It was an interesting title, so I went ahead and read the editorial in the LA Times. As you know, I am of an age that normally, when I think of the name "McCarthy", I don't immediately land on "Tailgunner Joe", but instead I envision Eugene McCarthy, of anti-Vietnam-War fame in the late 60s.
However, I am also a student of history and I know a lot more about Tailgunner Joe than the average person, so it was with a lot of interest that I read the LA Times editorial entitled "The GOP's McCarthy Gene".
Go ahead and check it out. It's an interesting and unique take on the recent (i.e. last 50 years) history of the Rethug Party, and it rings pretty true:
...a less heroic story, and one that may go a much longer way toward really explaining the Republican Party's past electoral fortunes and its future. In this tale, the real father of modern Republicanism is Sen. Joe McCarthy, and the line doesn't run from Goldwater to Reagan to George W. Bush; it runs from McCarthy to Nixon to Bush and possibly now to Sarah Palin. It centralizes what one might call the McCarthy gene, something deep in the DNA of the Republican Party that determines how Republicans run for office, and because it is genetic, it isn't likely to be expunged any time soon.And it also explains why mAnn Coulter is so wet for the memory of old Tailgunner Joe...