A Flea in the Fur of the Beast

“Death, fire, and burglary make all men equals.” —Dickens

Exit DeMint

by evanmcmurry

Soon to be ex-Senator Jim DeMint:

“My constituents know that being a Senator was never going to be my career.”

Totes. They might have thought it was going to be for the term for which they elected him, though.

Also, this:

Rep. Tim Scott’s name was immediately circulated in the wake of the news as DeMint’s preferred successor. Scott is a conservative, African-American popular with Tea Party activists.

The whole “learning from the 2012 election” thing is just going swimmingly.

If At First You Don’t Succeed

by evanmcmurry

Charles Pierce catches Erick Erickson’s two-part prescription for 2014 conservative victory: fewer mushy conservative candidates, and more Super PACs. Because Todd Akin and Crossroads GPS did such a bang-up job in 2012? By all means, dude, nominate more men who say things about rape and start more organizations to throw money after them. We might even take the House.

George Will and Grover Norquist For Progress!

by evanmcmurry

George Will has been ratcheting up the hackitude lately—what with his “Mitt Romney will win by a billion electoral votes” and “Obama caused college football“—but yesterday’s column is just plain weird. Will defends Grover Norquist, whose grimy conservatism seems below where Will knots his bow tie, with the following logic:

Or horrible Grover Norquist. Although a surfeit of numbers are being bandied, a pertinent one is missing — the number of legislators who have pledged to Norquist not to raise taxes. The number is: Zero. All pledges have been to voters. Progressives lament the public’s distrust of the political class while urging many members of it to treat their promises as pie crusts.

No, they pledged to Grover Norquist, which is why it’s he and not voters who appears on cable news networks threatening legislators who break the pledge. But the last sentence is the strangest: if conservative lawmakers say insane things, according to Will, it’s in our interests to make sure they follow through on them, or risk further eroding faith in public officials. Makes sense!

This part’s even better:

Given progressives’ “principled” refusal to countenance entitlement reforms, the principal drivers of the fiscal imbalance will not be untouched even by raising, from 65, the age of Medicare eligibility. In 1965, the year this program was created, the average life expectancies of men and women at age 65 were another 13.5 and 18 years respectively. Today they are 19 and 21, and rising. Given modern medical — especially pharmacological — marvels, longevity often involves living with several chronic ailments that might have been fatal a generation ago. For liberals, however, no demographic or scientific changes need be accommodated.

You see, progressives have trouble dealing with change. That’s why we call them “progressives.”