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Attack of the Zombie Republicans: Part 2

The GOP’s Oompa-Loompa.

John Boehner is in dress rehearsal to become the Speaker of the House for the putative Republican Congress, and what the feverish partisans among us need to accept is that this chain-smoking, conflict-averse, glad-handing and peculiarly orange-tinged golfer is the pay-off for the last two years of Lilliputian turmoil.

No matter how successful the Tea Party and Club for Growth vote on Election Day–60-seat swing! coup de main!–all the king’s horses cannot do more come January and the 112th Congress than to wait on the modest brainpower of a 61-year-old professional Ohio pol who, on his best day, is described by a wag as so out of touch with the American culture that he thinks of himself as cool, just like Dean Martin.

What does John Boehner say of his plans for the No. 3 job in the Republic? Two of his recent policy speeches in Cleveland and Milwaukee are so stunningly facile that there is an open question as to whether the guileless Mr. Boehner is putting us on.

Boehner warned with a mighty trumpet, “Never before has the need for a fresh start in Washington been more pressing.” Boehner cried out like a blue-eyed Jeremiah for “a series of immediate actions to end the ongoing economic uncertainty…” Boehner proposed with drum-rolling militancy, “…We must focus on working together to identify our national security priorities …”

What explains this colossal banality? Grant that Boehner is a foreign-policy tenderfoot after two decades of kissing the hem of the domestic Abramoffs. Still, his remarks on the economy suggest, as Mark Twain taught us to repeat, that he is an idiot as well as a member of Congress.

It may be possible that Boehner, one of 12 children of a modest tavern keeper in Cincinnati, has worked so hard at being an anonymous footman since entering Congress in 1990 as part of Newt Gingrich‘s dynamiters that he’s incapable of the cogency associated with historical memory.

He might be nothing more than what we see: a maitre de pork, a Buckeye hack on the make, a fall guy who played Newt’s bagman for tobacco companies on the floor of Congress once upon a time in 1995, who inherited the IED ruins of the GOP House from the fleeing Tom DeLay in January 2006, who took a palooka’s dive for Hank Paulson’s TARP folly in 2008, and who has clung to his “Leader Boehner” with the bravery of a parasite these last years of leading the “No” team as if it were destiny.

Then again, it is also possible that Boehner has taken on this rinsed-out golfing partner act just because he is struggling to stay youthful, hip, in step with his backroom boys.

Boehner may have an envy problem and, if so, it is making him sillier and sweatier by the week.

The problem has names: Eric Cantor, Kevin McCarthy and Paul Ryan.

Easily the most self-involved Republican tyros since TR and Cabot Lodge, they call themselves the “Young Guns,” and they do this without measurable irony. Not only does the trio offer a new book, Young Guns, of sensationally unoriginal genius–”…less Washington and more hope, opportunity and freedom…”–but also they have produced a YouTube video that sets a new standard for suicidal vanity. Appearing in open-necked white shirts, either like frosh virgins or West Hollywood parking valets, they gaze longingly at each other with a soundtrack of celestial choir-wailing and a script written from Frank Capra outtakes. “America is at a crossroads … a new team is ready to bring America back … together they are ready to make history … innovative, energetic, forging new solutions … a new generation of conservative leaders.”

As we watch the manly gunslingers stride purposefully down the horse trail together, it is worth considering that this trio is about to be given the keys to the House of Representatives because John Boehner is spooked by their togetherness.

It is an incredible fact that John Boehner thinks calling yourself a “Young Gun” is a vote-getter.

The “Young Gun” video is humorless, callow, tyrannically stupid–including the phallic Washington monument under photoshopped storm clouds and a cameo with a frightened, angry citizen shouting down the surly, worn Arlen Specter.

If the video were less inane, it would be a burden to the GOP comparable to Michael Steele cracks. As it is, it is a threat only to John Boehner’s fantasy life.

Consider what the rest of us see in the “Young Guns,” who are neither young nor noticeably armed.

