The post was The Opposition Party Myth, and here are a few key passages:
As Carpetbagger points out, Arlon Specter says that many of his colleagues wanted to join him, but realized that doing so would make their Republican primaries hard to win. And so they went against their better judgment because Limbaugh gave them no other choice.I also went on to explain that over-emphasis on partisan politics was anti-democratic, as the whole purpose of democracy is to give voice to the people; before saying:
Of course, the solution to that would have been for these politicians to stop lying about the stimulus and explain that it's a good idea. Which, as I already mentioned, everyone already agrees with. But that'd require them to face-off against Limbaugh and the other talkers, who clearly are more influential with the base. So Limbaugh is essentially holding the Republican Party hostage, solely for the benefit of his ratings.
For as much as Congressional Republicans are in a power struggle, it's entirely against Limbaugh and his ilk; and they're clearly losing. And because of that, Congressional Repubs have forfeited the power struggle against Obama.
But Limbaugh doesn't want that to happen. He doesn't want his fans to think Obama is listening to them. He wants them to feel powerless against Obama and that Limbaugh is the only outlet of power they have. And that means he has to make Republican politicians powerless. He doesn't want them making the stimulus bill better, or any other Democratic bill better. He wants them to abstain completely. If they're not working to make the bills better, they might as well not even be in Congress.
So effectively, the people these congressmen represent don't have representatives in Congress. No one is sticking up for them but Limbaugh. Limbaugh is the only voice they have. They have been effectively disenfranchised. And that's the way the Limbaughs want it. Republicans aren't functioning as an opposition party. They're a non-existent party, which doesn't function at all.
And that's exactly what we're getting now. Limbaugh wants to be the only voice for these people, which is why he's threatening to hurt the party if they don't go along with him. This isn't about ideological purity anymore. This is about Limbaugh being a power-hungry idiot.
Limbaugh Blows His Schtick
And he is an idiot for doing this. His whole schtick was that he was "The Voice of America." He wasn't supposed to be a party hack. He was supposed to be a patriotic purist who used the Republican Party to advance the cause of America. Sure, that was a complete load of bullshit, but that was his gimmick. Similarly, Bill O'Reilly is an "Independent" and Fox News is "Fair and Balance." Yeah, we all knew that was a load of bull, but the rubes needed to believe it.
Their supporters honestly see Limbaugh, O'Reilly, and Fox as telling them the unvarnished truth and are incredulous when we suggest that they're partisan hacks. Sure, they realize there's a conservative slant, but they're conservatives so they think that's alright. Plus, it makes up for the liberal slant they imagine they're getting elsewhere. I'm sure they assume it's just about framing things in certain ways and don't realize they're being straight-up lied to.
And they certainly don't realize they're being fed Republican talking points. So for Limbaugh to openly make the Republican Party his bitch just takes things too far. He always was a party hack, but now that it's become his party, the whole charade ends. Before, there was a sort of plausible deniability between the two. He wasn't responsible for their compromises and corruption, and they weren't responsible for his offensive idiocies.
But now, that's all gone. With even the head of the party publicly bowing before Rush's alter, they've given up all pretenses of a separation. Now they're responsible for one another's actions and are a big liability to each other. I honestly thought Steele might have been playing some scripted game when he criticized Limbaugh, in an effort to return to the fictional separation they always had. But now, all they've done is sealed it irreparably. And we have Limbaugh's ego to thank for it.