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US Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) smiles as he talks to reporters about his opposition to ratifying the new START treaty, at the US Capitol in Washington, December 22, 2010. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
Why is this man smiling? Maybe it's the "hysterical delusional affirmation."
Jim DeMint, once senator and now Heritage Action head honcho, promises in a Wall Street Journal op-ed that "we won't back down on Obamacare." Why? Because the guy who deals with data at Heritage Action published a report saying everyone's premiums are going up under Obamacare and it costs too much and someday single payer and because someday "most Americans are consigned to poor care through the exchanges and Medicaid."

Elections? Terrible approval ratings? Bah!

Forget the consultants, the pundits and the pollsters; good policy is good politics. If the Republicans had not fought on ObamaCare, the compromise would have been over the budget sequester. Instead, they have retained the sequester and for the past three months ObamaCare and its failings have been front and center in the national debate. Its disastrous launch was spotlighted by our defund struggle, not overshadowed, as some contend. With a revived and engaged electorate, ObamaCare will now be the issue for the next few years.
Yes! That's why the shutdown was so successful: spotlighting the lauch of Obamacare! Priceless. Now we could spend a lot of time debunking all of DeMint's assertions. It's easy to do, because it's been done sooooo many times before. Instead, let's look at maybe why DeMint, and so many of his friends, are so convinced that they can get rid of this law. Charlie Cook took a stab at trying to understand why these folks seemed so divorced from reality. He had to get professional help to understand.
I consulted a psychiatrist and a psychologist on this question. Both said there is no formal term for the behavior some Republicans are exhibiting, but one described the groupthink as “hysterical delusional affirmation,” and the other named it “delusional synergy.” One said, “It entails suspension of logical intellectual processes with a selective consideration of only confirmatory input. Paranoid people typically experience ideas of influence and control where they believe that they see things that others cannot. This process is often propelled by delusions of grandeur, quite often messianic in nature.”
"Hysterical delusional affirmation" sounds pretty spot on. They're definitely hysterical (in all of its definitions!) and pretty damned delusional, too. And does "delusions of grandeur, quite often messianic in nature," sound like any junior senator from Texas we might know? Thought so.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 01:18 PM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (39+ / 0-)

    "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. [...] There would be no place to hide."--Frank Church

    by Joan McCarter on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 01:18:22 PM PDT

  •  Julie Driscoll explains pretty well (12+ / 0-)

    right here They are like men who abuse their wives. This is a great article. Please read it. She hits the nail on the head

    Join the War on Thinking. Watch Fox News- John Lucas

    by Jlukes on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 01:40:32 PM PDT

  •  And ... then Cook goes all false equivalence. (12+ / 0-)
    Destructive behavior is not confined to one political party. During George W. Bush’s presidency, the Left and some Democrats got caught up in some pretty crazy stuff as well; some peddled conspiracy theories that Bush knew about the 9/11 attacks in advance and that his 2004 reelection was stolen.
    "Some peddled"? Who peddled, Charlie? Some douchenozzles in their basement, that's who. NOT COMPARABLE to a sizable chunk of elected Congressfolk in the GOP.
    More recently, House Democrats’ decision in 2009—despite a worsening recession—to push ahead on cap-and-trade climate-change legislation, and then pursue health care reform after unemployment topped 9 percent, cost them their House majority, along with Senate seats, governorships, state legislative seats, and control of chambers. This led to devastating redistricting consequences for the party.
    This is "delusional"? Pushing party platform issues that were vilified successfully by the opposition? Most people would call that "politics," Charlie. Not delusion.
    It’s also worth pointing out the fairly crazy belief on the left that the political controversy surrounding health care reform would help Democrats and virtually ensure Obama’s reelection. The union-backed decision to push a recall of GOP Gov. Scott Walker in Wisconsin falls into this category as well—another colossal miscalculation based on hate, not logic.
    "Miscalculation"? Walker had his wings clipped by the recall, which is something the GOPers do all the time---succeed in moving the Overton Window even when they lose the battle. But when Democrats do it, it's a miscalculation?

    Lot of concern trolling there, Charlie.

  •  On some (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    message boards that I frequent some in opposition to ACA are using that Heritage Foundation table to show how premiums have gone up pre-ACA to post ACA....

    Is this data accurate? It seemed like across the board in every single state the premiums are higher for all age groups.

    Is this accurate?

  •  Yeah well (7+ / 0-)

    You think that's bad, there are people in this country who believe that if you have sexual intercourse with the wrong people you die and horned beings with forked taiis dunk you in magma and stick pitchforks into you forever and ever.

  •  Cruz, delusions of grandeur? (6+ / 0-)

    I understand Rafael has one piece of art in the office of his lobby, an 8 foot high oil painting of one Rafael, with a light beaming down on him from heaven.  not snark

  •  Fristian diagnosis is still Fristian Diagnosis. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Nothing to be proud of.

    "But the traitors will pretend / that it's gettin' near the end / when it's beginning" P. Ochs

    by JesseCW on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:08:49 PM PDT

  •  They don't believe in psychiatry (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Does that surprise anyone?