Eric Cantor, VA-7 (R), has limited social skills and no charisma; his position as majority leader-in-waiting is built on the money he can raise as the only Jewish Republican in the Solar System.

Kevin McCarthy, CA-22 (R), is a backslapper and small-talker from a safe district, who can work a room full of Gingrich cronies as a stand-in for the slow-tongued Cantor. McCarthy is useless as muscle, as an enforcer, because, says an observer, “That would put him in a position [where] he was unpopular.”

Paul Ryan, WI-6 (R), is the babyface of the lot, no money, but lots of braininess about taxes and spending. Ryan loves to spew numbers in Cantor’s earshot, which makes Cantor feel smart and less bad about the fact that he voted for TARP twice and every other bank bail-out he could find in Nancy Pelosi’s kitchen.

Ryan also has the problem of two “yes” votes to TARP. Oddly, McCarthy, thinking of his options, rejected TARP twice, but he is too polite to bring it up to his amigos, the “young conservatives” Eric and Paul.

Cantor, McCarthy and Ryan are most of the faces that Boehner sees in his smoke rings when he orders his food-taster changed monthly and feels a chill as he starts another cigarette. Another face Boehner sees is Mike Pence, IN-6 (R), an older gun, sort of a pop gun, who is generally uninvolved in the intrigues in the House because he fancies himself presidential timber, another Hoosier without a sense of proportion.

Boehner also knows that Cantor has presidential ambitions. Surprised? There is no sentimental limit to the delusions of these fellows, and why would there be? The pollsters tell us that this wave election will sweep out the Democrats. By default and for no other reason, a great deal of the responsibility in the First Article of the Constitution will then pass to the hands of men who have eyes only for themselves and their self-described guns.

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  • Jackie

    This was a really funny piece.  I didn’t agree with all of it, especially the TARP criticism–where exactly would we be right now with “let them fail”–but this was still really funny.  I especially liked the Boehner description: “rinsed-out golfing partner act”.  I’m stealing that one.

  • stodghie

    let me keep this very simple! democrat no on any day of the week and twice on sunday. anyone else hell yes!

  • EllenD

    BTW, I wonder who Mr. Batchelor does like in his party?

    I believe Nevada is one of the few states that has a “None of the above” choice.
    And I believe that “None actually won once.

  • EllenD

    As an animator, Marge, I visualize your comment as a pendulum with a small group of people on each side giving it a big push, and a large group in the middle ducking as it goes past each way.

  • EllenD

    John, I laughed out loud at your writing. Your Mark Twain reference was great. Coincidentally I’m getting Mark Twain Tonight for viewing this evening.
    Gotta laugh more or I might cry.

  • kenoshamarge

    Holy cow is Stephanie Miller still on the air? I used to listen to her now and again but after hearing “Momma’s for Obama” a few times I moved on. That and the fact that she seems to find her only claim to fame in that her father was a Republican than ran on the Republican ticket with Barry Goldwater. Jeebus Stephanie, is what daddy did so long ago is all ya got, what do ya got?

    (I suspect Stephanie is still crying in her beer because she and her show got a chance at a spot on MSNBC and she bombed. Badly.)

  • kenoshamarge

    I wonder if the pendulum will ever swing to the middle for long creeper. The people that reside there are seldom as vocal or as obsessed as those on either fringe.

    Fringies tend to be louder and have a tenacity that would be admirable if directed at something other than hating anyone that doesn’t think the same way they do.

    Moderates need to stop allowing the vocal and obsessed from either fringe to run this country. We must listen, learn and vote. And we can never again vote as partisan pinheads lest we get replays of Bush or Oblahblah Administrations.

  • Obama: Dubya 2 Electric Boogaloo

    Despite this piece I’ve learned to enjoy his radio show, creepy bumper music aside…on KSFO I would have to say it’s my second favorite program next to Brian Sussman’s morning show.

    Occasionally I’ll do a drive-by on the Stephanie Miller show, which I used to listen to faithfully until March 2008. I flip it back as soon as I hear the word “racists” and “bigots”, which is never more than 1-4 minutes these days. How pathetic.

