October 12, 2013 (San Diego) Taegan Goddard reports over at Political Wire that negotiations have broken up once again. As we now look up to the Senate to save us, it is important to understand that this crisis is not a normal DC crisis. Yesterday Rachel Maddow FINALLY went there. She basically told us how much the Tea Party radicals cannot be predicted and how much they think they are right and the rest of us are wrong. First off, welcome to the fold Rachel. Some of us have been making these observations for years now. I see the professional DC \ NYC commentariat joining us, welcome guys and gals.
So let me expand on this. The Tea Party is not just a radical right wing faction, as I have written before at other places. They are a quasi religious cult, and they know what they say, their reality, is the only reality that counts. In this reality the country is a Christian nation, that best case scenario should be ruled under old testament principles. They take the City upon a Hill idea not as an essay written by Cotton Mather and spoken on board the Arbella to Puritan Settlers.
To Tea Parties, this is predestination, and why we are an exceptional nation, which Mather believed in. The United States is the New Jerusalem, we are indeed the new chosen people of Israel. God will judge us now that those dirty secularists have been able to spread their works, and destroyed that godly sense, like Sodom and Gomorra, that now approves of sinful life styles. This is where Congresswoman Michelle Bachman is coming from. When she speaks of the end times, she means it, in a religious sense. To her the fight against Obamacare, and the evil government, is eschatological, and manichean. It is literally a fight between good and evil. I will admit, there might be an “end of times” for the economy as we know it, but this is purely self inflicted. That event might trigger a further destabilization of the country, which might look like end times to these folks, again self inflicted.
But how about polls? Senator Ted Cruz is typical. Polls don’t matter in their minds, and in many ways they do not understand them. To be honest, most people do not understand the statistics that these are based upon, but polls do not matter. While polls at times do fail in their predictive power, they are not meant to predict either, they tend to be a snapshot in time of the feelings of a group. Right now Republicans are not too popular, and neither is the Hill.
The problem is that for the most part Tea Parties hang out in confirmation bias environments (so do many liberals but it is less extreme). To many in the Tea Party the President is not legitimate. He is not a United States Citizen, therefore, cannot hold the office he is holding. It is racial in some ways, but it is also a dynamic that started with Nixon. This dynamic means that any democrat is not a legitimate president. This dynamic has taken us here, to a moment in time when the country is becoming unstable.
These are the people who have taken over the Republican Party and sent that party into an internal civil war from hell. They are making demands of the White House that are popular with the self confirmed such as the Family Values Conference crowd, polls don’t matter, since they see themselves as warriors in the final battle. The default position is that polls and the media are liberal with a liberal bias, therefore they can be safely discounted as pure evil.
As a country we have been here before. I keep referring back to the dynamics just before the civil war that led to the rise of the GOP and the fall of the Whig party. Back then the know nothings were in the exact same boat, in their case it was a defense of slavery. They also talked state rights constantly, and nullification laws were passed to cancel Federal statues, just like we are seeing now. If anybody is surprised that John Boehner has no control over these people, well, you have not been paying attention. In the meantime let’s see how much damage they cause to the country, and how fast they blame everybody but themselves.
So talks have failed, anybody surprised anymore?
I will add, why the animus to the health care law? It’s not just the belief in the market as all powerful and only thing we should bow to. (We call that mamom and I believe it’s a demon but..). No, they do not believe in a safety net. You and I, Christians or not, might be very familiar with the Sermon on the Mount. Start getting very familiar with Thessalonians.
For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.
This is at the heart of this world view. It is a new way of Christianity that justifies wealth as proof of salvation and goes back to Calvin. It is a bad understanding of Calvinism, since even Calvin was turned away by this search for pure materialism. Regardless it is what it is. It’s been with us for a while, and this is now in a virulent form.
They also do not believe in the expansion of the health care system as an intrusion of the Feds into their lives. Never mind these are the same folks many a times screaming “keep the government out of my medicare.” This tension between local authorities and federal authorities has been there from before independence, but now it has become dangerous. Before independence it was between the counties and the Royal Governors.
So yes, good luck. None can predict what will happen here. We have radical forces in charge now.