The Moose puts on his counter-intuitive antlers.
Republicans are in a deep funk awaiting disaster. Democrats can hardly control themselves in anticipation of a GOP collapse.
The Moose suggests that the donkey and elephant should just settle down. If the indictments come, it will be a very difficult for the GOP in the short term. With the stench of corruption already surrounding the congressional wing of the Party and incompetence the leitmotif of the White House, this is not a good moment to be a Republican.
In fact, the Moose suggests that the Republicans should encourage a total collapse of the Bushie-DeLayican regime. Only then will the GOP have a chance and an imperative to reform itself - the worse, the better.
For the Democrats, a GOP collapse could benefit the party in the short term and harm it for the long run. The Republican travails could provide false comfort and convince the donkey that there is no need to fundamentally reform its message and policies - particularly on values and national security. Consequently, it could enjoy major gains in '06 that are wiped out in '08.
Don't misunderstand the Moose. He can enjoy the schadenfreude as well as the next mammal. However, it appears that the American people have had it with both parties - neither is all that popular at the moment. A recent Democracy Corps memo indicates that "both national parties are at a half-century low point in public esteem."
Democrats must move beyond the Merlot crowd and capture the Toby Keith and Hank Hill types. Bush hatred alone will be insufficient. And the 22nd Amendment precludes him from being on the ballot again. Does the Democratic Party have any appeal to disaffected Republicans and moderates or does it merely serve as a conduit for the rage of the base? Can it become the party of fiscal responsibility again as it did during the Clinton years? Unfortunately, they missed a chance yesterday when only Senator Feingold joined a small group of conservative Republicans who attempted to slash some Alaska pork.
David Brooks channels the Moose yesterday in the Times,
"Congress is polarized, but this isn't an ideological moment, liberal or conservative. It's a moment when voters want to know someone is running the country, that there's someone to project authority and take responsibility, to establish international and domestic order, so they can get on with their lives."
While the GOP is an exhausted volcano, Democrats comprise a party that is largely bereft of courage, daring or any imagination. The donkey believes that good fortune will merely fall into its lap. While the Moose has policy differences with Senator Feingold, he is the only '08 wanna-be who has truly demonstrated the capacity to surprise.
The Moose will go out on a limb (a dangerous perch for a large mammal) and predict that if neither of the two parties reform themselves to appeal beyond their bases, there will be a serious independent third candidate (not a party) for the Presidency in '08. There is a huge political market niche for it - and some entrepreneurial politician or non-politician will figure it out.
Count on it.
Moose inquiry of the week - Is the President's nickname for Tom DeLay - "Bugsy"? --