Conservative Bender

Now that I am a (more or less) full-time blogger, I try to remind myself periodically not to get too caught up in the “lefty blogger syndrome,” seizing on every conservative misdeed as reflecting a deep pathology and bellowing at my confreres to fight back.

But this week is not a good one for maintaining a calm and reasonable attitude.

Perhaps we shouldn’t get too alarmed at the sight and sound of Supreme Court Justices enjoying lifetime appointments talking about the 47-year-old Medicaid program, on which 60 million Americans depend, as though they might just choose to kill it to make an abstract point about federal coercion of the states.

Now that the oral arguments over ObamaCare have mercifully ended, and Washington returns its collective attention to Congress, what do we see? I’ll let Ezra Klein explain it:

Today, Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget will come up for a vote in the House. It’s expected to pass on a party-line vote. Insofar as any trouble is foreseen, the difficulty is that many conservatives consider Ryan’s budget too compromised and incrementalist. I’ll repeat that: They consider Paul Ryan’s budget — which is an undeniably radical, transformational document as compared to the major budget proposals of, oh, the last 50 years — too compromised and incrementalist. When that’s the ideological temperature of one of the two parties, it’s not obvious that any amount of leadership from the top can lead to a reasonable deal.

Conservatives are truly going on a bender this week. It could create one helluva extended hangover, but in the mean time, it’s fearesome to watch.

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Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore, a Monthly contributing editor, is a columnist for the Daily Intelligencer, New York magazine’s politics blog, and the managing editor for the Democratic Strategist.