I’ve always hated “when they go low, we go high”. I prefer this (from The Untouchables): “They pull a knife, you pull a gun. He sends one of yours to the hospital, you send one of his to the morgue.”
While I don’t know if that’s exactly the right attitude for Democrats to take, there’s no doubt that Dahlia Lithwick (via rikyrah) is certainly onto something:
This isn’t a call to become tolerant of awful behavior. It is a call for understanding that Democrats honored the blue slip, and Republicans didn’t. Democrats had hearings over the Affordable Care Act; Republicans had none over the tax bill. Democrats decry predators in the media; Republicans give them their own networks. And what do Democrats have to show for it? There is something almost eerily self-regarding in the notion that the only thing that matters is what Democrats do, without considering what the systemic consequences are for everyone.
In the event that you doubt that the war is asymmetric, ask yourself how long it took for the same GOP that was disavowing Moore a month ago to embrace him, and to embrace him again in the face of new evidence. Ask how long it took from when Trump made it clear that he would wage war on Robert Mueller for Hugh Hewitt—purporting to speak on behalf of “a large swath of responsible center-right observers”—to call for an investigation into Mueller. This because a former FBI official sent pro-Hillary texts that now raise, according to Hewitt, “the possibility of shattering public confidence in a number of long-held assumptions about the criminal-justice system generally and the FBI and the Justice Department specifically.” The president just claimed the FBI is “in tatters,” but it’s the former official, who Mueller pulled off the investigation for the texts, who shatters confidence in the agency?
Unilateral disarmament is tantamount to arming the other side. That may be a trade worth making in some cases. But it’s worth at least acknowledging that this is the current calculus. It’s no longer that when they go low, we get to go high. They are permanently living underground. How long can we afford to keep living in the clouds?
I think some of the nasty shit Republicans are doing is short-sighted and will bite them in the ass. Democrats are now winning the 18-29 age group by 30 points in elections. It could be that in ten years, the national Republican party will be in the kind of shape the California Republican party is now, and that Democratic supermajorities are commonplace at many levels of government.
But, even if that’s true, will our country still be here after Republicans are through with it?
I’ll tell you this: when Democrats get control of states in 2018 and 2020 — and they will — they need to gerrymander back, not turn things over to a panel. And I’d like to see some measures taken to make it so that older people are less likely to vote. Maybe schedule a Matlock marathon on A&E on election days.