Democrats on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown
I was amused to read the following from Mark Halperin in Time magazine last week: "Is it hyperbolic to say the Democratic Party is in the midst of a nervous breakdown?"
I immediately flashed on Pedro Almodovar's now classic Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (Mujeres al bordo de un ataque de nervios) in which a woman's lover leaves her, and she tries to contact him to find out why he's left.
In this case the lover would be the American public, which appears to be deserting the Democratic Party in droves. But the Democratic Party doesn't seem to want to contact them. It's only gotten worse since the election -- and that was bad enough. We now have Harry Reid flagrantly acting like the corrupt padrone he is, making sure his famiglia in the casinos is taken care of. (Note to Sarah Palin: Please stop supporting candidates who are obviously incompetent to hold office, as you did in Nevada. All this accomplishes is six more years of Reid. And it doesn't reflect well on you either.)
But back to Halperin. His actual explanation for the ataque de nervios is clueless, or should I say reified? Try as he may, he can't get outside his traditional mindset:
Democrats are understandably -- and largely justified in being -- frustrated that they lost an election based on Republicans defending tax cuts for the wealthy that are only expiring because of a budget gimmick championed by George Bush -- and based on criticism of their apparent lack of concern over the deficit, by a party that has shown no past or current seriousness about deficit reduction and the hard choices involved. Losing those political fights was as inexplicable as it was hard for the Democrats. Maybe that's why Thursday seemed to have donkeys melting down all over the place.
Largely justified?! Oh, I see. It's about George Bush again. Eureka! Never mind that all those tea party demonstrators -- you know, the ones that just helped elect the new Congress -- were more than willing to criticize Bush spending policies as well. They were a mirage (or, I forgot, racists).