Birtherism and the Death of One Kind of Conservatism (Part 3):
Let us speak now of the vicissitudes of relationships damaged beyond one's control. Let us say, and why not, that you are a gay dude. And let us say that you have been together with the same guy for, oh, hell, seven, eight years. It's beautiful love, it's great fucking, it's downs, sure, but mostly ups, it's a life, you know? But then your partner (who'd be your husband if you were in the right state) gets hit by a car. It doesn't kill him. It doesn't even break any bones. But, because he flipped over the car and knocked his head on the pavement, he's got a concussion, and the doctors aren't sure if there will be long-term brain damage. After a couple of days of a hospital stay, with you by his side for much of the time, he's released and you go home. Everything seems fine, but little quirks and odd blips in his behavior worry you. He's on medication, but he doesn't think anything's different. Then, after a week or two, you initiate sex with him. You go down on him, and it's like pre-car smack times. But then you try to get him to blow you, and he freaks out. He doesn't want your dick anywhere near him, he announces. And if you wanna fuck him, you can use a dildo in his asshole, but not your cock, nowhere, no how. Nothing for you to get off. No hand jobs, you can't even jack off in his presence.

Sooo. Huh. That's a big change. Now, you know that this is because of getting pavement upside his skull. So you stick by him, encourage him to see more doctors, get therapy. You want to be there for him as he goes through this crisis. But he doesn't want to. He thinks he's just fine and that you're just being a pussy. Then your obviously fucked-up boyfriend/partner/oughta-be-husband starts acting out even more. He's fucking other guys and telling you about it. But maybe he's lying about that as part of his brain damage, you rationalize. This goes on for a year, with you thinking that, shit, this is the man you love, you can't just walk away when he's obviously got something wrong with him. But then the thought starts to creep into your mind: what if this is the new normal? What if the accident changed him for good? Goddamnit, you want him back the way he was. You want to make him better. But the question is, of course, how much of your life are you willing to give up for what is more than likely a failed attempt? Isn't there a point where you walk away, even if he says he still loves you, even if he wants you to stay, just on his terms, your needs be damned?

Every day, the Rude Pundit receives at least one email from someone named something stupid like "Phineas T. Fuckmyface" or whatever. It's spam sent to writers all over Blogsylvania. And it's some variation on brand new, earth-shattering evidence proving, motherfuckers, once and for all, that President Barack Obama was not born in the United States. Oh, the Rude Pundit will block the email address, but then it comes again from "Jizzy McTwat" or some other name. (By the way, if those were the actual email monikers, it'd at least be vaguely entertaining.) There's websites and organizations devoted to proving the theories of the birthers; there's even books, including one coming out by Jerome Corsi, the spoogebucket who lied about John Kerry's actions during the Vietnam War. Instead of being treated like the herpes-ridden whore that he is, Corsi is invited onto conservative talk shows to spout his theories like so many bursting pustules. But that's all fringe nonsense, the nonsense that gets the mouth breathers to turn off the sound on their Libyan rape porn so they can masturbate to Sean Hannity's voice while some poor woman is having train of Qaddafi's men run on her. Now, though, birtherism has gone mainstream, in preparation for the 2012 election. (And whether you like it or not, Fox "news" is mainstream.)

Let's add one more piece to this puzzle. Expressing what must be the angst felt by a great many people who once proudly called themselves "conservative," if not "Republican," once-proud conservative Andrew Sullivan wrote this week, "Conservatism cannot be defined as whatever is the most extreme right-wing narrative of the moment. Time matters. Conservatism needs to be flexible enough a governing philosophy to be able to correct for conservative ideology itself. When such an ideology threatens fiscal balance, a prudent foreign policy, and a thriving middle class, it has become the enemy of real conservatism, not its friend."

He's right. However, the exigencies of time and the actions of fools change things. 19th-century liberalism is nearly the mirror opposite of today's liberalism. Eisenhower Republicans would think that today's GOP is filled with barking mad idiots and then wonder why in the fuck would leaders pay attention in any way, shape, or form to the maddest of them all. Sorry, dear, once-loyal opposition, but "conservative" has been co-opted and remade in the image of the extremists, much in the way that "Christian" now generally means "fundamentalist" in the United States. Whatever Buckley-esque resonances of decades past you may want it to have, "conservative" now means a devotion to untenable financial policies, obeisance to the needs of corporations and the very wealthy, regressive social policies, and, indeed, belief in things that are demonstrably false. The word belongs to the nuts and to the imbeciles and to those who profit off their devolved sense of the nation and the world.

What do you do, in such a relationship, where you have been abandoned by the progress of the world beyond your reach? If you have any sense, you break up. It's that simple. And you try to figure out how to make your life have meaning again.

(Note: unless it becomes absolutely necessary because of some event or other, this is the last time the Rude Pundit will talk about the godforsaken fucktardery of birtherism.)