Even A Stopped Clock…

On Wednesday morning, the GOP is very likely to strip Liz Cheney of her House leadership position.

I detested Dick Cheney, and I have no warmer feelings for his daughter. She has routinely staked out “conservative” positions that I oppose–as one pundit recently opined, she is one of the House members who have been most protective of the wealthy, most willing to sacrifice the environment, and most willing to ignore injustice. Just this last year, she’s voted against reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act, against the Paycheck Fairness Act, against an expansion of background checks, and against the American Dream Act.

Evidently, she also voted against removing Marjorie Taylor Greene from committees.

Judging by those votes, Cheney would seem to be a perfect representation of today’s Republican orthodoxy. So why are her equally regressive GOP colleagues seemingly out for her blood? Because–despite her track record of really extreme partisanship– she has refused to participate in “the Big Lie.”

As she wrote in The Washington Post,

Trump is seeking to unravel critical elements of our constitutional structure that make democracy work — confidence in the result of elections and the rule of law. No other American president has ever done this….

The question before us now is whether we will join Trump’s crusade to delegitimize and undo the legal outcome of the 2020 election, with all the consequences that might have. I have worked overseas in nations where changes in leadership come only with violence, where democracy takes hold only until the next violent upheaval. America is exceptional because our constitutional system guards against that. At the heart of our republic is a commitment to the peaceful transfer of power among political rivals in accordance with law. President Ronald Reagan described this as our American “miracle.”

Many years ago, when I was still a Republican, I predicted a schism between what we then called the “country club” members of the GOP and the fundamentalist Christians who were increasingly becoming the party’s foot soldiers. I was wrong. In the intervening years, pro-business “country club” voters separated into two groups–those whose desire for favorable regulatory and tax treatment overcame any moral qualms continued to vote Republican, while those repelled by the party’s increasing focus on culture war simply left. They became independents or joined the Democrats.

The division that threatens to take the GOP the way of the Whigs ends up being between the few Republicans who still live in the real world, and those who live in Trumpland.

Liz Cheney and her rapidly diminishing ilk still believe that the GOP is a party espousing their version of conservative principles, and that fidelity to those principles should be the standard on which they are judged. They are living in the past. In the 2020 election, the GOP didn’t even bother to produce a platform. In place of policy debates, the party falls back on a racism that is hardly masked by the repetition of tired slogans about “socialism” and “cancel culture.” Rather than any measured response to Biden’s agenda, GOP figures engage in diatribes about Mr. Potato Head and Dr. Seuss.

Today’s GOP is the party of Marjorie Taylor Green, Josh Hawley, Ted Cruz and Lauren Boebert–a pathetic mix of venal and crazy. In that environment, even someone as ideologically unattractive as Liz Cheney looks good.

As the saying goes, even a stopped clock is right twice a day.


  1. My feelings for Liz and her father are the same as yours. The truth seems to be a bridge too far for most Republicans these days.

  2. What to do? What to do!

    This is all fine and dandy, but how do you fix it? You can’t fix a marriage if one party in that marriage wants a divorce! There is nothing you can do but capitulate to the desires of the other that will not capitulate their stance under any circumstances.

    The only thing that can be done is to force compliance! And, this will not happen without a great deal of pain and agony along with a tumultuous bloodletting. In other words, if it happens, the treatment might kill the patient!

    This whole thing has been brewing for such a long time, and, the teakettle has been whistling on the stove and no one decided to turn down the heat. Politics isn’t designed for that anyway. It is designed to ratchet up the rhetoric and ratchet up the heat, it’s not designed to find compromise, how do you live by the credo of do no harm, especially when your opponent is buffeting you about the head and chest with deathdealing blows to annihilate your existence?

    One has to fight back in the same manner, this is way past the kids game now, and, it’s way past play nice time! If this country is going to exist in the near future, someone is going to have to stand up and do the unpleasant things restore sanity. Let’s face it, there are no epiphanies to be had concerning coming together. When Craven power lust is the only goal, that goal must be met with a superior form of power!

    Time for conversation and negotiation is really way past the pale, but I don’t suspect that anyone will rise to the occasion that’s needed by great men in history including Abraham Lincoln or the Roosevelts in our recent past.

