Caught some glimpses of the CPAC conference, the rousing right-wing Project Runway for aspiring adults who want to tell us what they hope to be when they grow up. It’s an annual spectacle comparable to the Carnival of Venice except that the clowns in this instance are the real-life thing. If you saw Sen. Mitch McConnell in his Charlton Heston mode, waving a long gun to the delight of the crowd, you might see what I mean.
CPAC, in case you’re just checking in, stands for Crazy Party of Anarchy Central, whose members argue that we must be noisily vigilant to save the country from going to hell while giving us all of the reasons why it should go to hell. In their screeds that vandalize the common good, America must become a country without a country. On Planet Tea Party, no government operation is worthy of existence.
Sen.Ted Cruz of Texas, a Joe McCarthy look-alike, found nothing good to say about the Republican Party and singled out three losing presidential candidates – Bob Dole, John McCain and Mitt Romney – as evidence of blown opportunities to move into the Oval Office. There were repeated references to feel-good core principles, whatever they are supposed to be.
There is something about the meteoric rise of Ted Cruz, so full of himself with those slits for eyes and the mad smile of Mephistopheles. This much, I will admit: If I happened to see him under a full moon, I’d run like hell!
With all of that theater of the absurd occupying the TV screen so soon after Oscars night, it became an even worse setback for political sanity when Republican Rep. Darrell Issa, the richest man on Capitol Hill, reduced his persona to ashes reprising his own role as Count Dracula. As the chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, he cut off the mike before the Rep.Elijah Cummings, the ranking Democrat on the committee, could speak his mind.
Issa, I have to say, has the scariest glare on Capitol Hill. He ended the hearing and left the room as I foolishly awaited the McCarthy hearings’ Joseph Welch to cry out from the gallery, “Congressman, have you no sense of decency? ” Issa called Cummings later with an apology for his unspeakable action, but then later added without remorse to Fox News’ Megyn Kelly that Cummings, after all, had thrown a “hissy fit”. Tsk. Tsk. If it’s possible for the Republicans to be embarrassed by the Dracula sideshow, the episode on camera confirmed that the GOP still has many miles to go when one of its prominent courtiers insults an African American. The Democrats should thank Issa for handing them a hot-button issue.
BULLETIN: Rand Paul won the straw vote with a third of the ballots. He won last year, too. If he wins again next year, they should retire his number.