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The Grand Party

January 13, 2010

Is Harry Reid a racist or does the GOP just like watching the neighbors fight?

The GOP is looking dreadfully petty these days. Irresponsible and melodramatic language married with an impetuous defensiveness that borders – on shifty. Theatrics, an almost childish ‘look at me’ – that doesn’t slow down for double standards or pretense, nor does it fear the brand of insincerity.

Quite unusual for the party of character, values and integrity?

But that was then; and now, pump jockeys and deejays lower the bar till the GOP ‘goes reality’. And why not, your audience is already there?

I’m reminded that only the governing party has the ‘tools of leadership’. While Rahm Emanuel can be the Democratic Party strong-arm for the President, the GOP only has contenders for leadership; all vying for our attention, and deviously willing to misbehave to get it. None are concerned with the Republican brand, and most prefer to shape it in their image.

The difference between opposition and divisiveness is found in the hostility (which isn’t required or welcome), in the fractiousness (taking no conceivable high ground but scorching earth nonetheless), and in the delivery; particularly by renegade malcontents – whose frenzied heresy is never convincing (and is often a little frightening).

The Republican brand has issues. Natural leadership is absent. Common sense (and the refreshing flavor of citizen candidates) was unrealized in Palin? A war; unplanned, deceitfully engaged and with victory prematurely (yet arrogantly) declared – all tarnish GOP credibility – of course! Like poisoned Tylenol; Republicans have some rebuilding to do.

The War on Terror is off limits (grow TF up). Anyone suggesting publically that we’re not ‘safe’ is a fear monger. There is simply no rational basis for such a bloated and hysterical claim (we are at greater mathematical risk from our spouses) and, (here it is); it gives aid and comfort to the enemy!  It also gives them the illusion of victory or the possibility of one. Republicans should be natural leaders in unity (at least on terrorism) but failing that they can learn to shut up and support the President (as so very many Democrats and Moderates did for Little Bush). This is not brand optional!

And if there is any remaining illusion that Republicans are the exclusive, or natural guardians of peace, reason, security and law; I’d remind the GOP of a recurring behavior with power and privacy. It was after all Vice President Cheney’s office publically released the name of an undercover spy. This act (if committed by anyone else) is called treason, and is punishable by death. I remain mystified as to why Cheney would even have access to (or interest in) ‘the NOC (non-official cover) list’ but regardless; he and his Republican brethren didn’t keep the information, our spy or us – safe! 

Resistance to health reform is fair game. Concern over stimulus is reasonable (but dangerous since the GOP raided Mommy’s purse and ran her plastic up by several trillion dollars). Republicans can perhaps get traction on economic issues and jobs – without stuttering, in support of the greater confidence and recovery.

If you take the high road – the high ground always comes easier.

There are a few Republicans holding the party (and the opposition) up – and without a lot of help. John McCain is certainly (usually) among them. The true leaders of the Republican Party won’t give rise to an attack on The President’s citizenship or molest Harry Reid on racism. They are secure enough in themselves to recognize The President’s leadership without surrendering to it, able to see and debate his vision without being blinded by rage.

This week, Republican Governor Schwarzenegger (a strong supporter of health reform), came out with details on how the House and Senate proposals would affect California’s budget, explained why he had to withdraw his support and encouraged California’s delegates to follow his regrettable lead.

It may have been political – but it wasn’t cheap. Leadership rarely is!


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