I am feeling slightly better, though I still have a very deep and abiding fear about the state and direction of America. I should note, perhaps, that this is not just a fear of what four more years of GWB will bring (though that is none too comforting). It is also a fear about what happens to a country in which the political discourse has become so poisonous.
Many fine things have been written in the aftermath of Tuesday’s election. As well as much nonsense. Sometimes, I’m not sure which is which, frankly. I do, however, have a few things to say about it, in a longer entry coming soon.
One of the things that this election cycle has made me realize is that the old labels don’t really apply any more. Conservative used to mean something about fiscal responsibility, defending states’ rights, and supporting free trade. Now, it seems to mean nothing more than cutting taxes no matter the cost and writing discrimination into the constitution. Liberal once stood for all that is best in the Western tradition (free speech, etc.). Now, it is nothing more than a Republican smear word. Both of our political parties are deeply, deeply broken. I’ve told you much about what’s wrong with the Republican party (in the person of GWB); in the sequel, I will describe briefly what’s wrong with the Democratic party.
Let us speak no more about red states and blue states, about liberals and conservatives, and about Republicans and Democrats. Let us instead talk about ideas and about the future of our union. The old labels aren’t serving us well.
I have been very introspective lately. In keeping with my desire that we talk about ideas, I’m going to write a series of entries about various issues and my ideas about them. It should be revealing for me, if boring for you.