• Okay, so my first thought was "This is news for whom, now? The five people who showed up at O'Donnell's book signing?" Then I realized that that might double Politico's readership without appreciably lowering its average IQ. Good move.
• And my first thought here was "Oh, Politico's management gave every employee the same Word-a-Day calendar last Christmas." But that doesn't work, since "panic" in the first instance consists of spokessentients for four "leftist" "special interests" (Women, Gun Violence, the Separation of Church and State, Al Sharpton) stating their dislike for the Governor's politics in what seem like fairly calm, and certainly complete, sentences (and apparently in response to a question some journalist asked); "not panic", in the second, describes being forced to kiss Jim DeMint's ass in public, and having your advisers, real and self-declared, urge you to start swinging at Perry real quick, before the Teabag Party appoints him President.
But even as the primary is fought on conservative turf, liberal leaders say they and their constituents see Perry as far worse than your average, hated Republican, and indeed as bad — if not worse — than his hated predecessor in Austin, George W. Bush.
Y'know, the median age in the United States is around 35, and the median age of voters adds another decade. This suggests that the typical "liberal" "leader" should have a passing familiarity with Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan, and probably should have confronted the presidencies of one or more Bushes from a liberal perspective. Th' fuck is there left to panic about? Why would anyone in his right mind imagine that a Romney presidency would be "more moderate" on gun control just because Rick Perry is a pandering loon in a bandolier? What gun control? We fucked this country up royally in 1980. It is the year to which you can trace the decline of the middle class, the ascension of Property over Personal rights, the end of Fairness on the public airwaves, and the national agenda being set by slimy televangelists. The two centrist Democrat administrations in the interim have sought mainly to find a common ground between Reaganism and their own pollsters' notion of what wins elections; historical Democratic majorities in both Houses did nothing whatsoever for their supposed constituencies. I sure don't relish the idea of another Bush, but does that make me feel more confident about Mitt Fucking Romney? No it does not. I'll relax about it when this shit is thoroughly discredited, in the public debate and at the ballot box, the same as it has been in reality. Or else when the tainted Chinese catfood kills me. I'll panic about it never. The people who ought to panic about Rick Perry are the Mitch Danielses and the David Brookses and all the other fuckers who've been whistling past that graveyard for thirty years now.
Maybe Rick Perry is 8% worse than Romney, and 15% worse than Obama; if I had a serious alternative I'd be donating money to the cause. When we fuck up Social Security, Medicare, reproductive rights, the public schools--that is, when we fuck them up to Republican standards, not just Democratic Bargaining Position standards--and arm every citizen so we can gun down anyone who doesn't Pray in school, I'm not going to panic. I'm going to watch, and try to enjoy, as much as possible, as the slow dawning of what they've accomplished seeps over the Republican rank and file, aka the rightward part of the new permanent Serf class. We've had thirty years to wake up from this shit now. The continued slumber is not due to lack of evidence.
• Meanwhile, I hope you weren't too overcome by Perry Panic to enjoy the tour of The Opulent Digs of Aisha Gaddafi, the Uday and Qusay of Libya, as brought to you by teevee reporters outraged by the pretentiousness of Wealth and the stratification of someone else's society.
• South by Southwest Festival gets politicized; proposed lineup includes:
"Poli-Sci-Fi Punditry: Nerdy Political Bloggers," featuring Slate's David Weigel, The Washington Monthly's Steve Benen, The Washington Post's Ezra Klein, the American Prospect's Adam Serwer and the Center for American Progress's Alyssa Rosenberg.
More tainted Chinese catfood, anyone?