    I'm no philosopher, I am no poet, I'm just trying to help you out - Gomez (from the song Hamoa Beach)

    by jhecht on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:12:21 PM PDT

    •  Well, neither do Scientologists. LOL. n/t (0+ / 0-)

      The "Shot heard 'round the world" is now known as the "Pinochet Ricochet". --commonmass

      by commonmass on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:15:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Not at all! (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      Cognitive therapy and most other forms require the participant to take a brutally realistic look at how his/her worldview and behaviors are contributing to self-destructive tendencies. It's not for bullshitters steeped in cognitive dissonance (although I'm sure there's a popular psychologist somewhere willing to feed into their narcisissm).

      Is fheàrr fheuchainn na bhith san dùil

      by bull8807 on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:17:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I believe all political movements and their (5+ / 0-)

    leaders, when faced with utter defeat and the nasty reality of failed ideology, go through this kind of public and collective delusion. I saw some talking head on MSNBC the other day, this Republican woman who projected a persona which was one part cheerleader, one part Junior League and fifteen parts totally divorced from reality, who simply shook her head and clucked when confronted with the reality that Obamacare is not as unpopular as she thinks it is and that the Tea Party is tanking. It was painful to watch. There was a moment there when I thought she was going to try to sell me the Kay Bailey Hutchison line of Tupperware. Truly scary and unsettling.

    Watching these guys and their apologists is truly painful. I take no pleasure whatsoever in it, while if you had asked me three months ago, I would have expected to gloat.

    Watching people descend to this dark place is not pleasant.

    The "Shot heard 'round the world" is now known as the "Pinochet Ricochet". --commonmass

    by commonmass on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:13:33 PM PDT

  •  One small kernal of truth... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    The shutdown/Obamacare fiasco DID mask the sequester spending levels.  That is the starting point on the budget now.

    “Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.” - John Steinbeck

    by RichM on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:16:26 PM PDT

  •  He is right about one thing. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Upper-middle-class and above are seeing some hefty premium increases, and they get no subsidy. And those are really the ones who count, right?

    Early to rise and early to bed Makes a man healthy, wealthy, and dead. --Not Benjamin Franklin

    by Boundegar on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:18:22 PM PDT

    •  That's what I was thinking. (0+ / 0-)

      Anyone of any lower income is seeing a great deal of relief from this. The problem with some in the GOP, especially the Tea Party folks, is that they confuse the people who's interests they serve with the people who actually vote for them.

      The "Shot heard 'round the world" is now known as the "Pinochet Ricochet". --commonmass

      by commonmass on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:20:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Doesn't it just boil down to the fact that DeMint (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, Just Bob, Bulldawg

    needs an issue to raise funds around and for generating a degree of discontent? Railing against Obamacare, at least until people love it, is a pretty reliable routine.

    What was it that Mark Twain said about dogs and fleas?

    "Life is short, but long enough to get what's coming to you." --John Alton

    by Palafox on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:22:50 PM PDT

  •  GOP donors should defund Jim DeMint (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    or fire him from the Heritage Foundation. Reduce donation and then force the Board to act.

  •  Not hysterical in all its definitions... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Originally it was a term to describe a medical condition in women; see the etymology of the word.

    Is there a suitably derogatory medical term that would apply to these men?

    I want to live in a civil society. Political compass: -7.88, -5.08

    by dragonwerx on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:26:12 PM PDT

  •  Our premiums just went up $30.00 a month. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, 207wickedgood

    My husband works for a utility company in PA and we just received our new premiums. It has gone up $30.00 more a month for 1 person.  Our co-pay also went up from $35.00 to $40.00 for an office visit. Our insurance premium has  gone up every year as well as our co-pay. How many other peoples' premium have also gone up?

    •  Many premiums will go up. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      commonmass, Just Bob, 207wickedgood

      How much did they go up last year? How much would they have gone up without the ACA? What else is included in your coverage that was not required last year?

    •  If anyone's premium is going up because of (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Just Bob, JG in MD

      Obamacare, it's an industry problem, not an Obama problem. Frankly, because of the mandate, the industry should feel comfortable relaxing premiums.

      However, insurance is essentially a kind of mix between legal extortion and a casino, anyway. The entire business is shady, and always has been, no matter how tightly regulated.

      The "Shot heard 'round the world" is now known as the "Pinochet Ricochet". --commonmass

      by commonmass on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 02:38:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Extortion and a Casino (0+ / 0-)

        Exactly. When my COBRA ran out around 2002, I sat down and thought about it and then made a bet with myself.

        I wager everything I have in my retirement fund that I will stay healthy until I'm eligible for Medicare. I further bet that I can afford to pay routine medical bills.
        I won my bet. But I knew I was all in.

        I suddenly started a blog.

        by JG in MD on Sat Oct 19, 2013 at 11:47:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Bill Maher had the simplest term for it (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    "The Bubble"

    "Echo Chamber" also applies.