    Reagan was a lunatic that counted on his wife and astrologist to make decisions on the country, he demolished the Social Security trust fund, stripped funding for mentally disabled citizens, and was instrumental in increasing the divide between the wealthy in the poor. The GOP knows for a fact that all things being equal and the playing field being level, their stances on everything will not be popular. Hence the big lies, the conspiracies, echo chambers, the building of Frankenstein’s monster by Dr. Frankenstein! The incarnation of the tea party was the beginnings of this current clear and present danger to democratic values! And it came to us carrying a Bible and across while wrapped in a flag!

    As Sinclair Lewis writes in his novel, “It Can’t Happen Here,” he surmises; “But he saw too that in America the struggle was befogged by the fact that the worst fascists were they who disowned the word ‘fascism’ and preached enslavement to capitalism under the style of constitutional and traditional Native American liberty.”

    Well, we’ve been seeing what Sinclair Lewis wrote decades ago, but of course, Nero fiddled as he stoked the Inferno!

    Capitalism is an extremely powerful force, because it completely dismantled communism! The Russian Federation and China, are no more communist than our own government! So, is that good or bad? And, what does the capitalist do when they can no longer control the whirlwind that they are reaping now? Fight for right while you still have the opportunity to do so, because once that opportunity is gone, it will never return! The monster is turning on Dr. Frankenstein, and, I am suspect that a society run by a monster is not going to be a society at all!

    In his book Religion and the Rise of Capitalism, R. H. Tawney denounces the “illusion of progress won from the mastery of the material environment by a race too selfish and superficial to determine the purpose to which its triumphs shall be applied.” He criticizes the idea “that the attainment of material riches is the supreme object of human Endeavor and the final criterion of human success.” Additionally, he emphasizes the need of “a standard of values based on some conception of the requirements of human nature as a whole, to which the satisfaction of economic needs is evidently vital, but which demands the satisfaction of other needs as well.”

    Well, there you go! The time is not even short anymore, really for all practical purposes, run out! What type of Phoenix will rise out of this nations funeral pyre? Nothing good I would imagine! Grieve for the children!

  3. The future of the Republican Party will be decided in the 2022 mid-terms. If they lose badly, if more women and suburbanites desert them, they will have to rethink their fealty to Trumpism or go the way of the Whigs. They will still be stuck with those pesky conservative principles that really don’t fit our world anymore. A good example is the recent move by Republican governors to take away unemployment benefits to force people back to work. Sounds like something out of a Charles Dickens novel. Of course, if they gain seats the rest of us should really start to worry.

  4. “Judging by those votes, Cheney would seem to be a perfect representation of today’s Republican orthodoxy. So why are her equally regressive GOP colleagues seemingly out for her blood?”

    Just my point of view but..Rep. Liz Cheney is being faithful to her party structure just as we are to ours; her “regressive GOP colleagues” have chosen to Follow The Money and support Trumpism. It is those Republicans who, for the same reason many believe the Republican party left them, have for unfathomable reasons turned on her and the party and are blind to their own unfaithfulness to the GOP, the government and this nation. Just as studies have not found the source and the cause of the Covid-19 Pandemic; we do not know the source and the cause of the Trumpism epidemic.

    Much about the future of the states and this nation will be decided in the 2022 mid-term elections; at this time, those are the elections which scare the hell out of me. We cannot fight the 2024 presidential elections until we know who we are fighting against and who is fighting for and with us.

  5. I too worry about the 2022 elections. Democrats need to meet the challenge and get out the vote as they did in Georgia. As for Ms. Chaney and the Republican Party of Trump I say, “A pox on all of them.”

  6. THANK YOU for not taking the path of many bloggers and writers in main stream media – that of trying to make Liz Cheney a sympathetic figure. She’s not. She may not be as overtly a deranged nazi as the members of the cult-of-the-former-guy but it’s a subtle shade of gray that distinguishes her from them.

    Oh, and happy Mother’s Day to you!

  7. This is a fight between those lusting for power within the remnants of the Republican Party, and either outcome is disgusting, i. e., raw Hitler-like dictatorship or terminal greed (aka Chamber of Commerce dictatorship). Fortunately, the sane have a third choice, the Democratic Party, and with all the flaws and imperfections found in any large and diverse group that party is our last best hope to keep the flickering flame of democracy alive.

