Extremist movements whether they are national like the Confederate Republicans, or your local ultra conservative religious group, eventually suffer the same fate unless something forces diversification. Idealogical extreamists have a need to be “correct”. If they are “right” enough, their thinking goes, then they will win. Rush has been busy talking about the need to do this. Colin Powell, who is not a Confederate Republican, is voicing the exact opposite opinion: the GOP must expand to get beyond this recursion into self. If the recursion into self continues, all those who disagree with the “core” group which seems to be Confederate Republicans, will be kicked out of the party. Whether Stalinist, Nazi, Confederate Republicans, or a small fundamentalist church do this, it is always for the same reasons: Ideological Purification. Small fundamentalist churches do it something like this: There are sinners in the world. We are in the world. There must be sinners in us. No sinners found. If we were perfect we would win. We are not winning. Someone among us must have impure thoughts. Find the ideological sinner. No sinners found. Find the guy who looks like he has impure thoughts. Throw him out. Repeat process until one man is left standing. Perhaps Powell understands the GOP will self destruct if this process is not stopped. Hitler destroyed Germany and much of Europe riding this engine. The same pattern can be found in any extreme ideology searching for purity. Consider the Soviet Union and Stalin’s purges if you are in doubt. The quest for ideological purity can destroy most human endeavors, and perhaps humanity itself. So what has suddenly killed Republicanism? The quest for ideological purity forced out government regulation. If they could, they got rid of it. If they couldn’t get rid of it, they didn’t bother to enforce it. If capitalism and the market economy can solve every problem known to man: why do we need any regulation? Or government, for that matter? So now we have toxic assets, toxic air, toxic peanuts, toxic toys, toxic vegetables, toxic water, and toxic wall board. Ok, so we had toxic government. The nation tossed them out last year. Now they are off purifying themselves, tossing out all the impure ideological fellows amongst them. Shouldn’t be too long after that task is complete, they will be purging all their fellows who look idealogically impure. When Rush is the only one left standing, he should consider himself lucky. In another place and time, he might find himself in his own bunker, in his own Berlin, waiting the arrival of his own Soviet Army. This America finds a comfort zone in the area under the bell curve. You might call it the umbrella of diversity of thought and union of common interest. Powell would move the republican party back under the bell curve, and away from ideological extremism. That might save the party. Sure couldn’t hurt America. Couldn’t hurt the rest of the world, much either.