The Notorious P.I.G.

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Mark Cromer –

As America dies the GOP’s electoral serial killer Karl ‘Pig Man’ Rove is still trolling the polls and positioning postmortem Republican political bodies all along his highway to hell

Charlie Daniels once famously sang The Devil Went Down to Georgia and offered up during that summer of 1979 a semi-spoken word performance that sizzled with either America’s casual confidence or her reckless disregard for risks and potential outcomes, depending on one’s perspective. On the one hand, Johnny wasn’t looking for trouble the day the Devil happened upon him, but on the other he didn’t exactly skedaddle either. And when Satan proffered his wager in Daniel’s tune, Johnny didn’t consider the odds and then step back from the pari-mutuel window and wave off a bet that offered either solid gold or the eternal abyss. No, he put his collateral up and let Mephistopheles get the party started. Anyone who remembers the tune when it first hit the airwaves recalls the invigorating outcome, with a simple country boy decisively vanquishing Old Nick at the song’s crescendo and, in the best tradition of Southern hospitality, inviting Lucifer to come on back anytime he felt he needed some more of the same. Karl Rove surely remembers the classic tune and as the disastrous year of 2020 came to a close with the Republican Party’s majority in the Senate hanging by the political shoestring of two seats that would be decided in a Georgia runoff election the opening week of the new year, it must have seemed something like old times to the veteran political operative who by nearly every estimation didn’t wager his soul as much as he outright sold it decades earlier on the altar of corporate globalism. While 1979 may seem like a political eternity ago, certain elements of the political landscape must ring a distant bell for Rove: in 1979 a feckless Democratic president from Georgia was in the White House and the GOP’s presence in Congress was south of tenuous and stuck somewhere between frail and anorexic—with the Democrats holding a 58-seat majority in the Senate and a staggering 276 seats to the Republicans 156 seats in the House of Representatives. But as grim as those spreads appear now, it’s worth remembering that more than 40 years ago the difference between most Democrats and Republicans in both chambers often ranged from minor to miniscule depending on the issue, a demarcation of a few simple degrees that would be unthinkable today amid the political peacocks and freak show power junkies carrying out their corporate looting and jihad for total control. The era of old salts like Tip O’Neill and Howard Baker and Bob Packwood and Alan Cranston making their party’s case and jockeying for position inside the Capitol before retiring to Old Ebbitt Grill or Martin’s Tavern to cut a deal over steaks and drinks that most everyone could live with has passed along with the nation’s cultural cohesiveness that produced a functioning government symbolic of a fairly united nation. While men like O’Neill, Baker, Packwood and Cranston surely did have political hills to fight over and perhaps ideologically perish upon, the definition of what constituted a man or a woman or whether a man can have a baby or should a seven-year-old boy be chemically castrated so his mother can dress him up and parade him around as a ‘girl’ or whether a blood libel against white Americans and peddled under the guise of ‘systemic racism’ was the true arbiter of success in America were not among them.