Republicans




The comeuppance of the Republican Party’s undue influence over Rupert Murdoch’s Fox “News” Channel is described by Dan Hodges at Business Insider: For me there was no doubt about the high point…


I bet you they never even stumble across the actual explanation, though (i.e., they’re *ssholes whose policies don’t work and their electoral strategy relies on alienating every growing segment of the population).  From Michael Cooper at…



The Log Cabin Republicans are as divided as ever over the GOP presidential candidate, but Mitt is their man reports The Advocate: Log Cabin Republicans, the largest national group representing gay Republicans, announced its…






Mother Jones has obtained video leaked by an anonymous source of Mitt Romney addressing a select group of donors, a setting in which he seems far more at ease than appearing before the public.

It’s fascinating to see a presidential candidate speaking unguardedly behind the scenes. Among other remarks, Romney says that nearly half the population does not pay income tax and thus is overly entitled and dependent on the government, and his “job is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.” (Romney seems to be forgetting the low tax rates which he himself enjoys.) He jokes that he wishes he were Latino, which would make it much easier to become president, and brags that he has assembled a team of “Karl Rove equivalent” consultants who have influenced elections “in Armenia, in Africa, in Israel.” Below, he discusses visiting the Chinese factory of a Bain-owned company, and how it made him grateful to be American:


Last week the Democracy Now host came oh-so-close to getting an actual answer from one of the reclusive Koch brothers, before, in a moment ripe with metaphor, subservient Republican delegates formed a defensive moat around him:

When conservative billionaire David Koch sat down as a member of the New York delegation Thursday night on the floor of the Republican National Convention, Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman attempted to ask him one question: “Mr. Koch, do you think unchecked concentration of wealth will undermine democracy?”

While Koch started to answer, the delegates and security around him stood up, one by one, creating a human wall between them. One of those who stood up was Ed Cox, chair of the Republican Party of New York and the son-in-law of President Richard Nixon. Eventually, Goodman was asked to leave due to “security issues.”




While Clint Eastwood’s Republican National Convention argument with an empty chair confused and amused many, some American mental health practitioners probably recognized it as a classic tool of Gestalt therapy: the Empty-Chair technique.

Gestalt therapy was invented by a German psychiatrist named Fritz Perls, an associate of Wilhelm Reich (who found fame – some would say infamy – as the inventor of “orgone therapy”) and refugee who fled his native land in the wake of the Nazi Party’s rise to power. In South Africa, Perls, along with his wife Laura, developed the basics of the practice: an emphasis on healing the whole self and recognizing the social environment of the patient for its impact on his or her development.

In the Empty-Chair technique, a patient is instructed to imagine a person in their lives with whom they have difficulties sitting in the chair. The patient then speaks to the seated “person”, expressing his or her frustrations and fears. During this conversation he or she is encouraged to talk for the imaginary person as well, with the goal that through this process the patient will be able to recognize the projection as part of him or herself, articulating and resolving deeply-rooted emotional conflicts. It is important to note that the Empty Chair doesn’t always have to be occupied by a specific individual: The therapist can direct the patient to imagine it is occupied by an object, idea or stereotype.

With this in mind, Eastwood’s confrontation of the empty chair can be understood in terms of mass psychology. Eastwood, once the very image of the tough, independent white male, but who is now noticeably in decline, stands in as a surrogate for the fear of the overwhelmingly white, male Republican Party. In doing so, he addresses their fear of the youthful black President and what he represents: a change in social order that will eventually erode and overcome the established face of power–much like time has replaced the once-rugged Man with No Name with the cranky old veteran of Gran Tourino, besieged on all sides by a youthful, non-white culture on the rise.


Perturbed by the GOP’s current push for new laws making it more difficult for the young, elderly, poor, and minorities to reach the ballot box? This classic, extremely blunt speech by über-influential conservative Paul Weyrich (founder of the Heritage Foundation, Moral Majority, and American Legislative Exchange Council) goes a long way in explaining: