Watching the election returns on TV provided the perfect opportunity to observe the “business as usual” paradigm at work. The dominant narrative is that the re-taking of the House by Democrats (insert sigh of relief here) means that the President must now work with the “opposition” party if he wants to get anything done. Bush is now a wounded, lame duck president.
The pundits and assorted TV bubble-heads still don’t seem to notice that this lame duck is a unitary executive duck. And it only knows how to quack one way. The idea that Bush (or the hands inside the Bush costume, i.e., Richard Cheney and associates) would ever work with the Democrats is such wishful thinking that it may qualify as science fiction. These guys will continue to do whatever they damn well please under the rubric of “national security” and the “war on terror.” They don’t care if the government “works” properly, a fact which Katrina should have proved once and for all. But denial is a wonderful thing. (And the name “Katrina” was notable for its complete absence during election night coverage.)
The Democrats are apparently laboring under the same delusion, what with all the talk of working together, reaching across the aisle, and so forth. Maybe they believe it, although Republican behavior over the last twelve years makes me doubt that. What we really have is a situation in which the Democrats and the media enablers are too frightened to say the truth out loud: that we have a lawless, illegitimate, rogue presidency that is threatening the foundations of American liberty. The theory, I suppose is that announcing that the bus driver is insane would increase the chances of the bus driving off a cliff. Better to pretend that the driver, no matter how strangely he behaves, will obey all traffic laws.
I don’t agree. I think the Democrats need to be merciless towards a foe that did not shrink from accusing them of “aid and comfort to the enemy.” But it won’t happen because the Democrats are also beholden to business interests, and we all know that. The responsibility for the future of our country lies not with them but with us—I mean the progressive community. Only a vital, growing progressive movement can force the Democrats to do what’s right. A new party (say, for instance, a Labor Party) would be nice, but that’s a long way down the road. In the meantime, we’re stuck with the donkey, and it will only listen if we stay active and committed.
Anyway, CNN’s coverage was remarkably free of insight into the issues. MSNBC offered a bit more entertainment, albeit coordinated by the incredibly narcissistic Chris Matthews. Over at the Zombie Channel, we had the usual gang of idiots headed by cold fish Brit Hume (with Bill Kristol flashing his satanic little smile as he tried to spin what was happening into his neocon framework). I confess that I could only watch brief snatches, since I forgot to take my anti-nausea medication. I did notice, however, that Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, Ann Coulter, Michelle Malkin, and other assorted psychos were conspicuous by their absence. They were hidden away because the network thought that a somewhat different audience (to wit, grown-ups) may be watching on election night. I'm sure things are back to normal now.
Make no mistake. What happened last night was a good thing. Witnessing the voters rejecting the Royalist party in droves was cathartic for me. I am disappointed that Jon Kyl, the crypto-Nazi senator from my state (