It's Day Two of President Obama's second term and the gloom and despondency are palpable among his opponents. There is open talk among his allies of an alleged plan to smash the Republicans and permanently render them powerless.
That may be the best thing that could happen for Obama's loyal opposition because, like the prospect of being hung at dawn, losing elections that couldn't be lost has a way of concentrating the minds of political leaders and followers on the wrong end of the vote count. Ilusions are smashed while false promises and assumptions are exposed.
Such concentration often produces victory the next time around.
RedState's Erick Erickson is all about smashing illusions by exposing false promises and assumptions with his "The Loyal Opposition" essay this morning. It's a blunt, no-holds-barred assessment of the current condition and future prospects for the conservative movement that is the heart and soul of the Republican Party.
Erickson steps on a lot of toes and pulls no punches. He's probably going to be blasted by Republican Establishment regulars and long-time conservative figures at the same time. Here are three blunt paragraphs that are likely to draw particularly intense fire:
"What I am finding is that among conservatives there is too much outrage, piss, and vinegar. It makes our ideas less effective. We have become humorless, angry opponents of the president instead of happy warriors selling better ideas. We are not even selling ideas.
"Conservatives, frankly, have become purveyors of outrage instead of preachers for a cause. Instead of showing how increasing government harms people, how free markets help people, and how conservative policies benefit all Americans, we scream 'Benghazi' and 'Fast & Furious.'
"We're off key and off message. We've become professional victims dialed up to 10 on the outrage meter. Who the hell wants to listen to conservatives whining and moaning all the time about the outrage du jour?"
Good question. Go here for the rest of a bracing essay and may the debate begin in earnest.
Mark Tapscott is executive editor of The Washington Examiner.