Sunday, July 31, 2011

Disliking the 2012 Tea Leaves

Horrifying thought. For the next 15 months, the Dems repeatedly force the GOP to deliver what the Tea Party wants, knowing full well that the GOP cannot do so minus either the Senate or POTUS. Tea Party disapproval leads to political fratricide, which disrupts a unified front against the left, and which could in turn destroy the Tea Party from within.

Democrats May Have Just Snatched Victory from Defeat

24 hours ago, I thought Republicans had dropped any blame for default squarely in the laps of the Democrats. Democrats are better at playing chicken, though. The "compromise" being discussed tonight is a big pile of chicken poop, but likely necessary to forestall default now that it is out there. But Democrats understood a very important strategic fact. They can afford to piss off their supporters. The GOP cannot afford to piss off the Tea Party.

The Tea Party is full of Washington veterans, but its life blood is the passionate, relative newbies who lean towards Republicans because of shared values, but who expect the GOP to toe their line. They state a willingness to go to war against any Republican who doesn't toe that line. And they didn't get what they wanted in this deal.

This could have a two-fold effect. First, it is going to turn Tea Party rage right of center. Oh, they won't be anymore supportive of Obama, Reid, Pelosi, et al. And they'll still fight hard to unseat Obama. But this will split their rage. There will be some cannibalism towards individuals on the right. And that split focus is precisely what Obama needs. If the Tea Party has a singular, laser-like focus on him in the coming year, he is in trouble. But if they are sniping at the right, too, that's just enough to give him some wiggle room and to sew together a narrative to use against the Republican candidate.

Second, this might end up being the shatter point for the Tea Party. Like the Republican Revolution of the mid-1990's eventually experienced, this is a point where the realists, the idealists, the self interested, and the national interest types all move in different directions and shear the movement apart.

There is still time, and I acknowledge that I could completely misunderstand the Tea Party. But the GOP is going to be hard pressed to pull a better deal from the fire at this point.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Large Teen Fight in the Streets of Fort Atkinson?

I'm starting to see some information filter in about a sizable (50 kids?) fight in the streets of Fort Atkinson tonight between local kids and kids from possibly Watertown. Can't verify much. I am mostly writing this because I challenge the Madison/Milwaukee media to look into this. I know that you both claim Jefferson and Walworth county as your own, but you both do a miserable, miserable job of covering those counties unless someone is dead. And I'm told that, even then, you aren't so good at it.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Choo Choo Barrett

Tom Barrett has been begging for a toy train like a child at Christmas in 1959.

He's finally gotten his wish.

Never mind that this line makes no logistic or financial sense. Tommy wanted a train, and he finally got one. And it took some foot stomping and screaming.

I'm fine with Milwaukee's boondoggles as long as the stay Milwaukee's. I do oppose this line ever seeing a single state dollar. Want it Milwaukee? Fine. You own it. Keep the rest of us out of it.