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A Message From Ike

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Watching the Republican party redefine "right-wing ideology" on a daily basis is starting to make my head spin. Historians of this period will no doubt be confounded by this bizarre transformation of the 'Party of Lincoln' as it careens out of control. One of the examples they will point to is the difference between 'Goldwater conservatives' and today's teaparty driven elected GOP politicos as they try to curry favor with a voting base that seems to have utilized a brand of ideological white-out that any sane person using a rational approach to political analysis will not be familiar with. Digby over at Hullaballoo turns me on to a quote that I, like her, would have bet the house on that could only be attributed to Howard Dean. Not only is it astonishing who the author of the quote in question is, it should also serve as a warning to those who do not heed its message:
"Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that believes you can do these things. Among them are a few Texas oil millionaires, and an occasional politician or business man from other areas. Their number is negligible and they are stupid."
And the dispenser of this infinite wisdom? One Dwight David Eisenhower. I'm just dumbfounded. Not only is the source of the quote astonishing it serves as a crystallization of the difference between yesterday's 'Goldwater conservative' and today 'Teaparty Republican.'

In the movie Butch Cassidy & The Sundance Kid Paul Newman's Butch Cassidy peers out at a posse they can't shake and wonders, "Who ARE those guys?" Historians will be looking back at today's GOP and asking the same thing.