Reason why I'm saying this is that today - Halloween, very appropriate day to do so - the official Republican candidate for the special election in New York 23rd District bowed to pressure to let the unofficial Far Right Wingnut candidate finish the race: (text bolded by me)
The official candidate - Scozzafava - had been chosen by the local party figures to fill a vacancy caused by the 23rd's Republican Congressman getting tabbed by Obama to become Secretary of the Army. For a while there the campaign was going her way. But the Far Right conservatives took one look at her - Scozzafava was as solid a Moderate Republican you can find in the Northeastern states, pro-choice and pro-gay marriage - and became revolting (yes, I pun). They pushed a more hard-line Republican, Hoffman, to run for the district on the Conservative ticket (New York politics is damn close to unique: small region parties have the power to nominate shared candidates, for one thing; for another, those regional parties have enough oomph coming from a wealthy media-rich state to campaign rather effectively for these kinds of elections).
In recent days, polls have indicated that my chances of winning this election are not as strong as we would like them to be. The reality that I’ve come to accept is that in today’s political arena, you must be able to back up your message with money—and as I’ve been outspent on both sides, I’ve been unable to effectively address many of the charges that have been made about my record. But as I’ve said from the start of this campaign, this election is not about me, it’s about the people of this District. And, as always, today I will do what I believe serves their interests best. It is increasingly clear that pressure is mounting on many of my supporters to shift their support. Consequently, I hereby release those individuals who have endorsed and supported my campaign to transfer their support as they see fit to do so.
I am and have always been a proud Republican. It is my hope that with my actions today, my Party will emerge stronger and our District and our nation can take an important step towards restoring the enduring strength and economic prosperity that has defined us for generations. On Election Day my name will appear on the ballot, but victory is unlikely. To those who support me – and to those who choose not to – I offer my sincerest thanks.
End result: The Democrats sat pretty with their candidate Owens while the Republicans tore themselves to shreds over whom to back - Scozzafava or Hoffman.
The Far Right, pushed by the likes of Malkin and Palin and Teabagging coordinator Armey, supported Hoffman and openly derided Scozzafava as being further to the left than the Democratic candidate. The more rational leaders of the GOP - led by Gingrich, who for all his criminal hypocrisy isn't stupid and knows damn well the Republicans can't survive at 20 percent voting numbers - backed Scozzafava, arguing that “...Local people picked a local candidate (Scozzafava came in first in the balloting at the district selection)... You should call and ask them and say what’s the purity test for the governor of California? Does anyone pass the purity test? I just want to know what the test is... You are talking about a region where we currently have 3 out 39 seats in the House. Why is it that? When I (Gingrich) was Speaker we had a substantial number of seats in the region..."But in the last few weeks, Hoffman surged, raising more funds because he ended up getting the one true support that any Republican or Conservative candidate needs in this day and age: Hoffman won the backing of the Club for Greed, and it has become increasingly clear that whomever Club for Greed wants to back and drive into ruin, then Club for Greed gets it.
What does Scozzafava's dropping out mean?
Obviously, it means that from now on, anyone not in the Democratic party wanting to run for office better start kissing the boots and asses of the Club for Greed's leadership. Past that, well... read these guys.
Andrew Sullivan (two threads):
...No one knows what might happen now. For the insurgents, it means a scalp they will surely use to purge the GOP of any further dissidence. But the insurgents were also backed by the establishment, including Tim Pawlenty, who's supposed to be the reasonable center.
What we're seeing, I suspect, is an almost classic example of a political party becoming more ideological after its defeat at the polls. in order for that ideology to win, they will also have to portray the Obama administration as so far to the left that voters have no choice but to back the Poujadists waiting in the wings. And that, of course, is what they're doing. There is a method to the Ailes-Drudge-Cheney-Rove denialism. They create reality, remember?
From the mindset of an ideologically purist base - where a moderate Republican in New York state is a "radical leftist" - this makes sense. But for all those outside the 20 percent self-identified Republican base, it looks like a mix of a purge and a clusterfuck. If Hoffman wins, and is then embraced by the GOP establishment, you have a recipe for a real nutroots take-over. This blood in the water will bring on more and more and deadlier and deadlier sharks....Within the GOP whatever nerve anyone had to resist the imprimatur of Erickson, Malkin, RS McCain et al is surely gone now. If a moderate cannot survive even in up-state New York, it's over.
Moderate Voice (to be fair, the person posting this is NeoMugWump, so it may seem like I'm overlapping the postees which is not my intent):
...Think that this one taste of blood will satisfy the birthers, supremacists and Christianist extremists who fuel the teabagging movement? Wingnut, my friends, has not yet begun to peak.
Before moving on to something else, take a moment to sympathize with coalition builders like Newt and David Frum, no doubt tearing their hair out at the runaway success of Sarah Starbursts’ insurgent crusade.
The sad thing is that Hoffman doesn’t even know or care about issues affecting the district he is supposed represent should he win. Scozzafava knew her district,but because of her so-called liberal stances on gay marriage and abortion she is being drummed out of the party (My EDIT: well, she's not out of the Republicans. It's just she's not going to represent like she hoped).
How Scozzafava was treated makes me wonder how long I will keep the moniker of Republican. I consider myself a pragmatic conservative and will remain one. But I am increasingly finding it hard to stay in a party that does not want me even though I agree with them on more issues than I disagree with them.
The party is headed towards destruction. I don’t know if I want to be there for the end...
The reason why I have the title of this blog "Night of the Undead Greedheads" is because I'm going to finish up with a rant against the Club for Greed, which about only 7 people will ever see. Anyway.
