Published in The Nation, Feb 15, 2010

Our Worthy Opponents

We've all seen it: the beet-red-faced kid in the grocery store, stomping, stiff-legged, screaming because some demand was not met. This, my friends, is the modern face of the Republican Party; rude, regressive and ranting. They're joined at the hip with Blue Dog, wart hog, lost-in-a-fog Democrats and a smattering of insipid, insolent, ill-mannered independents, all fuming since the election of Barack Obama.

Call it the pout after the rout, an adult version of everything you hate about someone else's kid. And the parents of this soiled, spoiled, well-oiled, naughty brood? They're politicians like John McCain and Chuck Grassley, or the Neanderthals yelling "Fire!" in a crowded theater, like Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh, who make political hay, or money, or both, at our country's peril.

This has nothing to do with healthcare reform (I like paying eighteen bucks for an aspirin! The insurance industry will suffer if it has competition! Keep your damn government hands off my Medicare!) and everything to do with their notion that a black man should not be giving orders.

Dave Waldon, Stockton CA