> The Nation - October 9, 2000
> KATHA POLLITT
> I still think Nader dismisses too lightly the threat Bush poses to
> women's rights and civil rights generally. Having said that Gore was
> genuinely better on abortion, Nader seemed to deny that this would
> matter: Roe v. Wade "is a settled issue. We're not going back to the
> back alley again. Prochoicers are too strong." But if prochoicers are
> so strong, how come abortion is already encumbered with more than 300
> state restrictions, most carrying criminal penalties? How come George
> W. Bush signed eighteen antiabortion bills into law in 1999?
Or for another example, think of Social Security. The 'third rail' of politics (meaning, 'touch it and die'). One which even the GOP didn't dare screw with. Something with far less opposition than abortion.
Well, they spent enough time and money laying a foundation for it's destruction ^H^H^^H^H^H^H^H^H^H^^H privatization, and they're ready to actually swing the wrecking ball.
There was a description in a book written during WWII, by an american pilot in China, of raising a plane which was sunk in a river. The americans pent a long time on it in vain, while the chinese offerred their help. When the americans gave up, the chinese started. They had guys take a stick of bamboo down, and tie it under the plane's wings.
Several thousand sticks later, the plane rose to the surface.
The GOP is perfectly willing to do the same thing. For 'swimmers', substitute 'economists'. For 'bamboo sticks', substitute 'propaganda'. And their foundations are totally willing to fund the effort as needed.
And in the case of abortion rights, they have the advantage of a solid minority which is seriously dedicated to stopping all abortion (and virtually all non-abstinence-based birth control). They also understand the use of the federal judiciary. One of the changes which the Reagan adminstration did was to appoint younger men to the judiciary, so that they'd have a longer careers, giving each appointment more long-term influence.