Friday, September 05, 2008

The Politics of Resentment

Once again Paul Krugman, in his column in today's New York Times, gets to the heart of the matter:

What struck me as I watched the convention speeches, however, is how much of the anger on the right is based not on the claim that Democrats have done bad things, but on the perception — generally based on no evidence whatsoever — that Democrats look down their noses at regular people.

Thus Mr. Giuliani asserted that Wasilla, Alaska, isn't "flashy enough" for Mr. Obama, who never said any such thing. And Ms. Palin asserted that Democrats "look down" on small-town mayors — again, without any evidence.

What the G.O.P. is selling, in other words, is the pure politics of resentment; you're supposed to vote Republican to stick it to an elite that thinks it's better than you. Or to put it another way, the G.O.P. is still the party of Nixon.

Read the entire article.

Of course, the fact that the Republicans have selected the politics of resentment, left-over hatreds of the of cool and popular cliques in high school, as the focus of their convention and campaign does not necessarily mean that their analysis, polls and focus groups tell them that is a winning strategy this year. They may be going with it because it is all they have.

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