This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Perhaps a little reflection on recent history would be helpful. After the 2012 elections, in which the Republicans lost the presidency 332 electoral votes to 206, lost six House seats, and lost two Senate seats, the GOP was in disarray, trying to figure out how they needed to change their message (or at least the wording of it) to appeal to more voters.
They even commissioned a study of the party that came back with some results that were tough to swallow.
This navel gazing didn't last long, though. Rather than actually change their message to be more relevant to modern America, they came up with a "better" idea: extortion. They figured if they could shut down the government and threaten the world with economic ruin (by tying unrelated and impossible legislation to raising the debt ceiling), they could get what they had failed to obtain through constitutional means (legislation, a Supreme Court challenge, and election results).
Let's call this what it is. Desperation. Lawlessness. Cowardice. Selfishness. Disconnection with reality. Political suicide.
And really bad marketing.