  • kenoshamarge

    Paul Ryan is my congresscritter and I having heretofore been a loyal, stupid, partisan Democrat, never voted for him.

    Russ Feingold is one of my Senators and I having heretofore been a loyal, stupid, partisan Democrat, always voted for him.

    What a difference a couple of years make. This time I will vote for Ryan and against Feingold. Actually I will vote for Ron Johnson, if he’s the Republican nominee. Not as a protest but because on fiscal issues I like what he has to say.

    Feingold lost me with his support for health care. And for his snotty attitude towards any constituents that were/are against it.

  • cat

    that would have been COOL  :)

  • Patience

    Granted, the “Young Guns” schtick is dippy.  The commercial sounds like an ad for a new TV show.  
     
    Having said that, it seems John Batchelor is yet another conservative pundit who likes to eat his own.  Who knew Republicans were such perfectionists, such idealists?  I read waaay too many op-eds with this sort of tone prior to November, 2008.  Why is it that liberal pundits cheerlead and at least sometimes offer constructive criticism but conservative ones are forever finding fault and clicking their tongues in disappointment?  The pompous George Will is a master of this “art”.  
     
    To me, the practical difference between the two parties is only marginal, but that margin can make a huge difference.  I’ve seen what a government consisting of Democratic majorities in the House and Senate along with control of the WH can wreak on our nation.  Some cornball music and graphics in an Eric Cantor ad isn’t enough to really bother me, considering what we’re stuck with now due to some mighty slick marketing.  

    If it were me, I’d privately advise Rep. Cantor to contract with a better PR firm instead of taking the usual conservative pundit route of hubristically bending over backwards to prove to liberals that they’re “fair and balanced”.  
     
    Boehner is bland.  I can definitely live with bland.  Yes, he voted for TARP but I seem to recall his angst at having to eat the “crap sandwich” the legislation presented.  I also recall how very dire things seemed at the time, with our banking system teetering on the brink.  It’s two years later and a lot of TARP money has been repaid.  Some banks are still on shaky ground but many are (unfortunately for borrowers) responsibly building up their reserves.  They’ll need it when they finally account for bad mortgages their holding.

    I’d think conservatives would be happy about this and that Bush did what he had to do and it saved the day.

    BTW, I wonder who Mr. Batchelor does like in his party?

  • Patience

    Granted, the “Young Guns” schtick is dippy.  The commercial sounds like an ad for a new TV show.

    Having said that, it seems John Batchelor is yet another conservative pundit who likes to eat his own.  Who knew Republicans were such perfectionists, such idealists?  I read waaay too many op-eds with this sort of tone prior to November, 2008.  Why is it that liberal pundits cheerlead and at least sometimes offer constructive criticism but conservative ones are forever finding fault and clicking their tongues in disappointment?  The pompous George Will is a master of this “art”.

    To me, the practical difference between the two parties is only marginal, but that margin can make a huge difference.  I’ve seen what a government consisting of Democratic majorities in the House and Senate along with control of the WH can wreak on our nation.  Some cornball music and graphics in an Eric Cantor ad isn’t enough to really bother me, considering what we’re stuck with now due to some mightly slick marketing.

    And BTW, who does Mr. Batchelor like in his party???

  • kafir

    Hi Brother,

    It’s time for you to contest a seat in the Congress come November, 2010. The atmosphere now is favorable for any new and young Republican. You fit the bill man!

