Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Cult Of Republicanism

Kenneth M. O'Brien

The party of Lincoln is no longer a political party.

It has devolved into a religious cult.

Reasoned debate, the fundamental basis of a democratic society, no longer exists.

The Republican cult has proclaimed its articles of faith. Those who fail to conform are subject to excommunication.

The Nicene Creed of the Republican Cult has the following tenets:

1) Under no circumstances will we raise taxes. All Republican members of the US House and Senate have signed a pledge by Grover Norquist that they will not raise taxes under any circumstances;

2) No legislation will be supported that contravenes a “free market” philosophy;

3) Despite the qualifying language in the Second Amendment to the US Constitution, anyone is entitled to own guns of devastating capacity because “The government should fear its citizens”.

4) Despite the decisions of the Supreme Court, they will seek to limit a woman’s right to exercise sovereignty over her own body;

In addition to these articles of faith, there has been a relentless effort to deify Republican prophets, first and foremost Ronald Reagan.

Put forth in 2009, the so-called “Republican Purity Test” said:

 Proposed RNC Resolution on Reagan’s Unity Principle for Support of Candidates
WHEREAS, President Ronald Reagan believed that the Republican Party should support and espouse conservative principles and public policies; and
WHEREAS, President Ronald Reagan also believed the Republican Party should welcome those with diverse views; and
WHEREAS, President Ronald Reagan believed, as a result, that someone who agreed with him 8 out of 10 times was his friend, not his opponent; and
WHEREAS, Republican faithfulness to its conservative principles and public policies and Republican solidarity in opposition to Obama’s socialist agenda is necessary to preserve the security of our country, our economic and political freedoms, and our way of life; and
WHEREAS, Republican faithfulness to its conservative principles and public policies is necessary to restore the trust of the American people in the Republican Party and to lead to Republican electoral victories; and
WHEREAS, the Republican National Committee shares President Ronald Reagan’s belief that the Republican Party should espouse conservative principles and public policies and welcome persons of diverse views; and
WHEREAS, the Republican National Committee desires to implement President Reagan’s Unity Principle for Support of Candidates; and
WHEREAS, in addition to supporting candidates, the Republican National Committee provides financial support for Republican state and local parties for party building and federal election activities, which benefit all candidates and is not affected by this resolution; and
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Republican National Committee identifies ten (10) key public policy positions for the 2010 election cycle, which the Republican National Committee expects its public officials and candidates to support:
(1) We support smaller government, smaller national debt, lower deficits and lower taxes by opposing bills like Obama’s “stimulus” bill;
(2) We support market-based health care reform and oppose Obama-style government run healthcare;
(3) We support market-based energy reforms by opposing cap and trade legislation;
(4) We support workers’ right to secret ballot by opposing card check; (5) We support legal immigration and assimilation into American society by opposing amnesty for illegal immigrants;
(6) We support victory in Iraq and Afghanistan by supporting military-recommended troop surges;
(7) We support containment of Iran and North Korea, particularly effective action to eliminate their nuclear weapons threat;
(8) We support retention of the Defense of Marriage Act;
(9) We support protecting the lives of vulnerable persons by opposing health care rationing and denial of health care and government funding of abortion; and
(10) We support the right to keep and bear arms by opposing government restrictions on gun ownership; and be further
RESOLVED, that a candidate who disagrees with three or more of the above stated public policy position of the Republican National Committee, as identified by the voting record, public statements and/or signed questionnaire of the candidate, shall not be eligible for financial support and endorsement by the Republican National Committee; and be further
RESOLVED, that upon the approval of this resolution the Republican National Committee shall deliver a copy of this resolution to each of Republican members of Congress, all Republican candidates for Congress, as they become known, and to each Republican state and territorial party office.”

The lifeblood of politics is money. If you don’t believe, you get no money. Ergo, politically you die!

Tonight we will have the opportunity to witness the first Republican Presidential Candidate Debate for 2012. Let’s see how many of these candidates stray from these articles of faith.

Even more telling is the absence of any candidates of substance. As Steven Colbert observed, “Good seats are still available…On Stage.”

The fundamental point is that, it is no longer possible to reach a reasonable compromise to benefit Americans. Republicans have been co-opted by an American version of the Taliban who are guided by articles of faith. Facts and reason don’t matter. They will stick to their convictions, despite any rational evidence to the contrary in pursuit of their version of seventy-two virgins and rivers of honey – the rest of you be damned.

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