The billionaires’ takeover of the GOP

The people at Ring of Fire radio were good enough to make a nice YouTube clip of my recent interview on the Ed Schultz radio show.

Guest host Mike Papantonio and I discuss the billionaires’ hostile takeover of the Republican Party, courtesy of Citizens United, the gift that keeps on taking. Here, the “taken” is the R’s themselves.

Corruption via Shutterstock

The clip references a series of cadre coups on the right, described as “inner groups [cadres] taking over outer groups [their hosts]. This is similar to the way a cadre (hard-core creationists) took over local Texas school boards, then moved upward until they “owned” the committees that control state-wide textbook content. After that, it was Dinos-for-Jesus for everyone. The Southern Baptist Convention (its controlling organization) was similarly couped by MoveCon activists.

The first takeover of the Republican Party, as noted in the interview, occurred in the 1970s, as the original Movement Conservatives took over party control from more traditional Republicans, who tended to be Nelson Rockefeller types. Now those last-gen “traditional” MoveCons are being themselves dethroned by the Americans for Prosperity–financed “Tea Party” candidates. In the clip, I called that coup about 60% complete.

Grand Daddy of the AFP is, of course, David Koch, who seems to be fronting these days for Koch Bros Central. Thus the billionaires — the Kochs, Adelson and the Foster Freize–types — are well on their way to having their way with the Boehners and McConnells et al. As noted in the clip, Norquist has already capitulated.


Read my earlier piece on the distinction between Tea Party voters (people with real beliefs) and Tea Party candidates (employees with bosses in a tightly controlled organization). It’s an important distinction in my view; these two groups should not be conflated with language like “the Tea Party.” There is no “the Tea Party” — there are true-believers without power, and people with power who use those believers. Both tend to be called “the Tea Party” but they’re two different balls of wax, at least as I see it.

If you agree, you might want to let your language reflect it; after all, language does count.


To follow or send links: @Gaius_Publius

Gaius Publius is a professional writer living on the West Coast of the United States.

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