(After watching the Republican debate) For most of the U.S.A.’s 235 years, it’s been governed by a Sensible Center, sometimes from one major party, sometimes the other. But there’s no Sensible Center among these candidates. The Tea Party seems to have captured and occupied the Republican Party. Were the Green Party to infiltrate and capture the Democratic Party, offer a field of seven or eight Ralph Nader clones, each trying to out-Nader the others, the general election would be a gift to the Republicans. And unless a Reasonable Republican emerges out of the present line-up, none of those in this evening’s debate can convince Americans that a Radical Right ideologue should get the reins of power. Barack
Obama, the quintessential Sensible Centrist, seems to disgruntle some Democrats, who’d evidently prefer him to generate a little craziness on their behalf.
The prospect of a president who would try to dismantle social security, turn medicare and medicaid over to profit-seeking insurance companies, suck the blood out of education, end unemployment insurance, let infrastructure rot, promote fracking, pollution, deforestation, and drill-baby-drilling (even though there’s little oil left), would provoke riots in the streets. A Tea Party president would call out the troops, like Herbert Hoover did to out-of-work World War One vets when they set up a tent city in Washington DC. But this time, the troops would refuse to attack their own, and voilá! Egypt in the U.S.A.
The Tea Party is a bubble. Make that a boil. Unless it is lanced, American voters will have three election choices: Radical Right, Decent Democrat, or Stay-at-Home. Some Reasonable Right may do that, but so might some Disgruntled Democrats. The Tea Party will not stay at home.
So unless Republicans can come up with one candidate who isn’t an open-and-shut nut case, which might encourage Tea Party ideologues to Stay-at-Home, the general election could be a gift to the Democrats, although even that may depend on whether more Reasonable Republicans than Disgruntled Democrats decide to Stay-at-Home.