The Washington Post

Friday rant: Whips and chains edition

The GOP has spent it’s time and energy for decades whipping up the base and now it’s chained to the result. Rush Limbaugh? Huh? Wha? Glenn Beck? Who, us? Fox News? Wait, we thought that was fair and balanced! So now what? One more time! Pander, then pivot! Or pirouette! What are the choices? There is no choice, at this point.

Well doesn’t somebody need to represent the interests of the wacky base? Well, yes, somebody does. But there’s supposed to be a two-way street. As a candidate, you listen to the voters’ concerns, and learn from them. As a leader, you help educate your constituents about, uh, reality. D’oh! Forgot that second part!

If instead, you pander to half-formed thoughts and ill-considered predilections, and even stoke and flatter those predispositions and pretend to believe all of it, well you are going to end up with an irresponsible, angry base that actually has forgotten how to listen, because pandering tends to do that. A disservice to democracy, and eventually, to yourself. Looks like we’ve reached eventually.

Tom Toles is the editorial cartoonist for The Post and writes the Tom Toles blog. See all of his cartoons here.


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