It's one of the ironies of history that the "party of Lincoln" has become today's Republican Party, with its base solidly in the white South, fighting for "states' rights" against the federal government, eager to wave the Confederate flag.
And when they don't get what they want, they often seem eager for violent revolt:
Like many conservatives, Matt Davis, the former spokesman for the Michigan Republican Party, was upset that the Supreme Court upheld most of President Obama’s health care law on Thursday.
But unlike those who simply saw it as a rallying cry to elect more conservatives in November, Davis wants to know whether an “armed rebellion” will be necessary to overturn the law.
Michigan Capitol Confidential got a copy of an email the Michigan attorney sent to fellow conservatives after the ruling. The news service posted it online:
If government can mandate that I pay for something I don’t want, then what is beyond its power? If the Supreme Court’s decision Thursday paves the way for unprecedented intrusion into personal decisions, then has the Republic all but ceased to exist? If so, then is armed rebellion today justified? God willing, this oppression will be lifted and America free again before the first shot is fired.
Davis told the news service he was serious about his email.
“You can’t have people walking with lattes and signs and think the object of your opposition is going to take you seriously,” he told Capitol Confidential. “Armed rebellion is the end point of that physical confrontation.”
"God willing, this oppression will be lifted and America free again before the first shot is fired." Wow, he sounds exactly like those old Southern slave-owners, doesn't he? Michigan was on the other side in our first Civil War, but I guess there were southern sympathizers everywhere, even back then, huh?
Of course, what's funny is that this is Romneycare they're protesting. This was the Republicans' own health care plan, developed in a right-wing think tank as the free-market, insurance company-friendly alternative to Democratic ideas of health care reform.
And it was widely supported in the GOP. Even by Republicans - especially by Republicans - it was considered to be Mitt Romney's signature achievement as governor of Massachusetts. This is the plan they're protesting. It's really kind of funny.
In fact, it's hilarious to hear Mitt Romney try to attack his own plan. Before the Supreme Court decision, when Republicans were certain that they'd packed the court with enough right-wing political operatives to get the decision they wanted, Romney simply argued that it was unconstitutional on the federal level.
Yes, it was a great plan - after all, it's Romneycare - but only for state governments. "States' rights," you know. But the Supreme Court - a right-wing Supreme Court packed with Republicans - disagrees. So what can Romney do now?
Well, Romney knows that you really can't underestimate the knowledge or the intelligence of the American people. After all, half the country wants him to be our next president! So now, he's just claiming that Romneycare - excuse me, Obamacare - is bad policy.
Yeah, their own plan - his own plan, his signature achievement as governor - is a terrible thing now that the Democrats agreed to go with it, too! (Do you really wonder why we can't get anything accomplished in Washington, when Republicans turn violently against their own positions as soon as the Democrats agree to "compromise" and adopt a Republican plan themselves?)
If we had an intelligent, informed electorate, the Republican Party would be laughed off the political stage at this point. If we had a decent news media, Republicans would be hammered about this over and over again - and no one more than Mitt Romney. But we don't.
And all too many Republicans seem eager for violence, if they don't get everything they want - and I mean everything! After all, this country is in a horrible mess after 30 years of right-wing trickle-down economics and especially after two presidential terms where they firmly controlled all three branches of the federal government.
And when they start threatening Civil War over their own policies, you really have to wonder about their sanity. Of course, I've been wondering about their sanity for some time now.