Time was when conservatives would be satisfied with ordinary garden-variety lunacy and reckless irresponsibility, but not anymore. Consider David Brooks’ heartfelt lament that Republicans are not satisfied with a budget plan that’s insane and destructive, because even one dollar of tax increases is one dollar too much – especially if it causes any sacrifice to be shared upward.
Better yet, consider this: The freshmen who knocked off GOP establishment incumbents to wash into the House on the red Tea Party tide… are now facing possible Tea Party primary challenges of their own for being insufficiently batnuts. That’s where the right is now – the Tea Party isn’t even extreme enough for itself anymore, still restlessly searching for The Next Crazy Thing.
IANAD (I am not a doctor), but this sounds like addiction to me: Conservatives develop a taste for insanity, then indulge it to such excess that they build up a resistance to it. They require ever stronger doses to get the same buzz, and resort to increasingly dishonest and abusive behavior in pursuit of their next fix. Such as, say, threatening to throw the world economy into chaos if they don’t get $3 trillion of draconian spending cuts without a penny of new taxes, all while claiming that their opponents are the unreasonable ones.
If only the right’s crazy jones could be satisfied with the occasional Pat Buchanan column extolling the virtues of prejudice, we would all be a lot better off. But alas, it is not to be.