    59 Days to Decide: Evidence Mounts That Dems Are Facing Midterm Wipeout

  • csuzeq

    I have never in my life seen such a sick lunatic as Nancy Pelosi and ANYONE would be an improvement!  I will give anyone else a shot!  The Republicans do also like perks and because of this, they like to win elections and if you look back, they have held majority more often than democrats.  Because of this, if they were to have people in their face at town hall meetings, telling them to take their star issue and shove it and 80% of those polled didn’t want their garbage, unlike the idiot progs, the Republicans would at the very least, make some changes to that to appease some of the people.  The Democrats were on a suicide mission and guess what?  They killed themselves.  The GOP may cut off their arm, but I can assure you, they will always try to stay alive and that says something.  We will be watching the Republicans no matter what and many of them know it.  They will be working on 2 fronts, helping improve the economy and create jobs, and also ousting Obama 2012.  They will behave somewhat for the next 2 years.  When they win the White House 2012 and retain both houses, then I’ll be afraid because it is dangerous for any one party to have full control.  For 2010?  I am not afraid of Republicans.  They should be more afraid of us.  Never forget!  We surround them!

  • My Site (click to edit)

    C’mon, the only thing that ad (especially the music) was missing is Mel Gibson in some variation of face paint.

  • AC

    Crack that whip!

  • Armymom

    Oh heaven forbid that, those are only the democrats perks to be had. So we’re perfectly content to continue to let the party in power continue on their quest and let them reap the rewards? I think not and I’ll do everything in my power to get rid of some these scum bags and that means removing the bitch Pelosi from power asap. I can handle Boehner and if he doesn’t do his job, he will get booted out when he’s up for elections, but it is imperative to get rid of botox nancy, at least as speaker.

  • Tony Stark

    Proof that Boehner is just out to preserve the perks and status quo once the GOP takes control.

    http://tinyurl.com/2g4cfra

  • Ferd Premium Saltine Berfle

    Q: Are We Not Men?
    A: We Are Devo

  • Ferd Premium Saltine Berfle

    Are We Not Me? We Are Devo

  • Yttik

    I think calling the GOP Oompa Loompas is kind of funny. The original Oompas were African pygmies, which of course caused a racism fuss so they had to become light skinned and white haired.The children ran around naked, which just wouldn’t do, so they were given industrial uniforms. Than there was a controversy about women Oompas working next to male ones in the factory, so poof! All the Ooompas had to become men. The female Ooompas are now at home where they belong.

    This need to entirely rewrite a childrens story so that it matches politically correct thought leads me to conclude that Oompa Loompas are definitely Democrats. As if you couldn’t tell from the way they wear industrial uniforms and march in lock step….

  • Sassy

    People don’t want democrats, then they don’t want republicans.
    The alternative is mob rule.
    I don’t know where we are going, but it is becoming clearer how we got where we are!

  • ralphb

    Oh noes, Boehner smokes.  What’s next, excessive salt intake?  Can’t have that in a leader.  What a pile of crap.

  • cat

    Ryan is an avid hunter. Next ad should feature him and his cross bow.

  • Sassy

    Dear John has been ecstatic since the democrats took Congress in 2006.
    It’s never easy letting go!

  • Onofre’s arm

    Yes Ferd, it’s very easy, and lazy I might add, for John to enumerate every last complaint he has with Republicans, while failing completely to offer a single constructive suggestion or mention the good sides of these people. I’ve known some pretty remarkable, extremely admirable people in my life, but none of them were perfect, and I could make them seem somewhat unlikable if I only pointed their faults. Does John expect the Republicans to only offer up candidates who’ve passed some sort of Saintly litmus test?

  • Onofre’s arm

    Yes Ferd, it’s very easy, and lazy I might add, for John to enumerate every last complaint he has with Republicans, while failing completely to to offer any constructive suggestions or mention the good side of these people. I’ve known some pretty remarkable, extremely admirable people in my life, but none of them were perfect, and I could make them seem somewhat unlikable if I only pointed their faults.

  • SoCalDem

    After Pelosi, Boehner seems like a step in the right direction. He might not even end up speaker, don’t the Republicans get to pick their own speaker?

  • creeper

    Why can’t the damn pendulum quit swinging so wildly and just stop the hell in the middle? 

    Dog, I hate the thought of Boehner as SOH.  Is it remotely possible Reps might come to their senses and actually name someone capable?

    I suppose that’s too much to ask.

