David Brooks on Republican “fanaticism”: not “normal,” “not fit to govern”

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    Finally, a sane, serious Republican (the kind that used to fill this party – Weicker, Dole, Javits, Ford, Jeffords, Weld, Whitman, Meskill, Kassebaum, Holton, Chichester, Boehlert, etc. – calls out the warped, perverted, Frankenstein’s monster hybrid  — part John Birch Society, part Dixiecrat, part neoconservative, part Moral Majority, part National Front – that the current Republican Party has mutated into. Thank you, David Brooks!

    …the Republican Party may no longer be a normal party. Over the past few years, it has been infected by a faction that is more of a psychological protest than a practical, governing alternative.

    The members of this movement do not accept the logic of compromise, no matter how sweet the terms…

    The members of this movement do not accept the legitimacy of scholars and intellectual authorities

    The members of this movement have no sense of moral decency

    The members of this movement have no economic theory worthy of the name

    That about sums it all up, and it’s not like it takes a genius to figure it out. The question is, why aren’t more sane Republicans speaking out against the beady-eyed extremists who have taken over the once-great Party of Lincoln, Party of Teddy Roosevelt, Party of Dwight Eisenhower, and heck even Party of Reagan (who, today, would be on the far left fringes among the Republican House, Senate, or 2012 Presidential contenders not named “Huntsman” or possibly “Romney”)?

    My guess is, they’re a combination of: a) afraid to do so; and b) hoping they can channel the energy of the fanatic “tea partiers” without losing control of their party. But now, sane Republicans like David Brooks are seeing clearly what we’ve seen for a long time – this is simply not possible. Just to demonstrate how untameable those folks in the funny costumes are, check out this article, which describes how even the current crop of hard-as-hard-can-get right wingnut Republicans isn’t right wing enough for the tea partiers. Among these people, it’s all absolutes, black and white, essentially theological belief in whatever it is they believe (government is inherently bad; taxes are evil; giving money to rich people and corporations is fine, but progressive taxation is communist/socialist; President Obama is a Kenyan anti-colonialist/apologist for TheGreatestNationEverOnTheFaceOfTheEarth, etc., etc.) – no compromise, ever.

    In the end, what David Brooks is essentially asking is, can we have a functioning Democracy with one party controlled by people who are this crazy, this fanatic, this absolutist? Short answer: no. Longer answer: absolutely not. The question is, when will responsible Republicans – are there any left?!? – decide that country comes before party, even if it means they lose an election or two in the process (but in the end, save themselves – and the rest of us – from disaster)? Hello, John Boehner? Hello, Eric Cantor? Do you guys read David Brooks? Do you have the slightest clue what you’re doing?