So, if the Republican Party keeps marching off the cliff on the Right and falling further yet into the radical realm, the next question is: Will the Democratic Party be able to stop itself from continuing their follower-ship before they step off themselves?
The Republican platform isn’t surprising, but no less significant, in illustrating the power of moving Right along. From Peter Montgomery at AlterNet:
6 Right-Wing Zealots and the Crazy Ideas Behind the Most Outrageous Republican Platform Ever
The official 2012 Republican Party platform is a far-right fever dream, a compilation of pouting, posturing and policies to meet just about every demand from the overlapping Religious Right, Tea Party, corporate, and neo-conservative wings of the GOP. If moderates have any influence in today’s Republican Party, you wouldn’t know it by reading the platform. Efforts by a few delegates to insert language favoring civil unions, comprehensive sex education and voting rights for the District of Columbia, for example, were all shot down.
Montgomery’ list of six “are some of the people we can thank on the domestic policy front”: Bob McDonnell, Tony Perkins, David Barton, Kris Kobach, James Bopp, and Dick Armey. He details some of the actions taken by each that earned them a place on the list. An “honorable mention” goes to Mitt Romney.
This is his year, his party and his platform. The entire Republican primary was essentially an exercise in Romney moving to the right to try to overcome resistance to his nomination from activists who distrusted his ideological authenticity. …
The new GOP platform reflects Romney’s desire to placate every aspect of the party’s base. It also demonstrates both the continuing power of the Religious Right within the GOP, as well as ongoing efforts to erase any distinctions between social conservatives and anti-government zealots … .
At Real World Economics, Peter Radford writes about the Republican platform.
At its core it is a radical right wing document that seeks to undo the American social contract in place since the 1930’s and replace it with an earlier version. …
Among the planks of modernity to be trashed is Medicare. The Republicans are hell bent on getting rid of it. …
Along with its overt racism and anti-women stances on health issues, the Republican party has become a strange melange of anti-social libertarianism cobbled together with religious paternalistic authoritarianism, and gun happy violence embracing extremism.
The political conversation has been drive from and by the Right for quite some time now. The Democrats had an opportunity to change directions in 2008, and probably a good many who voted for Obama thought that’s what was going to happen. The Rightful slide was slowed, no doubt, but it continued in one-sided-bipartisan-like-actions and “pragmatic” steps related to the economy, war, security, environment, education, immigration, and the privatizing of every service, I mean product, possible.
A visionary leader who wanted to act on a real and serious national desire for “change” that would offer “hope” to those not only in the much-beloved-at-election-time “middle class,” but for the growing number of people living below that magic “middle class” line, including the growing number in poverty … such a leader, or such a party, has an incredible opportunity to propose and work toward policies which starkly contrast the extreme, over the cliff movement. Not just in campaign year language. Not just in timid, incremental shuffles toward the Left (often while keeping the other foot firmly planted to the Right). The radical Rightward movement, coupled with the obvious discontent and precarious economic situations of millions of citizens, provides the Democratic Party with a clearly defined opportunity actually to be “progressive” and “liberal.” Or for god’s sake, even just “centrist.”
Soon the GOP convention show will be over, shortly followed by the Dems show in Charlotte, and then by the last several weeks of the usual campaign stupidity. THE important thing for the parties, and for many voters is that “My side wins!”
And when winning is more important than policy, what do we get? We can watch the 2012 campaigns and election process to find out. The next act in the farcical play will feature whoever is in the WH and in majority / minority positions in Congress, and whatever the Robert’s Court declares the law of the land. At this point, there seem to be a lot of people happily stepping over the cliff, either cheering “My side won!” or jeering “Just wait until the next election!”