I do wonder whether in the end historians will lay root responsibility for the destruction of America's Republican Party to Anthony Kennedy, John Roberts, Nino Scalia, Sam Alito, and Clarence Thomas's decision that what they really wanted to do was to transform the political order to enable whack doodle billionaires to break things (Live from the Republicans' Trump Hell)
Benjy Sarlin: [@BenjySarlin]: Take a sec to read this @DouthatNYT piece. http://mobile.nytimes.com/2016/10/26/opinion/campaign-stops/what-the-rights-intellectuals-did-wrong.html
Dana Houle: @DanaHoule: Always some glaring, self-refuting flaw in a Douthat piece...
...For instance, no mention of donors/funding sources. Douthat talks about the GOP like it’s just rubes w pitchforks outnumbering the people of ideas who he thinks should be guiding the rubes & keeping them from excess. Well, dude, those rubes have the financial backers, including elites.
Fred Koch went to MIT, as did his sons. Fred founded the John Birch Society, and Charles & David are funding most of the rightwing. Then there’s Robert Mercer, who’s funding Trump, Breitbart, & other crazy crap. Maybe not “elite” by way of computer science PhD at U of IL, but he’s one of the wealthiest people in the US, & much of his political operation is run by his Stanford-grad daughter.
Trump, of course, was raised wealthy, Ivy-educated, as are Ivana & either Uday or Qusay (other went to G’town), & Kushner was raised wealthy (though his dad was literally a crook, & went to fed prison) & graduated from Harvard & NYU Law.
These people are “elites,” but they’re also bigots or worse, and giant idiots. So, when Douthat drones on that nobody with power in the GOP listen to him (which is what he’s complaining about), he’s trying to make it about the rubes vs the elites, but it’s rubes & demented elites against the rest of America.
Another example: Bannon, who appeals to the worst mouth breathing bigots in America, is a Georgetown/Harvard Biz grad & worked at Goldman.
One of the ironies of all of this is that people like McConnell have tried to destroy Democrats by wiping out controls on money in politics, but what it’s done is given the most zealous ideologues the opportunity to spend more than wealthy individuals & industry sectors do on an entire party & propaganda infrastructure. Conservatives thought it was the way to let corporations outspend unions but instead it’s led to ultra wealthy whackadoodles outspending corporations for control of the GOP.