    The Republican Party arose from the ashes of the Whig Party in 1854. Lincoln was a Whig but became a member of this new party and won the presidency only six years later. Perhaps Liz fancies herself the new Abe who will lead her party out of the wilderness. Trouble is, she will be leading her party into only a different wilderness. Though subtler and quieter, the Chamber of Commerce is as much a dictatorial force in politics as Trump. See Koch et al.

    Our task? Resist either outcome, and above all, maintain and expand the most precious asset we hold in common – our democracy.

  8. This isn’t a battle for the soul of the Republican Party. That was sold to DJT long ago. This is a purging of the insufficiently loyal. It happens in every authoritarian regime.

  9. It doesn’t take much imagination…in ’22 the DEMs will have only passed the COVID aid and nothing else – Mitch/Manchin will have blocked the rest of the “big ideas”. The economy will be doing ok for the middle/professional classes and they will be focused on themselves getting back to “normal”. Respect for DC will be about 10% (it is 15% now). Crime/violence will continue to rise in the top 5 concerns of all voters (it is there NOW). The DEMs will again have no cogent message except “not them”. The GOP will continue their successful messaging to turn out their loyalists – NOT Defund the Police. DEM turnout will be tepid – especially minorities and young people who see nothing done for their concerns. GOP will take the House and Senate and headed toward the presidency in ’24 behind a Trumpian as the DEMs have 17 candidates and wind up with a “progressive” loser.

  10. Sorry Gerald, but our democracy has already gone the way of the pony express. The oligarchic Founders were scared of democracy, so they established a Republic which failed before it started.

    There was an interesting interview with HRC in The Guardian where she too mentions that the defining moment in history will be the battle between democracy vs. autocracy. We are not a very good example of democracy since we rank 25th (considered flawed).

    I’ll hold off on following through with the obvious to discuss the topic at hand – Liz Cheney. By the way, if we had a functioning free press and democracy backed by laws, would be visiting her father and George Bush in The Hague for committing international war crimes against humanity.

    The attack against Liz will not go without a bloody battle which should cause lots of ripples within both parties. On January 3rd, Liz helped orchestrate an OpEd in the WaPo by former defense secretaries. Liz was scared that Trump was going to order the military to interject in the election outcome. The defense secretaries warned the nation and Trump about doing so. However, someone from the MIC/IC ordered the Capitol police to stand down on 1/6. The FBI and both political parties are covering for this response, so both should face the consequences.

    My guess is Bill Barr played a major role, and the FBI knows that as well. Christopher Wray lied under oath to Congress about there not being intelligence. There was plenty of it since the organization was done on monitored platforms. The dummies didn’t even use encryption.

    There are Trumpians already lining up to take on Liz, so I doubt she will go down with a whisper. My prediction is the 1/6 insurrection is about burst open. The press and politicians tried to contain it, but not now. Operation Insurrection Damage Control will be the main focus for a few days for the oligarch’s employees. Remember, it was funded by billionaires who haven’t been charged or even brought to hearings in front of Congress. Why not?

    Happy Mother’s Day!

  11. I’m wondering if John Kasich left the Republican Party and ran in 2024 as a moderate Democrat would he be able to, in Joe Biden fashion, unite the Democrats, Independents, and moderate Republicans to defeat “The Big Lie” once and for all? I’m suggesting this for one reason only: to save a nation! United we stand, divided…

  12. Have a happy day all virtual and actual mothers tasked with saving males from the ravages of testosterone and its results.

    That being duly recorded, now to Liz Cheney, a prototypical country club Republican product of her father.

    She did do right by the simple and surprising act of telling the truth about the big lie but that does not make her a skilled legislator, only a surprising exception to the Republican propensity for a total absence of telling the truth, whole and nothing but.

    Will that aspect though form a seed for a legitimate Party rebirth to spring from?

    Not as long as Trump is the rainmaker for campaign contributions and the harvesting of power it leads to a media-centric culture.

