"The feeling of many – certainly of the Republican leadership – is that so long as there is some chance we are not doomed, we should not act."
I don't know what to call that emotional stance. Not learned helplessness, certainly. Not despair, not hopelessness, not fatalism. Norm has recognized a problem -- but as long as there is some chance that he's not doomed, he sees no reason to try to do anything about it. Lazy cluelessness, maybe?