A first-hand account

A FIRST-HAND ACCOUNT…. A faithful reader who works on Capitol Hill emailed last night to describe the scene yesterday. Specifically, the staffer seemed incredulous about just how “ugly” the right-wing antics became. I’m republishing the aide’s email with permission:

[I]t was ugly up here today. A complete disrespect for the people and institutions. The well-reported racial slurs and attacks on Barney Frank’s sexuality, but also the little things. At 9am some Tea Partiers were putting a paper placard above a Member’s name outside his door that said “I am stupid” and taking a photo. I shook my head at the disrespect and after I turned the corner, yelled at my back was, “You don’t agree? Then you are, too.”

Or at lunch when my colleague was “boxed out” from the Coke machine by a group of Tea Partiers who used their bodies to keep him from buying a Coke.

Or when I left today and the Capitol grounds were littered w/ trash and discarded protest signs.

Unfortunately I have more stories like that, but you get the idea…. I wonder if I’m watching the death throes of Movement Conservatism up close and personal.

Conservatism will never die (nor should it) and arguably the Democratic plan is conservative in the little c sense by keeping and enriching all the entrenched players.

But Movement Conservatism is definitely dying. You know the kind that thinks a .07 increase in the Medicare tax for those making over 100k ruins America’s competitiveness but double-digit inflation in health care costs doesn’t. Or 400Billion in tax cuts and another 300 billion investments in infrastructure is something to rally against rather than a major legislative victory.

Or the Movement Conservatism that blows a gasket because the cost of two wars are accounted for rather than being done off-budget. Or, hell, the Movement Conservatism that objects to PAY-GO legislation.

I wonder if I was watching people’s worldviews breakdown before their eyes. And they had nothing left but to name call, spit and litter as a form of futile and immature protest.