The Sickening Rot at the Core of the GOP
Patrick L. Smith, Salon: Donald Trump’s Biggest Crime Is His Honesty: How He Exposes the Sickening Rot at the Core of the GOP
“Talking nonsense is what you have to do to get anywhere in today’s Republican Party…. Or to put it another way, modern Republican politicians can’t be serious—not if they want to win primaries and have any future within the party. Crank economics, crank science, crank foreign policy are all necessary parts of a candidate’s resume.”
There is something in this not to be missed. In effect, the Republicans’ gamble is that the denial of the realities with which we live will prove attractive to enough voters to put a G.O.P. candidate in the White House. Two big things are at stake here. One, the Republicans may turn out to be right. Two, denial is essential to the right wing’s position. They are committed to refusing any acknowledgement of the requirements the 21st century imposes upon us.
Denial is totemic, then—a kind of ritual of refusal. It reflects, and I would say unmistakably, a deep, subconscious fear abroad among us. Many voters want to see and hear denials. They depend on the irrationality of each one.
This is what I mean by a self-destructing party—and the danger all of us will face if we get a Republican victory next year. We will be made prisoners of our past in all its real and imagined aspects. It is not possible, of course, to live well in such a space.