S/SW blog philosophy -

I credit favorite writers and public opinion makers.

A lifelong Democrat, my comments on Congress, the judiciary and the presidency are regular features.

My observations and commentary are on people and events in politics that affect the USA or the rest of the world, and stand for the interests of peace, security and justice.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Republican Leadership Report Cards

The first 100 days of the Obama administration have not been good for Republican leaders. They have seen approval ratings drop and members of the party flee to the label of "Independent." They get failing grades in party leadership, in their "perceived" leaders' performance, in Congress and as Governors.

Congressional leadership: Grade F -- House Minority Whip, Eric Cantor, has taken on a great deal of the leadership role of opposing President Obama. They engage fairly regularly in very respectful verbal "toe-to-toes." Both very smart, they seem a good match for each other. Cantor started leading the "No" campaign early on, but now appears to be taking the tack of "Republicans have the good ideas. The Democrats just won't listen to us." Republicans will never get a "yes" to outrageous and unreasonable proposals.

Perceived leaders seize on red herrings: Grade D -- Salon's Glenn Greenwald has the story: "The ultimate reaping of what one sows: right-wing edition" — Right-wing polemicists today are shrieking in self-pitying protest over a new report from the Department of Homeland Security sent to local police forces which warns of growing “right-wing extremist activity.” This is what all the shrieking was about. "DHS Sees Resurgence in Rightwing Extremism" was posted by Steven Aftergood on Secrecy (4/17/09). Predictably -- to quote,

The report has drawn attention from several conservative bloggers and talk show hosts, who interpreted the report’s references to right-wing positions on abortion, immigration and gun control as defamatory in this context. The “document targets most conservatives and libertarians in the country,” according to The Liberty Papers blog.

. . . In an April 15 statement on the report, Secretary Napolitano said: “We are on the lookout for criminal and terrorist activity but we do not – nor will we ever – monitor ideology or political beliefs.”

Republican IQ: sometimes below 100 -- Too much of the time for my taste, Politico leans right. On 4/20/09, writer David S. Cloud incorrectly headlined this question "Can GOP paint Obama as apologist?" To quote:"Republicans are hoping they have finally found the secret to taking on President Barack Obama — by portraying him as overly apologetic about U.S. misdeeds and naive about engaging unfriendly regimes abroad." This writer used the word "apologist" incorrectly. Actually being an apologist is a good thing for President Obama. He defends all kinds of good things. The word "apologist" is a noun, meaning:

a person who writes or speaks in defense or justification of a doctrine, faith, action, etc.

Citation: apologist. (2009). In Webster's New World College Dictionary

  • Retrieved April 27th, 2009, from

    Party leadership: Grade Incomplete -- The bulk of Republicans refuse to let Michael Steele be the leader of the party. As Governors, the Republicans who refused to participate in the "stimulus" bill's provisions to the states should also receive an Incomplete. Some changed their minds, some said one thing and did another, etc. And all this breaks my heart. The nation needs an effective "loyal opposition" party, not the party of "no," not endless infighting amongst themselves, not stupidity and ignorance, not arbitrary narrowness, and not petty carping all the time. They need to nurture the moderates again. They will remain at risk until they come to their senses.

    [Post date 4/27/09]

    See also Behind the Links, for further info on this subject.

    Carol Gee - Online Universe is the all-in-one home page for all my websites.

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