Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The GOP as Shrinky Dinks

Today's Republican Party bears scant resemblance to my parent's GOP. It seems to have shrunk not only in size but in wisdom, quality and ideas as well.

Remember that child's toy of the 70's called Shrinky Dinks? My kids loved to 'create' their cellophane art pieces then watch them shrink down in the oven. I note on the drawing above they even have the Republican elephant ready for shrinking. Cute little fella, ain't he?

My parent's GOP was solid, respected and filled with men and women who actually cared about the people they served. One wouldn't be ashamed to identify oneself as a Republican at a cocktail party.

Solid characters, morally sound men and women doing their best to move this nation forward while looking out for the interests of the working class.

That 60's song, 'Where have all the flowers gone?' comes to mind. Where have they gone? Abandoned ship, mostly, or voted out of office because they ran on the Republican ticket. I think of Christopher Shays of Connecticut and Jim Leach of Iowa, two outstanding legislators who were recently defeated simply because they were Republicans.

"Only this big," the girl in the photo seems to be saying.

Rather than purifying the party through attrition, as in a distillation process, the purge has left a toxic, smelly substance at the bottom of the flask- the essence of today's Republican Party. It has been skrinky danked! And the net result is awful.

Nearly every day one hears some idiotic and scary sound bite made by some Republican operative that curdles your inners. The party has moved so far to the right, that I'm thinking that it is on a slippery slope towards fascism. Just yesterday at a GOP rally in California, GOP congressman from the 2nd district, Wally Herger, praised a man in the audience who shouted out, "I am a proud right wing terrorist!" "Amen, God bless you," said the Republican, and continued, " There is a great American."

Isolated incident? Just one random kook? Sorry, not at all. Today's Republican Party is filled with legislators on the right-wing and ultra right-wing because the others have been distilled out. Congressmen like Herger are in solid right-wing districts populated by people of the same mindset. They are the toxic goo at the bottom of the flask.

One ought to revisit their high school history books to learn what most of us slept through: the rise of fascism in Spain, Italy and Germany in the 1930's. Whereas we found it most boring back then, it may sound refreshingly familiar to us these days.

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