Here's where we are in 2009 for the Republican Party: they've just finished most of the Aught Decade (2000-2010) mostly in control of all three branches of the Federal government. They had the Gingrich/DeLay/Armey faction in charge of Congress from 1994 to 2006. They had Cheney/Bush in the White House between 2000-2008. They had a 5-4 advantage in the Supreme Court.
They spent - literally in most cases - most of their decade in power tossing money about like drunken teenagers with their parents' credit cards, racking up huge debt and deficits by adhering to a strict massive-tax-cut policy that crimped the government's ability to, you know, actually afford all Teh Crazy Sh-t they wanted to buy. Billions of dollars to the Big Pharma under the guise of Medicare reform! Billions upon billions for two wars and nation-building occupations that became quagmires far deeper and more unstable than Vietnam! Lax regulation of federal oversight of our financial institutions allowing for massive toxic funds to clog the economy! More and more Government revenue lost to such deep tax cuts that when the time came for the Feds to try and handle a massive economic collapse caused by said toxic funds there wasn't enough wriggle room to pull off anything to truly re-stabilize the nation's economy (oh, sure the banks are safe, but try telling the 27 million UNEMPLOYED that we're out of the Bush Recession).
And why was that? Why did the Republican Party, once in power, acted so irresponsible with fiscal and business policies during their rule?
Because of the likes of the Club for
Growth Greed. They're not the only Far Right advocates of massive tax cuts, but they're the most noticeable. They're the ones who came up with the term RINO. They're the ones who highlight officials they call 'comrades' (ahh, that old SOCIALIST smear campaign crap) for attempting any policy or program that tries to provide public aid for people in need. They're the ones who back primary challenges against moderates or any Republican who yes raises taxes in attempts to balance the budgets and keep governments solvent, and they're the ones who prefer they LOSE the elections in order to ensure THEY remain in power among the GOP ranks, even as the Republican Party itself loses any actual voice, leadership, or effectiveness within the halls of Congress.
The Club for Greed is adamantly opposed to raising taxes, and tax hikes, ostensibly under the libertarian ideology that "government is the problem" and that people (read: Corporations) know better what to do with their hard-earned money than the government does. They're the ones who worship at the foot of the Laffer Curve: a simple Bell Curve claiming that the higher the tax rate, the less actual revenue it generates (without any actual numbers or stats to have backed it up) for the government. Of course, that Laffer Curve also demonstrated that the lower the tax rate, it also generates less revenue as well (in a perfect world according to the Laffer, the tax rate should be 50 percent!), but the Clubbers seem convinced that at the 30-35 percent tax rate we're basically at now, we're still on the HIGH end of that Curve (we're NOT).
The Club for Greed also opposed any government regulation of corporations, of the industries of high finance and banking at what not. Because, gosh, the United States always did so well when businesses were free of interference and oversight and allowed GREED to overrun our economies like in the 1920s and the 2000s. Yeah, I was in SARCASM mode that last sentence.
You would think, just getting out from under a massive economic collapse that even made Greenspan apologize, that the Club for Greed would have lost face, lost prestige, lost whatever access or connections to those in power granted them. We are right now living in a time where the Federal government is the one sure anchor we've got: 1/10 of the nation is unemployed, states are fighting to keep their budgets afloat, no one is hiring, people are on edge worried we're going to have another economic disaster around the corner because the banks and financial overlords responsible for last year's collapse are still around and getting more brazen with their tricks. This is, as any honest student of history will tell you, a time where Keynesiansim and not Randianism should be prevalent in economic/political thought. We simply can't afford to let the financial behemoths run ragged and smash everything again: We do need to raise revenue to be able to pay for the government programs that are needed to reset the engines of industry and business.
And yet, here's the tax-cutters claiming a RINO scalp that now gives the Democrats a respectable shot at securing yet another Congressional seat. The Greedhead Zombies rise from the dead.
In fact, the Club for Greed won't - CAN'T - die. For starters, they still have all the money: their deregulation/tax-cut advocacy still gets their coffers filled by those who profit literally from their defense of GREED. For another, there are enough foot soldiers within their ranks who are geniunely terrified of Socialism... despite the fact that such a threat is ludicrious (And also if they think FDR's New Deal was Socialist (they do) that shows how WRONG they are (The New Deal SAVED Capitalism: without it, the real Socialists or worse yet the Facsists would have taken over)). Such devoted, whacked-out devotees assures the Club for Greed won't fall until they themselves push their own destruction (it's called PRIDE, you GREEDHEADS, and it does come before a fall)...
So, this is what I learned a good long time ago. It's one of the reasons I gave up on the Republicans and left the Party that had already left me. It's why I still post comments on Sanders' NeoMugWump blog, wondering if he'll ever get the hint and find solace in independent voterhood.
It's also why I opened up this blog asking if anyone can help form a viable Third Party for true Moderates. Because I do geniunely think the Republicans are reflecting the path of self-destruction once mirrored by the Federalists and the Whigs. We're going to need another Party to fill the void when all the Club for Greed has left for their knee-capping efforts is 5 Senators and 29 Congressmen (no women) from Southern states... So let us now look to forming a Moderate Party, one dedicated to true political reform, sensible efforts to balance budgets including targeted tax hikes to afford needed government programs (like the military, natural disaster emergencies, public transit, effective interstate commerce, job safety, and funding of state-level programs such as education, law enforcement, and health care), and a respect for the Constitution (including recognizing the No Religious Test requirement as a means to ensure equal protection of ALL true faiths). All we really need is a Moderate with at least $300 million to spend... anyone? Anyone? Bueller?