Ichabod's Kin
A place for politics, pop culture, and social issues


          Around coastal Georgia are what are known as frizzle-chickens, scruffy and battered-looking, ends of feathers twisted forward, and known for continuously scratching in the dirt. Earlier poor settlers, refugees from slavery, deemed the toil of such fowl as attempts to uncover evil spirits and expose them to sunlight, thereby killing them.

          After too many years of a Tea Party-driven GOP, other chickens have come home to roost, similarly battered from the wickedness of their assault on our body politic. Their scratching exposed their own evils as from a Pandora’s box that, in this case, turned on the miscreants themselves.

          Early on, even critics of the Tea Party began to wonder if some odd little truth were on their side; that they were doing the Lord’s work instead of endangering the Republic via government shutdowns and other mischief. But falls from grace generally occur near the tip of the arc and such has been the case here, and the Partyers are rapidly losing altitude. Ironically, they have done it to themselves.

          It is not that a slice of the citizenry is mad at all government, albeit innately miffed at liberals and the Democratic party. The real anger is at their own conservative legislators who arrived in Washington to lynch the president, only to have him out-maneuver them on every issue.

          Being black, Obama shrewdly ascertained it were not wise to appear either angry or belligerent, given that his critics are predominantly white; and like a master of martial arts, he has used the weight and aggression of his opponents to “throw” them at every turn. Stupidly, they persist in mistaking his tactic as a sign of weakness, leading to disaster for the Grand Old Party. Hence the rise of Donald and Ben the Outsiders, fueled by the wrath of right-wingers.

          This has led as well to a righteous venting of spleen on the part of establishment GOP leaders, all of whom are furious with Mr. Trump: Scott Walker knows that Donald ruined his candidacy and damaged his political career. Others are also at the tipping point of their runs for the White House—Mr. Oops, Rick Perry, was the first to leave in a huff and the rest will do well to follow. Why Fiorina hangs around is curious: she thinks that heading a corporation entitles her to political leadership: I was once a car-hop at a drive-in—can I be president?

          Others say: well, but Trump too is a businessman. Yes, look at him, and know this–he won’t be prez either, so he’s no better than I am. But Trump’s riches are a warning in this regard—by late spring Bush could well be ahead because money makes the conservative world go ‘round, and Jeb & Co. have their own stash of it. Regardless of the “life support” label on Bush right now, things can change dramatically as the disenchanted among the GOP tire of Don and Ben, as they did Herman Cain, and the reshuffle begins.

          Hence, not to get too excited about Ben Carson, or shall we say, Mr. Sleepy. I fully expect him to nod off during a future debate and fall face first into the treacle, as did the Dormouse of Alice in Wonderland. He is Exhibit A of the pitiable current crop of presidential wannabes: how could their Clown Car of candidates come to such a sorry pass had not Republicans fallen so far?

          And please do not confuse entertainment with substance: there are those who say the GOP debates are more “exciting,” as if that means something. So are tent revivalists and snake oil salesmen—and how many have been president? Were that a litmus test for leadership, Houdini would have been elected to wriggle out of the national and world problems of his day: after all, the White House, regardless of its occupant, is the Home of Bad Luck, the nerve center of all that’s wrong with the earth and its inhabitants. Burundi sneezes and we catch cold.

        The real problem with this nutty little political season is that certain Americans, primarily on the right, have attention spans of 2-3 seconds at a whack and easily mistake insanity for intelligence. One need only recall how conservatives fell all over Cain, the pizza king, and his “9-9-9” plan for national renewal and his “Uz-beki-beki-stan-stan” approach to foreign policy.

          As a political analyst, I’ve never relied on polls. I dig deeply into search engines and rub shoulders with operatives, which reveal the “ground games” of each party and campaign. And this is totally feasible in 2016: Hillary as Bride, Jeb as bridesmaid, Dems re-taking the Senate, and the GOP House majority greatly diminished. Plausible result: under the new regime, Republicans get dope-slapped back into political coherence.

          And all because the Clown Car has clearly de-railed, Paul Ryan inherits a hell of a mess as new Speaker of the House, and frizzle-chickens have come home to roost.

   (An edited version appeared earlier in the Daily News in eastern Massachusetts)

2 Responses to “THE CLOWN CAR DE-RAILED”

  1. The clown car needs automotive air bags, not hot air bags. I have about 3% of me that understands Republic-speak. About the same as my DNA is 3% Neanderthal.

    What concerns that conservative splinter of myself is this: If the demographics are evolving to a multi-cultural mix and whites will be one of many minorities, while we have the majority, ought we not to be ensuring the minority rights of our own descendants? If Christians are now the majority (a very big IF), ought they not be pushing for laws to protect the religious sliver they will occupy in the future?

  2. Fantastic article! On target, erudite look at the current state of affairs with an ensuing calmness projected.

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