Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Weirdos?

Shortly after the election, Dick Meyer at CBSNews.com ran piece that caused a bit of blog universe buzz. In it, Meyer accused the the congressional Republicans who came to power in 1994 of being, well, "weirdos."

The men who ran the Republican Party in the House of Representatives for the past 12 years were a group of weirdos. Together, they comprised one of the oddest legislative power cliques in our history. . . .

I'm confident that if historians ever spend the time on it, they'll confirm my thesis. Same with forensic psychiatrists. I have discussed this with scores of politicians, staffers, consultants and reporters since 1994 and have found few dissenters.

Politicians in this country get a bad rap. For the most part, they are like any high-achieving group in America, with roughly the same distribution of pathologies and virtues. But the leaders of the GOP House didn't fit the personality profile of American politicians, and they didn't deviate in a good way. It was the Chess Club on steroids.


Most of this just struck me as typical media elitism. The Republicans of 1994 were probably more like ordinary Americans, for good or ill, than people like Meyer and the "normal" politicians he cites. But then I read stuff like this coming out of Newt Gingrich's mouth and I've got to wonder:

"I'm going to tell you something, and whether or not it's plausible given the world you come out of is your problem," he tells Fortune. "I am not 'running' for president. I am seeking to create a movement to win the future by offering a series of solutions so compelling that if the American people say I have to be president, it will happen"


Yeah, maybe weirdo is the right word.

1 comment:

Dick Meyer said...

I'm not sure whether media elitism can compare with academic elitism, but I'm pretty sure "weirdo' is the right word. Listen to the tapes of Gingrich's college course some time. Or spend sme time talking about Congress with Tom DeLay and thn tell me how muc like reular Americans they are.

Thanks,

Dick meyer