Years ago I read “American Odyssey,” long out of print, a history of the origins and development of Michigan. For several years, while working at the Michigan Supreme Court as the State Court Administrator, I gave copies of the book to the people I worked with, particularly those who had come to Michigan from elsewhere in the U.S.
My goal was to afford new staff the opportunity to learn about the State of Michigan and some surprising aspects of its history, one of which was the first convention of the new Republican Party near Jackson, Michigan, just south of Lansing, in July of 1854 – a half dozen years before Abraham Lincoln was the first Republican to be elected President. A great part of the impetus behind the formation of the Republican Party was opposition to the extension of slavery.
Somewhere along the line the Republican Party became known as the GOP, the Grand Old Party. I don’t argue about the words “Old Party,” even thought the Democratic Party is older. But at this stage I must object to the word Grand, which is defined as stately, dignified, and highly idealistic, at least not when I think of our current Tweeter-In-Chief and many of his minions, some of whom are in the U.S. Congress. Possibly the last straw for me was his recent reaction to the report on climate change prepared by U.S. government scientists: “I read part of it. It’s fine. I don’t believe it.”
To paraphrase a recent summary from an NPR news program summing up the current White House strategy: Start a fire, blame someone else for starting it, then take credit for putting it out. One might well add: Be sure to disagree, disparage, and/or ignore most everything about former staff and much of the work of the intelligence community and other government agencies, except, of course, what is contained in the tweets emanating from the White House. The G in GOP is missing these days.