former is a “term of endearment,” according to Oliver’s daughter. This is enormously believable because, if you’re an armed 28-year old gunslinger in pursuit of what you believe is a dangerous burglar, the first descriptive that would leap to anyone’s mind is a term of endearment used by high-school girls. Yeah, sure. Whatever. As if. And it is enormously believable because This Is Not About Race.
Charles P. Pierce, at Esquire.
February 23rd, 2012
thesmithian

'Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign has received a second warning from the Federal Election Commission (FEC) for widespread financial irregularities…

…saying the campaign must disclose why nearly $1 million was paid to the candidate, staff and a small group of fundraising consultants for questionable reimbursements…The campaign transferred Mr. Gingrich $88,000 last month for unspecified “travel” expenses, a pace far higher than he paid himself over the course of 2011…It was part of $220,000 in mystery money that month that went to people close to Mr. Gingrich on top of their salaries, raising the issue of potential self-dealing.

more. and from December.

January 29th, 2012
thesmithian

When Newt Gingrich said in a recent debate that he was a man of “grandiose” ideas…Romney’s campaign pounced. It sent mocking Twitter messages with a hashtag, “#grandiosenewt”, encouraging voters to add their own examples of occasions when they felt Mr. Gingrich had been “grandiose.” Within minutes, the hashtag was trending…Reporters picked up on it…If the 2008 presidential race embraced a 24/7 news cycle, four years later politicos are finding themselves in the middle of an election most starkly defined by Twitter…

more.

January 28th, 2012
thesmithian

The press loves drama and hates a front-runner. So guess who they are rooting for.

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January 22nd, 2012
thesmithian

That’s what Newt Gingrich promises them…

In order to survive without moderating their policies, they must subscribe to the belief that if only they eliminate every program that helps poor people (including minorities), minorities will suddenly wake from a deep sleep and learn to embrace conservatives through the power of tough love. That’s what Newt Gingrich promises them. He is their answer to Barack Obama, their Savior, their Great Racial Uniter. He speaks not ignorantly, schizophrenically nor in code. He and his base have leaped into this ideological gamble with open eyes, and are attempting to take the rest of the country with them.

more.

May 28th, 2011
thesmithian

[Distort, Attack, Repeat] Fox may look like a news broadcast, but it’s really the advance guard of the GOP distortion machine. An hour-by-hour look at how Fox turns Obama into…

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