Subscribe via RSS Feed

People who only talk to themselves either already are or drive themselves crazy.

[ 53 ] September 20, 2012 |

After the past week and, well, the past twenty-four hours, I think it’s become clear to conservatives that their strategy to install Mitt Romney in the White House has failed. As strategies go, it had its charms: conservatives would only talk and watch and read other conservatives, thereby eliminating the possibility that they might hear or see or read anything that failed to conform to their prejudices. For months, this strategy seemed to be working. They had convinced themselves and each other that Obama, being the worst president in the history of the United States, couldn’t be elected again if the opposition candidate had some appeal to the center. So they chose Mitt Romney.

Unfortunately, Mitt Romney also chose them. He started to appeal to the conservative base in order to acquire what had already been delivered. He was supposed to bring in the centrists, but he and his campaign chose tactics designed to further secure the base. The irony is that his appeals to the base have only angered and alienated it. His “inelegant” iterations of their cherished theories have set the terms of the national debate against conservatives, such that any argument about equitable taxation must begin by discussing the 47 percent instead of job creation. In the war to frame the debate, conservatives now believe, Mitt Romney has unwittingly played the role of Benedict Arnold.

With the former opportunist Romney now considered an extremist, what are the actual extremists to do? If the past week is any indication, they are going to spend the next two months losing their shit to establish their bona fides. Now that they have no reason to appeal to center, or to rational thought generally, we are in for two months of:

Barack Obama has been building a cult of personality reminiscent of fascist leaders. That doesn’t mean he’s a fascist; it doesn’t mean that he’s Hitler or Mussolini or Stalin. But his semiotics and iconography are far more suited for a fascist country than a vibrant republic.

Of course Ben Shapiro has no clue what “semiotics” actually means, but it makes him sound like an authority on something, in this case the “fascist” field of branding. Instead of being annoyed that, from Shepard Fairey forward, the Obama campaign team has simply demonstrated a more sophisticated understanding of contemporary advertising than any of its Republican opponents, Shapiro wants to claim that the use of “iconography” is “far more suited for a fascist country than a vibrant republic.” And it doesn’t matter how many images of the Twin Towers falling or acting Presidents in flight suits you show him, Shapiro will never believe that any other administration has ever used the power of singular images to sway public opinion. It’s only ever been Obama.

This is but the tip of the iceberg.

The knotted fringes of the far right movement no longer have any reason to remain tangled, so as their weak coalitions unravel expect to hear more about every inane and insane theory that’s dogged the administration since before Inauguration Day 2009. I fully expect the next two months will witness some of the most absurd political theater ever to grace the American stage, and I fully expect that while some of it will make me weep for the state of our great republic, quite a bit of it will provide me with an endless hours of entertainment.

Comments (53)

Trackback URL | Comments RSS Feed

  1. c u n d gulag says:

    Yes, the next two months may be endlessly entertaining, if you’re far enough from their poo-flinging to not get some feces in the face.

    And the “N-word” will be screamed at one point – and by some Republican not unknown to the public.

    But, we’d better also hope for a total electoral debacle from them.

    Because if the Republican keep the House, and have a fairly decent majority, they will start impeaching President Obama for ANYTHING and EVERYTHING!

    “Fast and Furious.”
    Apologies as appeasement.
    Non-disclosure of his College records.
    Insufficient scandals – something MUST be going on!
    Making an ass out of a national hero – Clint Eastwood.
    Fathering black children.

    And in 2016, a Presidential tickets of some combination of Glenn Beck, Jim DeMint, Steve King, or Michele Bachmann.

    Poor Paul Ryan will be tainted by the loss in 2012, and will return to his families road paving business, to await the Republican Parties return to “sanity.”

    • DocAmazing says:

      the “N-word” will be screamed at one point – and by some Republican not unknown to the public.

      Those “Don’t Re-Nig in ’12″ bumperstickers aren’t just being put up in dark and inaccessible places. The N-word is already making the rounds; it’s just that no one wil admit to being the one who uttered it. It’s a bit like flatulence.

    • mds says:

      Poor Paul Ryan will be untainted by the loss in 2012, and will return to his families road paving business House seat, to await the Republican Parties return to “sanity.” appearing endlessly on Sunday talk as the “wonk” with bold ideas.

      As the young people say, FTFY.

  2. Derelict says:

    They had convinced themselves and each other that Obama, being the worst president in the history of the United States, couldn’t be elected again if the opposition candidate had some appeal to the center. So they chose Mitt Romney.

    That’s not the primaries as I remember them. I seem to recall that the party’s primary voters were firmly in the camp of ANYBODY BUT MITT–so much so that they entertained every crackpot who had $100 and a minivan in Iowa. Remember who the leading contenders were at some point in the primaries? Bachmann, Perry, Santorum, Gingrich, Caine.

    No, Mitt became the nominee because all the other halfwits imploded and/or got buried under a Mittload of cash.

    Now the right is stuck with Money-Boo-Boo as their nominee and they’re shocked that the nation at large dislikes him as much as they do.

    • SEK says:

      I could’ve put “chose” in scare-quotes, but I thought the point was clear enough: Romney “won” the primary by being political pablum and seeming “electable,” which most of the “sensible” people in the party thought was required to win. Then he did, and now he’s appealing to the very people who tried to sink his candidacy, and surprise! It’s not working.

    • njorl says:

      Republicans made of flesh and blood were looking for “anybody but Mitt” and failing to find him. Republicans made of money never went looking. It wasn’t ironclad, like when they picked Dole or Bush, but it was always going to be Mitt.

