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Plenty of pundits, professional and otherwise, have no clear notion of what is going on in the GOP. They have theories. We all do. It continues to fascinate as idea after idea is proposed to explain the relative insanity that goes by the name of the Grand Old Party.

Perhaps Old is the operative word. It’s old, worn out, bereft of an ideology that pertains to the real world. It is stuck in the Eighteenth Century, maybe the Nineteenth on a good day.

It contains a wide range of idealogues, practical practitioners, and plain wackos. In this, it is no different that the Democratic machine, which is famed for having the biggest tent in the land–home to near anarchists, social progressives, and middle of the road conservative-lite working families.

Yet, the Republicans have run off the track in a way that is providing enough fuel for the next five generations of political historians. What are they doing? Do they know? Can they control the bus careening down the mountain?

It’s anybody’s guess.

Some suggest, and I think it worth thinking about, that the real core of the Old Party is setting the stage for a serious “weeding.” What better way to rid itself of a wing of immature, uninformed, uneducated riff-raff that thinks it can “primary” anyone who doesn’t adher to their “cut taxes, cut government” child-philosophy?  What better way for a lot of old-white-men-Establishment types to rid themselves of uppity Black folk, odd ball “Christians” and *gasp* any nosing around Muslim types. Atheists already know better. What better way to rid themselves of noxious women who dare to think that they can carry the standard for the party of Lincoln?

They allow this bag of tricks to sit in the middle of the road on a rainy day and throw mud. They let them propose and raise their hands to every idiotic notion about how the world works that’s been recorded in the last one hundred years. They let them show their insanity, trusting that they will be rejected by the great massive “middle” of the electorate that may not quite know why they are crazy, but can sense that they are.

So we get Mitt who has not a single principle in his pretty little head, but wants to be president in a way that suggests that a psychiatrist would have a field day unwinding the neuroticisms that play into that. And he’s a Mormon. No matter how people creep around the subject, the Right-wing mass of unthinking fundies will never abide that.

Then there is Newt who never met a dollar he didn’t want in his pocket. A man who enjoys all the perks of public life, right down to discarding troublesome wives when a hotter item walks by. A man who can start a public organization, “Americans for the Betterment of Newt America” every day of the week, for the express purpose of paying his airline bills, his hotel bills, and his overeating.  Newt is grifting in the public arena for all to see.

Then there is Rick Perry, called by some the human price tag. While Mitt’s principles can be bought for a vote, Perry can literally be bought by monied interests. If you want a job, want a bill passed, want your drug distributed, want your filthy environmental disaster ignored, just call and ask for the current rate.  Perry personifies the theory that everyone has a price. He was so right when he said that anyone who thinks that he can be bought for $5,000 was insulting. Everyone in Texas knows it takes much more than that.

Then there is Herman Cain. Herman is the epitome of the black guy who decides that personal success matters more than principle. He is the guy who applies to be the token and dutifully reads the prepared statement written by his “owners.” His arrogance shows. He is one who believes with all his heart that he got where he got by his own superior abilities. Cain believes that he is “using” the GOP, when in fact they are merely allowing the minstrel show because it suits their purpose at the moment. He will be prove positive that blacks “can’t handle the job.” Among themselves they will nod and say, “it was the problem all black men have–white women.”

Michele Bachmann provides the best of all excuses that women are plainly crazy. Added to the silliness of the inept Sarah Palin, Michele offers more religiosity and mixed up history to the mix. She doesn’t pretend to offer an economic plan”, since platitudes are her stock in trade. “we will make President Obama a one term president,” she bellows, batting her eyes and waiting for applause. Her every move is motivated by some personal interpretation of the bible, either given to her by her gender conflicted husband or from some fringe preacher of the day. Once she admitted that a husband is the head of the wife, she admitted that as president, Marcus would make the decisions.

Rick Santorum hardly needs mentioning. He is a one-trick pony who is exactly what John Kennedy had to fight off in 1960–the fear that he would be controlled by Rome. Rick outdoes Rome in his demands that sex in general and gays in particular are just “icky”. He joins the rest in demanding to “secure our borders” without offering a thought on what to do about the 10 million of undocumented workers already here. Some how they should just disappear. Rick is doomed by his “Google” problem. With Michele, he represents all the intellectual “depth” of the TeaNutz® machine–a light mist.

Ron Paul? Ron is barely a Republican at all. His limited-but-stable following consists mostly of independents. The wizened old men of the party barely know he’s there.

Jon Huntsman on the other hand is an entirely different kind of Republican. He is bright, principled and could give Obama a serious run for his money. In fact I suspect, given the economic conditions we life in (which I don’t blame Obama for), he would probably win. He accepts the reality of global warming and evolution. He recognizes that the “immigration problem” must be solved with a view toward finding a way to citizenship for all those who contribute so much to our economy but are not citizens. I don’t agree with his economic solutions which are still thoroughly on the side of reduction of taxes and elimination of regulations, but at least I don’t fear him taking the country over the cliff. His Mormonism is frankly ignored.

But the real power of the GOP will not give him a hand.

And that is why I think they are throwing this one.

For the good of themselves.

Which is what all good “powers” behind the throne do. Look out for themselves.

And you say?