Tuesday, December 1

Drafting Dick Cheney: A Commentary of the Republican Party

Dick Cheney made going rogue popular long before Sarah Palin contemplated writing her book never mind thinking that she had the corner on that particular market. And a few days ago I saw a story that a group of people were planning to draft Dick Cheney, which puzzled me for a few minutes. My mental digression imagined drafting Dick Cheney for military service though we no longer have the draft yet I found that concept quite compelling considering Mr. Cheney's involvement in the WMD debacle and his position on escalating tensions in the Middle East, though I suspect he would see his efforts in a considerably different light. But then I read the title more closely and even skimmed the opening lines of the story to discover a group of people were seriously considering drafting Dick Cheney to run for president in 2012.

My next mental digression tried to imagine the sort of people who would want to draft a man like Dick Cheney for president of the United States as I just had to wonder where they had been living for the past 10 years and if they'd been paying attention to anything and a few other character notes that aren't particularly flattering nor very nice. The good news is that Cheney seems not to be interested, but it's not quite 2010 and as Cheney himself says, "it's far too soon to be handicapping." Sigh. I don't see "no" in there.

But then I started thinking about Sarah Palin and her book tour and the media flak and the RNC and the hobgoblins that seem to have invaded the majority of Republican politicians and remembering my experience of visiting the RNC web site in September. I went to the web site to use the "Tell Us What You Think" link which didn't work and which I found more irritating than amusing. I also found it rather indicative of the GOP.

You may recall that in September Joe Wilson, Republican Congressman from South Carolina, shouted "You lie!" during the president's health care reform speech. I wanted to share what I thought as this event was an interesting culmination of several not-quite-cascading, but certainly painful events. It occurred to me then that the RNC may have disconnected that link because it was already tired of hearing what people really thought about the party and its politicians.

Almost immediately after the incident, Wilson's web site was "offline for maintenance." I bet. And my thinking was then, as it now, that the GOP needs to be offline for a little maintenance. Joe Wilson, Sarah Palin, Dick Cheney, and Michael Steele, chair of the RNC, are symptoms of a widespread and deeply rooted disease.

If the "Tell Us What You Think" link had worked--and it might still not work; I haven't checked it recently because I don't think the RNC really wants to know--this is what I would have said and would say.

I'm a white female registered Republican who is often embarassed to admit that fact. I'm gainfully employed, for which I am truly thankful, and reasonably well-educated (I have a Ph.D.). On the page with the ineffectual "Tell Us What You Think" link, I was asked what I would like to see in the GOP. I would like to see actual leadership, professional behavior, humility becoming a public servant, better attitudes towards pretty much everyone, and, perhaps most importantly, vision.

You are an embarassment. You have taken up a mantle of hate-mongering and rhetorical hysteria. If you don't intend to be racist, you give every opportunity for people to cast you in such a light. Your voice is strident and cluttered; you seem incapable of being anything but incendiary and reactionary. You have touted no vision or certainly nothing new but tired ideas that reflect oblique or clouded thinking of an older time. You are old, boring, narrow-minded, and increasingly constipated of thought. While I will not likely ever become a Democrat, I am appalled by your behavior, your guerilla tactics of leadership, your lack of vision, and your lack of relevance. Arlen Spector, who switched to the Democrat side of the aisle only this year, appeared in a town hall and had the gall to say that he didn't have to be there. Really? Do you all forget for whom you work? It's really not the lobbyists. Did you forget the part about being in public SERVICE? In your myopic need to attack all things related to or coming from Obama, have you completely lost sight of what you were elected to do? Serve not the lobbyists or the special interest groups, but the Amerian people?

A lot of people don't care for this president, but, unlike Rush Limbaugh who was idiotic enough to say he hopes Obama fails, I most fervently hope the GOVERNMENT succeeds. If Obama fails, then Congress fails. If Congress fails, the America fails. Get a grip. That includes you clowns.

Let go of your ridiculously fragile egos, suck it up the President Bush wasn't the greatest president ever, remember that President Reagan wasn't quite as perfect as you seem to recollect, realize that though President Obama did not get a majority vote and that his ratings have gone down, there are a LOT of people who still believe in him. They want to believe, you see, that there are reasons to HOPE for CHANGE.

So instead of taking potshots behind whatever ideological barricads you have erected and instead of being so gleeful about small election wins, spend some time thinking about the direction in which the country is going and the paths we have stumbled down so far; realize that so-called Republican values may be outmoded ad may need to be updated though, to be honest, I have no idea what the RNC stands for any more except belligerent tirades from fear-mongering ultraright loudmouths who can't or won't listen. Start be proactive.

The GOP continues its death march to irrelevance. There is still time, but not much.

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