So the basic storyline is that McCain's supporters want a no-holds barred assault on Obama. The only problem being that most of the things that they want him to say are not even close to being true, and most of the things they themselves are saying are breaching toward violent acts (Kill em, traitor, and so forth). I'm not surprised by this, not because the typical republican is violent or stupid enough to think in such ways, but because the typical fundamentalist republican is. Extremism tends to breed zealots. My only hope is that the zealots will weed themselves out by either throwing a riot that no one else comes to, or they'll weed out into their own party after this election and something more reasonable will come along for people who actually don't like statism (ie populism).
I noticed that basically both major parties, despite having no major differences between them were busy putting into their leadership people with major polarizing effects (ideologues): Democrats with Pelosi, Obama and Republicans with Palin, W, and previously with Gingrich (though he, like Obama, always tries to come across as thoughtful rather than crazy). I'm not sure how this works, because it seems to me the typical success in politics is to play to the middle ground, not to antagonize the pool so much that there is no middle ground. So basically my hope is that this means one or both major parties splinter in the near future. The other hope would have to be that McCain in the Senate and Obama work productively as non-partisan foes over issues of importance, but that's just a fool's hope.
More from Lester Thurow
29 minutes ago