View Full Version : Michael Steele thinks he's a nut job....
09-30-2009, 10:42 PM
10-01-2009, 06:46 AM
Excellent OP-ED. Thomas Friedman is a clear-thinker. I sent this link to a parishioner of mine who sent me a somewhat vitriolic note a few weeks ago. We'll see what he says. (He's normally a very even tempered guy ... it kind of surprised me)
The saying "Politics is the art of the possible" is attributed to Otto von Bismark, a German politician, who made the remark on Aug. 11, 1867.
American politics has always been about compromise. Compromise means finding the middle ground. Each side gets some of what it wants; both sides give up something they wanted. Fundamentalist politics of both the right and the left, like fundamentalist religion, sees things in black and white, with no gray in between. As dull as gray may seem, it is precisely in the gray area that we should be looking for answers to our major problems.
Representative democracy as we have experienced it in the United States has produced myriad compromises over the two-plus centuries of its existence. Some of them, most notably those around slavery, were wrong-headed and immoral, and were subsequently eliminated. But most compromises have worked reasonably well and have improved -- or at least not diminished -- the the nationa's quality of life.
Compromise means you have to talk to each other and listen to what the other side has to say. That demands respect for others' beliefs and a modicum of civility that seems to be missing in our society. As the middle tunes itself out of the political debate, the extremes become more strident. The scariest trend of American life is the apathy that has silenced the voice of the vast middle part of the body politick.
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