Last night I was having dinner with my friend Dave. We started exploring the question of whether the House Republicans were crazier when Clinton was Prez or now. Remember how totally outrageous the House was under the Newtster? They shut down the government…twice. And then they decided to impeach the President, essentially, for getting a blow job. The two charges that passed along party lines in the House was easily dismissed by the Senate.
There was a kind of zealotry in that bunch of Republicans that parallels what we see today. They share a collective tone-deafness that has caused House Republicans—then and now—to unwittingly undertake extreme actions that Americans disagree with.
Both then and now, there was a zealotry that was borne out of hatred for the Democratic President. But here is a difference I see between then and now. Republicans seemed angrier, but less crazy in their zealotry back then. Newt Gingrich and Henry Hyde were angry and cynical men, who sometimes said outrageous things to make a point—but a point that had some connection to reality. The current crop of Republicans are expressing zealotry borne out of a much bigger dose of madness. It seems many in the current crop have been brainwashed into believing things that are at odds with facts, with reality (Kenya!, Obama Muslim conspiracy!, cutting taxes raises revenue, Obamacare kills!, etc.).
Michele Bachmann and Louie Gohmert seem to really believe the crazy-ass shit they say. They live in a largely self-constructed universe.
In some cases it seems the hatred observed of both groups is confounded in the current crop by racial hatred. It has driven some House Republicans to insanity.
So what do you think? Were they crazier in the crazy House days of the Clinton Administration? Has Obama derangement syndrome pushed today’s G.O.P. further off the cliff of sanity? Or was the Newt-pack just as bad?