When the dust settles I'm afraid it'll be Romney with a briefcase and a fountain pen, trying gosh-darned hard to get America to switch insurance companies.
I'm no prognosticator, which means, above all, that I don't have to phone in one of these cutesy faux-self-deprecations at year's end (designed, you'll note, to reinforce the Offical Pundit Script even as they supposedly highlight what pundits got wrong. Imagine a real column in which Dana Milbank confesses his errors. It would take the entire year to do it. The wisdom of confining oneself to "predictions" when doing such things is shown by the fact that Weigel doesn't have to admit anything nearly as embarrassing, or self-revealing, as his paean to Michele Bachmann's knowledgeable and polished initial debate performance).
I have no idea what Romney's path to the nomination looks like. I know he has unlimited funds, God bless America, and a collection of opponents who couldn't govern a home daycare operation without one or two swingset strangulations per annum. That may be all he needs, or he may be so personally devoid of personhood that support coagulates around one particular non-Romney in response. You heard it here first.
What I do know is this: the supposed Teabagger Agenda is just the corporate agenda, and Romney's the corporate candidate. And so's Obama. Some of us think the 5-10% difference between them is important, vital even; that difference, for the Republican rank-and-file is what the headline writers call The Culture Wars. And they are busy fighting a protracted partisan conflict over whether that shit needs to be saved to rile up the yokels, or spread across every front page in America.
In a sense, then, the Republican party has become the Democratic party, with an entrenched leadership machinegunning the human waves of the unwashed and their sharpened sticks. Meanwhile Democrats get to keep up their thirty-year rope-a-dope attempt to become the Thinking Man's Corporate Lackey party.
Can someone remind me what the intervening three decades of hubbub was all about, again?