Frank Rich's latest column bears a read.
I guess I'm not quite (yet?) where he is in seeing the Stack suicide and the notes of approval it generated in a worrisome light. It's all too easy for some anonymous or pseudonymous clown to give vent to his fantasies online, and as for the prominent Republican officials who gave it the old wink, wink, nudge, nudge, grin, grin, I am in many ways happy. The more Republicans do to align themselves with rightwing extremists, the less chance they have of reacquiring majority power.
Rich is correct to call the overall GOP "efforts to co-opt" the teabaggers "ham-handed." I think he misses another aspect of it, though: to the extent that they succeed, it's only going to backfire, just as it did with the decision to align themselves with the radical religious right. You can get a quarter, maybe a third of the country into your camp by catering to the wingnuts, and maybe even fool another chunk for a short while by preaching a non-stop message of fear, but the majority of this country really doesn't want to associate itself with racism, nihilism, and hate.
Still, eternal vigilance is the price we must pay. My confidence in the ultimate good sense of the Murrikin people could be misplaced. So, to that end, give Frank Rich's piece a look.
[Added] Steve M. has some more comments on Rich's column, and a slightly different take from mine.