When I was a kid - perhaps nine or ten - our neighbor's dog got loose. Our neighbor was a terrible excuse for a human being. I believe the term my father used for him was "asshole". Given that my father cursed about maybe once a year (and, yes, my frequent use of profanity is my form of rebellion), that was a pretty telling condemnation. Also, his kids turned out to be rotten shits as well,so...
Anyway, the guy had no control over his dog, an empty-headed Irish setter named "Colleen". He kept her in a large cage, completely covered by fence wire. I figured out Colleen had gotten out when I looked out the window, and saw a pack of of around a dozen dogs out on the street. Colleen was in heat.
I went out and shooed the dogs away (surprised now that, though many growled and bared their teeth, none of them took a snap at me, and instead cowered when I raised a hand to cuff them - apparently the brutish inhabitants of the 1960s kept their dogs well-beaten), and went to grab Colleen to take her home. She had no collar on, so I had to grab her by the scruff her neck, and that's when I found that she was completely covered in dog semen.
Well, it's one of those semi-rural moments, like stepping barefoot into chicken shit, when you get grossed out, but there's nothing to be done about it, and you are already committed, so... it's not like you are gonna die from it.
So, to use the above as a metaphor for the 2012 Republican primaries, who is what? Is Colleen, the bitch in heat, the Republican voter? Or are the ardent suitors? I kind of view the bitch in heat as the Republican voter, but an empty-headed Irish setter bitch in heat kind of Republican voter. In which case the candidates are just these frenetic humpers that can seem to find an entry, and so just coat the voter in dog jism. Except Newt Gingrich. I can't imagine him as part of the pack. More like, the soft-served swirl of doggie doo left after the frenzied fuck mêlée.
But Romney, Santorum, Paul? Even Paul is not trying very hard. So, I guess it's just Romney's and Santorum splash-coating the voter's fur.
There is a certain paranoid frenzy to all this. Jonathan Chait chalks it up to a cold realization on the part of Republicans that the population is getting away from them, that the demographics are leaving them all behind. And so, rather than compromise and watch their position steadily weaken, they have decided to make a last stand, and try and jerk the nation as far to the right as they can. Maybe.
Certainly the strategy of sabotage that has been carried out over the past four years has not left them in good stead with the voters. But only if it is a strategy, rather than just a tactic, a temporary rearguard action.
Smart money (as well as the planners and PR flipperlimbs) says that the Republicans give this round to Obama, and let him have the second term. They always have Rubio in 2016. Yeah. Well...
By then, they may have rubbed most of the dog sperm off of their hides.