Where he used to titter over a bon mot… or smile wryly at a double entendre, now he can only give a hoarse laugh, like a half-wit watching The Three Stooges.
For now, there's not even a single entendre. It's just mud wrestling and pie throwing.
Conservatives held their big jamboree last weekend. We sent our own eyes and ears.
"There was hardly a conservative in sight," he reported. "There were no Ron Pauls here. No Eisenhowers. No Howard Buffetts. Certainly no Thomas Jeffersons."
The essence of traditional conservatism is humility, doubt, and cynicism about what government can achieve.
Activists, on the other hand, think they can use the feds' muscle like a ball-peen hammer, to knock the country into whatever shape they want.