The GOP Chocolate Machine

The Republican retreat in Hershey, PA is rather symbolic of their tactics and their attitude toward the people. The Hershey brand of chocolate is a perfect metaphor for the Republican tactic of rebranding with the most appealing and tasty stances but never delivering on the nutritional substance.

Then like a metaphor of Recycle and Reuse, Romney revisited a Bush moment. He — sort-of — re-launched a 3rd campaign for president on an aircraft carrier, mocking the tone and site of a George W. Bush “Mission Accomplished” declaration over 10 years ago on another carrier. Mitt Romney spoke to a Republican audience (where was Jeb Bush?) on the retired USS Midway off San Diego, supposedly a high point of the Republican RNC Winter Meeting.

The public is increasingly bored with politics, but has a big role in the success of GOP election tactics, this as dropouts and low-information voters. Meanwhile American majorities earn less, get less from government (except millions getting health care) and take periodic whippings of their well-being, like the Wall Street recession, but mostly continuous corporate bilking, that accompanies anti-people, pro-corporate legislation, a pro-business Supreme Court, and anti-union policy. Most of this are hangovers of two rich-give-a-way terms of George W. Bush, feckless Democrats, and almost two terms of GOP obstruction.

The 2014 election will probably furnish no lesson for the people, but in light of the GOP penchant for taking from the middle class and the poor and giving to the rich, perhaps the Signe Wilkinson cartoon is a bitter pill we might swallow now with a Republican Congressional majority, and especially in the future if a Republican president is elected in 2016.

Regarding the recent announcement of Ted Cruz as the next Senate NASA and Science Committee Chairmen, a well-educated buffoon who denies science but celebrates the attention his seemingly innate demagoguery brings, Nick Anderson’s image tells the story from President Obama’s point of view, if not from the view of an average rational person.

Then there is the double-whopper brought by recent events in the US and in France. Republican House of Representatives Majority Whip, Steve Scalise and his dabbling in white supremacism (addressing the David Duke White Supremacists) was overshadowed by the terrorist slaughter of the Charlie Hebdo staff.  The Mark Fiore cartoon (and story) helps to explain how Scalise was rescued by this display of the extremist Muslim ideology; though I would argue that attention and power had more to do with the terrorists’ atrocity – and perhaps attention and power in a state with reactionary politics, for Scalise as well.

Then there is the Republican attention to wording rather than the slaughter they seem to ignore world-wide. President Obama would not say “Islamic extremists” in decrying the cowardly terrorist attacks by terrorists who are French citizens, and has seldom used it in his two terms, believing it’s too incendiary against Moslems in general.

Meanwhile, Republicans let him do the “heavy work” regarding any anti-terrorism policy: ISIL, Nigeria or Pakistan, for example. In the meantime, a Congress with a Republican majority refuses to have any discussion on our ISIL policy in Syria and Iraq. The latest atrocity in Nigeria by Boko Haram will most likely get the same type of superficial condemnation by Republicans while doing nothing constructive.

Republicans are quite busy vilifying Muslims as a group, including anyone who speaks well of them. Before midterms GOP fear-mongerers spun images with Ebola folded into specters of immigration, be-afraid, terrorism, and be terrified in the phantom guise of Ebola-ridden terrorist immigrants crossing our border. But lying to spread fear is always an option. Now with the French Charlie Hebdo attack, they’ve got game.

Steven Emerson, so-called Fox News terrorism expert, proclaimed NO-GO Zones in Europe, saying that Birmingham, England was totally Muslim (actually 22%) and that non-Muslims dare not go there. David Cameron, the British Prime Minister, in total disgust, publicly called him an idiot.

Quite embarrassed, Fox plans to make an on-air correction, something quite rare on Fox News. However, in spite of NO-Go Zones being a total invention, other talking heads on Fox have been saying the same thing.  In fact “Fox News Insider” says there are 751 “no-go zones” in France where police and the state have no authority, this according to “Jihad Watch Director” Robert Spencer, joined by a forked-tongued Sean Hannity.

Meanwhile the RNC also seeks less embarrassment, something their crowd of presidential candidates during the over 20 debates of 2012 gave them. They plan a convention a month earlier than the August, 2012 convention, supposedly without Clint Eastwood talking to an empty chair, and they substantially reduced the number of debates to 9 with an option for 3 more, one-third of them in the friendly arms of their cozy uncle,  Fox News.

James Hoover is a recently retired systems engineer. He has advanced degrees in Economics and English. Prior to his aerospace career, he taught high school, and he has also taught college courses. He recently published a science fiction novel called Extraordinary Visitors and writes political columns on several websites. Read other articles by James.