It helps if you can muster such vitriolic anti-government sentiment there's no chance your minions will consider that you might be fudging it when you insist the Obama administration is "bound and determined to violate every single one of our Bill of Rights", or there are still godless communists lurking around yearning to yank the capitalist bones out of all of us, or there are members of your own party who are working against you when all you're trying to do is save millions of hapless citizens from certain disaster.
It helps if you don't recognize that the disaster is you. Much easier to pull it off if you can convince yourself you're really on a mission to help and not destroy. (But if you must destroy, remember you're only destroying in order to, yes indeedy, build a better. . .ah, who cares? You've got 'em right where you want 'em.)
That's Ted Cruz.
We've all noticed it, and there's a reason for that: Ted Cruz wants us to notice it. It's a major part of his grand strategy. He's sure he knows us better than we know ourselves. He wants us to believe there are evildoers around every corner. Sometimes they're so well disguised we might not even recognize them. But he does. He knows who they are..
Never mind that more than three-quarters of the country--including a good number of his own Republican colleagues--wishes he would take his Joe McCarthy Tribute Show off the road and retire it forever. There's only one thing that could make Ted Kruz happier right now, mere weeks after coming off of his triumphant Shut the Country! tour--if he only had a real-life Edward R. Murrow dogging his every step.
Cruz, not to be outdone by his doppelganger, lives for attention. Dana Milbank addressed it in a piece he wrote as the Cruz-instigated government shutdown ended and the Republicans were forced to do damage control:
Cruz left the reporters after a few minutes, but when he noticed the TV lights and microphones outside the Senate chamber, he stopped and reversed himself. After repeating his statement for the cameras, he took a question from CNN’s [Dana] Bash, who pointed out that there has been “a lot of bruising political warfare internally, and you’ve got nothing for it.”Exactly. Ted Cruz hasn't yet come to the end of Joe McCarthy's story. It ended for McCarthy when the press finally tired of the phony drama, finally came to grips with the depth of destruction (and possibly their own roles in it), and turned its back on him. When Joseph Welch uttered the now famous words, "Have you no sense of decency, sir, at long last?" it was as if the dawn broke and, in an instant, the darkness ended. (Full text here) The crowds, the politicians, the press, cleared the room, leaving McCarthy behind. He was heard saying to no one in particular, "What happened? What did I do?" Nobody answered. He was done.
“I disagree with the premise,” Cruz informed her. He said the House vote to defund Obamacare, rejected by the Senate, was “a remarkable victory.”
It was a revealing statement: For Cruz, the victory is not the achievement but the fight.
And someday soon, hard as it will be for him to believe it, Ted Cruz will be done. It will happen when the press decides it's time and not a moment before. They hold his celebrity and his power in their hands and if they've learned anything from the past, I hope they've learned there is no honor in building up demagogues simply for their own peculiar enjoyment.
I look forward to the day when they're finally over that.
Cross-posted at dagblog and featured on Alan Colmes' Liberaland
Picked up on Crooks and Liars MBRU. Thanks, Tengrain!