      • I don’t really think that’s true, because Romney was only ever really threatened in small states, caucus states, and Iowa. Which is to say, the hard right conservative activists were very much against him, but it would seem that a sizeable chunk of rank and file Republican voters in places like Florida preferred him to the clown show of challengers, at least.

    • Davis X. Machina says:

      The primaries showed you don’t need somebody to beat nobody.

      The general election is showing you can’t beat somebody with nobody.

    • tt says:

      More importantly, Romney won because not-Romney split their votes. Even in New Hampshire Romney only got 40%. It’s very unlikely Romney would have won a two way race.

      • Meh, depends on the candidate. If Perry had been mildly competent as a campaigner? If Pawlenty hadn’t dropped out of the race early? Then Romney would have been beaten. But I don’t think Cain/Newt/Frothy/CrazyEyes could have beaten Romney even one on one over a protracted campaign. Maybe Newt if he could have gotten everyone else out of the way, but I doubt it.

    • Uncle Kvetch says:

      Money-Boo-Boo

      Harrumph^100

  3. njorl says:

    I can’t wait to start maximizing my use of “inelegant”.
    “Is that your dog under my car? I’m sorry my driving was inelegant, but I stand by my parking.”

  4. James E. Powell says:

    I will always wonder how a primary season between Romney and Huckabee would have played out.

    • Malaclypse says:

      I will always be grateful we will never know.

      I know one thing – John Stewart would never have written “Chaos on Bullshit Mountain” if Huckabee were the nominee.

  5. burritoboy says:

    That’s what happens to American conservatives after most big depressions / recessions, especially if they’re running the show in the period in the run-up to the depression. They didn’t behave themselves any better in the 1930s either, even when they were near extinction.

  6. Major Kong says:

    I always thought those black “W” stickers would have looked really good on an armband…

  7. Bitter Scribe says:

    Some people keep urging Mittens to “take the gloves off.” I hope he does. That would be priceless.

    • BigHank53 says:

      I, too, look forward to seeing the gleaming serrated stainless-steel flensing blades of the Mittbot’s primary manipulators.

    • Pays income taxes and votes Obama says:

      Oh please Oh please. That is JUST what the GOP needs – to have Romney go full birther in the debates.

      “You sir, have increased taxes on people, cut the military, drastically increased the number of government employees, and apologized to our enemies.”

      Moderator: Mr. Obama, your response.

      “I’ll wait a few moments so the fact checkers can finish their notes.”

      • Cody says:

        150% of the media would instantly say “Obama lost this debate. He had to rely on facts!”

        And if you think I’m kidding… just re-watch the DNC coverage.

    • Ooh, maybe he’ll unleash Chiang!

  8. thebewilderness says:

    The thing about preaching to the converted is that sometimes when you really hit the heights of conviction and take it to the place you yearn to go even the converted start giving you the side eye.

  9. Halloween Jack says:

    So, the Technically-Not-Still-(But-Still-Seeming-Like-It-Somehow-)Virgin Ben is bitching about Obama’s “iconography” on a site that is still trying to canonize its dyspeptic, fuming founder? That’s rich. Shapiro, of course, would think that he’s immune to accusations of hypocrisy because no one would ever dream of iconizing him, which is true, if painfully obvious.

    In the meantime, I may have to finally get around to making myself one of these.

    • Joey Maloney says:

      Dare I ask how we know that Ben has handed in his V-card? Is there video? Please tell me there isn’t video.

      • redwoods says:

        He’s married. Hard to believe the world is such a hard place that a woman would be ground down enough to accept that proposal, but there we are.

        • John (not McCain) says:

          But if the pre-nup specified no nookie, and surely any competent lawyer would have insisted on behalf of the fiancee, it’s still just him and a stained Breitbart collage.

  10. [...] I had to do was dither around the site to which I’d already linked to find evidence that my prediction about the next two months is correct. Because as it turns out I somehow missed this: Breitbart News is doubling its reward—to [...]

  11. herr doktor bimler says:

    I fully expect the next two months will witness some of the most absurd political theater ever to grace the American stage

    Starting with a production of Ionescu’s “The Chairs”.

  12. Kyle says:

    Barack Obama has been building a cult of personality reminiscent of fascist leaders.

    This from the ideological home of the Reagan Legacy Project, whose needy goal was to name a monument after their strong-daddy-figure in all 3000+ counties in the US.

  13. [...] (typeof(addthis_share) == "undefined"){ addthis_share = [];}After reading the two posts I wrote yesterday evening, SOMEONE FROM HIGH SCHOOL decided that he’d had enough, but [...]

  14. BC says:

    . . . every inane and insane theory that’s dogged the administration since before Inauguration Day 2008

    Hmmm, can’t remember the inauguration in 2008, but I must assume you meant to infer that Obama, according to our friends on the extreme right, was president during the economic meltdown in 2008. Otherwise, just a calendar error?

  15. Tehanu says:

    Of course Ben Shapiro has no clue what “semiotics” actually means,

    I know, isn’t it cute? Apparently Ben is still a virgin in the realms of intellect too.

  16. [...] Guns and Money’s SEK expects that in the aftermath of Mitt Romney’s collapse as a candidate, American extremists are [...]

  17. Suzette says:

    Hey there! Would you mind if I share your blog with my twitter group?
    There’s a lot of people that I think would really appreciate your content. Please let me know. Thank you

  18. Pay Day says:

    I’ve loaded your blog in 4 different browsers and I must say your blog loads a lot quicker then most. Would you mind e-mailing me the name of your web hosting company? My personal email is: kara.boswell@freenet.de. I’ll even sign
    up through your own affiliate link if you’d like. Cheers

Leave a Reply




If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a Gravatar.

  • Switch to our mobile site