Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Why Conservatives Can't Govern

From AlterNet:

Second, conservatives are acutely aware that they represent a minority, not a majority, position in America. From Nixon to Lee Atwater to Karl Rove, they play politics and exploit America's divides with back-alley brass knuckles -- from Reagan's welfare queen to Bush's impugning the patriotism of Georgia Senator Max Cleland, a Vietnam War hero who literally sacrificed his limbs in the service of his country. They excel in the politics of personal destruction, as Democratic presidential candidates Michael Dukakis and John Kerry discovered. And in the grand tradition of the establishment in American politics, they are relentless in seeking to suppress the vote, particularly of the poor and minorities who would vote against them in large numbers.

Click here for more.

The essay's first point is that conservatives totally buy the concept of an all-powerful Presidency, especially during wars, which tends to erode the Constitutional balance of powers, and therefore US government, whenever they hold the Oval Office. I also would throw into the mix the point of view, well articulated elsewhere, that, since conservatives bought Reagan's line back in the 80s that "government is the problem," all they really know how to do is dismantle government, instead of running it effectively. But I like a great deal the idea expressed in the excerpt above: the right wing knows that if most Americans knew what they're really about they'd never, ever, ever hold office again, which is why they have to lie and smear rather than advance their views on merit alone.

That is the sole reason FOX News exists.