The first thing that crossed my alleged mind when I heard about Todd Akin’s shall we say, remarkable abuse of biological science, common decency and common sense, was that “This is no surprise to the crowd that put him where he is.”
No one rises to the party nomination for U.S. Senator without being thoroughly vetted, not so much by “average voters” as by well-connected, usually deep-pocketed party elders … and their minders in the national party. Particularly in Missouri this year.
As has been exhaustively repeated the incumbent Democrat, Claire McCaskill, is pretty much a sitting duck. All the Republicans really had to do is put up someone who bathed regularly and knew the difference between a fork and a spoon to guarantee a win … and take a giant step closer to making Mitch McConnell Majority Leader.
Maybe Akin performs his ablutions regularly, but the fundamentals of what is real and what is — as The Great and Wonderful Austin said in the previous post — medieval religious hysteria kind of escape him. He’s a modern troglodyte, but by strategic design he has plenty of company.
The like of Todd Akin is very much what today’s modern Republican elders, overseers, party professionals and strategists are regularly endorsing and financing.. I’m certain Akin saying what he believes in his out-loud voice disappointed them, but it sure as hell didn’t surprise them, if for no other reason than what Akin believes about gynecological function is essentially no different from what, I strongly suspect, dozens of other “true conservatives” currently taking up space in Congress also believe.
Do the names of Steve King, Louie Gohmert, Bob Aderholt, Jeff Flake, John Boozman, Brian Bilbray, Gary Miller, Sand Adams, Allan West, Paul Broun, Raul Labrador, Joe Walsh, Dan Burton … and Michele Bachmann to name just a few, mean anything to you? While most know better than to say — out loud and on TV — what Akin said, what do you think those deep thinkers discuss privately when it comes to “legitimate” or, (equally absurd and offensive) “forcible rape”?
It as been pointed out that the Tea Party’s intellectual leader, Paul Ryan, co-authored with the bumbling Mr. Akin, the short-lived legislation deploying the term “forcible rape”, (as opposed to, I don’t know, the kind where the woman touches up her lipstick and gives the drunken thug her best “come hither” look). Ryan’s purpose in exploiting that term — i.e. pandering to the most superstitious, know-nothing instincts of his base — was to blunt an imagined scheme by Planned Parenthood to qualify all teen pregnancies as statutory rape … and have taxpayers pay for abortions.
It’s a “moral” thing with this crowd, you understand. Not that they’ve added anything to the prosecution of the characters who melted down the world economy.
With Karl Rove pulling his money out of Mr. Akin’s campaign, I see no way the pathetic doof survives. But the modern GOP has a deep well of like-minded “talent”. The party hierarchy has actively recruited and sponsored a small army of mini Torquemadas, people of often astonishing ignorance but reliable recklessness who can be counted on to advance the hierarchy’s primary objective — reduced tax rates for themselves — while creating no end of collateral damage along the way.
The lesson the party minders will take away from Mr. Akin’s “lapse” is a fresh set of talking points of “what to never say in public”.