    I sometimes see the same thing when I talk to a more hardcore Christian, and they think that reciting certain Bible verses at me is some kind of checkmate.  Then they really don't seem to be able to grasp how I don't give that much weight.

    Really, it's peple coming from completely different worldviews, and different realities.

  •  they have retained the sequester (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    commonmass, mdetrano

    Not untrue.

  •  gobbledygook (0+ / 0-)

    The precise psychological term is BATSHIT CRAZY!

  •  Wait... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Weren't these same fucking idiots calling it the "Obamaquester" a few months back????

  •  Well, we all have our bubbles (0+ / 0-)

    I like mine with a rubber duck.

  •  My pet term would be "shared narcissism". (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Just Bob, JG in MD

    These seem to me to be intellectually insecure people, although that's an admittedly subjective assessment. What is obvious, however, is the circular affirmation that they offer each other on matters of opinion, as well as their shared myths (or as they refer to them, "facts.")

    They know that they are smart, because their opinions are affirmed by other smart people. How do they know that those other people are smart? Because they have the same opinions. People who have different perception are stupid and/or fools who are allowing themselves to be deceived--you know, "libtards". (Charming, right?)

    This worldview of being in the know, without any troubling doubts about their perceptions, is a source of emotional comfort in a confusing world. For example, I supported Obama over Romney on economic matters not because I'm sure that Obama or any other Democrat has the answers to solve our economic problems. I don't feel like I have the answers at all. I was just damn sure that electing a super-rich guy to initiate another dose of trickle-down WASN'T the solution.

    I'm comfortable with the ambiguity that accompanied that decision, because I'm intellectually and emotionally secure with being unsure about these things. But the Tea Party crowd is allergic to such ambiguity, because the idea of not really knowing what to do in these circumstances just freaks the shit out of them. So they grab at the guy that sounds like he knows for sure--Newt Gingrich, or Rand Paul, or Ted Cruz--which makes them feel like THEY know for sure as well. And the rest of us guys are just raining on their parade, trying to deprive them of that ideological teddy bear--so they just HAVE to tear us down.  

  •  Joaquin Murietta's gang (0+ / 0-)

    included a guy who was sleeping around; he had a jealous wife, who one night as he slept poured molten lead in his ear. I would like to do that to DeMint.

  •  It all begins with a political philosophy (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JG in MD

    that says, "Either we can get anyone to believe anything, or those we can't don't matter."

    THIS is the triangular relationship between Heritage et al, ALEC et al, and the state legislators/legislatures.

    That this is an effective relationship cannot be argued.
    That it begins with an illegal constitutional authority, or that it  creates an unholy alliance with no good end in mind for the American people cannot be denied.  The core of the plan is the use of legitimate power for illegal and unconstitutional ends, to be paid for by the extremest poor population of the Americans; this has not even been attempted to be denied. The question is, what are WE going to do about it?

    Nurse Kelley says my writing is brilliant and my soul is shiny - who am I to argue?
    Left/Right: -7.75
    Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -4.51

    by Bud Fields on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 03:25:55 PM PDT

  •  Are these guys Obama admin plants? (0+ / 0-)

    Talk about the perfect smokescreen for the ultimate in stupid IT screw-ups.  If it wasn't for the real GOP plants, the false-equivalency crowd in the MSM, covering for them, the Republican Party would already have sunk without trace under this kind of "leadership."

  •  All snark aside (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    207wickedgood, JG in MD

    Please don't tar folks who are actually mentally ill by talking about them in the same terms as Republicans.  Only the latter are at all likely to be a danger to others.  Schizophrenics are almost entirely dangerous only, or at least predominantly, to themselves.

    Schizophrenics actually have a fairly strong tendency to not find affirmation in the fact that others have similar ideas.  Instead of having delusional synergy, their delusions carry a lot of their force from being private, NOT what other people think.

    There are certainly some parallels and shared qualities to chronic paranoid schizophrenia versus Teahadism.  There definitely is a paranoid style in US politics, and the Teahadists have been some of that style's closest adherents.  But CPS is inherently not a basis for a mass movement.

    The biggest difference is that schizophrenics need our patience ands understanding, while Republicans just need the boot.

    The states must be abolished.

    by gtomkins on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 03:39:20 PM PDT

  •  I am a violist and I can not last thru this (0+ / 0-)

    maybe Jim DeMint can...

    by Portia Elm on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 03:51:29 PM PDT

  •  He came, he saw, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    He Jim Demented!

  •  Let's see - should their pitcher throw a fastball (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JG in MD

    high and tight or maybe a fastball high and tight? Perhaps they should "change up" a bit and throw a fastball high and tight!  If that doesn't work they could always try a fastball high and tight from the wind-up.

    No one would ever see that coming.

    Fuck me. It's a leprech... oh wait, it's just Newt.

    by here4tehbeer on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 04:25:45 PM PDT

  •  It would take a whole fleet to treat this man em (0+ / 0-)

    “Never argue with someone whose livelihood depends on not being convinced.” ~ H.L. MENCKEN

    by shigeru on Fri Oct 18, 2013 at 05:14:41 PM PDT

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