Can't anybody here play this game? - Jimmy Breslin

Conservatives have been treated to serial disappointments of late, and while the left deserves to shoulder a lot of the blame, some of our recent wounds were self-inflicted.

First, I sympathize with Parler to a certain extent because what Amazon has done to them is somewhat unprecedented. There are, of course, competing views as to whether Amazon telegraphed their intentions far in advance of their final decision to bump Parler off of their infrastructure. But whether they did or not, and even though what they have done is a little unprecedented for them, their actions were far from unforeseeable by anyone with a modicum of imagination.

Given the ferment within the tech market over censorship, Parler should have had a detailed plan locked and loaded long long ago. The lack of an executable disaster plan is on Parler. As painful as it might be to admit, Parler has just been outplayed by the tech lords and there was nothing foreordained about that outcome.

But I have also come to view Parler's failure in this regard as a mirror image of what happened to Republicans in the recent election.

It's highly likely, in my view, that the election was stolen. That the left was going to try to steal the election was as plain as the noses on our collective faces. But the decision by Republicans, not to go to defcon 1 until after the election, reflects a rather breathtaking incompetence on their part. Mounting widespread challenges to the rules of the game only after the game has been played is just, well, dumb.

Both Parler and the Republicans (people don't call them "the stupid party" for nothing) have demonstrated a lack of shrewdness and foresight that have ill-served both their constituents and the country at large.