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Wednesday, January 11, 2006

CLINICAL DEMOCRATS: Speculation grows about why the Democrats are turning in such a pathetic performance in their attempt to stop the Alioto nomination. Obvious answer: they're outgunned at every level: philosophically, intellectually, politically. Seven of the last ten presidential campaigns won by the GOP, yet the Dems continue to act (and speak) as if they're the majority party temporarily sidelined because the other side has somehow gotten a series of lucky breaks. We all know the drill: Reagan got elected only because he was an actor and Carter was weak; Bush 41 won only because he wore the Reagan mantle and Dukakis is a synonym for Doofis; Gore and Kerry actually won but W. stole both elections; the beat goes on. I confess I'm having an altogether delightful time watching the Democrats fall apart in public — from Kennedy's inability to pronounce Alito's name, to Biden's duplicity about Princeton. Permit me now to introduce a bit of psychological lingo:
decompensation |dēˌkämpənˈsā sh ən| noun • Psychiatry: the failure to generate effective psychological coping mechanisms in response to stress, resulting in personality disturbance or disintegration, esp. that which causes relapse in schizophrenia.
Watch them all carefully: not just Kennedy in his perennial fog, not just Biden and his endless preening narcissism; watch Durbin and Schumer and Feinstein and Leahy. What they have in common is that their "1960s mental furniture cannot square a modern nominee, much less a conservative one." Their coping mechanisms may have worked during the early Reagan years, when it was still possible to view his presidency as a grand historic accident. But their cognitive strategies simply are no longer working; they are indeed unable to "generate effective psychological coping mechanisms." So they stammer, they back and fill, they make lame jokes, they tread water furiously while trying to look calm, they claim to be progressive yet they sound reactionary, they hector and scold while appearing to be magnanimous. What America sees is the lack of congruence, the sustained disingenousness, the garden variety duplicity. Remember Nixon's sweaty "I am not a crook" moment? Recall Clinton's pasty, pious "I did not have sex with that woman?" These snapshots in infamy have become the Dems' ongoing present-tense reality: a continuous train wreck in slow motion, the cars becoming uncoupled one by one as the engineer refuses to look back and see what's actually happening. It goes without saying: This is all very good for America.