  13. the power grab is in state legislatures now. the senate/congress is tied to the pole,in the aftermath of the trumps regime of change. the republicans can claim all they want now,but what’s the end game? norquesters,, want a drowned goverment,the republiqans want the christians to rule,etc. the local legislatures have a regular meat grinder of political might. taking away rights and needs as a theatrical science,and lying their bare ass about it.(kissit baby) they know the rules of the past,and they,who have voted for them stand there yelling shit when they figure they own the soap box now..the tea baggers were already a state affair in NoDak long before reagan. being around these nuts,is not intimidating, it’s sickening . many here here,( i didnt say read about) about the issues,and you get a taste in any overshot conversation anywhere.. myself i’m surrounded by them,for 3 decades now. its about a 95/5% count. in my blue collar world, i’m a lone voice. i’m not into making friends anyway, but i see the overall issue,the ignorance that provides a gateway to inept minds to think. but hell, just step onto ones land around here and ya got a fight. if the enviroment keeps pace here,every farmer will have his hand out for a check from failures,then lets see them grovel to Biden for help..fuckem…

  14. That’s an interesting idea about John Kasich, Michael. I wonder if all the gloom and doom I am reading is a reflection of this gloomy, rainy day. I don’t know. I suspect that the democrats will continue to manipulate the rules to pass Biden’s agenda. I don’t like that, but since they assert that the majority of the citizens want his expensive bills passed to help the middle class, they will do what they must.

    When on occasion I think about Trump, I think about Sauron and his orcs in the Lord of the Rings. He wants automatons, not people who can use good critical thinking.

    Mothers arise!! Mother’s day was initially a day when mothers protested war. There’s a poem written that is a protest against war and it is in the readings of the UU hymnal. If only Palestinian and Israeli mothers would rise together today. If only Iranian ,Saudi Arabian , and Yemeni mothers could rise together. If only Syrian mothers could confront the dictator of Syria. I wish we celebrated mother’s day by having a protest march against war instead of this sugary celebration. My mother, may she rest in peace, was so good to us. She lived through WW II and one of her sons was drafted during the Vietnamese war. She hated war. And so do I. But I guess as long as there are dictators like Trump who want automatons not free thinking citizens, there will be war. I just pray that the day will come when the power of love overcomes the love of power.

  15. It is a sad day for the country when the likes of Bush the Younger and the Cheney’s can be considered “Moderates”.

    The Trumpet has a firm lock-down on the GOP. The GOP Elected officials and the GOP wanna-be Elected officials will have to campaign at least in the primary elections from the most extreme on the Right Wing.

  16. The GOP has been crying for decades for smaller government. They have sold out their entire party to Donald Trump, a Dictator; forcing this country into a Dictatorship with NO government. Falling right in place into Putin’s hands with North Korea and Iran waiting in the wings for their share of the United States. Their clocks haven’t stopped and will gain power to keep on ticking.

  17. JoAnn,

    I know the left-wing media (democrats) in this country likes to focus on Russia but that is a ruse – an overused one as well.

    China will soon take over the number one spot as the biggest economy and the world will get to see that autocracy runs much more smoothly than our capitalist oligarchy which will continue imploding.

    Even Queen Hillary suggests and so does Biden. Historians will look back at this era as the defining moment where autocracies became the global leaders if we survive a nuclear war caused by neocons in Washington and climate change.

  18. Todd; when China takes over the number one spot, I will concentrate my attention on China. Until then…

  19. China HAS taken over the number One spot.
    Ask any car dealer with no inventory because tiny Chinese chips are in short supply. Or wonder why pipelines and hospitals are hacked.

  20. Until the GOP suffers a devastating loss, they won’t change. I used to think that if and when Trump goes to jail, he will lose his power to intimidate fellow Republicans and the party will reform. Sadly, he has so polarized the party that it will take more than his removal from the scene to change things. Even more sadly, gerrymandering and voter suppression made it more difficult for the majority of Americans to right this ship.

    It’s going to take one heckuva registration and turnout effort to overcome all the chicanery threatening democracy. Thankfully, Stacey Abrams showed Georgia and the rest of us that it CAN be done.

  21. I share your feelings about the Chaney’s but this does show how depraved the GOP has become, I still can’t believe they have fallen so far from our founders vision, but surely have.

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