In watching the latest Republican circus (ring one: gay-bashing; ring two: making sure that obscenely rich people get to keep more of their wealth), I was forcefully reminded of an idea that first occurred to me back in the Clinton years:
Democrats are too sane.
What I mean by this is that the Republicans have some seriously batshit people in Congress, from Rick Santorum to Sam Brownback (can we turn "Brownback" into a verb? "Yeah, the two of them met at the bar last night and spent the night brownbacking"), and some even crazier motherfuckers in the House. They push for crazy shit all the time.
And then the Republican leadership (sic), which is only marginally less bugfuck than their fringe, can settle on something that's only 80% insane, and look "moderate", and willing to "compromise" in doing so.
I don't even know what the left/progressive version of Rick Santorum would be. Someone who supports public group sex -- with animals -- in Central Park or the Boston Common? There simply is no one on the left as crazy as the whacked-out Right Whingers. There is certainly no one as extreme as the extreme Right in any level of government. When John Kerry is your example of a Dangerous Liberal, you clearly didn't look very hard.
And just think of how long it took them to find Ward Churchill after 9/11 -- months to find one lone nutball of an ethnic-studies professor at a mid-size university. That's the best they could come up with?
This goes hand-in-hand with the wingnut "think" tanks like the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute and the Cato Institute (which, credit where credit is due, is not as crazy as the others): these folks give cover to the not-quite-as-pathological "moderate" Right Whingers.
And the Democrats? They're people who have forgotten how to negotiate: they ask for what they want, rather than for what they know they can't get, and then they get 20% of what they want instead of 80% after the haggling is done.
Democrats are a bunch of pussies, basically.