  • kenoshamarge

    Well we’re certainly “screwed” if the essence of one’s problem with someone is the color of their face. Orange? Racial profiling against faux tans? Tsk, tsk.
     
    I’m sure Cantor can visualize himself as presidential material considering the Democratic POS that sits in the Oval Office now. (No I don’t think Cantor would make a good president.)

    If being wonky is a slam at Ryan then all those Hillary folks should be outraged that the same thing is being said against him as was said against her. Oh wait, she was a Dem, he’s one of those evil Republicans.
     
    Zombie Republicans? And what is it we have in the majority now? The alienators?
     
    What a hit job and what a bunch of baloney!

  • Onofre’s arm

    Jeeze John, what thorny, cat sized bug crawled up your ass?

  • jbjd

    The ad was offensive on so many levels…

  • elizabethrc

    Of all the Republicans, I think he is the one with the future.  He’s unflappable, brilliant, understands more about what’s going on and what Americans are facing than the rest of the bunch.

  • Peggy Sue

    The political ad is laughable in its hubris.  And Cantor sees himself as presidential material?  Get the barf bag!

    As much as I want to see Pelosi walk to defeat, the idea of Boehner’s orange face does not cheer me.  Thank you, John Batchelor for being so honest.  My party, the Democratic party is hopelessly compromised.  Both parties have been thoroughly corrupted and invaded by greedy fools. And ordinary Americans, left and right, will bear the brunt of massive corporate influence that rewards Congressional lackeys on the backs of the American public.

    We’re screwed!

  • Ferd Premium Saltine Berfle

    Yeah, felizarte, and he ignores what might happen if we don’t turn the house over to the other party.

    There’s nothing like the omission of salient points to make your argument appear sound.

  • Armymom

    Wow, surprise surprise, another freaking hit piece. Democrats are scared out of their diapers that they may lose the house so we gotta have us some hit pieces to scare their voters of the big bad republicans again. Same old shit, different day. I’ll take Boehner any day over Pelosi and I’m from Ohio.

  • felizarte

    This is nothing but an obvious hatchet job from John Batchelor.  

  • HARP

    Paul Ryan 2012 for me.

  • Yttik

    Zombies huh? Well, compared to the blood suckers currently in power, zombies are starting to sound good.

  • Tony Stark

    Oh goodie, in November we’re going to trade a moronic Speaker of the House for a cretin. Something to definitely look forward to! We are so screwed.

  • bigtime

    Clowns on the left and jokers on the right.  We are so screwed.  Dot a drop of compassion or decency for the common man on either side of the two corporate parties.

  • cat

    What an ugly hit piece.

    Personally, I wish Ryan would stand alone-he doesn’t need the other two.

    His “Roadmap for America” is brilliant. And some day he’ll be president.

  • Ferd Premium Saltine Berfle

    Attack of the Zombie Republicans–uh, yeah.

    What we currently are suffering from is a malady caused by control of the government by zombie democrats, who gulp the hogwash coming out of the WH as though it were nourishing and tended to edification all at the same time. If those boobs were any more comatose, they would be inanimate objects.

    You’re criticizing the wrong crowd, John.

  • Ferd Premium Saltine Berfle

    Hmmm. A lot of ad hominems and soundbites here but no substance. This must be another less filling essay because it definitely leaves a bad taste in one’s mouth. What do we do here, John? Allow Nancy, Harry, and Barry finish the job they started or do we go for broke and give the reins to someone other than them?

  • Ferd Premium Saltine Berfle

    Hmmm. A lot of ad hominems and soundbites here but no substance. This must be abother filling essay because it definitely leaves a bad taste in one’s mouth. What do we do here, John? Allow Nancy, Harry, and Barry finish the job they started or do we go for broke and give the reins to someone other than them?

  • Noogan

    I like Paul Ryan; but TWO OUT OF THREE ain’t bad. You nailed it on Cantor and Boehner. This is the pathetic state of our body-politic these days for the most part. Political parties are an insidious force.