GOP Extremists Threaten Economy and Nation

James Fallows spells out as clearly as I've seen anywhere how the current dysfunction in Washington is the result of a fight within the Republican party over whether compromise itself is legitimate.

David Frum predicts that a government shutdown will hurt the GOP because (1) Obama will not destroy the Affordable Care Act, (2) Rejoicing in some Republican quarters at the prospect of a shutdown will make it impossible to blame Democrats in Congress or the administration, and (3) Because of items (1) and (2), Frum predicts Republicans will be forced to retreat, and the attendant de-motivation of extremists will reduce chances of electoral gains in 2014.


Princeton history professor Sean Wilentz, writing in Rolling Stone:
Republican Extremism and the Lessons of History, suggests that Republicans "practicing a variation of the subversive politics of nullification first elaborated in the 1820s by John C. Calhoun, the Southern slaveholding archreactionary. Controlling just one half of one of the three branches of government – and having won that control only because of rigged, gerrymandered districting – they are out to nullify laws they don't like...." Read the full article.