Bill Thompson, this is to continue my response begun yesterday:
5) I cited "Know Nothings" for the sociological component of fear. I generalized about the attitude of the "tea party"—again, I argue, a rather vague concept—that I have seen expressed on signs at rallies or in quotes from supporters. What you see as a "limited, legal immigration process," such as that you say the "tea party" favors, I see as a wall built along our border with Mexico and draconian laws enacted that discriminate against anyone who "looks" like she or he might be of Latino descent. The fear element is the same, in either case.
6) As for President Obama’s waffle on creationism: you are correct. I believe that is horrendous for the chief executive of a corporation that addresses matters of science every day—whether private sector corporation or a government—to waffle in such a manner. for the civil response to my blog. Let me respond, point-by-point.
7) Mitt Romey went that far right. In 1994 he said he was pro-choice and pro-gay-rights. He veered back to pander—the popular word onto which the media glommed—to the right-wing. To drop back and say he only adopted his party’s platform as his position ducks the fact that the tea party pushed candidates last spring to go ever-further right wing. (Remember the cheers for Rick Perry as executioner-governor or the boos of the gay serviceman overseas?) As to Paul’s reference to Romney as "a card-carrying member of the GOP establishment" I would say (a) there is no such group or card, unless the card is a black American Express ® card, the kind with really, really high limits (don’t leave your 18-bedroom home without it) (b) Other Republican candidates, in 2008, did not Romney because he stood for nothing (see "Game Change," by Heilemann and Halperin) and (c) Republicans, generally, have shunned Mitt since the election.
8) Paul did not mention "urban types." The comments about African-Americans and Latinos having voted heavily for Romney were made by Romney and Ryan, for starters. I am offended by the tone Romney took (where he also said the President bought their votes with "gifts"), the implication being that those segments of the population are not "real" voters. Romney’s former chief of staff (I think that is who made the statement yesterday) claimed Romney "really" won the election because he won the votes of people with median incomes over $50,000—as though others do not count. When you conclude "and black people don’t see a place for them under the Republican tent," I would say that is natural. People, against whom a party’s policies are aimed, naturally would not want to be in that "tent."
9) Your suggestion about the Democratic platform probably is correct, at least in part. The issues to which the "tea party" clings, that I have cited, are no longer viable for a political party in the United States in the 21st Century.
Thanks for the response and the civil tone. btw, you’re not the former Governor of Illinois—one who was not convicted of anything, served in the 1980s—are you?