Today is the third day that Tea Party Republicans have held a loaded gun to America's head, threatening to keep the government shut down and potentially even refuse to pay our country's bills, plunge America back into a recession, and collapse the world economy unless they're allowed to rewrite or revoke existing laws and extract draconian cuts to vital social programs.
The very future of our democracy is at stake. If Republicans are successful at extracting concessions from the Democrats, they'll have proved that this tactic -- creating a crisis and then extorting policy changes in exchange for ending it -- works, and they'll use it again whenever they feel it suits them.
And if we have that, then we won't have a democracy. We'll have a government that operates by blackmail, jerking from one self-inflicted crisis to another with a loaded gun to its head, slashing and bleeding itself and us to death along the way.
How does this unprecedented extremism make Republicans feel? According to Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), ecstatic. She appeared on
Faux Noise Fox News today and told Sean Hannity "We're really very energized today, we are very strong. This is about the happiest I've seen members [of the GOP] in a long time..."
Seriously. To paraphrase Rachel Maddow, the Republicans are burning down the house and laughing while they do it.
If you're able to stomach it, you can watch Bachmann's remarks after the jump.