I opted for the breathtaking originality of Virginia Woolf's genius and a walk with my daughter in the cooling, late-summer air and a C-Span panel-discussion on the Tuskegee airmen's courageous contribution to the civil rights movement and thus ended the evening with my mind stimulated and my soul refreshed and my sanity reasonably intact.
This, I could not write had I spent the night in the GOP sewer. It wasn't as though the sewer would be gone tomorrow. It wasn't as though Mitt Romney's Shakespearean tragi-comic crowning as King Liar and all the attendant absurdities would fail capture on video tape. And it wasn't as though all that wicked splendor and majestic farce was in any way fleeting, something in need of instant, blogospheric commentary and journalistic judgment before it slipped and oozed and reeked right back into the groundbreaking cloaca of the GOP's special little hell. No, it would all be there the next day, just as it was the day before, and it shall be next week, as it has been all summer.
The Republican Party has discovered the base-hypnotic magic of indifferentiation: lie low, and stay there--and I don't mean "lie" in any prostrated sense. We in the clean world assumed Romney would shift to the middle during the general campaign, as is customary. Yet the thought occurred to King Liar and his sociopathic staff of double-troubling witches and warlocks that this, for the big guy, would prove unquestionably fatal; he'd lose the base, which was precariously held at best. Better to go so indescribably negative that the political filth would altogether alienate independents from the political process--voila, a base election in which a besieged incumbent must defend from a fixed fortification while the challenger is free to attack viciously from any direction and violate every standard of decency and break every traditional rule of engagement.
It's what hellish sociopaths do. Their particular acts may be unimaginable to small-r republicans right up until the moment they hurl their despicably unthinkable rot--Obama's gutting Medicare, Obama's gutting welfare reform, Obama will raise your taxes again, Obama apologizes for America, Obama resents small-business success, Obama's economic policies (sociopathically obstructed for two years) have failed--but their hydra-headed depravity never disappoints.
But, back to the GOP's carefully delimited psychotic episode of last night. What, around 4PM Central, did I expect? What Andrew Sullivan summarized at precisely 11:20PM Eastern:
[A] sad evening for an actual reality-based critique of Obama's record, or a coherent set of proposals for the future.
Yes, but I suffered it not, and yet I didn't miss a thing.