Is Politics Now Just an Endless War of All Against All?

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Jamelle Bouie makes the point today that having strong views doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll never compromise. So the mere existence of extreme tea party sentiments doesn’t really explain why modern Republicans are so hellbent on never compromising their beliefs. But what does?

This seems to stem from an attitude that emerged during the 1994 elections and has only grown since—the idea that conservatives aren’t just opposed to liberals but that they’re at war with liberalism. It’s why Republicans have dismantled key norms governing Congress and other institutions (see: the filibuster and the 60-vote Senate), and have taken to opposing everything associated with the Democratic White House. If immigration has a chance, it’s because it isn’t identified with President Obama. And insofar that individual Republicans see it as such, they tend to be opposed.

For what it’s worth, most movement conservatives appear to feel exactly the same way in reverse. They believe that Democrats don’t view them merely as political opponents, but as enemies to be utterly destroyed. What say you, commenters? Is this true?

THE TRUTH...

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THE TRUTH...

is the first thing despots go after. An unwavering commitment to it is probably what draws you to Mother Jones' journalism. And as we're seeing in the US and the world around, authoritarians seek to poison the discourse and the way we relate to each other because they can't stand people coming together around a shared sense of the truth—it's a huge threat to them.

Which is also a pretty great way to describe Mother Jones' mission: People coming together around the truth to hold power accountable.

And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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