I should think that in view of the current ridiculous and wasteful machinations of Republicans they may have finally reached the point of no return. That is, their talk of somehow changing into a different and viable political party is, I fear, just that, talk. I can see no way for them to overcome the incredible damage they have done to our country by their obsessive hatred of President Obama and their persistent obstructionism. It has become obvious by now to virtually everyone, except perhaps the complete nitwits that comprise their base, they have nothing to offer, no program, no agenda, no ideas beyond simply refusing to co-operate with Obama and the Democrats, and opposing anything and everything he has tried to do to improve things. In my view their behavior for the past few years has bordered on treason. The only way Republicans could possibly renew their party is if the entire current leadership, and most or all of the members, could be voted out of office and replaced with all new and more intelligent and responsible individuals. Not only that, they would also have to make massive changes in their philosophy and other core beliefs. As this is not at all likely to happen I think they will be, for all intents and purposes, finished as a political party after the 2014 elections – or at least they certainly should be.
The Republican Party was at one time respectable and acted as a responsible party should have. At no time in the past did they ever simply refuse to participate in governing, whether they were in power or in the minority. Although the rot may well have begun earlier, probably under Saint Ronnie, and certainly grew during the Clinton era, I think it became more obvious and much more serious during the George Bush/Dick Cheney administration. When it became obvious during the Clinton Presidency the Republicans could not win at the ballot box they began to turn to desperate measures. Their attack on Clinton was unprecedented in its savagery, dishonesty, and hypocrisy. Clinton survived but the die was cast. With Karl Rove leading the way everything went downhill from there. Honesty and fair play were abandoned in favor of slime and unprincipled attacks on whoever opposed them. Lying and hypocrisy became their standard operating procedure. The concept of “Roviation” was born and in many cases it worked. With the help of the corporate media they managed to destroy Howard Dean, John Kerry, John McCain, and others that displeased them. No tactic was too sleazy or dishonest, innuendo and slander became an integral part of their plan to grab and hold power, according to Rove, forever. In short, they morphed from a viable, respectable political party into a criminal conspiracy, what I called the “Brafia.” Brafia was a naïve mistake as I assumed it was merely part of the Bush/Cheney era, not considering it would remain the basic characteristic of Republicans in general.
And so now we have this bizarre collection of religious nut-cases, ultra-conservatives, warmongers, and hyper-capitalistic neo-cons, who never saw a potentially profitable war they didn’t like, are basically opposed to government, and are so basically incapable of governing they do not even pretend to have a platform for that eventuality. As they are morally, intellectually, and politically bankrupt they can do nothing but obstruct, obstruct, and obstruct. Thus the vital needs of the country are ignored while they manufacture scandals out of thin air and waste our time and money. They are not bright enough to realize their tactics have now been exposed, and also not capable of changing their hateful, racist, sexist, greedy, unconscionable, and self-destructive behavior. If they are not voted out of office en masse, god help us, for we will have proved we cannot help ourselves. Republicans have gone too far, for them there is no turning back. If there is ever to be a new Republican party (unlikely) it will certainly not resemble this miserable excuse for one we see now.
Philosophers should consider the fact that the greatest happiness principle can easily be made an excuse for a benevolent dictatorship. We should replace it by a more modest and more realistic principle - the principle that the fight against avoidable misery should be a recognized aim of public policy, while the increase of happiness should be left, in the main, to private initiative.